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I have just about totally moved from a mountain biker to a roadie. Not a bad thing at all. I started out as a motocross rider went roadie in college (Mtn. bikes were pretty primitive way back when) and now back on the road.

While I have embraced my roadie side I can’t give up my mountain bike helmet. The one with the visor that I, at least, think looks very cool.

My question is how much am I giving up in aerodynamic drag with this helmet? I am not the next Mark Cavendish so I am not looking at places on any podium. But some of my fellow riders tell me I am giving up a lot of speed with this type of helmet. True or perhaps not?
 

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Whatever you're comfortable with.
B when you're on a road bike and cranking your neck up all day the extra weight is more a problem.
If time trial aero helmets are so great why don't the pros wear them all the time?
 

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Your fellow riders are either pulling your leg, or they don't know their helmet vents from their ___ vents. It's total bs. Your head contributes a tiny fraction of overall drag, and the differences between one helmet and another are miniscule, unless you're talking about a full-on aero time-trial helmet, which is impractical for road use because it's ventless and would kill you with heat exhaustion. Wear what you like.
 

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While I have seen helmets with visors that have awkward aerodynamics, even in those most extreme cases the effect is very small. A more streamlined helmet with a visor is negligibly less aerodynamic.

Things that actually do affect aero drag is your position on the bike (lower hands = less drag) and loose clothing. Snug is fast.
 

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Comfort and cooling will far outweigh any and all aerodynamics from the average helmet.
You will be far more aerodynamic by minimizing your body's drag by good positioning.
 

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"how much am I giving up in aerodynamic drag with this helmet?"

Almost nothing. It's so small it would be almost impossible to measure it and i If you like it, ride it.
 

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It's weight that'll slow you down. You should get a carbon visor.

Seriously though, comprare the size of the front of the visor that hits the wind to the size of your bike and body. I think you'll noticed the visor isn't relevent to overall drag.
 

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tell your friends that you are just following the newest trend that LA started....:).....seriously, this will be a continuing theme as you progress in your cycling...."do I follow the herd or do I do what's cheapest and most comfortable for me?" you can spend thousands of dollars on the newest, greatest, strongest, lightest etc etc etc etc.........
 

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The visor really isn't all that relevant to drag, although since none of us have done any wind tunnel testing, nobody has any concrete facts. However, one of the few times I've had to use my MTB helmet, I noticed the visor got in the way of my vision when I ride a lot in the drops.

In regards to the comment of why the pros don't use aero helmets all the time, it's because the non-vented nature would make them unbearable for long days in the saddle. With drafting, many things you see on a TT bike simply are no longer that advantageous.
 
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