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New pads - SR's, or Pro?

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11-07-2009, 11:55 AM
  #1
OneMoreAstronaut
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New pads - SR's, or Pro?

Looking for some people who are experienced with either SR level or Pro level pads. I'm in the market for a new set of pads - my old Bauer Reactors have served me well, but the new style of pad is just too enticing to hold off any longer. I'm debating the choice between SR's or Pro level pads though. From looking in the stores, it's sometimes hard to tell the difference between them, but I do see small things that indicate Pros are better quality, and I do know that Pros are made in NA whereas SR's would be imported. The sticking point is that the price difference is substantial. While money is important I could definitely still afford Pros, but I'm interested to hear people's experiences with one or the other, or if they've used both. Things like quality of materials, protection, and playability are a few particular points I'm interested in.

For the record I'm largely looking between new Vaughns and RBKs, but I won't turn you away if you have opinions on a different pad Thanks!

edit - just realized, I should mention that I just play men's hockey, beer league, that sort of thing.


Last edited by OneMoreAstronaut: 11-07-2009 at 12:26 PM.
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11-07-2009, 12:27 PM
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Ragss
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The general logic in this matter is that its better to get used Pro level pads versus brand new non-pro pads. As you yourself noticed, the biggest difference is build quality, pro level pads should last longer. I took up goaltending last winter and did a lot of research and question asking in the matter. Ended up going with some 'old' $1200 Vaughn Velos I picked up on Ebay for 200 bucks. They are well used, but they are still going to last me another two seasons probably.

Or just get the pro level pads brand new hehe.

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11-07-2009, 01:25 PM
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gluvhand
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If you want a incredibly priced pro pad you should also check out Smith pads. Pete Smith custom makes all his pads in western New York. I bought a set about four years ago and they've held up VERY well. He has three or four different styles to choose from and will do any color combo and graphic. Also stands behind his products in a way seldom seen anymore.

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11-07-2009, 01:35 PM
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I have actually heard about Smith pads on HF before. My only misgiving about Smiths is that I can't preview the pad before I get it to see if I like them, as I'm on the other side of the country. With RBKs or Vaughns, I can see them in the store beforehand. I do love the customization though - I was also considering getting custom RBKs or Vaughns from their websites as well.

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11-07-2009, 02:14 PM
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gluvhand
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The Smiths tend to be similar to the Vaughns. Smith designed the Velocity for Vaughn I believe. He shut down his shop for a few years and designed for them. I couldn't get to his shop for a fitting either and did it all over the phone but I understand the reluctance.

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11-07-2009, 07:02 PM
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OneMoreAstronaut
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Speaking of price, gluv, are you able to tell me how much a set of the SP6000s are? edit - never mind, just saw the price on his website

Any more experiences from anyone else regarding SR or Pro type pads?

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11-08-2009, 09:43 AM
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PeterSidorkiewicz
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I went from Itech 11.8 pro X-factors into Smith pads, and I absolutely love them. Best pad Ive ever owned, and Ive owned quite a few pairs of pads ranging from Heatons to Bionics. Pete is also great to talk with, and will answer questions and give you advice on anything you want to know.

If you want me to post some specific pictures or anything on here just let me know.

I would also go the used pro route instead of the SR, but thats just me.

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11-08-2009, 11:19 AM
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adaminnj
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all of my equipment is pro return (some was used some not). I think you should get the best equipment you can afford. Buying top end is not always getting pro quality, but if you by pro return you know it's pro quality.

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11-08-2009, 01:14 PM
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densetsu
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What's your style like?

RBK pads are stiffer, have no breaks in the pad, and don't take an S-curve on well. Vaughns are "softer", have two breaks in the pad, and will take on an S-curve. If you have a narrower butterfly, an S-curve will help you close up your five-hole.

S-curve

Could come in handy if you're like Giguere:



Vaughn pads have much more padding in the leg channel, while RBKs are a very "open" leg channel. Some see this as a tradeoff between protection (Vaughn) and rotation speed (RBK). RBKs can feel a lot more "looser" on the leg, which might not make it a good fit for older, hybrid-style goalies.

There are exceptions to a lot of things, though. For example, the Turco break on RBKs puts a break in at the knee, helping close the five-hole off like the Vaughns can.

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11-08-2009, 09:22 PM
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I am young enough that I play a butterfly style, yeah. That's a big part of why I am on the hunt for new pads - the ones I have are better suited for hybrid, and they're old besides. I'm also not nearly as narrow as Giguere in that photo. However, that's not really what the thread is about.

I think I am leaning towards Pro pads, at this point. Having the money to spend on them and having heard what people have had to say at this point has more or less made my mind up. I think buying Pro is what has made my Reactors last as long as they have - I think I've had them for at least 8 seasons, and that kind of quality has been great.

PeterSidorkiewicz, if you want to post any pictures you have, sure, but don't go out of your way. I've been able to find quite a few pictures online. I have done some more reading on the Smiths and I have to admit I really like what I'm hearing, and the customization is an added plus. How were your Itechs in comparison to the Smiths as far as the leg channel goes? My Bauers have a fairly deep leg channel where the Smiths have no leg channel at all (even in the boot), and while I initially thought that would lead to a lot of looseness and sliding I've read that it's completely the opposite. How did that affect you when you switched?

Are you also using Smith gloves, by chance? If so, can you compare them to any other glove? What do people mean by "bindingless boot" also, which the Smiths apparently have?

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11-09-2009, 12:57 PM
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pfloyd75
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If you can afford it, go with Pro level pads.

With you being a beer league goalie, you might be able to go with older 12 inch pro pads and save a chunk of change. A lot of places have them for dirt cheap since the NHL and lower leagues switched to 11 inches a couple of years ago. It takes some digging but good deals are out there to be found. i.e. my current pads are Itech Prodigy Pro 9.8s that I got on ebay for $250- new with tags.

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11-09-2009, 02:42 PM
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Tretiak 20
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A lot of places are trying to clear out their RBK Premier II pads. That could be a cheaper, brand new, pro level pad to consider.

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