The Chainlink

Specialized Align II Helmet MIPS Review 

Animals were injured in testing.


November of 2020, I decided to buy a new helmet.  I wear a 62cm size and wanted MIPS technology.  I decided on Specialized Align II Helmet MIPS because of price, size, and color.   In XL size I can wear a stretch fleece hood under it.  The combination was okay riding at 20°F.  I took a selfie while wearing the helmet when it was in the high 30s.  

 May 1st, 2021 at 2 PM was a warm crowded day on the Lakefront Path.  There were a group of teenagers riding Divvy bikes in front of me.  A few of them were in the left lane.  

 I tried to pass on the far left.  One severed served left and both of us went down.  Since he was luckier and more than 50 years younger than me he got up fairly quickly.  They saw the chain flipped off my bike and unsuccessfully tried to repair it.  After a while I got up I engaged the chain and pulled out a 5mm hex wrench to realign the handlebars.  I slowly rode to the nearest bus stop.  I called my son to retrieve me since I felt poor and knew I could not load my bike on the bus rack.  At 11 pM I got out of Northwestern ER.  I had two CAT scans, four additional X-rays, various tests, and some effective pain drugs.  X-rays confirmed I have two broken bones in my shoulder area.  I have scrapes and bruises all over my body except my head.   CAT scan confirmed I had no cranial or neck injuries.  The left side of my helmet shows deep scrapes and an internal break.   

 The rear of the helmet also has a break.  My last bike fall was five years ago sliding on the slick algae along the lake.  While wearing an aero-tailed Schwinn helmet the back flipped up and I had a slight head cut from the rear adjuster being pounded into my head.   The Align II absorbed the shock in the back.


 I will not be on a bike until I am cleared by my orthopedic surgeon, likely in July.  I ordered a new Specialized Align II MIPS this afternoon for $55.35  tax and shipping included.  I cannot comment on hot weather ventilation but for protection, I found what I want to wear.  BTW:  I now have a used and abused helmet only four months old for sale, offers will be accepted.   

See you on the road (in July), Elwood


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