Bell has been working hard on a new downhill helmet over the past few years. It’s now ready and we’ve been impressed so far with it. It has lots of bells and whistles to swoon riders to it. Learn all about the Bell Full 9 inside.
Bell Full 9 Details
ASTM F1952 DH Certified, F2032-06 BMX, CPSC, CE EN 1078
Insipred with help from Aaron Gwin and their other athletes over the years
6 sizes to suit (XS – XXL)
10 vents, washable, magnetic cheek pads
3 brow ports
designed to flow air over the head for cooling
Eject system for paramedics to remove the helmet safely from your head
GoPro / Contour compatiblity (clip on easily)
sound integration (with your favorite helmet speakers)
Multiple color options
Available – March 2013
Video: Bell Full 9
Out of the box, it’s clear to see that Bell took a fresh approach when they designed the Full 9. It certainly took cues from their moto helmet, the Moto 9. We received a XL White/Black Carbon Emblem painted helmet that you see here.
Jumping straight into it, the Full 9 is a new helmet from Bell that was designed with help from riders like Aaron Gwin, Loic Bruni, and others.
Loic Bruni taking his Full 9 to the podium at 2012 Worlds - Leogang
The Full 9 is ASTM DH certified so your head will thank you in the event you do have a crash. We’re glad to see ASTM DH certified helmets popping up more as they provide a much needed standard in downhill helmets that was once missing . It has a robust feel to it that is more reminiscent to a moto-lid with attention to safety clearly in mind.
Continuing down the path of safety, the Full 9 also is Eject compatible so a paramedic can remove the helmet of a downed rider easier if installed. Bell doesn’t include an eject pad with the helmet but it is compatible with the Eject system. The other mountain bike helmet we’re aware of that has this feature is the new Specialized Dissident.
Bell Full 9 - Eject System and internal channels facilitating airflow
As you can see above, the Full 9 has vents and channels in the helmet to help guide air up, over, and behind the riders head to keep things cool.
Front vents help drive air towards the back vents
Exhaust vents are fed from air through the front vents
Continuing into the details of the helmet more, the Full 9 has magnetic cheek pads (Magnefusion) that are a cinch to remove and relocate properly as they align automagically. The force feels relatively strong but they clearly will work best when they have a clean interface to attach to. They use this system in their Moto helmet as well. It’s a very slick system.
Magnetic cheekpads ease into place automatically and are easily removable for a paramedic or cleaning
The rest of the liner snaps in the lid through 4 points. The liner sits nicely in the helmet but doesn’t slide/snap under anything in the front of the lid like a D3 does.
Liner snaps into the red holes securely
Bell includes a nice helmet bag with the Full 9 in addition to GoPro and Contour attachments to cleanly attach your helmet camera to your helmet. The construction of the bag is nice and they include small vents in the bag to help keep things smelling fresh. There aren’t any external pockets in the bag for things like goggles but there’s plenty of room inside to store extra things.
Bell Full9 Helmet Bag
If you like listening to music, the Full 9 is compatible with the Soundtrax system to integrate sound into the helmet.
Full 9 is Eject compatibility and Soundtrax audio compatibility
The Full 9 doesn’t come with an extra visor like a TLD D3, but it is very flexible in comparison so we suspect it won’t break off easily in a crash. It mounts via 2 points instead of 3 and you can use a coin, screwdriver, or allen key to snug it into place.
Full 9 side
A removable GoPro and Contour mount come with the Full 9 as well.
Helmet camera mounts
Bell doesn’t include any helmet cameras with the Full 9 so you’ll have to have one yourself to utilize the adapters. The GoPro mount works with all GoPro’s so whether you have a Hero, Hero 2 HD, or a Hero 3, it’ll all work seamlessly. If you have a Contour, you’ll need their 360 quick-mount to use the Bell adapter as its a round nub and not a rail.
GoPro installed - (You will have to supply your own GoPro)
The GoPro Bell Full 9 adapter is clean and solid. To get good helmet camera footage it’s important that the mount is secure and this one definitively is. The GoPro mounts directly to the adapter and the rubberized accents help provide a secure fit to hug the helmet and kill vibrations / movement.
XL Full 9
Weight wise, our XL came in at 1197.8g. In comparison, our XL D3 weighed in at 1207.3g
Fit and Finish
Putting the helmet on its got a very nice feel to it that is certainly reminiscent of a moto lid. The helmet feels great and we’re excited to check it out further. The padding is stellar and its certainly one of the nicest fitting mountain bike helmets we’ve tried out. If you get a chance to try out the Full 9 we’d highly recommend it.