So you’re in the market for a helmet. What features do I want? What manufacturers should I buy? What’s the difference? They all provide air and head protection. We can help guide you through these questions. You came to the right place.
Lets get started by looking at the different types of helmets
Air Hat Helmets
A demand helmet only provides air on inhalation. An air hat has a constant flow of air.
Why? An air hat/helmet expels more air because it’s constantly flowing. This provides superior protection in HAZMAT environments where you don’t want to risk ANY contamination from the outside environment.
- Uses more air
- Loud. The air noise is constant.
Demand helmets are plentiful out on the industry. They only supply air on the divers inhalation. Therefore, by their very nature and design, they don’t use as much air as air hats.
- Good but not the best contamination protection
- Uses less air
- Plentiful in the field
- Quieter than air hats
- Not as good as constant flow air hats for contamination protection
- Not as simple. More parts than the air helmets.
Stainless vs. Fiberglass
This is one of the epic questions in the last few years. For metal helmets, your choices used to be the bronze Miller or a constant flow air helmet (more or less). Now, there are more choices than ever in the metal gear helmet category.
There are advantages and disadvantages to each. Both weigh about the same. They have to so that they can offset the buoyancy from the air trapped inside the helmet.
Stainless is going to cost a bit more on average. That said, stainless steel provides you with longevity and toughness. You’ll be able to will a stainless helmet to your grandchildren to dive with. If properly taken care of, they can potentially last generations. The biggest complaint that we at Ocean Eye hear about is noise. They are noisier than the fiberglass versions and steel is also a conductor. Just something to keep in mind for all of you welders out there.
- Lasts a LONG time
- More expensive in initial investment
- Less pricey initially
- Quieter than their stainless counterparts
- Non-Conductive (at least the shell)
- Not as tough as stainless
- Limited life span