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SKATES - Buying Guide and Advice

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Old
05-02-2013, 10:22 PM
  #726
AIREAYE
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccarrigan View Post
If anyone can help point me in the right direction, I would LOVE some help finding some skates that finally fit my feet properly. Here's a little about me:

5'11", maybe 220. Play 3-5 times a week at C or a bit higher level. Currently wear D width CCM U+ 10.

The issues:

Forefoot is too small, if I lace the first 3 laces tight at ALL my toes bunch and cramp my foot. Midfoot I can't crank down on as my foot is too tall and it cuts off circulation. I have to crank down on the top of the skates due to my skinny ankles and I think the only thing preventing lace bite is the nice tongue. (my ankles are different sizes because of a previous hockey injury but a baking should help that)

We don't have any great stores here in Columbus Ohio so before I went out or ordered online I wanted to see what my next options should be. I was looking at the Nexus 800s, but I'm up for any suggestions.
You would best be served by taking a day trip to your nearest large store for a thorough skate fitting. You need to try on as many different pairs as possible, in different fits and widths. It will always be better to get it done right as opposed to guessing and having to deal with the hassle of returns and further guessing. Not to mention the necessary bake and sharpen procedure.


Last edited by Jarick: 05-03-2013 at 10:01 AM. Reason: bickering
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05-02-2013, 11:05 PM
  #727
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Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
You would best be served by taking a day trip to your nearest large store for a thorough skate fitting. You need to try on as many different pairs as possible, in different fits and widths. It will always be better to get it done right as opposed to guessing and having to deal with the hassle of returns and further guessing. Not to mention the necessary bake and sharpen procedure.
Oh, I agree completely. The issue is that I got my current skates by doing that and they still didn't come out right. I guess I was looking to see maybe what lines or models might be best so I don't waste everyone's time. We don't really have any great shops so the more I know before I go in the better off I'll be.

Edit: Also, are new series of skates coming out that I should wait for before getting something new?

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05-02-2013, 11:23 PM
  #728
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OK, so in summary, you believe that you have a wide forefoot and a high instep such that it is 'pushing out of' the boot? How is the heel lock in your CCMs and how does the skate fit around your ankles?

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05-02-2013, 11:28 PM
  #729
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Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
OK, so in summary, you believe that you have a wide forefoot and a high instep such that it is 'pushing out of' the boot? How is the heel lock in your CCMs and how does the skate fit around your ankles?
Heel lock seems to be ok in the CCMs. The fit around the ankles is pretty loose, so much so that I usually have to retighten the top few laces during a game. But I'm thinking that the poor fit at the instep might be causing the top to loosen up as I forward flex?

The pushing out is harder to explain, just that my skates don't tie like I see other people's. When I tie them the boot doesn't seem to enclose properly, like my foot is trying to escape the boot.

Does that make sense?

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05-02-2013, 11:38 PM
  #730
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I see, I would definitely go out of my way to target Nexus or Graf (which is beyond my knowledge for now, so I would ask others if you decide to look into that). However, my advice on trying different fits still holds, Supreme (perhaps a EE) could also be a candidate.

Have you tried stretching the boot so that your foot sits in wider sidewalls?

Regarding your foot not seeming to sit in deep enough, do you feel that it is not planted firmly on the footbed when you stand? In that the sensation seems to be suspended or 'squeezed' by the midfoot and arch?

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05-02-2013, 11:43 PM
  #731
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Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
I see, I would definitely go out of my way to target Nexus or Graf (which is beyond my knowledge for now, so I would ask others if you decide to look into that). However, my advice on trying different fits still holds, Supreme (perhaps a EE) could also be a candidate.

Have you tried stretching the boot so that your foot sits in wider sidewalls?

Regarding your foot not seeming to sit in deep enough, do you feel that it is not planted firmly on the footbed when you stand? In that the sensation seems to be suspended or 'squeezed' by the midfoot and arch?
Yeah, they don't sell Graf around here so I think I'd be stuck on the two Bauers. I did try a stretching and punching and neither seemed to make it fit 100%. Sometimes I think that maybe hockey skates will just never be comfortable, but that can't be the case.

