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Black Diamond Vector Helmet

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    68 Reviews


    Vector Helmet

    Your head is your most valuable climbing asset, which makes a good helmet key. The Black Diamond Vector Helmet keeps all your marbles where they belong: in your noggin and focused on climbing. A vented polycarbonate shell encases co-molded EPS foam for a versatile design that allows airflow without compromising protection. The Vector's ratcheting adjuster means you get the most ideal fit without fiddling around, and secure headlamp clips keep your light source from taking off for an adventure of its own.

    • Climbing helmet for coverage with comfort
    • Polycarbonate shell provides structure
    • EPS foam absorbs and disperses impact
    • Ratcheting adjustment lets you find a precise fit
    • Vents ensure airflow without sacrificing protection
    • Headlamp clips secure your light source
    • Item #BLD1409

    Tech Specs

    ⚠️ WARNING
    This product can expose you to chemicals including Bisphenol A (BPA), which is known to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. For more information go to
    Shell Material
    Impact Foam
    Fit Adjustment
    Claimed Weight
    (S/M) 8.1 oz, (M/L) 8.5 oz
    Recommended Use
    rock climbing
    Manufacturer Warranty
    1 year

    Tech Specs

    • Reviews
    • Q & A

    What do you think about this product?

    Have questions about this product?

    Light and comfortable but not durable

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    It's a great helmet in many ways but I wish it were more durable. I can easily push a dent into the shell with a finger with little force. I'm ALWAYS concerned when storing in my pack, even if just going cragging. Perhaps it's good to be mindful of protecting your helmet but I really feel I have to baby this thing. Because of this, my next helmet will be a one with EPP core and partial hard shell such as a Mammut Wall Rider. That said, the BD Vector is very light, breathes well, and comfortable. I hardly notice when I am wearing it. Adjusting fit is super easy.

    Lightweight and happy so far

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    I was looking to side down from my half-dome helmet and this did the trick. The profile is definitely bigger than the half-dome but I don't mind it, and it definitely feels considerable lighter. Only thing I'm not crazy about is that the inside adjustable frame feels a bit flimsy and I worry it will break in the not so distant future due to my helmet abuse.

    Good fit, wish there were more colors

      Good fit, good safety rating, and good weight... Which is all that really matters.

      But I do wish they had more "fun" like a really bright reddish pink or something.

      Great Helmet

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      I love this helmet! I have an average size head, maybe a little smaller and a small-medium was the one for me. It adjusts in the back as well for a perfect fit. It is lightweight and breathable.

      Simply the Best

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      Finally - a helmet that fits my head, looks good, and is lightweight!

      I've been searching for a helmet that fits these parameters, but it's been hard to find. My first helmet was the Black Diamond Half Dome. It fit pretty well but I thought it was a little too heavy, and it gave me headaches when wearing it for more than an hour at a time - not ideal for multi pitch climbing!

      After using the Half Dome for a season I decided to purchase the Petzl Elia. I love the colors it comes in (green!) but it was just way too big for my pea head. It was constantly shifting and I was always adjusting it which is again, not ideal.

      After saving up some money I decided to pull the trigger on the Vector. My boyfriend has one himself and I thought it looked super light and sleek. I'm so glad I finally purchased this! It fits my head PERFECTLY, and it adjusts with ease so I can wear this with a bandana or beanie underneath if I want to. The straps are comfortable and also adjust easily, and BD added a little tail catch to keep it from flopping around under your chin. The EPS foam and polycarbonate construction make this helmet so light, you barely notice it's on your head. The EPS foam saves weight while the polycarbonate layer adds a little bit of structure to it, so it can handle more bumps and dings than a traditional foam helmet. As a bonus, it looks great.

      I would wear this helmet for basically any outdoor sport that requires or recommends a helmet (rock climbing, mountaineering/alpine climbing, ski touring, ice climbing, etc).

      Here's a cheesy photo of my boyfriend and I wearing our matching BD helmets - climbing in Rock Canyon, Provo Utah!

      Simply the Best

      nice and light

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      Needed a lighter helmet because old one kept falling off when climbing steep stuff. This helmet is light enough that it always sits on my head and pretty comfy too. The adjustment isn't as a nice as helmets with a knob on the back, but it does the job.

      Comfortable helmet, not durable for ice

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      Comfortable helmet, barely can notice wearing it.

      Standing up into roofs, etc dents the helmet pretty easily.

      Took a basketball sized piece of ice to the head from ~30' and it protected me without any pain.

      Retiring after 4 years and going with a hard plastic shell for ice climbing. Would buy again for just rock.

      Comfortable helmet, not durable for ice

      Lightweight and Comfortable

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      The vector is comfortable and has better ventilation than the half dome helmet. That being said, you do sacrifice durability, but that is understandable.

      Safe, Light, Comfortable

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times

      A climbing helmet is supposed to protect your dome, but it helps if it does more than that. I have a large head and this helmet has plenty of room and is very comfortable. Moreover it is super light, and easy to forget you're even wearing it. And if you're a head sweat-er like me, this helmet has plenty of ventilation to keep you cool.

      Best fitting helmet

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      Easily one of the best fitting helmets I have ever worn for any discipline. Easily adjust to your head with the ratcheting adjuster. Insanely light, sometimes I forget it is on my head because it fits so well and is so light. Breathes well so your head won't get hot, easily fits a beanie or cap underneath without causing any pain or fitting funny. Most hoods easily fit over it, including the Patagonia R1 hood.

      Protect the good stuff.

