Love them or leave them helmets are very much a part of the powersports industry and there are a lot of names in the helmet market. Among those common names is AFX. AFX North America, Inc. was established in the mid-1990s. The founders saw big helmet companies were regularly increasing the price of helmets without offering new innovations to justify that cost. So, in true American fashion, they began creating their own helmets designed to give users feature-rich helmets at reasonable costs. The new AFX FX-21 helmet is proof that after almost 20 years in business they still stand behind that business model.
The AFX FX-21 helmet has an aggressive design. Traditionally helmets have curved in around the bottom, but a recent trend has been that helmets flare out at the lower back of the helmet. While style is all in the eye of the beholder it adds a nice change. It does not interfere with the mobility of the helmet at all. Another innovation in this model is the goggle strap guide across the back, also a trend across the industry. This formation across the back of the helmet keeps your goggle strap from sliding up or down across the helmet and keeps it properly lined up during riding.
The AFX FX-21 helmet is cleaned like most helmets by simply wiping it down. The liner and cheek pads are easily removable for cleaning. They do have to be hand washed; machine washing is not recommended. Being able to machine wash the liner and pads is the biggest improvement we would like to have seen. They do hand wash pretty easily and dry out in a couple of days. Everything snaps back in place with no issues. Ventilation is provided at the mouth (which is filtered by a thick, foam pad), vents on each side of the jaw, two just aft of the top of the helmet and a pair at the back of the head. There are also vents at the top of the eye opening which direct air into channels that run over your head and down the back of the neck. None of the vents can be closed off. It also includes an adjustable visor that can be removed.
On the safety side, the AFX FX-21 Helmet uses their trademarked CONE-HEAD Technology. According to AFX, the outer shell and the impact absorbing, foam liner are fused together. With this design the force of an impact is pushed out to the sides rather than taken full by the helmet and skull. It also helps with the helmets weight; only 2.95 lbs for a size large. The AFX FX-21 Helmet is DOT certified and meets the standards for AMA and several others. The fit is good and snug and plenty comfortable for a day of riding.
The AFX FX-21 Helmet is available in 3 solid colors and 8 colors of the pattern shown in our sample. Solid colors carry an MSRP of $129.95 with the patterns at $139.95. AFX helmets are available through a select few retailers. To find one near you check out http://www.afxhelmets.com. The AFX FX-21 should be a consideration when looking for a good budget priced helmet.