Composite Hockey Stick Weigh-In

Stick Weigh In

By Kyle Stevenson, Pure Hockey Marketing

Over the course of the past few years, the battle to produce the lightest composite stick has raged on between all the major hockey manufacturers. During this time, companies have all looked for ways to tip the scales – pun intended – in favor of their own sticks. So how is it possible that all the manufacturers produce graphs, pie charts and lists that their sticks are undeniably THE lightest on the market? Somebody is right. Right?

Well, in light of that,  we decided to have our own little weigh-in with some of the top model sticks, using a Dymo Digital Scale. In all, we took 9 top-end sticks, all in the same 85 flex and all in a comparable blade pattern. The attempt was to give our customers an even and fair basis for stick weights. Let me note that stick weights should not, by any means, be your only criteria for choosing a stick. But we DO think this will be helpful piece of info for you.
So without further ado, here are the results, from lightest to heaviest:
7.Easton Mako 464 g

Click here to see our entire selection of composite sticks.

 

So as no real surprise, the Bauer Vapor APX came in at the top spot as the lightest stick, with the new Nexus 1000 just 1g heavier. Now, just to ease your mind, the difference between #9 at 474 grams and #1 at 420 grams shouldn’t really alarm anyone here – in my opinion, only the most discerning could probably pick up a stick and really feel the difference in weight. Still, it’s fun and interesting to do these exercises from time-to-time and a lot of people ask us about stick weights, so we think this is helpful.

 

My biggest surprise was the Sherwood Nexon 12, coming in 3rd – and only four grams heavier than the APX! With a price tag of only $189.99, the Nexon 12 is a great, light stick for the money. I wonder if Sher-Wood was mad when Bauer launched Nexus, given Sher-Wood has had the Nexon sticks out for a good while now? Hmmmm.

Easton Stealth RS Hockey Stick Review

By Kyle Stevenson, Marketing

After a couple months and finally having a chance to use it on a consistent basis, I have my decision on the Easton Stealth RS stick: unbelievable!


I have used the Stealth line since Easton came out with the elliptical taper on the S-17’s. The last five years I have almost exclusively used two stick lines, Easton Stealth (S-17, S-19, RS) and Warrior Dolomites. This review is going to be a little bit about using the newest Stealth released back in the fall, the RS.

When I used the S-17, I picked it up and loved it. The S-19 – same thing – one shot and I was in heaven. The RS however, I almost considered putting away after the first skate, where I used it in warm-ups and then benched it. It rode the pine in favor of the Dolomite for the game, but at the end I decided to give it another try and I ended up loving it. It just took a little more time to get used to than its predecessors.

The model I use is the RS Hall Curve (think Sakic, P92, Draper) 85 Flex, non-grip. Upon taking the first shot, I immediately noticed two things, it has a much different kick-point than I expected (based on using the other two) and it’s a very whippy stick. Leaning into shots, it felt much softer than an 85 Flex, and the stick was noticeably flexing forward on my release and follow-through. As I figured out how the stick was going to react, I couldn’t believe how smooth the puck was coming off the blade. Without exaggeration, snapshots felt like they were coming off as smooth as a saucer pass, just rolling off the blade. On top of the great feel, I was putting the puck where I wanted. A symphony of pipes in warm-ups.

There is nothing like the release on this stick, I haven’t ever used anything that came close. Just lightning fast. I lean into a snapshot and its gone. It creates and incredible advantage if you find yourself with an open shot and only need to beat the ‘tendy. As soon as you see the goalie shuffle across and it flashes in your mind “shoot now” before he sets, its gone. You can go from thinking shoot to release so quick that it’s mind-blowing. The advantage of being able to release so quick is so important in today’s game – goalies are big, but still quick – so being able to place it where you want when you need to is crucial, and the RS allows you to do it.

The most noticeable improvement I see from the S-19 is the feel of the blade. Again, when I first touched the puck with it I thought it had absolutely zero feel and it felt like a hard blade. As I got used to it, I liked the feel a lot more. I realized it didn’t feel like no feel, it was just a much different feel. Playing with it now, I can really feel the puck a lot more so than I did with the S-19. A month later now, I can tell you I think that great feel comes at a cost, the heel and toe of this stick have worn out a little and chipped and splintered quicker than most sticks I have used. I can’t say for certain why, but the RS blade does not seem to have great durability.

On the other side of the durability discussion, I think the RS shaft feels a lot sturdier than the previous Stealths. The problem I have with the shaft is the grip. As I mentioned I use the non-grip, and as sweet as that matte black looks, I think it makes the stick a bit slicker. I haven’t used one, but I have held the grip version and I can instantly tell you it is way to sticky for me. I’m particular, and need a bit of grip without going overboard; the RS doesn’t really have that option. Its none or too much in my eyes. With the non-grip, I felt I needed more shaft tape than I would normally put on. I found myself looking for something in between the clear and grip shafts.

Overall the Easton RS is an amazing twig. Easton never ceases to astonish me with their innovations. Since the S17 came out, I have found that here is nothing like the first snapshot with a newly released Stealth model.


Easton Stealth S65 Hockey Stick Preview

In a week or two (or whenever we get them from Easton), we will be seeing the release of the Easton Stealth 65S hockey stick from the fine folks over at Easton Hockey. As you can see in the picture below, the look of the stick clearly shows that Easton is continuing to break the mold on stick design – it resembles the beautiful Stealth RS with its sleek red/black/grey design and matte finish (grip available as well). Other vendors like Bauer and Reebok have recently released sticks that are starting to look more and more like Warrior sticks – Easton went the other way with this simplified beauty. I remember reading somewhere one time about making spaghetti sauce – sometimes you don’t need to add 42 spices if you just have the right tomatoes. Easton has taken this approach – simple design, let the performance do the talking. We like that.

Anyway, the new Stealth 65S is being marketed as a “shooter’s stick.” What may be more interesting to you is the price point – this puppy clocks in at just $99.99! Easton has told us that what they did was go directly to rinks to develop this one. They spoke to hundreds and hundreds of youth hockey and high school players and asked them what was most important in a stick and the answer they received heavily influenced the development of the 65S – a stick to enhance shooting that costs less than $100. The 65S is comprised of carbon and kevlar material and will have an ultra thin taper profile – remember, this is a shooter’s stick!

We will carry the the 65S hockey stick in senior ($99.99), intermediate ($99.99) and junior sizes ($89.99) and Easton is only releasing the senior stick in 85 and 100 flexes. For patterns, we will carry the Iginla, Hall, and Cammalleri curves.

With the 65S, Easton is clearly zeroing in on the players who still play competitively and take their sticks seriously, but just won’t pay the expensive price for the top-of-the-line stick. We got to examine and hold the 65S at a meeting with Easton a while back and yes, this is a heavier stick than the RS, but the overall feel of the stick placed it far and above other sticks in this price range. While we obviously have not been able to test drive one yet, this stick appears to be a keeper.