When we sent out a Lazer Roller helmet to our resident pedal-head, Rachel Sokal, we didn’t quite expect her to ‘test’ it so comprehensively. Over to Rachel to explain further…
The Roller is Lazer’s entry-level helmet sitting below the Ultrax (which I reviewed last year) and the Enduro-style Revolution (which we’ve also reviewed). Unlike the Ultrax, the Roller also comes in a MIPS option too. I tested both for this review.
It wasn’t until I started penning this review that I realised Lazer classed this as their entry-level helmet. And I’m really surprised. The styling, fit and comfort of this helmet are that of something rather more fancy. The MIPS and non-MIPS versions are identical bar the lining. They are specific helmets though – you can’t fit the MIPS lining into the non-MIPS helmet (I know, I tried).
Externally the design is pretty straight forward, leaning towards the trail rather than XC look. It’s pretty airy for a trail helmet with its 28 vents doing a good job of keeping your head cool. The non-MIPS comes in eight colours from the outlandishly bright orange I had on test through to far more subtle white, black and grey. The MIPS versions are slightly more subtle with grey, black or yellow colours on offer. All colours come with a black visor.
The Roller is pretty lightweight, I weighed the medium MIPS at 316g and non-MIPS at 285g, a bit over the claimed weights of 265g (MIPS) and 245g (non-MIPS). There are three sizes available in both versions; Small (52-56cm), Medium (55-59cm), and Large (58-61cm).
The stand out feature on this helmet is the internal ‘baskets’ that fit the helmet to your head and the adjustment with the TS Plus dial (no, I’ve no idea what TS stands for either). The adjustment system gives a really secure and comfortable fit without any pressure points, enough that despite my efforts I haven’t been able to shake the helmet loose even without the chin strap done up (please be assured this was for the purpose of testing only, I don’t ride around with my helmet undone and neither should you kids). There’s a ratchet that adjusts where the internals sit so you can make sure you get a good fit round the back of your head whilst still being able to see out the front.
Unlike Lazer’s higher end models, the visor isn’t removable or adjustable. Riding this didn’t bother me at all, I don’t tend to adjust the position and it isn’t a style of helmet I’d wear on the road bike (am I allowed to say this?) so don’t have a reason to remove it. The only disadvantage I found was that because the visor didn’t lift and there’s no goggles clip on the rear. When I took my goggles off they didn’t stay on the helmet very well as the strap popped off the back. Given I don’t wear goggles that often it wasn’t a big deal, I just hung them round my neck.
The main challenges in reviewing kit for STW is ensuring you give it enough of a test to be able to really get a feel for how good it is, and what the weaknesses are. It does therefore feel rather remiss to try and review an item of protection without crashing. So to ensure completeness, I chose to fully crash test the Lazer Roller helmet not just the once, but twice, to be able to bring you this comprehensive review. This is why I ended up testing two helmets since I broke the first (and have now broken the second too).
Fancy lab tests aside, what I can tell you from my real-world testing is that the lower coverage at the rear did the trick nicely (both times I landed on the back corner of my head) and by the looks of my other scrapes and bruises, I hit the ground much harder than my head felt I did. As well as protecting my head nicely, another bonus of crashing the Roller is that Lazer is one of a decreasing number of manufactures to offer decent crash replacement and will replace a UK or Ireland purchased helmet at 50% of the RRP.
I really find can’t find fault with the Lazer Roller. It’s lightweight, comfortable and fits brilliantly, sacrificed itself for my head on a couple of occasions and looks pretty good too. Even more surprising that it calls itself entry-level and comes at a decent price.
|Product:||Roller and Roller MIPS helmets|
|Price:||£59.99 (Roller) and £79.99 (Roller MIPS)|
|Tested:||by Rachel Sokal for 5 months|