Vemar Eclipse Carbon Fiber Helmet ReviewBack in 2011, we put the Vermar Eclipse through a 4,000-mile test that involved sport-touring, a few track days, and everyday commuting. The attractive lid performed well, but two major issues surfaced – heavy weight and excessive noise.
Following our test, Vemar released a heavily revised model of the Eclipse, which remains on the market today. But did the Italy-based helmet manufacturer resolve the previous model’s issues?Vemar cured the weight issue; the new Eclipse Carbon Fiber lid we tested in size medium weighs 3.1 lbs. – nearly a pound less than the previous edition (the current non-carbon fiber model weighs 3.19 lbs.).As for the noise complaints, the ECE 2205 and DOT-approved helmet is a bit quieter than the previous edition – but not by much. The slight noise reduction is due to the redesigned shell and a new gasket seal of the visor.The weight-loss can be attributed to the Eclipse’s outer shell – where impact protection begins. The Eclipse is light thanks to its “Tri-Composite” shell, which features a blend of carbon, aramidic and fibreglass – materials that are strong but lightweight.The shell was enhanced for aerodynamics, and the shape truly impressed at speeds on both naked bikes (aka no windscreen) and sport bikes. Even during a few track days with Absolute Cycle, buffeting was non-existent at speeds in excess of 150 mph.Regarding fit, the shell has a mid-oval shape, which is optimal for most head shapes – including mine.The Vemar Eclipse arrives with a redesigned “Vemar Klima” ventilation system that features four-adjustable intake vents (two above brow, two on top) and four fixed exhaust vents. This system works well, and the Eclipse provided comfort during a few track days when the temps neared 95 degrees.But like the previous model, the helmet had some whistling that continually nagged us. Some of the noise was from the vent brows, and some from around the visor’s seal.As for the chin vent, the open/close lever is hard to locate. Depending on the thickness of gloves, it’s also nearly impossible to open when fully closed.The chin vent blows air directly on the face shield, and isn’t as affective at moving air as the top ventilation system. The chin vent also features a simple fabric mesh to keep the bugs out.The Vemar Eclipse arrives with a 2.2-mm, anti-fog, non-scratch face shield that is Pinlock equipped. I never had a need for the Pinlock insert; while riding in rain and extremely humid conditions, the shield never presented any fogging issues. The faceshield retains Vemar’s unique removal system – simply rotate two outer clips, and it comes off.Regarding vision, left-to-right is optimal, but up-to-down is about average. The lid could use a bit more opening on top, which is especially noticeable at full tuck.The Vemar Eclipse reigns in interior comfort. The double-density high-impact EPS shell is lined with a plush technical liner that has exceptional wicking capability. After some extremely hot days on the track, the liner never had an odor.The non-deformable polyurethane cheek pads are equally as comfortable as the liner, and are removable for easy cleaning. The cheek pads feature memory foam for optimal fit; during a four-month period of wearing it in various situations, the pads never lost their shape.The Eclipse’s neck roll has a unique design that allows for freedom of left-to-right head movement without getting caught on a jacket’s collar or the rear hump featured on some racing leathers. Other unique interior features are the padded chin strap, and the chin curtain, which is also removable for cleaning.Vemar provides a five-year warranty from the manufacturing date – which equates to the standard life of a helmet – and an extra visor. The lid is available in sizes S-XXL, and fits true to size.The Eclipse Carbon Fiber lid retails for $399, which is a bargain compared to other helmets that have similar features.The Ultimate MotorCycling VerdictThe Vemar Eclipse helmet has many rider-friendly features, especially when considering its price point. These features include light weight, optimal ventilation, fog-free vision, and a shell design that is one of the best for battling head buffeting. And there’s no denying its attractive Italian looks.Just make sure to bring along a set of earplugs; the whistling can get annoying.For additional information, visit Motonation.com.Photos by Jason Healey