I do have a low arch as well, so it could be the midfoot area lifting my foot a bit (tried other footbeds). For example, on the top of my skates from like the third eyelet to the sixth, the tongue bulges because of how high my foot is and I can't really tighten the laces in that area.

(PS i've read a lot of this thread and want to thank you for everything you do for people on here, epic help)

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05-03-2013, 12:06 AM
  #732
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So I've skated 2 games with my Bauer Nexus 600s and am not liking them so far. I understand that there's a breaking in period and it's not necessarily the issue. The width of the toe feels a little loose and I can move my foot a little bit inside. It makes me feel a lot less stable and affects my skating game big time. I got the standard D width for these and I have wide feet as it is. Does anybody recommend anything to try to make the boot a little narrower? I was honestly thinking about wearing them and putting some bar clamps on the area they feel loose and tighten them, leaving them on for a while. Would that damage the boot at all? I don't like the sharpen job at all and need to get it redone but my usual guy but I just don't think that's going to make the difference I'm looking for.

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05-03-2013, 03:44 AM
  #733
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Originally Posted by Frankie Spankie View Post
So I've skated 2 games with my Bauer Nexus 600s and am not liking them so far. I understand that there's a breaking in period and it's not necessarily the issue. The width of the toe feels a little loose and I can move my foot a little bit inside. It makes me feel a lot less stable and affects my skating game big time. I got the standard D width for these and I have wide feet as it is. Does anybody recommend anything to try to make the boot a little narrower? I was honestly thinking about wearing them and putting some bar clamps on the area they feel loose and tighten them, leaving them on for a while. Would that damage the boot at all? I don't like the sharpen job at all and need to get it redone but my usual guy but I just don't think that's going to make the difference I'm looking for.
Sounds as though you're simply in a skate that does not fit well. It's usually harder to force a skate to contract, rather than expand. Not saying it's not possible but it's not a wise idea. Any chance you could try on something else?

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05-03-2013, 08:20 AM
  #734
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They're non-returnable once they're sharpened which sucks. It felt fine at the store and fit perfectly there which really drives me nuts because if that's the case, how am I ever going to find a pair of skates that fit me just right when it feels perfect at the store but not on the ice? I could always go the route of selling them on eBay for a loss since I haven't used them much but I'd rather just try to keep them if I can.

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05-03-2013, 10:39 AM
  #735
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Originally Posted by Frankie Spankie View Post
They're non-returnable once they're sharpened which sucks. It felt fine at the store and fit perfectly there which really drives me nuts because if that's the case, how am I ever going to find a pair of skates that fit me just right when it feels perfect at the store but not on the ice? I could always go the route of selling them on eBay for a loss since I haven't used them much but I'd rather just try to keep them if I can.
That's a tough one man. It sounds like you are kind of screwed. I can understand your issue and your concern that you will never find the right skate, but the guy at your LHS should have guided you through the process. I'll offer up my experiences and someone with more knowledge can correct me if needed:

The way I understand how a skate should fit at the store according to a couple of different guys at my LHS is this;

-At the front of the skate your toes should not feel cramped, either width wise or height. The should however just barely touch the front of the skate. Then you should kick the heel hard to force your foot back and the toes should no longer touch the front. This is allowing for a bit of break in at the heel over time.

-Also the skate should not have any pressure points when you are just standing there or getting them baked, but they should feel snug. Again allowing for a little bit of break in all around.

I had the same concern that you did about skates feeling great in the store and right out the box. I bet if I put on a pair of Supreme's or Nexus' in store they would feel awesome b/c of the extra room for my narrow foot, but I know once I started skating they would be too big. I would hope that the person at my LHS would know to fit me in something different.

I just bought my second pair of Vapors. I went from an X30 to an X5.0. At first I was concerned about fit, but they turned out great. There is a little bit of pain right now right when I take them off, but that is to be expected as I break them in. Pretty soon I know they feel as good as my broken in ones.

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05-03-2013, 06:33 PM
  #736
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Well the guy helping me told me all that and that's how I was fitted into the skates I bought. I tried the Nexus 600s and it didn't hurt at all. I tried moving my foot in the boot with the skate blade planted on the ground so I would make sure it wouldn't move. It didn't feel like it moved in store at all but now while on the ice it feels just a little loose. I think I'll try the bar clamps on the sides and see if that makes it narrower, I don't need it to be much narrower so I'm hoping it'll be enough pressure to make the difference but shouldn't be so much that it damages anything.

