When it comes to the limited edition hockey skates, Bauer puts itself in a class of its own. Every year we are getting at least one or two limited edition skates from these guys. That's not to say that Bauer's competitors don't participate in the LE game, since in the past we have seen LE's out of Easton and CCM. Reebok's even implemented products such as the White K to offer some variety to those who are interested in something less traditional. I’ve never really bought into the idea of limited edition skates, but even I have to say that Bauer has done something pretty cool here with the new Bauer Vapor x100 LE.
The newest limited edition scheme from Bauer is a culmination of smaller good ideas that Bauer has had in the past, pressed into one flashy skate. They've ditched the classic "Vapor Red" and moved to an almost Graf-neon-green for the boot's trim and thread. I think they did a great job of choosing a unique color (since we all know how popular these neon colors have been lately) but not overloading it into the skate. We all know that it looks great, but this being a blog about the skate's release, I have to hit you with some performance specs about the skates. So if all you're looking for is a recap of some limited edition skates, scroll down, because its nerd time here for a couple minutes:
Vapor x100 LE Tech Features Breakdown
- The 3D lasted Curv® Composite upper with X-rib pattern…what’s that? Well, in English this refers to the boot structure itself. This feature gives the skate unreal ankle support, which means you're transferring energy efficiently, and getting as much power as possible in each stride.
- All new this year is the Tuuk Edge Holder. This patented holder has a quick release trigger so that the runners can be swapped in-and-out in seconds. Also, the boot sits 3mm taller than previous models, meant to prevent the skate from bottoming out and improving your turning radius.
- Bauer, per usual, has used the Hydra-Max Liner again. It displays top-notch durability and does more than enough to resist moisture, ensuring that your skate won't double in weight from sweat. The upper liner is dense and meant to maintain stability and the lower portion has a softer, more comfortable construction.
- One feature I like is the FormFit-3, 52 oz., 3-piece pro felt tongue. This guy is tall and thick and made of felt. Some people thought that last year's tongue needed to be beefed up a bit. Not anymore. Great lace-bite protection, and no need to search for a custom tongue. It’s made for potation and comfort, and comes ready to "flop".
- Once again, Bauer uses their Form-Fit+ footbed in the X100 LE. This footbed is meant to grip your foot, not only for comfort, but for your protection also. Working with the built-in heel stabilizer, they ensure that there is no sliding of your foot on the footbed. Any lateral movement within the skate could potentially result in serious injury while making cuts.
With all this talk about Limited Edition hockey skates, I started thinking back to some prior LE's from Bauer, so here’s a quick rundown of some LE’s from the past…..
The Supreme One.9
This is something you either love or you hate. There's no middle ground. It's not the first all-white skate we have seen, but it certainly is flashy. Personally, I'm not getting in this skate. I've never been into the all-white look. But there certainly IS a market out there for this look and sales of this skate tell us that’s a fact! Being someone that worked in one of our stores for a couple years, I can tell you this skate draws a lot of interest from youth players. The all-white skates make their eyes light up. I'm not saying that there aren't plenty of juniors and high school players wearing these, but for someone in a more intense level of hockey, I will tell you what I told guys buying them in our store - if you're buying the Supreme One.9 LE, you better plan on scoring a lot, because if you don't…you're gonna hear it.
The Nexus 600 LE
This one is something different. Bauer's newest family, the Nexus line, was engineered to have a softer and more comfortable fit. It also was made to have a classic look to it that’s meant to be a throwback to old-time hockey. This boot will confuse you though. The Nexus 600 LE offered a little more modern look, and got away from what the line was meant to do. In my own experience selling this skate, I've found that the older generation of players are really drawn to it. The same can be said to the Nexus line in general. Someone playing men's league hockey isn't necessarily looking for that stiff boot with all the ankle support. If you're playing once a week, you're looking for comfort. And you're not trying to break something in for weeks. Personally, I thought this was a weird color scheme, but the more "seasoned" men's league players who I would seek this too didn't understand the need for a flashy skate anyway. All about comfort.
Supreme One100 LE
I believe "murdered out" is the term here. Not for me, but for someone. Regardless, this is a baaaaaad looking skate. If there is an intimidating skate out there, this is it. Basically a complete opposite of the One.9 and One.6, it's all black everything. Flashy yes, in your face, not so much. The all black doesn't stick out as much as the all-white scheme, making me more prone to accept it. The black Tuuk is something that you probably either love or hate. I'm not a fan of the black Tuuk, personally, but this skate needs it. If you are going out on a limb and making an all-black boot, there's no reason to exclude the holder. In my opinion, the One100 LE is the biggest "win" on here thus far.
Vapor 7.0 LE
I think if you are going to make a limited edition skate, the Vapor x7.0 LE is the way to do it. Don't overdo it, add some less-traditional colors, maybe throw on a different graphic, but make it easy to recognize. When I was selling this skate, it didn't take too much effort. Most of the younger guys preferred this skate to the standard x7.0 and even if they were looking for the standard graphics, no one was against the changes that Bauer made here. Classic white Tuuk, lost the "Vapor Red", and added some white trim. Cosmetically, it is a great looking LE, and the performance of the x7.0 sells itself.