Date reviewed: July 2018 | Tested by: BikeSocial Test Team | Price: From £89.99 | www.sportsbikeshop.co.uk
The Dexter Spectron is an affordable flip-front helmet sold exclusively in the UK by Sportsbike Shop. BikeSocial Test Team member and motorcycle instructor Jenny Kirkwood has been using this one for several months on a variety of bikes, from an MSX125 to an MT07 and a VT750C…
The polycarbonate shell of our lid is finished in a pearl white, which looks good quality. A version with graphics is also available for £99.99, as is a fluoro yellow model.
While the Spectron does look more cheap and plasticky than the big-name flip-fronts, it’s a fraction of the price, and details are good, for instance the nicely stitched lining around the neck.
The polycarbonate-shelled Spectron weighs 1648g, which is slightly lighter than the average multi-composite-shelled flip-front. While of course weightier than a typical full-face, it’s not uncomfortable or ungainly, and the benefits of a flip make the small increase in weight well worthwhile.
The Dexter has one closeable vent on the top and another on the chin, both of which are easy to use with summer or winter gloves on. With shallow channels cut into the polystyrene liner, the vents can’t move air around as effectively as they could, but they still do a good job of keeping you cool and reducing fogging if you’re wearing spectacles.
The chin skirt helps to keep the helmet more still inside, but it can be easily removed if you want it to feel more airy.
Of course, if it’s really hot you can ride with the flip open. This helmet isn’t dual homologated, which means it’s only tested for riding as full-face, but it stayed in place while I was on the bike and had it open.
A lever on either side of the mechanism makes it very easy to pop the visor off, then quickly pop it back on – it’s an excellent system that works very well.
The five-position ratchet is reasonably smooth, and the visor can be just cracked open. Peripheral vision is very good (though you are aware of the Pinlock when fitted), and the drop-down sunshield is well positioned and not too dark.
In heavy rain, the visor leaks quite a bit, water running past the seal on the top edge. Unfortunately it wasn’t possible to adjust the mounting plates to improve things.
A central thumb catch is used to open the visor, which is great as it’s easier to operate while holding the clutch in.
The comfortable lining is very easy to remove and replace, so should be easy to keep clean.
A micrometric ratchet fastener is easy to use with gloves on, and once set up (it only takes a couple of minutes) will always give a secure fit.
Comfort is of course always very subjective, but I found the Spectron fitted me perfectly. It’s easy to put on with the flip open, and the convenience of being able to talk to my students – or staff in the petrol station of course – shouldn’t be overlooked.
I don’t wear earplugs due to allergy issues, but the Spectron doesn’t seem overly noisy.
We always recommend wearing earplugs with any helmet – once you realise the damage that’s been happening, it’s too late. And sitting at home with a constant whistling in your ears is very annoying. John Milbank, Consumer Editor
Flip-fronts are essential to me as a motorcycle instructor, but even during day-to-day use, I just find them so convenient. Despite the visor leaking in heavy rain, I think this is a great-value motorcycle helmet.