I'll give it a month before I ultimately decide what to do. Worst case, I'm hoping I could at least get $250 back on eBay or something, after all, they're still pretty much brand new...

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05-03-2013, 11:38 PM
  #737
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frankie Spankie View Post
Well the guy helping me told me all that and that's how I was fitted into the skates I bought. I tried the Nexus 600s and it didn't hurt at all. I tried moving my foot in the boot with the skate blade planted on the ground so I would make sure it wouldn't move. It didn't feel like it moved in store at all but now while on the ice it feels just a little loose. I think I'll try the bar clamps on the sides and see if that makes it narrower, I don't need it to be much narrower so I'm hoping it'll be enough pressure to make the difference but shouldn't be so much that it damages anything.

I'll give it a month before I ultimately decide what to do. Worst case, I'm hoping I could at least get $250 back on eBay or something, after all, they're still pretty much brand new...
Could this be an issue that waxed laces could fix/help? I may be way off base here, but it's possible that the laces are slipping/loosening as you skate. Maybe that's the reason they felt fine in store and not on the ice?

I mean they're $4 and if they help, that could save you a lot of trouble. If they don't then $4 isn't too much of a gamble.

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05-03-2013, 11:51 PM
  #738
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The Nexus line is notoriously wide, probably the widest on the market. I hope he gives it a shot but I don't think laces alone will fix his issue. Maybe if he gains 50 pounds, his feet will feel wider

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05-04-2013, 08:34 AM
  #739
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I already have waxed laces on there. I'm going to try to wear them in my house for the next couple days while watching playoff games and tighten particularly the lowest couple of eyelets as tight as I can with one of this little lace tightener tools. Really hope I can figure something out to make them a bit more narrow. Looking online and the ones that are sold after just a couple of skates due to being the wrong size are only selling for $200, I'd lose close to $200 for this problem if I do go that route but it'd still be better than having to skate with skates that don't fit.

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05-04-2013, 12:07 PM
  #740
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccarrigan View Post
Yeah, they don't sell Graf around here so I think I'd be stuck on the two Bauers. I did try a stretching and punching and neither seemed to make it fit 100%. Sometimes I think that maybe hockey skates will just never be comfortable, but that can't be the case.

I do have a low arch as well, so it could be the midfoot area lifting my foot a bit (tried other footbeds). For example, on the top of my skates from like the third eyelet to the sixth, the tongue bulges because of how high my foot is and I can't really tighten the laces in that area.

(PS i've read a lot of this thread and want to thank you for everything you do for people on here, epic help)
You're welcome!

The thing about the CCM skates form the Vectors to the current U+ line is that I found the footbed area (not the insole itself mind you) in the midfoot to be uncharacteristically narrow compared to the boot itself, which is characteristically wider. The shape sort of narrows in once you hit the bottom (exaggerated below)

\_/ vs (__)

such that many people had issues with their feet falling against the narrow edges and not sitting firmly at the bottom, a floating sensation. Obviously that wouldn't have been the case for everyone, but there were observations to that extent.

Regardless, you definitely sound like you have an ill fitting skate. Like I mentioned before, it sounds like Nexus could be your next step or even Supreme.

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05-04-2013, 06:57 PM
  #741
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Originally Posted by AIREAYE View Post
You're welcome!

The thing about the CCM skates form the Vectors to the current U+ line is that I found the footbed area (not the insole itself mind you) in the midfoot to be uncharacteristically narrow compared to the boot itself, which is characteristically wider. The shape sort of narrows in once you hit the bottom (exaggerated below)

\_/ vs (__)

such that many people had issues with their feet falling against the narrow edges and not sitting firmly at the bottom, a floating sensation. Obviously that wouldn't have been the case for everyone, but there were observations to that extent.

Regardless, you definitely sound like you have an ill fitting skate. Like I mentioned before, it sounds like Nexus could be your next step or even Supreme.
Thanks again, I'll check out both of those lines when I can find a local store that carries them.

