As so many soldiers who took part in the War on Terror know, one of the biggest source of injury is head trauma resulting from being thrown up and down in a vehicle during a mine blast. Add to that hours of foot patrols with helmets on and that will surely leave you with headaches and a sore neck.
Having been in the Canadian Forces for only a three years I haven’t deployed to a combat zone. You ask why did I rambled about the dangers of head injuries in a combat zone? In August 2015 I was in the back of an SVMS (CF utility truck made by Freightliner) with the rest of my platoon coming back from a section level live fire drills. The dirt roads on the base were terrible since it had rained a lot. Our driver lost control of the vehicle and we ended up on our side in a ditch. I was projected in the air by the force of the impact and hit my head square on a steel beam were the tarps attaches.
At that point my helmet still had the issue suspension which was a crappy Canadian version of the US PASGT helmet. Yep you read that correctly, in 2014 our helmet still feature that crappy suspension that doesn’t offer any level of protection against head injuries. I was diagnosed with a concussion by an Army doctor. Soon after I decided to upgrade my helmet with a set of Skydex pads. They were light years ahead of the issue suspension but they could have been better.
Fast forward two months ago and I finally got my hands on a Team Wendy EPIC helmet liner from an online shop who was selling their floor demo. It’s been installed in my helmet ever since and all I’ve got to say about it is WOW. Team Wendy came up with what I consider to be one of the best helmet liners ever. The modularity is phenomenal.
The complete package features a one piece impact liner that covers the entire area of the helmet top and sides.This liner is made of the same material used in the ZAP pads made by Team Wendy which is also the only pad system approved by the US Army and US Marines Corps to be used in combat helmets. On top of the liner comes 22 different comfort pads to be placed to user’s taste in the helmet. These comfort pads come in 3/16” and 3/8” thickness depending on the fit desired by the user. These come in a variety of shapes as well allowing perfect fit on the head. The system also comes with two ”sweatband” pads which are made of a different material for moisture absorption and a set of stability pads which are made of a grippy material to keep the helmet from moving around too much. According to Team Wendy testing the EPIC liner ”Exceeds the ACH blunt impact requirements (AR/PD 10-02)”.
Upon first time wearing the system I simply fell in love with it. The multiple pad shapes and sizes mean I have the perfect fit for my with very little to no movement at all. The two thickness available for the comfort pads also mean I can switch them around for a looser fit during the winter month when I have cold weather gear on such has balaclavas or beanie.
The only issue I ”might” have with this system is that since it covers the whole inside of the helmet, it may get hot during summer month. Regular pad suspension have spaces in between the pads allowing air flow.
Luckily last year Team Wendy came up with the EPIC AIR helmet liner. It basically is a more streamlined EPIC helmet liner to which Team Wendy has added their Air Channeling technology to have an improved air flow all around the head.
The Team Wendy EPIC retails for 66.50 USD and the EPIC AIR retails for 99.00 USD. Both will fit most combat helmets on the market. I have installed it in my Canadian Gallet CG634, MICH2000 and 2001 with an always perfect fit. Team Wendy offers replacement comfort pads set for 29.95 USD as well. Both the EPIC and EPIC AIR are available in Black,Foliage and Coyote Brown.