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Battle of the mid-range gear


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Hey all,

Very curious about your thoughts on all the mid-range price point lines from each brand. I like to switch up every few years or so to try different brands and new innovations, but generally don't like to break the bank going pro/top level each time. So I'm curious what everyone uses and thinks!

So far I've used:

CCM eFlex 500 - my first "real" pad (i.e. not the cheap used gear I started with). No real comparison here, but from what I remember they were well made and fairly solid, though in retrospect fairly heavy. Didn't love the soft rebounds though and wasn't crazy about the glove (including some stingers), but the blocker was stellar.

CCM Premier 1.9 - first upgrade and loved these. Big change from the eFlex, even with pre-curve and a single break. Great pad, and definitely got me more interested in reduced strapping options (took off the majority on these) as well as flat face/hard rebound pads. I did have to replace straps on them as the upper elastic one wore out on mine, but otherwise good quality and a solid upgrade. Pretty impressed with CCM's Senior level.

With this I primarily used a Brian's gnetik 5.0 glove (sr level) which was decent, but I could never get used to the break and couldn't catch worth a damn with. No quality issues that  I can recall, other than the lacing being done real tight and having to adjust so far. Upgraded to a G4 pro glove and love it. 

Warrior G3 Sr - Bought these on clearance as the G4 had just come out. Great pad once you tinker with it and get it dialed in. I had heard so much about the quality of Warrior's senior line and the sliding, so I bought in. Very quickly made a lot of adjustments on it (replaced the toe with a kenesky elastic, removed the boot strap, angled the knee down to calf and took off the holder, removed the clips). I really like these, but not crazy about the knee landing hardness. I also had a quality issue where one of the knee blocks cracked and I've since replaced with LD45 and an EVA foam topper thanks to PAW. 

Currently still using the G4 pro glove, and just got a G5 Sr+ blocker, though I haven't tried that yet.

Currently considering trying the next gens of the Gnetik X, G5 sr, or the eventual Bauer 3X or RGT3 senior. What have your experiences been with mid level lines?

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29 minutes ago, TheGoalNet said:

Ever consider a brand like Kenesky or Passau? You can get the full custom treatment in your price range?

Oh definitely. I think my interest is to try different things and different brand features. I feel going full-custom would honestly be fairly overwhelming as I'm still learning what I like and don't like. It's not so much about cost, honestly. 

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I don't have a whole lot to say about mid-priced gear, other than I think you can do just fine with the blocker and pads, but if there's only one piece I was going to spend pro-level money on, it would definitely be the trapper.  They tend to be easier to close out of the box and have noticeably better protection.  The senior level pads will break down more quickly in my experience, but as far as performance off they shelf they won't be much different. The only mid-level gloves I've put my hand in that seemed even usable were the Bauer 2X and the Vaughn V9 2 piece, the former I'd have been okay with using in a game, but the palm on the V9 seemed extremely thin even though it seemed to be built well and was actually pretty snappy right off the shelf.  The difference between my XLT glove and the P2.9, for example, is like holding a totally different piece of equipment.  I don't know how anyone uses the mid or lower-tier CCM trappers.

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On 1/8/2021 at 9:22 AM, indykrap said:

Hey all,

Very curious about your thoughts on all the mid-range price point lines from each brand. I like to switch up every few years or so to try different brands and new innovations, but generally don't like to break the bank going pro/top level each time. So I'm curious what everyone uses and thinks!

Currently considering trying the next gens of the Gnetik X, G5 sr, or the eventual Bauer 3X or RGT3 senior. What have your experiences been with mid level lines?

There will not be a R/GT3 this year.  Not sure if it's being pushed back due to COVID or if they've axed the line all together.
Not sure what's going on at Warrior in general.  Their website still has not been updated with G5 lines and M1 sticks (it's almost been a year??)

On 1/8/2021 at 9:52 AM, TheGoalNet said:

Ever consider a brand like Kenesky or Passau? You can get the full custom treatment in your price range?

On 1/8/2021 at 10:24 AM, indykrap said:

Oh definitely. I think my interest is to try different things and different brand features. I feel going full-custom would honestly be fairly overwhelming as I'm still learning what I like and don't like. It's not so much about cost, honestly. 