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05-06-2013, 05:04 PM
  #742
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Superfeet takes up volume, the boot remains the same shape, but you're right in that sense.

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05-07-2013, 09:36 PM
  #743
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Hey, thanks for making the guide Aireaye. I wanted to shoot a question off you if you don't mind.

My pop used to play A league when he was a youngin', but has been out of the game for probably on the order of 35 years. I wanted to pick him up some skates for father's day this year and so we could go out and do some casual stick and puck, but there are a couple obvious issues...

He used to wear CCM Tacks back in the day, and he says he remembers his skate size as being a 9, regular width. Do you know if sizing has remained at all consistent over the last 30 some-odd years (ahem...)? Because otherwise I either have to ruin the surprise by getting him fitted or take a shot and hope it works out.

Any thoughts from the skate master?

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05-07-2013, 11:08 PM
  #744
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I'm no skate master! Though it could be a goal...lol

The absolute best thing to do is to head to your local knowledgeable store and get fitted from scratch. You would need to know size and try on different boots to select based on fit.

I know it's a surprise and all, so perhaps you could purchase something in advance to indicate that a trip to the store is in order. Perhaps an actual pair of skates (which you would anticipate returning of course, so no sharpening or anything should be done obviously lol), or a gift card, or some sort of trinket related to hockey and/or skates?

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05-08-2013, 10:39 AM
  #745
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccarrigan View Post
Heel lock seems to be ok in the CCMs. The fit around the ankles is pretty loose, so much so that I usually have to retighten the top few laces during a game. But I'm thinking that the poor fit at the instep might be causing the top to loosen up as I forward flex?

The pushing out is harder to explain, just that my skates don't tie like I see other people's. When I tie them the boot doesn't seem to enclose properly, like my foot is trying to escape the boot.

Does that make sense?
I can add a bit to this.

How old are they? I ask because I got new CL's this past season & it took a while for the top of the boot to form 'in' around my ankle (even after two bakes)

I find that stock CCM-high models, is one of (if not the only-other than graf) option for someone with a very high instep + arch. You mentioned in another post that you have flat arches. You'll likely find a much better fit with another brand.

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05-08-2013, 03:58 PM
  #746
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So an update on my skates:

I put them on yesterday and used some bar clamps to make the boot more narrow. I did it so much so that it felt a little too tight thinking they'll loosen up a little bit when I take the clamps off. I left them in my car so they could bake a bit and mold better. I tried skating this morning and leaps and bounds better. They still need to break in a bit, the heel particularly is still a little sore but I feel so much more stable and confident on these.

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05-09-2013, 12:21 AM
  #747
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In the future, a stronger foot and ankle (tibialis anterior and posterior too) will create foot strength necessary to deal with a looser skate. You can do exercises that focus on those areas, of course.

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05-09-2013, 12:50 PM
  #748
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Excellent, hope it all works out for you sir! Keep reporting back on your experiences if you can, as it could help others.

Although that's a pretty big jump, it happens to people all the time, which is why it's imperative that a person gets fitted properly.
Well, it's almost a month since I got these now, and here's a short/brief update on the Nexus 400's.

I was hesitant to post this update because I went for pick with them once, and sprained by MCL during warmups.. I still played the full 2 hours, but I thought maybe I should get a skate in where my leg was 100%. Anyway I thought I was making sharper turns for sure, with a properly fitted skate. They were really comfortable all game. I'm considering waxed laces and/or superfeet, though. My toes push up against the toe cap more than I'd like when standing (but not uncomfortable), but they are fine when knees are bent/skating. No complaints about the skate so far, even if it was only one skate.. on a bum knee haha.

So thanks again for the guide AIREAYE.

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05-09-2013, 03:34 PM
  #749
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Np, if you want, keep us up to date with your experiences! Quoting your previous post would help us refresh on what was going on as well.

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05-09-2013, 04:50 PM
  #750
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Bauer X5 worst skate ever.

Me and 2 teammates all have the same skate and all three of us have extreme pain most of the time after skating for a little while with them. Then when you take them off you cant put your foot down because your in so much pain.

They never fully break in and the pain never goes away, i have mine for 6 months, and they have had it for a year.

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