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Quadzilla32

Why is gear so expensive?

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Is it just me or does it seem that gear is way to expensive, especially leg pads! I get it that companies have to pay for R&D, league fees and their overhead, but the price of gear is just crazy. You look at big major brands like Brians, CCM, and Bauer and they want 2k+ for a complete set. There is no way that some foam and jenpro cost anywhere near to that. They do have to pay for manufacturing costs, but it still seems pretty high.

You can look at smaller companies that manufacture right here in N.A. and their gear isn't AS expensive, but still a good chunk of change.

Rant over!

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There's a lot that goes into the pricing of a product and you have a good chunk of it but there are a lot of pieces at play.

One thing you need to take into account is that the gear you're buying essentially goes through two rounds of price markups. Suppliers sell their gear to distributors for a markup as they need to make money, and then distributors put their own markup on the gear to sell to consumers. We pay anywhere from 30-50% of the actual C.O.G.S., costs of good sold, or manufacturing costs including overhead.

Also need to take into account MAP that is dictated by the suppliers.

The fact that respective sales teams do case study's to determine the best price the market will bare.

Etc etc.

Essentially, pricing of goods and services can be a very complicated thing and isn't just as simple as a 5-15% markup on the COGS.

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It's a symptom of the sport (sports?) as a whole. Hockey is quickly becoming a game for the well-to-do similar to lacrosse, golf, etc. I've been researching local rinks/leagues to get my 5YO started in youth hockey, and I can't believe some of the prices. League fees, ice times, travel, etc. Everything related to hockey is so much money nowadays.

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Feels like it’s been that way for a while. In the early 1990s my folks had to scape together to let us play. Luckily Perinton Youth Hockey had a good community of parents that traded / donated gear.  

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5 years ago, professional pads cost 1000-1200 dollars. If I’m not mistaken, 1s odin on goaliemonkey in the year of its release cost $ 1200 and it was more expensive than the rest

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4 hours ago, motowngoalie said:

It's a symptom of the sport (sports?) as a whole. Hockey is quickly becoming a game for the well-to-do similar to lacrosse, golf, etc. I've been researching local rinks/leagues to get my 5YO started in youth hockey, and I can't believe some of the prices. League fees, ice times, travel, etc. Everything related to hockey is so much money nowadays.

I was blown away when I first started playing and found out how much kids travel hockey per season. I couldn't believe that people would pay that much or even could pay that much per season.

I get inflation made prices go up because once the cost of goods goes up the price for consumers goes up too. I just think its starting to get out of hand or companies are starting to get greedy. I found my old invoice from Simmons from pads I ordered 3/4 years ago and I got a complete set of gear for around 1300 and that is N.A made stuff. Its just getting harder and harder for me to justify to the wife that I need two sets of pads when I have to drop 2k+ for them.

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3 hours ago, benner33 said:

Feels like it’s been that way for a while. In the early 1990s my folks had to scape together to let us play. Luckily Perinton Youth Hockey had a good community of parents that traded / donated gear.  

That's another bad thing parents will start making their kids play soccer or basketball where they have to pay $100 league fees and buy some shoes for their kids vs. dropping thousands each season. Its a block for children who want to play and the kids whos parents are lucky enough to be able to pay for them.

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1 hour ago, ser33 said:

5 years ago, professional pads cost 1000-1200 dollars. If I’m not mistaken, 1s odin on goaliemonkey in the year of its release cost $ 1200 and it was more expensive than the rest

No they weren't.

At best they were $1,900 CAD vs the $2,000 CAD the 2S' were.

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19 minutes ago, coopaloop1234 said:

No they weren't.

At best they were $1,900 CAD vs the $2,000 CAD the 2S' were.

I talked about usd maybe they were worth the way you say, I do not argue. but this is already 1400 usd. and that's a lot. a lot. I completely agree with the comments above that in recent years, hockey has become an expensive sport

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39 minutes ago, Quadzilla32 said:

I was blown away when I first started playing and found out how much kids travel hockey per season. I couldn't believe that people would pay that much or even could pay that much per season.

Yeah I’m in high school and was just informed how much it was. I had no idea. I can’t play AAA/tier 1 travel because of the cost. I think I could make the team but we can’t afford it.

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12 minutes ago, ser33 said:

I talked about usd maybe they were worth the way you say, I do not argue. but this is already 1400 usd. and that's a lot. a lot. I completely agree with the comments above that in recent years, hockey has become an expensive sport

I understand that. I'm stating that the price of the 1S pads at release are the same as the 2S pads now.

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One thing to remember is that our gear is pricey because hockey is already a niche sport, and goaltending is a niche within a niche.   Some of the testing equipment my company uses costs between $3000 and $10000 per meter, and we need one for each technician we put in the field.  There are only two companies that make the gear we need, so we're stuck paying the price.

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...don't forget NHL licensing costs. Alot of the small companies that are not in The Show don't have to pay that, hence can keep prices lower. What really pisses me off about CCM and some other big companies, is the fact they make their pro gear in China, but still charge customers Canadian made prices. Fk that. I only bought custom twice in my life (Brown and TPS) and they were made in Canada. I even talked directly with JB on my Brown order. Good luck talking Chinese with CCM. Now I went back to buying close-out gear. If I wanted custom, I'd look at a small Canadian mfgr like Passau or Kenesky (..or Brian's, who is also Canadian made, but at a much higher cost). I won't shell out top-dollar to have my stuff made in a Chinese sweat-shop 🤬

As for prices of Juniors travel, in the US/CAN it does look pretty crazy. I saw some travel leagues cost $5-10k. My son is 17 and plays Juniors here in Switzerland and we pay around $1,000 per season, which is about average for all levels. "Elite" Juniors here might be a little more, because they travel nation-wide and have a higher game schedule, but then they also offset the costs with sponsors and donations, so even there it won't be much more, not even close to the US/CAN costs.

