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Les Ateliers Ruby, St. Germain Model, 4 month review:

A few tours overseas will give anyone a serious aversion to helmets: hot, dirty, headache inducing cool killers. But it’s the only thing that’s going to save you when the chips are down and the rubber is up.  So when I set out to get my riding gear, I went looking for the best looking, most comfortable thing (my) money could buy, luckily enough this beauty of a helmet turned out to be it.

Fit and Feel

Coming from a 5 pound kevlar, anything is going to be dreamy, but the Ruby was especially so.  The lining is arranged in such a way that no part of your head is pinched, the pressure is distributed evenly— so much so you will hardly notice wearing it at all. The lining is backed by a lot more padding than I have seen in other helmets, which again gave it an airy feel and allowed it to break in a little easier.  Sizing is arbitrary, but I found that the listed head size in cm matched up to my own measurements very well, and ran a size larger than the Bell helmets I tried.

Styling/Aesthetics

Hopefully the pictures do it justice, but this helmet is as much a piece of sculpture as it is safety equipment. The proportions are just right and the contrast and richness of color is stunning. The inlaid Ruby red insignia and chrome lining set against the jet black ebony shell is true eye candy, softened by the luxurious rouge suede lining and details. The helmet’s slight scalloping gives it a unique, more streamlined profile, but won’t draw any rocketeer jokes.  The over all feel is decidedly retro, but executed in the sleekest of fashions with vibrant uncompromising materials and eye catching detail.

Before purchasing I would suggest you try one on in person, the wrong fit can hurt a look, but when it comes to gear it can very will kill you. Also, the style of the Ruby helmets is a little larger than some people are use to, if you’re a smaller guy you might want to see how the proportions work for you.

Quality:

At this price point I expected the best, and when I was disappointed, Ruby fixed it with lightning speed in one of the best displays of customer service I have ever seen.  My Ruby held up to 4 months of daily use, and although I took care of it, the babying stopped after the first month, and the next 3 went without complaint.  Rain or shine it performed, always comfortable and a source of numerous compliments. A few weeks back, a small tear appeared near the earpiece and I sent an email off to Ruby.  After a short conversation and assurances that this was the first case they had heard of, they sent me a new one. I can’t get something I paid for from France to California in two days, so don’t ask me how managed to do it. 

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