The cool thing with Kenesky is that Mike can do whatever you want, and is pretty savvy even if you only have a general idea (ie - you can tell him you want a knee block from X pad/line and he probably knows what you are talking about)
If you have just a general idea of what you are looking for, he can make recommendations and work backwards with you to get to a pad that will work.
I kinda wanna ask him if he can make pads that make farting noises when they take shots off the shin

Custom ordering from Passau is a bit more like doing custom gear with CCM - you have a set menu of changes you can pick from.  Passau's selection is a little more robust. 

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On 1/8/2021 at 12:45 PM, Chenner29 said:

There will not be a R/GT3 this year.  Not sure if it's being pushed back due to COVID or if they've axed the line all together.
Not sure what's going on at Warrior in general.  Their website still has not been updated with G5 lines and M1 sticks (it's almost been a year??)

Not COVID related. One of their ambassadors told me back in the summer that Warrior is going to discontinue the GT line. Mostly due to sales.

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On 1/8/2021 at 12:59 PM, coopaloop1234 said:

Not COVID related. One of their ambassadors told me back in the summer that Warrior is going to discontinue the GT line. Mostly due to sales.

Maybe they need to start putting some Warrior R/GT logos on guys in the NHL...

😁

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49 minutes ago, Chenner29 said:

The cool thing with Kenesky is that Mike can do whatever you want, and is pretty savvy even if you only have a general idea (ie - you can tell him you want a knee block from X pad/line and he probably knows what you are talking about)
If you have just a general idea of what you are looking for, he can make recommendations and work backwards with you to get to a pad that will work.
I kinda wanna ask him if he can make pads that make farting noises when they take shots off the shin

Custom ordering from Passau is a bit more like doing custom gear with CCM - you have a set menu of changes you can pick from.  Passau's selection is a little more robust. 

Fair points all around! I was thinking more like the big big innovations, like I'd like to try Brian's strapping, or the stabilislide thing Bauer has going on, or the various different sliding surfaces. I've really liked the Warrior because of just how much/easily I can take apart the gear and try different combinations, but definitely hitting limits as to what I can do with it. Perhaps a new years resolution post-COVID is to get more goalie buddies to share/demo gear with! 

It would be cool to work with them to build up something though based on how you describe it. My dream pad is a very vintage look and fairly flexible, but with flat knee rolls, hard rebounds, modern all-elastic strapping, and huge 45 degree knee blocks. So basically not a vintage pad at all, haha. Good to know and having dealt with him in the past I know he's quite great to work with. 

Unfortunate to hear from @coopaloop1234 regarding the GT3 line though. Maybe that means a good deal on some GT2s in the future, haha.

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25 minutes ago, Chenner29 said:

Maybe they need to start putting some Warrior R/GT logos on guys in the NHL...

😁

NHL has almost whored out every aspect they can at this point, what's a few extra advertisements eh?

8 minutes ago, indykrap said:

Unfortunate to hear from @coopaloop1234 regarding the GT3 line though. Maybe that means a good deal on some GT2s in the future, haha.

GT2 Sr gear is essentially GT1 Pro gear. So you would be getting a decent pad overall and at a decent price.

Just no Hypercomp, which does make a massive difference for rgidity and protection. Saying that, I had almost zero issues in my GT1 sr gear, aside from eventually developing a crack in the blocker face two years in.

I made a review to my set. Review also includes my review of the GT1 set as well. In case you're curious.

 

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1 hour ago, indykrap said:

Fair points all around! I was thinking more like the big big innovations, like I'd like to try Brian's strapping, or the stabilislide thing Bauer has going on, or the various different sliding surfaces. I've really liked the Warrior because of just how much/easily I can take apart the gear and try different combinations, but definitely hitting limits as to what I can do with it. Perhaps a new years resolution post-COVID is to get more goalie buddies to share/demo gear with! 

It would be cool to work with them to build up something though based on how you describe it. My dream pad is a very vintage look and fairly flexible, but with flat knee rolls, hard rebounds, modern all-elastic strapping, and huge 45 degree knee blocks. So basically not a vintage pad at all, haha. Good to know and having dealt with him in the past I know he's quite great to work with. 

Unfortunate to hear from @coopaloop1234 regarding the GT3 line though. Maybe that means a good deal on some GT2s in the future, haha.

I did something similar with them.  There was a lot of custom on that set.

