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  1. #1
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    Default Cairns 880 Chicago Helmet

    We are purchasing new helmets and are considering the 880 chicago among others, but would like to here from anyone out there using them. Have talked to departments and tried on the others ben II, 1044, paul conway, but no one around North Dakota is using the newer 880 that I know of. Thanks for any serious input. (yea, I know helmets have been discussed on this forum before but didnt find any real helpful info on the 880 chicago) and yes I'll read and laugh with the comedians replies also.


  2. #2
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    Cant go wrong with the 880. Its small and light weight. Ben II sucks, i use it to hold tobacco spit.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by jonnyirons2 View Post
    Cant go wrong with the 880. Its small and light weight. Ben II sucks, i use it to hold tobacco spit.
    Ditto on everything, except I wouldn't degrade tobacco spit by putting it in a ben II. Had the Ben II and hate it, have a 1010 and it's ok. Trying to weasel an 880 as we speak. As I understand it, the new classes will be issued 880's again.
    I am a complacent liability to the fire service

  4. #4
    Forum Member BKDRAFT's Avatar
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    Cairns N6A.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the input, I'm leaning toward the 880.... I'm sure I'll get some resistance from the modern style lovers but you cant please everyone. thanks again Jack Lt. HFD (yea, I'd like the leather but the city doesn't think my heads worth $500) Thanks again

  6. #6
    Forum Member BKDRAFT's Avatar
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    Have your dept. pay however much the 880 cost and you pick up the difference so you can get a helmet you really want.

  7. #7
    Forum Member snowball's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChicagoFF View Post
    Ditto on everything, except I wouldn't degrade tobacco spit by putting it in a ben II. Had the Ben II and hate it, have a 1010 and it's ok. Trying to weasel an 880 as we speak. As I understand it, the new classes will be issued 880's again.
    I'll trade you my 880 for your 1010. I even adjusted the webbing so it would fit lower on my head.
    IAFF

  8. #8
    Forum Member Alex1137's Avatar
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    I had an 880 before I switched to leather, but the 880 was awesome. It was super light and there isn't a traditional style helmet made that is lower in profile. The helmet also has great balance, even with a boat load of crap up top. I don't know why/how the 1010 became so much more popular but the 880 still gets my vote.

  9. #9
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    Whats wrong with the ben II ? I was thinking of picking one up.

  10. #10
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    Ben 2 is garbage,,,although not as bad as a 1010,,,1010 is worse than garbage, I can't get either one to fit me like my leather.
    Chris Polimeni
    Prince George's County FD
    Back at the Big 29er

  11. #11
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    so the only thing that makes them crap is that they dont fit well?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by cooper173 View Post
    so the only thing that makes them crap is that they dont fit well?
    that, and the fact that they are big, heavy, stupid looking bobble heads.
    I am a complacent liability to the fire service

  13. #13
    Forum Member Alex1137's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChicagoFF View Post
    that, and the fact that they are big, heavy, stupid looking bobble heads.



  14. #14
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    I have dropped a "helmet made with new technology" on the bay floor (fell of my gear rack while getting my stuff together). It cracked the shell. I have also dropped my leather doing the same thing. No problems. Couple that with the fact that they sit too high on my head, don't fit well, are not comfortable makes them garbage.

    Ever see the fire helmet testing exhibit at Epcot center? The test repeatedly drops a huge barrel on top of the helmet. The helmet doesn't break, but I would bet dimes to donuts that the spine of the FF wearing that helmet would. Sometimes old technology really is better. Maybe ChicagoFF can speak up about the old Senators (I think thats what they were called) that were issued in the Windy City. I may be wrong, but I think those were the original "plastic traditional helmets", I think they stopped making them in the early nineties.

    Stay Safe
    Chris Polimeni
    Prince George's County FD
    Back at the Big 29er

  15. #15
    Forum Member MassFireGuy's Avatar
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    I have tried the Cairns 880, the Phenix TL-2, and now I am on the classic Cairns N5A. I have to tell you that the 880 is horrible. Stick with the leather. A real leather, not the Phenix. N5A or N6A. The other two make you feel like the helmet sits on top of your head and if you lean left or right, you will tip over.

  16. #16
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    I have a question if anyone knows........What is the difference between the 880 "Tradition" and the 880 "Chicago"?

    Stay Safe
    Chris Polimeni
    Prince George's County FD
    Back at the Big 29er

  17. #17
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    From the MSA/Cairns website

    New shell texture for fire-hardened appearance
    The MSA 880 Tradition Chicago Style
    Fire Helmet from Cairns Helmets
    combines traditional design and
    legendary performance with modern
    materials and a new fire-hardened look.
    This helmet’s design offers a low-ride
    and compact profile for superior
    clearance and maneuverability. The
    tough, high-temperature thermoplastic
    shell resists chipping and cracking.
    Cairns Helmets’ standard five-year shell
    replacement warranty provides
    insurance against fire ground damage.
    Our high-tech thermal impact cap
    provides increased heat and impact
    protection. Unique tube-lock system
    helps to absorb the shock of an impact.
    Ultra-high temperature TPR edge trim
    prevents against melting or dripping.
    The three-position, rear-ratchet
    height adjustment ensures a secure
    and comfortable fit for all head sizes
    between 5 5/8” and 7 5/8” inches. Front
    headband adjustment features an
    exclusive SCBA interface that matches
    the fit of any SCBA facepiece. Contact
    MSA Customer Service for available
    colors.
    So the helmet probably does not have a glossy appearance and looks like it has seen some action.....I guess.......Other than that, probably the same..

    On a side note, they do not adjust out as big as the 1010 or 1000 (6-3/8 and 8-3/8 inches) vs. 880 ( 5 5/8” and 7 5/8” ) ....so if you have a "physically" big head it may not fit
    Last edited by ehs7554; 10-19-2007 at 10:07 AM.

  18. #18
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    Thanks

    Stay Safe
    Chris Polimeni
    Prince George's County FD
    Back at the Big 29er

  19. #19
    MembersZone Subscriber cdemarse's Avatar
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    If I couldn't wear my 5A, I would be wearing an 880.
    "Train as if your life depends on it"
    Always Remember *343*

  20. #20
    Forum Member FHandz15's Avatar
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    Thumbs up 880

    We bought the "new 880" when they were re-issued 2-3 years ago. I love it, small profile, light weight, good balance....etc. Guys with huge melons might have trouble with it, but I'd say 90% of our guys like em. We had 1010's prior and I thought they were pieces of junk, heavy, un-balanced, fell apart. The 880 is the best plastic traditional out there IMO......


    My opinion only.
    Last edited by FHandz15; 10-19-2007 at 11:56 PM.

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