Used review: Pro Shade System

Arai’s external sun visor

Used review: Pro Shade System
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ARAI'S Pro Shade System is their answer to the internal sun visor. It's aimed at serious touring riders and I've been using one for the past couple of months.

Arai state that internal visors, as found on many other branded helmets nowadays, sacrifice helmet rigidity. And that’s why they place their sun visor on the outside of the helmet.

Non Arai owners will say that their internal designs are far superior. Yet the Arai owners I know tend to only wear Arai helmets so aren't likely to swap brands. So apart from swapping visors, or wearing sunglasses, this is the only real solution Arai owners have if it's dark one minute and light the next - or vice versa.

The flip up visor creates almost no drag at all. If you wear earplugs (and you should if you want to hear anything in a few years time) then you can’t hear it when it’s flipped up either. And it’ll stay up at triple figure speeds no problem at all.

While in the up position the visor acts like a peak, but the peak is only just visible and certainly does not distract from riding.

I was very happy to be testing the Pro Shade System on a recent 2500-mile tour. Simply put, with the Pro Shade System you don’t have to comprise your vision during changeable weather.

It came into its own on a sunny day during a series of dark dusty tunnels that stretched for kilometres at a time. These tunnels were not somewhere I would have enjoyed riding through with a traditional dark visor, choosing between limited vision or flipping the visor up and getting your face sandblasted while you’re forced to squint at the road ahead.

A drawback compared to internal visor designs is that you have to have the normal clear visor pretty much closed to use the dark visor. Not so great on hot days around town. The only other downside I discovered are the two visor air vents don’t always close properly if you pull the tabs down from their sides rather than the middle.

Despite these points I was pleased to have chosen the Pro Shade System rather than a tinted visor for that recent tour.

But I think the real benefit for Aria owners (when not touring) will come later in the year when daily commutes start off in darkness and end with a low sun.

The Pro Shade System costs £99 and is supplied as a free extra with these 2014 Quantum ST, Rebel and Chaser V helmets until October.

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