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Axxion89

Hackva GM2608 Mask Review

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I am surprised this mask has yet to be reviewed so I figured I would write one:

Reviewer Specs:

Height: 5' 7.5"

Weight: 185lbs

Head Size: 22.4"

Experience: 6 months on ice

vs Shooters: Beginners to Former Pros

Previous Masks: Reebok 3k, Itech 4000

Hackva GM2608:

Fit:

Very good for my head, I am a 22.4" head, hat size of between 7 and 7 1/8 and the Medium fits like a glove. I am on the large size of other brand's small size masks and judging by the sizing chart by Hackva, I would say these run small. That being said, if you fell in between a size, going up one may not be a bad option in my opinion. The mask fits a little wider than my previous masks for those of you with wider heads which is definitely a plus for many. The chin cup is comfortable however it would constantly slip and stick to my throat and no matter how I adjusted it, it would still be a pain, so I removed it. The elastic on my harness is very strong so it doesn't stretch easy making it a little difficult putting on and off the mask. Other than the elastic strength and chin cup, the mask fits very well

8/10

Protection

The best feature about this mask. The mask retails for $400 and is layered with primarily fiberglass with a full layer of Kevlar and Carbon Fiber. This makes for a very stiff mask with great protection. I have yet to have my ears ring or feel any of the shots that have hit my head. I have no doubt that this mask will suit most anyone playing hockey today unless you play in the NHL.

9/10

Weight

While the helmet may be as protective as a tank, its also as heavy relatively speaking. The mask weighs in at around 4lbs which is heaver than any of the other masks I have owned. While I do not care about the weight nor do I feel it, some may and is one of the few downsides to this otherwise great mask.

5/10

Durability

Hanging in there and doing well. After many games, the cage is slightly dented, has a chip near the ear from hitting the ice, and a few cracks in the clear coat. I would say that the durability is there but could be a little better in the paint department however, I am no expert in painting and do not know if this paint chips are normal for masks. I had the chips looked over by Hackva and none of them affect the integrity of the mask so durability scores high marks so long as you do not mind some cosmetic chips.

8/10

Intangibles

The Texallium paint job is beautiful as well as the gold cat eye cage. The price tag of $400 also makes this one of the best value masks out in the market. Finally, customer service is outstanding and second to none as the mask also carries a lifetime warranty on the shell, the only mask to my knowledge that does.

10/10

Conclusion

This is a great mask for players ranging from beginner to Top Tier mens league. I would not hesitate to buy another Hackva! Just as a recap:

Pros: Price/Value, Protection, Fit, Aesthetics, Customer service and warranty

Cons: Chincup, Weight, Paint durability

Overall: 8/10

UPDATE!!! 1/22/2012

SO after 8 months since the review, I would provide an update on protection and durability:

Protection will be going up to 9.5 as I feel the only thing this mask might not be able to stop is an NHL level slap shot. I have taken a fair bit of powerful head shots from distance slappers to in tight wrist shots and have yet to have any injuries or ailments. I play without a chin cup or sling and my hardest head shot resulted in a slight bruise to my jaw form the mask hitting my face but that's my fault not the mask.

Durability stays the same. Continue to see some chips and more cracks in the finish, but no other structural damages. Still feel plenty safe in this mask.

I will be adding some foam to the jaw line for impact protection for my face to complete this mask.

Edited by Axxion89

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Thought I'd take the time to add to Axxion89's review of the Hackva GM2608

Reviewer Specs:
Height: 5' 8"
Weight: 230lbs
Head Size: Large
Experience: 25 years vs Shooters: Beginners to Former Pros
Previous Masks: Vic Rhino, Bauer, Itech and a slew of Olie MA2000's
Been in this mask for a couple years now.

Review Mask: Hackva GM2608

Fit:
Very comfortable. I wear a large in other brands so the sizing fits true to size. It is snug enough to prevent the mask from moving or floating during play without being excessively tight. 5 point harness and adjustable chin strap offers a limitless amount of adjustment. Facial opening starts just over the eyebrows and covers to just below the nose/above the mouth so it feels open, not at all claustrophobic. Sight lines through the cage are perfect and un-restricting.
9/10

Protection
High level of protection. The shell is made of fiberglass with a reinforcing carbon fibre layer. It is easily on par with any other pro mask. I've taken some serious shots to the head without any injury. It doesn't even hurt though I've had a couple good ear ringers. I wouldn't hesitate facing any level shooter in this mask.
9/10