Edited by estogoalie
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17 hours ago, Quadzilla32 said:

I was blown away when I first started playing and found out how much kids travel hockey per season. I couldn't believe that people would pay that much or even could pay that much per season.

I get inflation made prices go up because once the cost of goods goes up the price for consumers goes up too. I just think its starting to get out of hand or companies are starting to get greedy. I found my old invoice from Simmons from pads I ordered 3/4 years ago and I got a complete set of gear for around 1300 and that is N.A made stuff. Its just getting harder and harder for me to justify to the wife that I need two sets of pads when I have to drop 2k+ for them.

Simmons cuts costs by knocking off the big boys' stuff.  They are NA made but they're essentially serial intellectual property thieves.  It's easy to keep costs down when your R&D costs are "buy a pair of Vaughns.  Cut them up.  Replicate."  They also weren't the quality of the big companies.  I had a pair of Simmons that went floppy by the end of the first season.  These were senior quality at best.  You get what you paid for.

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For reference in 2005 my epics were 999.99 for the legs, which was top of the line then, Mckenneys were around 599.99 at the time. Epics glove and blocker set were 499.99. Today Goaliemonkey current Vaughn combo is 2669.97. 100 in 2005 is equivalent to 131.58 today, according to google. That means the vaughn pads today would cost 1973.67 without tax. Gear today is truly 35% more expensive than it was 15 years ago dollar for dollar. The epics were brand new and top of the line when I bought them. I agree prices are ridiculous today for literally everything, not just goalie gear. 500 for a glove is just stupid.

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A full set of Smith Gear back in 2007 was $1,315.

  • $875 pads 
  • $255 glove
  • $185 blocker

Vortek VK7 bundle was $1,190.00 in 2007

Passau full stock kit 2020 - $1,112.53

Passau full custom 2020 - $1800

List prices for Vaughn V2 in 2007

  • Pads: $1400   
  • Blocker: $290
  • Glove: $430

Vaughn VE8 in 2020

  • Pads: $1675
  • Blocker: $365
  • Glove: $520

Generally looks like a 12% - 20% increase over the years.

Edited by MangoRhinehart

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If there is a market for a team sport that you can pitch to parents and kids alike as,

  • Requiring at a time and money commitment that projects self-importance and status
  • Establishing a 'career' trajectory that may take them you to schools and colleges of stature
  • Teaching team values
  • Offering positive, formative experiences not limited to an increasing diversity of youth hockey players (sex, ethnicity, ability) 

then you have the middle, upper-middle, and upper classes hook, line and sinker. Equipment manufacturers likely understand this better than most. 

As an adult, I don't mind because I am buying gear almost purely based on desire rather than need. When I was growing up, however, I paid for hockey and the equipment without any thought to the four bullet points above. There wasn't a newspaper or pizza delivered, lawn mowed, ditch dug, garbage detail attended that wasn't at least partially motivated by saving for new gear. Hockey was still expensive, but the motivation for me was to play hockey and have fun with the gear. I think the equipment manufacturers likely understand this just as well.

Edited by dualshowman

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18 hours ago, coopaloop1234 said:

I understand that. I'm stating that the price of the 1S pads at release are the same as the 2S pads now.

My 2S set cost about $100 less than my 1S set, but the 1S came with knee pads and a pad carry bag

Edit: which is not trying to take away from your point, that's the cost from custom ordering from TGC. Retail was exactly what you say, every brand went up between $50-$100 in that gen

Edited by Mroy31
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I'd be interested to see what is the cost of materials & labor for a set of pads. Too bad I know I will never get my hands on that information haha. Due to inflation the price of equipment has slowly increased over the years, like many members before me have explained. But during the last.. 10 yrs? CCM and Bauer have bit by bit moved their pro equipment production to Asia... So the manufacturer is saving money on labor costs, but the number on the price tag for the customer has gone up. No more made in Canada equipment for the average joe, and no deduction in price either. Big guys are pocketing the money they save when moving production to a country with cheaper labor...

Knowing this, I prefer to support small manufacturers and those who have kept their production in Canada.  

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58 minutes ago, Mroy31 said:

My 2S set cost about $100 less than my 1S set, but the 1S came with knee pads and a pad carry bag

Edit: which is not trying to take away from your point, that's the cost from custom ordering from TGC. Retail was exactly what you say, every brand went up between $50-$100 in that gen

If anything that adds to my point.

The difference in the sale price of the 1S and 2S was practically identical numerically. Technically less for the 2S if you want to to incorporate inflation into the mix.

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To counter the Simmons quality comment, I’ve had a set of their leg pads and gloves in use since 2012 and they’re humming along nicely. That includes a period where I was playing 5-6 times a week for multiple years. I have had the gloves spruced up by Sara at PAW and I’ve put Shoogoo on the wear spots on all the gear. For reference I have worn pro gear from Vaughn, Brown, Bauer, TPS and don’t feel any drop off in the Simmons gear.  
 

But the OP’s point is valid. More and more people have less and less disposable income and something non-essential like hockey will not be prioritized by a family who doesn’t have the means. Granted, if you’re a phenom you will likely find your fees paid for by organizations and it will be easier for you financially. But most kids are NOT phenoms, despite what many parents think. 

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Back in 1996 ish I bought (actually my parents) a set of Koho Revolution Pads/gloves blockers (the patrick roy ones)

The pads were $900 glove was just under 260 and blocker was 160.  so all told that's $1320 USD.  

In 2020 USD terms thats about $2250 which isnt too different from top of the line equipment nowadays

Pads have always been expensive.  

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