Bauer APX 2 vs. CCM RBZ Skate Side-By-Side Comparison

 Bauer APX2 Comparison  CCM RBZ Skate Comparison

Bauer and CCM both made some big improvements for their respective skate launches this year. CCM has made more improvements to their RBZ skates, but in fairness to Bauer, CCM had a longer road to travel down in terms of quality. The good news – CCM is now right there and has built a skate that matches up with the very best of them.

Both companies focused on a few features to improve upon, releasing a new holder with their respective launches, an upgraded lacing system, a new tongue and an improved quarter construction material.

Boot Construction: Both CCM and Bauer used a material new to their respective lines for this season. Bauer crosses over the CURV composite material (previously seen on the Supreme line) to the APX2 skates. Combined with their X-Rib pattern, the Bauer boot provides your foot with maximum structural support and stability. This allows for the best energy transfer, leading to quicker turns and faster acceleration.

The RBZ, on the other hand, is built from the CCM SpeedCore Technology. This provides pro level stiffness to maximize your foot reaction speed and explosiveness. The boot is 24% stiffer than CCM’s last pro-level skate, the U+CL. CCM also overhauled the actual inner fit of the boot, giving it a wider fit than most boots and giving it much greater contour. This makes for a true heel lock and helps to secure your heel in the boot. Less movement inside the boot leads to more control on the ice. The Action Form Foam core is still highly moldable, but this skate has CCM’s best out of the box feel ever – and far better overall fit than previous models.

 Bauer APX2 Comparison  CCM RBZ Skate Comparison

 

Tongue: Both tongues are new for this year. Both companies took the hint from their pro and college players by putting in tongues that are most requested at the very highest levels. CCM put in a pro-style felt tongue with injected foam to help prevent lace bite as well as give you a little bit of protection from impact. Bauer’s APX2 also went over to a more traditional felt tongue, with an abrasion guard on the front to help stop lace bite.

Lacing: The new lacing system on the APX2 from Bauer is quite innovative. They put in place a one-piece injected lacing system. This maximizes the energy return and transfer in every stride. On top of that it helps retain its consistency throughout the life of the skate, preventing individual eyelets from failing and strengthening the durability of the skate. This feature gives Bauer a large advantage over competitors, as it’s unique and useful.

The CCM RBZ has a lacing pattern which attacks fit and flex issues that many players have voiced. In the fore foot of the skate, the eyelets have a little more give and are closer together, allowing for a better wrap in the lower foot where it is needed. The upper section of eyelets are stiffer and face straight out to give players forward flex as needed.

Holders: Last but certainly not least, both companies released new holders this year, both of which are taller than their predecessors. CCM’s SpeedBlade 4.0 is 4 mm taller and Bauer’s TUUK LightSpeed Edge is 3 mm taller. This is done so that you can get lower to the ice in turns, producing quicker turns and more power exiting turns.

 Bauer APX2 Comparison  rbz-blade

The CCM holder is strengthened using their Speed Ribs, creating less torsion and less deflection. This leads to better control and less energy loss in stride. The SB 4.0 also features industry standard holes for mounting, allowing the holder to be easily mounted on other manufacturers’ skates. The steel itself is the SB HyperGlide, a polished steel runner, designed for less friction and better glide. It is also made from a harder steel, allowing it to hold its edges longer than many other models on the market.

The APX2 features the TUUK LightSpeed Edge holder, revolutionary for allowing players to change their steel in a matter of seconds. The trigger on the holder allows you to change your steel in case of breakage or a lost edge – without even taking off your skates. The steel runner is an updated version of the LS Fusion runner. It is made from elite stainless steel fused with high-grade aluminum, to reduce weight by 27% compared to standard steel runners. Fused aluminum lightens the runner without lowering the sharpening life.

A very nice final addition to the RBZ skate comes in the footbed, as included in the box is CCM’s new custom support insoles. This insole system is designed to be fit to your foot, falling into the category of low, mid, or high arches. The increased support maximizes contact between and connection from your foot to the sole of your skate. This increased connection gives you better control of the skate and an increased foot reaction speed.

In summary, Bauer basically continues on their path of making excellent skates. With each release of their pro-level skates, Bauer consistently finds elements to improve. The two biggest things in our eyes with the APX2 skates are the new lacing system and the ability to swap out your steel and not miss a shift.

CCM has completely revamped their skate line and is now right there with Bauer (or anyone) in terms of fit, quality and comfort. If you’ve previously been averse to CCM skates, now is the time to put them on your feet and give them a try, because the RBZ skate is legit. In a big way. As always, we won’t really recommend one over the other – everyone’s foot is different and it’s ALL about what feels best to you.
 

 


CCM RBZ Hockey Skate Preview

By Kyle Stevenson, Pure Hockey Marketing

 

For the second time in under a year, CCM is making a huge splash with the launch of a new product.  Last year it was the RBZ stick, this year it is the RBZ skates.

One of CCM’s goals with the RBZ skate was to leave a lasting first impression by creating a skate with the best out of the box comfort available. With the RBZ, CCM added a true ankle lock and heel counter, this allows your foot to sit more comfortably and stably in the skate from the start. In previous models – U+ Pro and U+CL – neither of these features existed, relying on the skate’s highly moldable foam to create a snug fit. For some players it worked great, for others it didn’t. The new build ensures that all players will sit correctly in the back of the skate, and then still be highly moldable for an even better fit.