Weight
Out of the box, this mask feels heavy. It is easily the heaviest of any of the masks I've worn. That having been said. Once it's on, you don't notice the weight. No neck strain or fatigue whatsoever. If anything I think the little bit of extra weight instills a sense of confidence I might not have in a much lighter/flimsy feeling mask.
7/10

Durability
Aside from a few scratches, this mask has held up amazingly well so far. Besides the few scratches in the paint, the only problems I've encountered involved the small clips that secure the chin strap to the mask shell and the glue that holds the interior foam in place. One of the clips actually broke (resulting in my chin strap coming undone during a league game :o ) A quick trip to the local hockey store netted me two new clips which are simply secured on the same screws that hold the outside button clips that the harness clicks to. A $10 repair that was more of an inconvenience than anything. Also the glue that holds the interior foam pieces in place gave up recently resulting in the two sections by either ear and the one section in front of the chin cup coming loose. I simply re-secured them with contact cement. Again a $5 fix that was really nothing to deal with.
7/10

Intangibles
The mask looks great! The styling of the shell is perfect in proportions so it doesn't have a funny looking (too narrow/too wide/too long/too short) chin, or a shallow head depth (creating the gap at the back of the mask where the head back plate is located) or awkward looking facial opening (too small/too large) like you see on many other manufacturers masks. Also as Axxion90 indicated, the mask also carries a lifetime warranty. That's alone is a pretty solid intangible.
10/10

Conclusion
It may not be the best mask on the market...but it is easily the best mask you can buy at the price point it is offered at and it is offered with an extensive selection of colours, finishes and custom factory paint jobs.

Overall: a solid 8.4/10

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I figured I could add to these reviews as well and share my experiences with this mask.

Reviewer Specs:

Male
6'3”

190 lbs

A-D Level Hockey

Fit: Fits snug and good on my head. Sometimes the chin cup feels too tight and hurts my jaw slightly, but this is very rare. I can't loosen the chin cup either as I replaced the stock one with a shock doctor anti-bacteria chin cup as the stock one was irritating my skin (this is an issue with my bad skin and not the Helmet). 9/10

Protection: As the others have mentioned, this is made of Kevlar and carbon fibre. The mask is extremely stiff and offers pretty good protection. I have felt shots before but I have never heard any ringing sensation. The rare after getting hit my jaw hurts for a few minutes to an hour after. This happened when I got hit on the top of the head and in the cage. Again this is a rare occurrence. There are a few downsides to this mask though. It has a flat spot on the front of the mask above the cage, in this spot a puck could hit the helmet straight on instead of deflecting it away like the helmet is designed to. Along the sides of the neck the helmet sits a little high exposing a little more neck than I'd like. I know there are neck protectors and plastic danglers for that (which I use) but when I tried on an Eddy mask before I noticed that the sides of the mask covered a bit more of my neck. 7/10

Weight: This helmet is very heavy, and probably the heaviest I have ever felt and worn. I don't have a big problem with that as I never feel the weight of the mask and my head moves fine with it. But since the mask is very heavy (even though it isn't an issue for me) it will be a lower rating. 3/10

Durability: I have gone through 3 cages in this mask (and my current one has a dent in it as well), but I do not consider the cages as a durability factor as if the get hit they will get bent doing their job. The paint on this helmet is another story, all around the edges of the face opening have cracks running through the paint (see photos). At the front and bottom of the mask there are significant paint chips in it as well, but this doesn't lower protection and really isn't that big of an issue. I did have problems with the foams in the mask falling out at very inconvenient times right before a game. I fixed this issue by re-gluing the foam into the helmet when I returned home. 4 years later this helmet shows wear but still works great. 7/10

Intangibles: Replacing the cages have been an interesting journey for me. The first time I got a replacement cage from Don Simmons and I had no issues at all. The second time I figured I'd go straight to the manufacturer to try and get a cage direct. Communication through email was very challenging and I received different answers a couple of times and very delayed responses, I also ended up paying more through the manufacturer than through Simmons. After I placed an order 4 weeks later I still didn't have a new cage and was using one of my older and less dented cages. I emailed the company again in hopes of being told when I'd receive my cage. According to Hackva the cages were on back order even though I was told they had everything in hand. With no special features and iffy customer service (and a website forever going through a rebuild) there is nothing really special about this mask besides the price point. 5/10

Conclusion: For $400 this mask is really well priced and is protective. It isn't the most custom mask nor the lightest, but it has protected my head and I would recommend this helmet to any brand name LHS helmet. Overall I am extremely satisfied. 9/10

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