 

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7 hours ago, indykrap said:

Oh definitely. I think my interest is to try different things and different brand features. I feel going full-custom would honestly be fairly overwhelming as I'm still learning what I like and don't like. It's not so much about cost, honestly. 

I can help you with our different options if you need to

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I've had a fair amount of experience with the mid level gear in both gloves and pads. I have mixed in pro gear I can find at good deals but I've like to try some new innovations from time to time and with a young family don't have the extra spending money to go new pro so the mid-level pricing helps.  When I got back into playing 10 years ago from a 10 year hiatus gear had changed quite a bit and it took trial and error to find what I prefer.  With pads I started back with some NikeBauer one55s which weren't for me so I quickly pivoted to some Vaughn 7450s which were great as they were softer and played more like the pads I played competively with in the late 90s.  Got the itch and got a good deal on some Reebok P3 pros but those were just a little too rigid with only a single break and found it hard on my knees.  Went back in time and found a never used set of Heaton 10s that were awesome but again, got the itch to be in newer style pads.  I then transitioned to some well used v5s and then went completely opposite and got into a set of Bauer x900s.  The quality of them I found great and had no durability issues.  Had the cortech on the sliding surface so I think it matched the performance of the 1x pads in that regard.  Alas, they were just too stiff.  I am now in a pair of Vaughn SLR Pros that I find are the perfect mix to what I want.  Stiff enough to give fast rebounds but flexible enough I don't feel like I'm wearing wood planks on my legs.  Quality is top notch for mid level and has the same strapping as the pro carbons including the professor strap(although it's just a plastic buckle on that instead of the metal magnetic buckle on the carbons).

As for gloves I agree with the majority that going pro is a better avenue then mid level especially with the trapper but also when it comes to the finger protection of the blocker.  The midlevel Vaughn gloves I've had were okay but definitely some stingers and the 2x senior glove I used ended up feeling super thin in the palm.  The best non pro set of gloves I've used were a set of CCM Premier 1.5s actually.  That's not even mid level, it's low level.  My local Source for Sports shop had them exclusive that had d30 in the trapper palm and finger protection of the blocker.  For the price with that added protection I couldn't go wrong.  The durability wasn't there but the protection felt pro level.  What I've done is also something that has been previously suggested and went with a smaller company for my gloves to get pro level protection and durability at mid level prices and wear McKenney.  Best pair I've ever had although I still have a sweet spot for my old Brian's Midnight Series Theif Trapper and Blocker from the 90s.

Edited by Drew37
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23 hours ago, AdamL said:

I don't have a whole lot to say about mid-priced gear, other than I think you can do just fine with the blocker and pads, but if there's only one piece I was going to spend pro-level money on, it would definitely be the trapper.  They tend to be easier to close out of the box and have noticeably better protection.  The senior level pads will break down more quickly in my experience, but as far as performance off they shelf they won't be much different. The only mid-level gloves I've put my hand in that seemed even usable were the Bauer 2X and the Vaughn V9 2 piece, the former I'd have been okay with using in a game, but the palm on the V9 seemed extremely thin even though it seemed to be built well and was actually pretty snappy right off the shelf.  The difference between my XLT glove and the P2.9, for example, is like holding a totally different piece of equipment.  I don't know how anyone uses the mid or lower-tier CCM trappers.

I very much agree with this statement for most brands but I swear, my sr GT1 glove is as thick and protective as any pro glove I've owned throughout the years. Durability might be the only issue as the top of the T split open after one season, 12-15 games or so. I brought it up but nothing happened. Oh well.

The Warrior GT line could easily compete with the retro Vaughn and CCM line due to knee roles and flex. A few guys in the show are still fancying that type of pad.

If Warrior really puts an end to the GT line, I wholeheartedly hope they will consider offering the permanent fixed inner lining of their GT glove as an option for the future lines (G6, G7, etc).

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On 1/8/2021 at 1:53 PM, coopaloop1234 said:

GT2 Sr gear is essentially GT1 Pro gear. So you would be getting a decent pad overall and at a decent price.

Really or a forum legend? I find that GT2 pad made a big step after GT. More boxier, softer shin cradle and bigger knee landing. Also huge step in catcher. You can't say GT pro = GT2 Sr. 🙅‍♀️

I think/heard G line is more popular and no market for two lines. But you can still order a custom GT2 set if you want. 

