Strutter Helmet- Sweet vs Predator Lee Helmet - Mountain Buzz

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Old 05-08-2012   #1
Grand Junction, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 380
Strutter Helmet- Sweet vs Predator Lee Helmet

looking to buy a new helmet had a friend misplace my wrsi helmet anyway i was looking into these 2 since they both have a sun visor whats you opinions on these 2 the predator looks way cool and the price is way lower then the stutter please give me some insight ill be playboating/river running with it thanks all!

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Old 05-08-2012   #2
MT4Runner's Avatar
Kalispell, Montana
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 2,684
Did you not like your WRSI enough to want to replace it?

I do really like the looks of the Predator.
I just went with a discontinuted ProTec TwoFace, since it was a good fit for my large melon. Similar shape to the Predator, slightly shorter bill.
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Old 05-08-2012   #3
Grand Junction, Colorado
Join Date: Apr 2011
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the wrsi was fine but i also had a velcro bill on it to keep the sun out just seeing what baseball type helmet was the better of the two the strutter is way pricy
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Old 05-09-2012   #4
KSC's Avatar
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
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You should contact Sweet and ask them what differentiates their helmet from the Predator. It would be interesting to hear the response as it sure looks like Predator has just copied it and produced it at a significantly lower price.

When I bought a new helmet last year I got a little obsessive compulsive about trying to understand the differences between helmets. My first reaction to your post was Predator probably cheaped out on the foam on all their helmets, but in this case it's the same EVA foam as the Sweet. It's hard to differentiate between the proprietary composite shell types because no independent parties seem to actually test their effectiveness. Fit is often a differentiator. Sweet Strutter mentions something about an inner shell -maybe this is something the Predator doesn't have?
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Old 05-09-2012   #5
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Silverthorne, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2001
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 592
the Predator has a sloppy fit in comparison with the Sweet. My Strutter stays on my head and doesn't move. I have seen the Predator Lee get pulled back off folks head effectively choking them. Just my $.02, when it comes to your brain drop the coin on the safest helmet you can buy.
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Old 05-09-2012   #6
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Colorado Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 78
Main difference in price is that the Sweet has a carbon-fiber shell whereas the Lee has a plastic shell.

If you really want a safe helmet get a Sweet Rocker or stay with the WRSI. The bill on the Strutter and Lee can catch water (especially off a waterfall) and push the helmet back on the head. If you're mainly playboating a baseball style helmet will be fine, but creeking would warrant more thorough protection that stays put.

Also, WRSI started making the Tridents ( WRSI Safety | Whitewater Helmets | Ski and Snowboard Helmets | Rescue Gear ) which have a similar style to the Lee and Strutter. WRSI impact protection is definitely some of the best, and the Tridents have a carbon-fiber shell.

- Nessles
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Old 05-10-2012   #7
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Cody, Wyoming
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 249
Two Predator helmets

i have never used or owned a WRSI or Sweet helmet, i have only examined them in the shop and spoke with friends who use them. i have two predator helmets, one purchased around 2004 and the other around 2008. neither of them have the rear strap/lock mechanism that the newer models do. i feel they are decent quality, but i do not think they compare to the level of protection offered by the more expensive WRSI or Sweet helmets. my older predator now has some "flex" through the plastic shell, a sign of its age and the plastic degrading over time. my newer one is a little more rigid and does not have the flex. the plastic used in them is better quality than that of a protec ace (for comparison) IMO, but it is still plastic.

i took a really hard hit on my older one in 2006 that i would equate to someone literally taking a swing with a bat at my head, and the helmet did not break and i did not black out. all good i suppose, but i was seeing stars in the eddy afterwards.

i am a fan of the bill on the predators, it is quite long and does provide some good sun protection. the only fit mechanism on my older models is foam inserts with velcro and the chin strap, fortunately my melon is big enough that i don't need any additional foam and they fit me right out of the box. i think the fit mechanism on both the WRSI and Sweet are better and more secure. i have never had the predator slide backwards off my head as indicated by others, but i could see that happening. i have adjusted the chin strap on mine quite tight in an attempt to prevent the sliding, but the older model predator does not have a lock mechanism on the back (like the WRSI and Sweet do) so the potential is there.

i chose these helmets because of the bill/visor style at a reasonable price, and the fact that i do not creek or run gnar. i am III-easy IV at most with the kayak, and now spend more time in my rafts. one nice thing about the predators is they make a good water scoop to rinse stuff off in the rafts. i am comfortable with the predator as my helmet for casual river running and play, but i agree with the other folks that they are not the best choice for higher risk associated with creeking, waterfalls, or CL V. my 5c fwiw. later.
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Old 05-14-2012   #8
montuckyhuck's Avatar
The Bitterroot, Montana
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Dont get a baseball hat for a kayak helmet.
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Old 05-14-2012   #9
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The Bitterroot, Montana
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I replaced my strutter with this after i ripped my ear open. (Sorry for shitty camera pic, but its a full face). My buddy has a sweet rocker and that seems to be a sick, non full face option.
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Old 05-14-2012   #10
Durango, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1996
Join Date: Mar 2012
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The preditor looks like carbon, but is actually plastic, as mentioned above. I have a newer one with the back adjust band, and it seems to stay put on my smallish head pretty well. I use it mainly for rafting and some river running on easier rivers. I think that if I was going to buy a helmet mainly for kayaking, I would go with one made out of composite material, because they inspire more confidence as the consequence for hitting your head increase. For my use the preditor is great, and the bill is great, as long as you are not spending much time upside down.
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