Date reviewed: April 2018 | Tested by: Simon Hancocks | Price: £239.99 | www.nevis.uk.com
I originally got the Shark Drak as I was taking part in the 2017 Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride; all the other lids I had were sports or sports touring, so not ideal for a ride with the UK’s hippest riders and bikes.
I’ve also used the Drak for the Triumph Bobber Black press launch, summer rides and winter blasts on a variety of different styles of bikes. The Drak was the first open-face lid I’d used, and I chose it as it gave some of the weather protection of a full-face, yet the style of an open-face helmet.
Constructed from injected thermoplastic resin, the Dual Black version I have features matt black flanks with a gloss black centre stripe, and I think it’s coolest-looking lid in the range. The removable soft plastic face mask adds to the style.
It’s worth noting that the Drak is not homologated as a full face helmet. This means that it isn’t tested in the same way as a full-face lid and not designed to offer the same level of protection. The face mask is purely aesthetic – although it does keep some bugs out of your teeth!
The Shark Drak weighs in at 1243g with the goggles and face-mask fitted.
There is a large centrally-mounted vent on the top of the helmet that slides forwards and backwards to open and close. The vent is easy to find and use on the move although I never really felt much benefit from it. I think it’s probably down to the amount of air that gets around the goggles and mask that nullifies the effect of this small vent.
That said I did use the Drak on some of the hottest days in summer and really enjoyed the benefit of not having my face stuck in what is effectively a greenhouse.
The Drak’s goggles have a scratch proof lens and anti-fog coating on the inside. There are also vents on the top and sides of the goggles to prevent any misting. It must work, even riding home one evening in a torrential spring shower the goggles never fogged or misted up.
The goggles – which are not removable from the helmet – have a small amount of adjustment on either strap. I found I could get them to sit closely to my face but not as snuggly as I would ideally want. One thing I found was that lifesaver checks at motorway speeds would cause the goggles to lift ever so slightly from my face. It never felt like they were going to fly off but the first time it happened it did take me by surprise.
The lining of the Drak is a natural fibre construction and although it does tend to stain quite easily – it’s a light grey colour – it is fully removable and washable.
The whole lining is soft and very comfortable against your skin. Even with a few days of stubble the lining is as comfortable as any of the other top end helmets I’ve tried.
The Drak uses an adjustable ratchet strap to fasten. There’s a large tab on the back of the ratchet that you pull to release, which is easy to find when wearing gloves, and the whole system is easy to adjust should you need to.
A nice feature about the strap is the soft lining of the interior of the helmet extends right the way down the strap; it’s thickly padded and lined with felt. It’s really noticeable when you’ve been wearing it all day, bravo Shark.
A big reason to consider the Drak is it’s really comfortable. I have a small – I’m normally a medium in other helmets but went by the size guide on the site – I find I have to open the helmet out when I put it on and squeeze my head in. Once inside though the shape and the lining provide a really snug place to be.
The biggest surprise with this lid is that it’s actually very quiet. There is a bit of wind noise at speed though no more than a full-face lid, and engine noise is very low. It could be down to the lack of vents or the close-fitting profile of the shell.
The Drak is a very surprising helmet on a number of counts. Firstly, I assumed that an open-face lid would be noisy and tiring over long distance; it wasn’t. I also thought the styling of the helmet would be prioritised over comfort, that’s not the case at all.
The Drak is a cool looking helmet that while not packed with features is still functional, in all but the coldest weather at least.
If you want a lid that provides the cool-factor in spades but still works like a full face, albeit without full face protection; the Shark Drak is most definitely worthy of your attention.