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      My wife is a former climbing guide who studied brains and TBIs, so she lovingly badgers everyone she climbs with to ALWAYS wear a helmet. It's disturbingly easy to injure your brain, and both you and your beloved climbing parters' brains are worth protecting with a good helmet. This is a great one.

      You won't wear a helmet if 1) it's uncomfortable, 2) it doesn't stay on your head, 3) it's too heavy or bulky to bring along with you, or 4) you think it looks dumb.

      The Vector (or the Vapor) fixes that and chips away at your excuses to not wear a helmet because 1) it is inarguably the most comfortable helmet on the market due to its ventilation, 2) its bombproof fit system (it won't slide into "lobotomy style") with a wide range of adjustability, and 3) its featherlight weight, which you nearly forget when it's on your head. It's so light you barely notice it in a pack.

      4) If you're worried about looking dumb in a helmet, take a long, hard think about it. Being able to think and climb is great. Just wear the damn helmet. That said, the Vector and the Vapor are pretty clean and sleek, and you'll automatically look like less of a beater because you won't have an ill-fitting helmet flopping around, or even worse... a backwards trucker hat or climbing shirtless with a beanie.

      She wears this helmet herself, and puts everyone she cares about in one, too.


        Last time I got the vapor, and while light, it broke while in my pack. the foam cracked. So I have been using this one for a bit and don't really notice the extra weight, and it feels more sturdy.

        Protect your cranium!

        My vector helmet has been scraped across all types of rock. Despite nics and marks from wear-and-tear over a couple year, I feel absolutely secure climbing in my BD helmet. Many people skip out on wearing a helmet but rock-fall doesn't discriminate. Pick one up!

        Protect your cranium!

        Bigger profile but good overall

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times

        This was my first helmet and I mainly used for rock climbing. I didn't notice the bigger profile it has over my half-dome helmet, which really became an issue when I started ice climbing because my jacket hoods do not fit over it very well at all. If you just want it for non-winter season climbing, it isn't bad, as long as you don't mind it looking huge on your head (especially with taller lengthy builds). For winter though, I would suggest a smaller profile helmet that you can easily slide your hood over.

        Great fit and a great feel!

        • Familiarity: I've used it several times

        Super light weight and strong! Fits my big head really well. Nice and snug so there is no jostling as you make the next hard move on the wall and the adjustable fitting system is great as well. You can barely tell its there!
        The front comes nice and far down the forehead to protect you from any falling rocks you may encounter as the belayer and the ventilation is superb. No more sweaty head ahahah. Protect your noggin with this great helmet!

        Is the Vector just a slightly more durable version of the Vapor?


        The Vector and Vapor will have similar fits but the Vector is slightly bulkier. It is about 2 oz's heavier and a larger profile. Similar fit, but just added bulk with less vents.

        It is still an awesome helmet with great protection. The Vapor is just for those looking to be gram weenies.

        Some of the weight savings in the Vapor comes from the sheet of Kevlar that it has whereas the Vector doesn't have that.

        Shoot me an email anytime you have questions!

        Jared D.

        Expert Gearhead


        I have a big head, really big. I tried on a Vector M/L and Elios size 2 today, both were almost comically small perched atop of my giant head. Any Ideas?

        Hey badp1148379,

        I would suggest you check out the Grivel Salamander helmet (Item # GRV0082). The XL size can fit heads that measure 58cm-66cm in circumference. Have you measured the circumference of your noggin with a tape measure? I would think that it would fall under the XL variant of the Salamander. I hope this helps, the link below will send you to the helmet I am suggesting.

        Whats the deal with the sizing? I currently...

        Whats the deal with the sizing? I currently wear a Petzl Elios which has a max size of 61cm, my head is roughly 62cm and the Petzl fits ok. Went to try the M/L (says it fits up to 63cm) BD Vector on and couldn't even begin to get my head in. I know manufacturers size things differently but this is ridiculous.

        S. Lee,

        I would suggest The Grivel Salamander helmet, The XL size measures 58cm-66cm so it would accommodate your head circumference at 62cm OR the regular maxes out at 62cm so if you are comfortable with being at the very largest setting you will be fine. I hope this helps.

        Best Answer

        I realize this is probably too late, but for anyone else reading, try this:

        Loosen the straps at the back of the helmet that the rear head retention (hard plastic strap things) is attached to. Pull the head retainer down and out, then try on the helmet. I had the same issue with this and the Vapour due to my large head, but it turns out that the issue is that they're set up at the smallest size of M out of the box rather than the much larger L sizing they are capable of attaining.

        Thanks for the tip on the back plastic strap piece! Something else I discovered about this helmet is that the pivot point of the plastic strap is adjustable. So if the above tip isnt enough to get your big head in you can pop the plastic strap out and move it back to the next set of holes (about 1/2inch back). Not sure why black diamond doesn't post any of this stuff.

        Thanks for the tip on the back plastic strap piece!  Something else I discovered about this helmet is that the pivot point of the plastic strap is adjustable.  So if the above tip isnt enough to get your big head in you can pop the plastic strap out and move it back to the next set of holes (about 1/2inch back).  Not sure why black diamond doesn't post any of this stuff.

        Can you wear ski googles with this?

        Can you wear ski googles with this?

        Best Answer

        Hi Aaron,

        you totally can, it depending on the goggle it will push them down on your face a bit. and you have to put the goggles on before the helmet and run the strap under the helmet. I use it with the smith I/O and it pushes them down, its really annoying at first but then you forget about it once you start skiing.