JOFA Helmets | Halos of Hockey

Gretzky, Lemieux, Jagr, Selanne, Savard, Sundin, Forsberg, Fleury, Kurri, Housley, Palffy, Salming and Stastny are some of the NHL greats who have worn the JOFA emblem proudly upon their foreheads during some of the highest scoring and most important seasons and careers in NHL history. This blog discusses the JOFA helmet, the different models, who men who wore them, their significance, where to buy and sell them, how to fix and modify them, and why they are icons of hockey excellence.

May 28, 2012

The JOFA 366 Prototype


Of all the JOFA helmets I have come across, this is the strangest and most mysterious of them all; this is the JOFA 366 prototype.  I say prototype because this, to my knowledge, has only been worn by pros; and may have been made custom by the factory. I have mentioned before that early model JOFA 366 helmets had a faux leather front bumper, such as this one; but they don't all have this type of padding, and other details I will mention.



To begin, it is immediately noticeable that the inner padding is made from soft beige rubber foam. But look closer; the front rivets holding the padding in place are absent, with no sign of removal.


Now this is where it gets really weird; the ear loops are made from faux leather. It is definitely a factory job, proven by the rivets holding it in place, and the snaps installed on both sides. Even more strange, the cut out for the ear goes over, and around, the embossed edge; where on later versions of the JOFA 366, the cut out leaves a little shelf above the ear.


Look closely, here you can see the rear bumper; notice it is also faux leather, stitched onto the helmet!


If anything proves this is factory made, and not some odd customization; the padding is cleanly cut to fit the form of the helmet, and avoid covering the vents. I wish I knew the story behind this helmet; as well as who used to own and use it!


From my research, I have seen the beige padding peeking out around the edges of JOFA 366's worn by the pros, but until I found this helmet, I didn't take much notice.  I was pleased to find that Mario Lemieux wore a helmet similar to this! Notice, though, in these pictures his ear loops are narrow plastic, even different from the standard JOFA 366; but you can see that the padding is the same, and that the rivets holding the front padding in place are absent.


 Another example shows Denis Savard, wearing a JOFA 366 without front rivets, and what seems to be beige padding around his forehead.


Last, here is Rick Tocchet, wearing a similar JOFA 366, with beige padding, faux leather ear loops and all.  On his helmet, the front rivets seem to be in place; and he also swapped out for a white chin strap.

With all the variations of this mystery helmet, my curiosity only strengthens.  Please comment if you have spotted a similar helmet, or own one; I would love to learn more.

3 comments:

  1. while i know nothing of this model, i recognized immediately that this is a very similar style to what mario had worn in days past. what a beauty!

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  2. I remember an old Jofa catalog from about 1988 that showed this helmet as "pro stock". I live in Sweden and ear protection was/is mandatory over here.

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  3. Hi there, my name is Alex Jones and I created the wallpaper that you're using as the background for this site.

    1) That's freaking awesome. I love that somebody is using it.

    2) I would appreciate some credit though. Just a link in the sidebar or another blogpost would be great.

    Thanks!

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