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Stage 1 of my re-kit


gruffin
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Hey folks,
 
I'm brand new here, just starting to poke around what seems like an excellent resource. Please excuse this post if it's been made in the wrong place. 
 
I've been playing with the same 34+1 V2's for the past 16 years. They were used when I got them. I haven't been keeping up with gear trends because I could never afford to change my gear, and it was working well enough.
 
Now I'm finally in a position to get a new kit and the process is slightly overwhelming. I'm doing my research and think I have a decent handle on what would work, but I'm hoping some conversation here may be of assistance.
 
Recognizing that my old V2's definitely shrunk, I did always find them to be a tad big in the knee. Today I tried on some new V8 and V9 pads in a 33 +2 and they felt great in the knee but a little bit too tall on the thigh; the pads were overlapping significantly in the middle when I went into butterfly. I suppose I could work on widening my stance, but my sense is that the +2 may just be too big.
 
So, I think that a 33+1 would be the ideal sized pad and I'dd like to keep with a hybrid, softer style of pad.
 
In my search, I'm seeing only 33 +2 in the newer Vaughns, but lots of ccm eflex in 33+1 size, so I'm wondering how these pads compare to the Velocity line -- they appear to fill a comparable niche, but am I missing something important?
 
Recommendations for other brands/lines that might better suit my transition to the modern age?
 
Any guidance provided would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
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@gruffin welcome aboard the board. I think I've weighed in a handful of similar flavored posts - so here goes...

The biggest thing I think you'll find in transitioning from your V2's to... anything really is that boots will be stiffer across the board. There are "softer" iterations of nearly every brand (like Eflex as you mentioned) but in my opinion they just don't compare to the stuffed pads from yesteryear. Anyhow - I'm a 32"/33" guy in Vaughn and its my experience that Reebok/CCM is sized considerably larger - meaning - I went from Vaughn to intermediate Reebok XLT's. Granted - they have a much steeper boot angle than the Eflex but you get the idea - really important to hop into a store to take a look at things and if you can't follow manufacturer specific sizing guides. As mentioned - nearly every brand will have a softer offering in their lineup - you've already hit on the Velocity series from Vaughn and CCM's Eflex. You might also want to take a look at True's 12.2 line (essentially the next iteration of the Eflex), Brian's G-Netik, Warrior Ritual GT... pretty much anything that "looks" like it still has knee rolls is the softer version of everyone's offering. There are of course smaller boutique custom gear shops like Battram, Kennesky, etc. If its helpful - as a guy that transitioned from V3's (and tried at least of handful of offerings across companies) - I ultimately landed on the UL series from Simmons. In my opinion this is the only pad offered today that plays similar to that era of Vaughns.

Half the fun is searching for new gear so enjoy the process and if you have specific questions most people here at least try to be helpful. Happy hunting.

Edited by chile57
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One important thing to remember is that CCM sizing runs differently than other companies AND, to make things more complex, has changed somewhat in recent generations of the gear.  As an example, I'm very comfortably a 35" in Brian's, Warrior and Bauer (well, a Large in Bauer, but it's the same difference...) but my 35" Eflex 4's were a catastrophe!   Way to big to move easily in, I landed in the wrong part of the knee cradle, just all around bad from a sizing perspective.   I dropped to 34" for Axis and EF5 and am much happier with the fit.

One additional point with CCM:  Avoid Speedskin like the plague!  My EF4's had it, my subsequent sets have both had weave sliding surfaces.   The difference in ease of sliding and consistency over time is night and day with weave.  Speedskin starts off great, but starts to feel "sticky" very quickly.  

Given where you're coming from, I'd be looking at senior/mid pricepoint leg pads in addition to pro level stuff.   Current senior level stuff is every bit as good as the pro gear of yesteryear, and will sting your wallet a LOT less if you do find that you struggle with the transition from V2--> wherever this journey takes you.   I doubt that will be the case, as I find modern pads very easy to play in compared to my older stuff, but others have had different feelings.  

Edit:

For a soft boot feel, Bauer, Warrior, and Brians are all softer than CCM as well, although the boot flex and shape on my EF5 was an improvement over previous CCM lines I used/demo'd.  

Edited by Puckstopper
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4 hours ago, Puckstopper said:

One important thing to remember is that CCM sizing runs differently than other companies AND, to make things more complex, has changed somewhat in recent generations of the gear. 

This is one of the things that I've been struggling with. I think that I'd like to purchase a used, but newer set of gear, both to save money and to avoid a lengthy break-in process. 