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On 1/9/2021 at 3:15 PM, Korppi32 said:

Really or a forum legend? I find that GT2 pad made a big step after GT. More boxier, softer shin cradle and bigger knee landing. Also huge step in catcher. You can't say GT pro = GT2 Sr. 🙅‍♀️

Pretty sure the core of the GT2 sr is the same as the GT Pro.

Sure it has a bigger knee landing, but the boxier feel comes from the added rigidity of the hypercomp, which isn't in the GT2 sr.

I'll be different and say the GT1 glove > GT2 Glove.

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On 1/9/2021 at 12:30 AM, Drew37 said:

I've had a fair amount of experience with the mid level gear in both gloves and pads. I have mixed in pro gear I can find at good deals but I've like to try some new innovations from time to time and with a young family don't have the extra spending money to go new pro so the mid-level pricing helps.  When I got back into playing 10 years ago from a 10 year hiatus gear had changed quite a bit and it took trial and error to find what I prefer.  With pads I started back with some NikeBauer one55s which weren't for me so I quickly pivoted to some Vaughn 7450s which were great as they were softer and played more like the pads I played competively with in the late 90s.  Got the itch and got a good deal on some Reebok P3 pros but those were just a little too rigid with only a single break and found it hard on my knees.  Went back in time and found a never used set of Heaton 10s that were awesome but again, got the itch to be in newer style pads.  I then transitioned to some well used v5s and then went completely opposite and got into a set of Bauer x900s.  The quality of them I found great and had no durability issues.  Had the cortech on the sliding surface so I think it matched the performance of the 1x pads in that regard.  Alas, they were just too stiff.  I am now in a pair of Vaughn SLR Pros that I find are the perfect mix to what I want.  Stiff enough to give fast rebounds but flexible enough I don't feel like I'm wearing wood planks on my legs.  Quality is top notch for mid level and has the same strapping as the pro carbons including the professor strap(although it's just a plastic buckle on that instead of the metal magnetic buckle on the carbons).

As for gloves I agree with the majority that going pro is a better avenue then mid level especially with the trapper but also when it comes to the finger protection of the blocker.  The midlevel Vaughn gloves I've had were okay but definitely some stingers and the 2x senior glove I used ended up feeling super thin in the palm.  The best non pro set of gloves I've used were a set of CCM Premier 1.5s actually.  That's not even mid level, it's low level.  My local Source for Sports shop had them exclusive that had d30 in the trapper palm and finger protection of the blocker.  For the price with that added protection I couldn't go wrong.  The durability wasn't there but the protection felt pro level.  What I've done is also something that has been previously suggested and went with a smaller company for my gloves to get pro level protection and durability at mid level prices and wear McKenney.  Best pair I've ever had although I still have a sweet spot for my old Brian's Midnight Series Theif Trapper and Blocker from the 90s.

Super helpful and interesting! I think you and I are similar in wanting to try some new things, but yeah - not break the bank each time haha. 

Interesting point re: the SFS exclusives. They and TGC (near me too) seem to amp up their lower end stuff a bit. I like what you and others are suggesting about pro models for gloves though, as the G4 Pro was a big step up and improvement for me. 

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On 1/11/2021 at 2:34 PM, indykrap said:

Super helpful and interesting! I think you and I are similar in wanting to try some new things, but yeah - not break the bank each time haha. 

Interesting point re: the SFS exclusives. They and TGC (near me too) seem to amp up their lower end stuff a bit. I like what you and others are suggesting about pro models for gloves though, as the G4 Pro was a big step up and improvement for me. 

Yeah, it's always something to keep an eye for with certain retailers and what exclusives they may have with some of the brands.

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On 1/11/2021 at 11:34 AM, indykrap said:

...suggesting about pro models for gloves ...

Not for the warrior G series the SR. is the best deal in town.  Grab that and later add some d3o in the pocket from ebay items for motorcycle like $20 more.

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I've had warrior G3 Sr and now have GT/2 Sr, I've taken shots from ex college kids and no issues with the glove at all with either line.  Blocker board broke in 2 seasons on G3, but I switch up stuff every couple years anyways (going with G5s maybe this next season as the glove matches the feel of my G3 and I like the boxier pads).  Seems to last for the twice a week I play.

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