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07-22-2010, 01:18 PM
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densetsu's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Edmonton, AB
Country: Canada
Posts: 338
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So are you playing roller hockey or ice hockey?

For ice hockey, a goalie mask with a decent level of protection will run around $300. Look up smaller companies, like Hackva. Their entry-level masks can withstand bombshells and keep your head safe. Stay absolutely away from any Itech/Bauer mask with a model number that begins with 1 or 2... the 1200, 1400, 2500, etc. There are a number of reported concussions on GSBB, and some of these masks have been recalled by Itech for being unsafe (even after receiving CSA certification). These cheap, cheap masks go for $150 new. Do a search for "widowmaker" on the GSBB and you'll find out why they're so cheap.

I'd also shy away from combos -- player helmets and cages, like Hasek and Osgood had -- because the cages tend to be thinner and the helmets aren't designed to take repeated impacts from pucks. Many helmets also have ridges and nooks where the puck can "catch" and deliver all the impact to your head -- a mask is rounded off and the puck would most likely deflect off, only delivering a small fraction of the impact to your skull. Ear and neck protection is also an issue with helmet/cage combo -- there is little to none of it. The only combo I'd recommend is the Warwick, because the helmet is designed for goaltenders and the cage is thick (these run close to $1000, though). Definitely don't just go to the local hockey store and buy a random helmet and cage for $50 and think you're safe.

If you're absolutely tight for money, buy a used goalie mask. Make sure there's no chips or cracks. You can wash it and the smell shouldn't linger; if it does, the smell if most likely in the foam, and you can order replacement foam for around $50.

If you're playing roller hockey, then some of these options are probably safe, even the cheap Itech masks. Make sure whatever head protection you have properly covers your head, including your ears and your throat. Buy a dangler for $30 if necessary.

Don't cheap out. Debt is temporary, brain damage isn't.

Last edited by densetsu: 07-22-2010 at 01:26 PM.
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