However, with so many different lines and iterations of each line of pad I'm having a tough time feeling confident in an online purchase without trying the pad on prior, and even getting basic information/cross comparisons between older generations of pads. I would really like to find a timeline showing when each major brand released different versions of their pads, so that I can see which ones might be comparable across different brands and know when technologies like speedskin (thanks for the tip) were brought in. 

Maybe that's something I just have to create myself. 

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6 hours ago, chile57 said:

he biggest thing I think you'll find in transitioning from your V2's to... anything really is that boots will be stiffer across the board

Is this mostly relevant for getting the skate blade onto the ice when recovering from a butterfly, or does the softness of the boot have other implications? 

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1 hour ago, gruffin said:

However, with so many different lines and iterations of each line of pad I'm having a tough time feeling confident in an online purchase without trying the pad on prior, and even getting basic information/cross comparisons between older generations of pads. I would really like to find a timeline showing when each major brand released different versions of their pads, so that I can see which ones might be comparable across different brands and know when technologies like speedskin (thanks for the tip) were brought in. 

Maybe that's something I just have to create myself. 

TIMELINE.png.f7947a45dfb1bcb32bd9fe813561393f.png

I threw this together and I think it's accurate. I skipped Brian's because I'm not too good with Brian's product and their release schedule is different.

Head over to https://www.thegoalnet.com/files/category/1-files/
We try to upload catalogs as we find them.
I think I have some older ones that have not been uploaded. Let me know what you're looking for and I can see if I have it.

Edited by ZeroGravitas
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1 hour ago, ZeroGravitas said:

TIMELINE.png.f7947a45dfb1bcb32bd9fe813561393f.png

I threw this together and I think it's accurate. I skipped Brian's because I'm not too good with Brian's product and their release schedule is different.

Head over to https://www.thegoalnet.com/files/category/1-files/
We try to upload catalogs as we find them.
I think I have some older ones that have not been uploaded. Let me know what you're looking for and I can see if I have it.

For True

2020-20.1
2021-12.2
2022-20.2
2023-Px3/12.3

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4 hours ago, gruffin said:

Is this mostly relevant for getting the skate blade onto the ice when recovering from a butterfly, or does the softness of the boot have other implications? 

Good question. I think its more a question of feel and how it plays. A softer boot will sit flatter on your skate and feel more connected to your leg. Can also affect the sizing. The steep angle of the Reebok/CCM boot is part of why I ended up in an intermediate size (that and their tendency to run "BIG" as noted).

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A softer boot is just more comfortable all around.   It feels like the pad is working with you instead of against you.    Firm, upright boot breaks like the old Reebok Premiere series of pads existed primarily as a way to avoid kicking rebounds right back into the slot, and they were effective at that.  Over time though, the thought process evolved to recognize that you were going to make more saves and expend less energy with a pad that is moved easily than you were going to lose by kicking the occasional shot back into the slot.  

 

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I went from used 35+1 V3's which had already shrunk were definitely way too short, to 36+1 v5's. After years of shrinkage in the V5's, they were noticeably shorter such that my knee was landing in the bottom portion of the stack (after starting in the middle). I just moved to 36+2 EFlex 4's and I am landing perfectly in these. The change from V3 to V5 and from V5 to EF4 was very similar -- the biggest thing to get used to by far was the extra thigh rise in both cases. I am actually shocked by how similarly the pads play (or at least how easy the transition to "modern" pads was) otherwise. The soft boot is definitely part of that. Hopefully that helps with your Q's around sizing and feel

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Honestly, the manufacturer's size charts are usually pretty accurate as long as you are careful in your measurements.  The biggest thing I had to learn was that close (+/- .25") was good enough, because unless you have a pro rep, you're not going to get your fit dialed in to where you hit the center of the stack (in teal below) every time.  The goal is to land within the green zone I highlighted.    If you're going to miss center, you'd rather miss towards the top of the pad as opposed to the bottom.   If you miss low (like I was in the 35+1.5" EF4's I referenced earlier) it will be harder to seal the five hole and the pads feel clunky to move in.  By going to a 34+2.5" EF5 I kept the same overall pad length to seal the five hole, but moved the knee stack down which prevented them from banging  together while standing.   More importantly, my weight was shifted towards the upper part of the knee stack, pushing the pad tips down into the ice while in the butterfly and improving seal slightly.

 

TL:DR--> You're probably not getting a perfect fit, but being a hair too short is easier to deal with than a pad that's too big. 

image.png.f5380d670d367a47afe6bec92b4d413a.png   

Edited by Puckstopper
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