Thread: Leather or Metro Helmets???
10-17-2000, 08:51 PM #1Ford45Firehouse.com Guest
Leather or Metro Helmets???
hey all. Well, I've been trying to decide wether to stay with a metro or buy a leather helmet. I like the way the leathers look and how they sit on your head, I was just wundering what everyone else thinks. Thanks!!
10-17-2000, 09:04 PM #2Neptune 33Firehouse.com Guest
Well, if you like the looks of the leather, but don't want the weight, I recommend the Morning Pride Ben Franklin. I have one, and I'll never give it up. It looks exactly like a leather, (unless you get another color besides black) Of course, if you don't mind the weight, and paying 400.00, go for the leather.
10-17-2000, 09:14 PM #3HFDExplorChiefFirehouse.com Guest
I have two words for ya "LEATHER FOREVER"
The opinions and questions presented here are my own, and not those of any organization that I belong to, or work for.
10-17-2000, 09:35 PM #4firecadet613Firehouse.com Guest
I have a Cairns 1010 currently. I love it! It has the look of the leather, but doesn't weight as much. It is a traditional style helmet, which is the only kind of helmet I will wear. I have the faceshield on mine, but if you look at my post titled, goggles/bourke's/faceshield, you'll see that I am going to change it. I highly recommend the 1010. It sits on my head very nicely, although the backend wobbles a little bit. It is considerably less than a leather. You can get it for about $200. If you want to go with a leather, I would check out the Paul Conway Leather, it is the cheapest one out there, and I hear it is pretty good. Leathers range in the $400 price range, while the pleathers(plastic-composite-fiberglass) helmets are in the $200 price range. I would recommend you get a pleather first, to make sure you like the traditional style after you use it a bit, and then get a leather, because that is a lot of money. If you have any more questions, contact me via one of the methods in my signature.
Take care/Stay safe,
Joe E. Thomson
AOL IM: FireCadet613
May our thoughts and prayers forever be with the Worcester 6 and all our brothers and sisters who make the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.
10-17-2000, 11:40 PM #5AdzeFirehouse.com Guest
I agree with my fellow New Englander...LEATHER FOREVER!!!!!
10-18-2000, 01:09 AM #6smokeeater51Firehouse.com Guest
Don't even ask a question like that! LEATHER ALL THE WAY! Neptune has a really good point though. The Ben Franklin is lighter, and looks very close to being leather, AND, if you get promoted and have to change colors, you can send it back and they'll put a new "color covering" on it. I used to have a 1010, which is currently the standard issue helmet on our department, but traded up for the Sam Houston. Leather Forever!
Take care, stay safe, & stay low.
10-18-2000, 03:39 AM #7Capt. ClayFirehouse.com Guest
Hey Ford45, I can understand the decision you are trying to make. My dept. recently purchased new gear and I specified the 1010's as the new helmets over the metro style. Since the new lids have come in, I get nothing but thanks from all the guys. They absolutely love them in comparison! Especially since we are the only dept. in the area that wears traditional stly helmets. On a personal note, though, I just recently purchased a Paul Conway leather for myself and have nothing but compliments for it! The weight isn't too bad compared to the 1010's, but there is something in the old saying, "LEATHER FOREVER!!!"
Be safe, have fun!
10-18-2000, 07:57 AM #8Captain GonzoFirehouse.com Guest
My next "brain bucket" will be Leather!!!
Firefighters: Today's heroes protecting our tomorrows....
10-18-2000, 12:08 PM #9my_dog_goes_ARFFFirehouse.com Guest
Any other views on the Paul Conway leather helmet (good or bad). I know it will be easier on my wallet, but will it be as good for my head as the Cairns.
10-18-2000, 06:02 PM #10Nick SBFD 6Firehouse.com Guest
I'll have to stick with the New England contigency, LEATHER, I went through the JR. Ranks with the Bullard Firedome, or as I like to call it the SALAD BOWL DOME. Make sure you get the goggles, I keep mine in my pocket until I need them so the lenses stay clean, and I got the Bourke Shields on there because as i've said before, they just look funny without them. Stay safe and have a fire!
10-18-2000, 06:50 PM #11GTFDLt61Firehouse.com Guest
I'll begin this by saying that, along with most of the New England contingent, I wear a leather Cairns and have for 10 years. What I'm wondering, and I know this is a little off thread, but what do you all think about the "rescue" style helmets. I'm thinking about getting a Cairns w/out the tail to use for for extrication purposes. What does everyone think? Anybody have one, use one? Its just that my leather gets heavy, and usually ends up on the roof, where it does my melon noooooo good.
10-18-2000, 07:12 PM #12Fired0gFirehouse.com Guest
Bought my first leather 25 yrs. ago and have never regretted it. In those days you'd have been totally embarrassed and laughed out of the firehouse if you came in wearing one of those "salad bowl" helmets. I think it cost a whopping $100 or so then. It's on the shelf now, replaced by an newer one that's compliant with all the latest legalese...funny, I don't ever remember hearing of any deaths or injuries attributed to the old style lids but anyway... Leather Forever!
"We don't go to work, we go to war."
10-18-2000, 10:19 PM #13Neptune 33Firehouse.com Guestif you get promoted and have to change colors, you can send it back and they'll put a new "color covering" on it.
