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A little while back I did a review on the INK helmet from THE and absolutely fell in love. Well, Toby Henderson and the boys at THE Industries did it once again. The guys took all that was awesome about the very successful THE ONE helmet and managed to improve what was already a nearly-perfect product. The ONE still retains its great close-fitting shape but now sports an advanced silver anti-bacterial material embedded in a “Cool Dry” liner which is breathable, moisture wicking, and odor free (perfect for those who tend to neglect their equipment). All kidding aside, the liner is easily removable which makes for easy clean up.

The Picture above shows the Carbon Tiki on the left ($299 MSRP) and the Composite Celtic ($199 MSRP) on the right. Both helmets exceed CPSC and CE standards for safety and impact which, let’s face it, is easily the most important feature in any helmet.

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Beyond improving the technical features of ONE helmets this year, THE has added several hot, new graphical styles for 2010. So many in fact, that I had a really hard time choosing two to write about. I finally decided on the Tiki for myself and The Celtic for Bob_the_Builder (BTB) to get his perspective.

Taking a look at the Tiki you can see the eye-popping Polynesian-inspired graphics that allow the carbon underlay to show through, giving the helmet an overall tribal pinstriping look like no other.

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The venting layout provides great air flow to your face and channels the breeze around your head and out the back, doing a good job keeping your head cool for a full face helmet. They may be tough to spot but there are actually 15 external air vents on both helmets which direct flow to 4 internal channels. BTB felt like he needed just a bit more venting on his Celtic and found removing the foam filter on the front of the helmet just behind the steel mesh of the front opening improved ventilation.

THE ONE helmets boast impressively competitive weights. At 36 oz, the Carbon Tiki stands to be one of the lightest full face helmets out there. The Composite Celtic, at 41 oz, is a bit heavier but is still middle-of-the-pack as far as weight is concerned. As a comparison, most full face MTB helmets weigh between 36 oz and 50 oz+.

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This year THE decided to change up the double-D chin strap rings slightly by having them treated in a black oxide treatment instead of last year’s chrome look. BTB and I both agree that we prefer like the new dark-out look. The double D ring also provides a positive no-slip solution that will not break or loosen during a bone-jarring runs.

Each THE ONE helmet comes with two visors which is something most helmet manufacturers don’t include. The last thing you want is to try to order up a new visor to match your helmet after you munch up your previous one with a face full of dirt. The front opening works well with goggles from Oakley, Spy, Fox, Giro, and Smith and your field of vision is really only limited by the style of goggles you choose. If you decide to run without goggles (not that I recommend this for DH or FR, but let’s say you’re hitting jumps in a bike park), you’ll find the opening is not limited or obstructed by the sides or chin guard.

For most of our testing we took the helmets to Joyride 150 to get out of the bad Toronto weather where it’s been barely above zero degrees C (32 F). Both BTB and I received numerous positive comments on the bold and unique look of the Tiki and Celtic helmets. Having been to Interbike and seeing the entire line up, all THE ONE helmets look great but I particularly love the look of these two units. The stunning red scroll work on the Celtic with its accented black and grey pin striping really sets the look apart. Likewise, the intricate blue print and highly detailed center stripe on the Tiki is really something to behold up close.

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BTB on the progressive jumps doing what he does best.

Well folks, if you’re looking for a great fitting, safe and sturdy helmet, give THE ONE a try. I’m sure you too will enjoy these close, form fitting, light-as-a-feather helmets wrapped in rad graphics. Stay tuned for other exciting products from THE!

Thanks to the folks at THE Industries for providing the Celtic and Tiki helmets for reviews and Joyride 150 for a place to ride and do our tests.

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