 

The quarter package is called CCM’s Speed Core and is made from their Action form foam. It is extremely moldable for a truly customized fit while still providing pro level stiffness. The skate inner liner is a pro comfort Clarino leather. The material is comfortable, dries quickly and is non-abrasive while skating. The liner is also constructed to overlap at seams to create smooth edges and not leave any potential spots for discomfort.

The RBZ also includes the new CCM custom support insoles. These are designed with 3 different arch heights – low, medium, high – to create the perfect support for each individual player. CCM created a device that can determine the arch height needs of each player, based on their foot. The purpose of these is to create full contact between the foot and the skate. This improves speed on the ice through improved foot reaction speed. It also helps to properly align the body, reducing the risk of injury and increasing performance.

CCM also did some creative things with the lacing system. First the top eyelets are made of brass; this makes them stronger and more durable to reduce the risk of failure. The eyelet pattern itself is closer in the forefoot, allowing for a better foot wrap and more snug fit. In the top half of the skate, the eyelets are a bit stiffer and wider, providing adequate space for forward flex in stride. The RBZ tongue is made from pro-style white felt with injected foam. This helps to prevent lace-bite and the tongue will actually mold to your foot through heat molding and during the break-in period.

One of the biggest moves from CCM this year is the introduction of the Speed Blade 4.0 holder.  The holder features industry standard holes, so no re-drilling if you ever want to put the Speed Blade 4.0 on another manufacturer’s boot. The SB 4.0 is 4MM higher off the ice compared to CCM’s previous holder. This added height increases turning radius by 10%, giving you the ability to be more aggressive when turning without the risk of “bottoming out” the holder. The Hyperglide steel runner is a polished steel runner. It is designed to increase glide on the ice and reduce friction. Less friction combined with the harder steel provides longer edge life, meaning less lost edges.

The CCM RBZ Skates are up for pre-sale now on PureHockey.com and will be available in store on July 19th

 


Hockey Glove Weigh-In

By Kyle Stevenson, Pure Hockey Marketing

There are few pieces of gear more important than a players’ hockey gloves. Having a comfortable, lightweight, protective glove is vital to feeling confident going into a game. While this test can’t address a glove’s comfort or protection level, it will certainly help out with the weight discussion.
Our Glove Weigh-in…..
                                                                             Single Glove (Grams)            Pair (Grams)
Warrior Bully                                                                 269                                          538
Warrior Luxe                                                                 273                                          546
Easton RS                                                                    278                                          556
Easton EQ50                                                               281                                          562
Easton PH E-Pro                                                        285                                           570
CCM U+ CL                                                                 296                                           592
Bauer Vapor APX                                                        297                                           594
Bauer 4 Roll                                                                305                                           610
Warrior Franchise                                                      307                                           614
Bauer TotalOne                                                          319                                           638
Bauer Vapor APX Pro                                                326                                           652
Eagle PPF                                                                   337                                           674
The results: A bit surprising to me that the lightest Bauer glove was the 7th lightest in the group, but again you have to take the weight and the protection into consideration. In many cases, a glove with more padding and more protection is going to be slightly heavier. Not every player wants or needs that much protection so sometimes the sacrifice is worth it.
Good Showing for Warrior, too, finishing with the top 2 lightest gloves, and also for Easton with the next 3 lightest.  All Gloves weighed were 14” inch retail models.
Let us know what you think @PureHockey and on Facebook.

 


Hockey Skate Weigh-In

 

Kyle Stevenson, Pure Hockey Marketing

So a couple of weeks back, we posted a list of some stick weights on high-end composite sticks and we got a really great response, so we are going to continue this over the next few weeks in some different product categories. Today we start with skates in the price range of $599.99 and up (other price ranges will follow).

NOTE: this is not necessarily a list of THE top lightest skates available; not every model is listed, but we feel this is a good representation of what is present on the market. Secondly, weight should not be your only criteria for purchasing a pair of skates! It is definitely a factor in a multi-step process of determining what is best for you. But it’s not the only thing you should be thinking about!

Weights were measured of a single skate, size 7.5D. So, what you see listed below is the skate model, the weight of a single skate in grams and then that weight doubled to represent the pair.

Model
1) Bauer TotalOne NXG                         —-680g   ——1360g   ———- $799.99
2) Bauer Vapor APX                                —-718g   ——1436g   ———- $799.99
3) Bauer Supreme One.9                      —-746g   ——1492g   ———- $599.99
4) Bauer Vapor X7.0                               —-805g   ——1610g   ———- $599.99
5) CCM U+ CL                                         —-830g   ——1660g   ———- $599.99
6) Reebok 20K                                        —-833g   ——1666g   ———- $799.99
7) Reebok 18K                                        —-834g   ——1668g   ———- $599.99
8) Easton RS                                           —-843g   ——1686g   ———- $599.99
9) Bauer Nexus 800                               —-890g   ——1780g   ———- $599.99
So there you have it! The Bauer TotalOne NXG’s  top the list and the Supreme and Vapor lines follow close behind. Bauer has the top 4 slots! Let us know what you think and what else you would like to see compared in the comments section below, on the our Facebook page and also at our Twitter page.