10-18-2000, 11:46 PM #14FFShootyFirehouse.com Guest
There's an option to wearing LEATHER? I didn't know there was anything but leather. Sorry...I wasn't aware.
Leather Forever Bros.
Firefighters....We're Risk Takers, We're Heartbreakers.
10-19-2000, 10:23 PM #15hazmat961Firehouse.com Guest
Do you really need to ask?! Even though I don't have a leather YET go with a Carins Leather.
10-20-2000, 01:13 AM #16AdzeFirehouse.com Guest
Just out of curiousity...of all you guys (and maybe gals) who have leathers...how many of you bought them yourself as opposed to your FD buying them?
Both the FD's in my town issue leathers...we just give plastic metros to Juniors and Probies. Actually, when I was a junior we all had leather. Sucks to be the current juniors. As far as new regular members go, once they pass Firefighter 1 class, then they get leather as their reward.
10-20-2000, 01:21 PM #17ENGINE18-3Firehouse.com Guest
Cairns 1010 lighter than a leather and cooler looking than a metro.
The statements above are my own opinions
FF Greg Grudzinski
Oaklyn Fire Dept.
10-20-2000, 03:52 PM #18EUittsFirehouse.com Guest
Another New England vote for leather...Cairns New Yorker; I paid for mine myself
10-24-2000, 02:45 PM #19GBordasFirehouse.com Guest
The leather helmet will last you a very long time. Most guys I know have had theirs for their entire career. I recommend the Cairns N5A "New Yorker". You can rip the rachet system out of it for a lower riding, better fitting helmet. I would say that the Leather Helmets are safer than the composite helmets because they are of tougher materials and construction. With a composite helmet, such as the Metro, you may need to replace it once the shell is compromised. That is very easy to do if you drop it. The visor alone can do it by rubbing each time you raise and lower it.
You can buy a new leather for about $400.00. It is an investment that will last.
[This message has been edited by GBordas (edited 06-06-2001).]
10-24-2000, 05:26 PM #20Mike DeVuonoFirehouse.com Guest
Cairns Leather N5A New Yorker with Bourkes. Nothing else. Don't compromise with the Paul Conway, you'll regret it later. There is a difference, the Conways don't sit as high nor do they look like the Cairns. Go for it...you got an extra $400 laying around I know it!! Get the Cairns.
Warminster Fire Dept.
Engine Co. 91
"There are few atheists inside a burning building."
10-24-2000, 07:00 PM #21OFDLUIT33Firehouse.com Guest
I haven't saved enough yet but LEATHER
10-25-2000, 09:45 AM #22Rich FFirehouse.com Guest
Check out the Conway Heritage Leather helmets. They are a beter helmet than what Cairns is producing: field replaceable hardware(no need to send your helmet back to have the suspension or liner replaced)Leather lined suspension is standard not an expensive upgrade,Carved brass eagle standard again not an upgrade, dyed leather throught out, not painted so you dont have blistering or chipping problems like you do with Cairns. All options of eye protection are the same price. Prices now running about 320.00 complete.Do yourself a favor and check them out I think you will like the way it fits and feels better than the N5A's
The folks at Conway have done their homework and understand what the firefighter wants.
10-26-2000, 08:08 AM #23Da SharkieFirehouse.com Guest
I have to agree with Rich F. The Conway is the better of the options I have seen. Most guys stick with the Cairns because they have been around forever. The Conway fits better, wears better, is less expensive and as stated before, it doesn't get chipped since it's died the whoel way through no matter whether it is red, yellow, white or black. I still have to say that the leather liner inside fits better than any other helmets I have tried.
I didn't do it, nobody saw me do it. You can't prove anything.
10-26-2000, 12:59 PM #24Bob SnyderFirehouse.com Guest
I can't comment on the Cairns - Conway issue because I've never used a Conway, but I have a few other comments:
1. If you have to use a rationalization like "it looks like leather, but...", then it isn't worth buying...just buy the leather!!
2. If you're using your leather properly, you'll burn, crush or otherwise bang up those fancy eagles anyway...why spend the extra money?? Same goes for gold-leaf fronts. The exceptions, of course, would be ceremonial helmets used for special occasions, given to retiring chiefs, etc.
3. Changing colors with changes in ranks is never a problem if you just buy a "natural" and keep it "natural"...I've just changed my frontpieces when I've change ranks and I was good to go.
4. Full face shields ruin the whole concept of a leather...only Bourkes are authentic. You can always carry goggles in your pocket if it's an issue for you. Personally, I actually use face shields, Bourkes, etc. so rarely that it makes no difference to me.
5. Leather is a preference...I bought mine myself, and I'd do it again. I'm also equipment officer for my company, and I buy Bullard Firedomes for company issue. We can't afford to be spending 4X as much on helmets to issue to everyone. If people want a leather in my company (like me), then they need to fork over the $400+ to get it. I don't see anything wrong with that. (I issued myself a Bullard like everybody else...no favorites...it sits in the trunk of my car with my spare turnout gear and rarely sees the light of day).
So, you can probably figure out my "optimal" helmet: Cairns N5A New Yorker (ratchet taken out), natural leather (no paint), Bourke shields, basic (name/rank/company number) leather frontpiece in the appropriate color(s) for the company/rank. Just exactly like the one on my shelf on the gear rack in my station.
11-01-2000, 09:52 PM #25nshake67Firehouse.com Guest
Real Men wear leather.
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