Double glaze your helmet: How to fit a Pinlock visor insert

What is pinlock on a helmet
What is pinlock on a helmet

The adoption of the Pinlock anti-fog visor insert has been huge – virtually all helmet manufacturers now offer this system to prevent the inside of the visor from misting and for some, an insert is included in the box while for others, it’s a virtual no-brainer accessory.

The technology relies on two principles; the visor absorbs the moisture that potentially forms droplets and hence, the misting on the inside of the visor while it also acts like double glazing, effectively insulating the inner surface so that the rider’s breath doesn’t condense on the colder, inner surface of the visor.

However, they are not infallible. They need to be fitted and – more importantly – adjusted correctly to make sure that they work efficiently and give long service and safety.

Here’s how to fit an insert.

Step 1:

what is pinlock on a helmet

The first thing to do is to remove the visor from your helmet. We’re using a Shoei and this sprung-loaded clip needs pulling down

Step 2:

Sliding the clip down releases the bottom of the catch on the visor – it is pulled out then the upper edge follows

Step 3:

One side of the visor is now free. Repeat and lift the visor away from the helmet. You may need to refer to your helmet’s instructions on how to remove the visor

Step 4:

what is pinlock on a helmet

To prevent scratching the outside of the visor itself, we always use a piece of cloth or fabric to work on. The carry bag for your helmet is ideal

Step 5:

what is pinlock on a helmet

These are the locating posts on the helmet. You can see here that they are eccentric, so you can move the mounting point by rotating the posts themselves

Step 6:

what is pinlock on a helmet

Time to get the insert out of the packet. It’s worth one last check if it didn’t come in the box with your helmet, that it is the right version for your lid

Step 7:

what is pinlock on a helmet

On one side of the Pinlock insert is a flexible rubber seal. This goes against the inside of the helmet’s visor

Step 8:

what is pinlock on a helmet

The other side of the insert is flat and is covered with a protective plastic layer. This sits towards your face

Step 9:

what is pinlock on a helmet

Before fitting the insert, it’s worth giving the inside of the visor a quick clean. We never use any fluid; just a wipe over with a clean microfiber cloth – this will get rid of any dust or foreign matter

Step 10:

what is pinlock on a helmet

We always start by locating the visor insert on the peg on the right-hand side of the visor as if we were wearing it. Not sure why – just feels ‘right’. Make sure the insert prongs sit against the centre of the post

Step 11:

what is pinlock on a helmet

You then need to locate the insert on the post at the other end. It helps to rest the end of the visor you have already located against your leg and straighten it slightly while locating the insert’s tab

Step 12:

what is pinlock on a helmet

Once you have located both ends, the insert will likely snap into place. If not, and it is now bowing outwards away from the visor, simply bend the visor straight slightly and give the insert a push in the middle and it should snap into place

Step 13:

what is pinlock on a helmet

This Evo version is shaped to fit perfectly within the Shoei’s visor. If yours is the same, check along the top edge that it is sitting evenly across the width of the visor

Step 14:

what is pinlock on a helmet

Now do the same at the bottom, to make sure that the gap is even and equal to that at the top, indicating the insert is correctly located

Step 15:

what is pinlock on a helmet

Now it’s time to check the tension across the insert. If this isn’t correct, the silicon seal may leave gaps and air can enter, affecting the insert’s efficiency. We usually slide the corner of a piece of paper or thin card (like the envelope the insert arrives in) between the visor and insert all the way round. If the paper/card goes past the seal, it needs adjusting

Step 16:

what is pinlock on a helmet

The pegs have hexagonal forms on the inside which you can use a tiny spanner on which, for this Shoei lid, is supplied in the box. If not, you can carefully use a pair of small pliers to help turn the peg to change the tension

Step 17:

Turning the post this way increased the tension across the insert slightly and pushes it against the visor for a full seal all the way round

Step 18:

what is pinlock on a helmet

Having adjusted the tension, go round and check the full circumference of the seal again to check it is snugly against the inside edge of the visor. It now is, so we’re all good

Step 19:

what is pinlock on a helmet

All that remains is to remove the protective layer of plastic that is fitted to the inside of the lens

Step 20:

what is pinlock on a helmet

The new Pinlock insert fitted to the helmet’s visor, ready for a mist-free view of the road ahead

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