Whether you’re riding down the block or across town, bicycle helmets can be the difference between a minor or major injury in case of an accident. Nevertheless, it’s still common to see both younger and older riders on bikes without helmets due to the stigma of being seen wearing one. Thousand is a company trying to change that perception by creating helmets that are functional and stylish extensions of the riders who wear them. Today we’ll be reviewing the Thousand Heritage helmet which is their most popular urban/commuter helmet with vintage design elements. To promote helmet use, the Heritage has a low retail cost and is offered in an impressive array of unique color schemes typically only seen on custom painted helmets. Are these helmets all style and no function? Let’s dive into the details to find out.
The Thousand Heritage’s unique color schemes and attention to detail make this a helmet you’ll want to be seen in.
|Measured weight (in g)||468 (size M)|
|Likes|| + Gorgeous color schemes|
+ Poplock feature for securing helmet
+ Unique retro design elements
|Dislikes||– Lacks MIPS or secondary safety feature|
– Fit system design doesn’t feel as secure as other helmets
– Non adjustment side straps
|Where to Buy (US)||Thousand|
Committed to environmental sustainability, Thousand ships the Heritage in a minimal cardboard mailer box that doubles as a helmet box with custom graphics. Inside the box you’ll find:
- Heritage Helmet
- Branded Helmet Bag
- Instruction Manual
DESIGN & USABILITY
The overall shape of the Heritage helmet is similar to a retro-style motorcycle helmet or a baseball helmet. A small bill is molded onto the front of the helmet and there are seven small vents. As with most commuter helmets, the rear extends further down the back of your head than traditional road cycling helmets With the goal of the Thousand Heritage helmet to have more people wear helmets, the Heritage was designed to visually stand out. Rather than stick with the usual solid color options, Thousand offers the helmet in a wide variety of innovative and eye catching designs. Everything from matte colors, stripes, and metallics color schemes are available. What really makes the helmets stand out is the attention to detail and use of contrasting colors. We chose the Race Strip version, inspired by the Gulf racing livery of the Ford GT40, which is a beautiful matte blue with slanted stripes running across it. Details like a checkered flag graphic on the back of the helmet and the number “40” on the magnetic clasp give the helmet unique touches. You’ll also find details like minimal but sleek branding and the use of polished metal rivets on the sides of the helmets.
The tan vegan leather straps and a magnetic buckle that are typically found on more expensive helmets give the helmet a premium feel. Additionally, Thousand has utilized a simplified head retention system with the Heritage helmet. To streamline the straps, there are no adjustment points on the side straps which means the helmet fit may not be ideal for everyone. We were also surprised to find that the helmet weighed in at 468g. This is heavier than the two commuter helmets we recently reviewed: the tech-filled Coros SafeSound (408g) and even the Lazer Urbanize MIPS (418g). While it’s still comfortable to wear, unlike some super light road helmets which can weigh as little as 200g, you won’t forget it is on your head.
FIT AND COMFORT
While the Heritage helmet features a familiar integrated dial system that cradles the back of your neck, it is implemented differently than some of the other helmets we have. It has a floating design, where the plastic cradle is only connected to the helmet on the sides. Other bike helmets typically have an additional anchor point from the center of the cradle, where the dial is, back to the center of the helmet. The floating design of the Heritage meant we often found that the dial would not stay in place when putting it on, and would need to be pulled back down. Additionally this results in less contact area between the fit system and your head resulting in a less secure feeling.
You’ll also notice that there are no side adjustment buckles or cams on the straps. This gives the helmet a lighter and more minimalistic design but also means the center of the ‘Y’ portion of the straps sits lower down than a standard adjustable strap. We typically adjust that point to sit under our earlobe for a more precise fit, but with the Heritage it was much lower. Also, we noticed that the straps attach to the back of the helmet instead of the center of the helmet or the sides. The combination of this routing and lack of adjustment points meant we weren’t able to get part of the straps to have any tension on them – only the portion of the straps that extend down to the chin were taut. Long story short, while the Heritage helmet fit well it didn’t have the secure feeling other helmets provide. Also, it’s worth pointing out that the minimal venting means this is an excellent helmet for colder or shorter rides. As a longer distance or intensity helmet, a more heavily vented road biking helmet would provide more cooling.
Perhaps one of the most unique features of the helmet, is their ‘secret’ Poplock. This is simply a small round hole near the rear of the helmet with a magnetically held cover with the ‘Thousand’ logo on it. The hole is large enough to slide a cable or U-lock through to secure the helmet when you’re out and about. Thousand will even replace your helmet for free if your helmet is stolen with this feature in use. While we’ve also seen this type of feature with the Lazer Urbanize helmet, we found that the Thousand’s side placement makes it more convenient to slide a lock through.
Overall, we found the Thousand Heritage helmet a beautiful yet simple urban or commuter helmet. Visually, Thousand has incorporated a variety of design details to really set the helmet apart from others on the market. There are a variety of creative and unique color schemes available with excellent use of contrasting colors and graphics. While the helmet lacks MIPS or other secondary safety features, it has a direction dial fit system (something low-end helmets lack) and magnetic buckle. The design of the fit system, and lack of adjustment points on the otherwise sleek vegan leather straps also meant that while the helmet fit well it didn’t provide the secure feeling we’re accustomed to. Nevertheless, if you’re looking for a helmet with some personality that you’ll want to be seen in, the Heritage is a great option.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Thousand. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.