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T120 - More Anatomical, tighter fit Digital overlays SOLD OUT Traditional Fit Digital overlay on left glove SOLD OUT
INTRODUCTION Two of the prominent features of hockey gloves are the palm and the gussets. (Custom cuffs would probably be next!) When I set out to order my custom Easton Pro+ gloves, I tried to research as many options as I could to pick out my specs. The information and videos about palms and gussets are scattered and sparse, so this is my attempt to bring together the information into one place. Obviously, each material will vary from user to user, so take the information as you will. I'm open to suggestions to improve this post. Special thanks to Pat Rivest for letting me visit his shop and pick his brain. OVERVIEW Hockey palms can be either genuine leather or synthetic leather. They will vary in thickness and durability. The synthetic leather options will be generally more durable than genuine leather. Their grip will depend on whether there is an addition adhesive or pattern added to the material. Genuine leather palms used in hockey gloves mostly come from goatskin. Common natural leather options are Digital, mustang, and kangaroo. Those names are given by the manufacturer, Pittards; it does not necessarily relate to their source animal. They tend to be labelled as “performance” materials as they are not intended to be durable palms. Another drawback is that they may have irregularities from being a natural hide. These palms are not usually found on stock retail gloves because of their lower durability. Rather, they’re found on gloves for players who request it, whether it’s a pro or a regular customer. Synthetic leathers are man-made. Common synthetic leather options are nash and micronash. In general, they are microfibers made to look like genuine leather but with improved durability and stain resistance. Based on their features, synthetic leathers are found not only on most (if not all) retail stock gloves, but usually on pro gloves, too. Hockey companies are always looking for the optimal synthetic palm material that is thin, durable, and soft, so more options are available on the market now than in previous years. Replacement palms are available for genuine leathers and synthetic leathers. Companies will offer replacement palms pre-made (such as the ones found in the catalogue from Nash Sports) or will create them from the source material (such as repalming services offered at Custom Pro Repair). GENUINE LEATHERS Digital: Comes in grey.Goatskin supplied by Pittards. (Synthetic non-Pittards “Digital” is not true Digital.)Considered a “performance” leather.Medium thickness between kangaroo/yellow mustang and pearl mustang.Properly known as Digital textured leather and was first used in collaboration with Franklin as a “grip-enhanced leather for baseball batting gloves”.May also been known as “Carbon Fibre Digital”.Can be used as a base palm, and often used as an overlay for grip.Has a pattern stamped onto the material to provide grip. (Looks similar to Suregrip, except Suregrip is a synthetic leather. Digital from Pittards will stay grippy over the course of its lifetime but nash-based synthetic variants will get slick over time.)A common option for custom gloves at the pro and consumer level for its grip and feel.Digital Tacky: Comes in a dark grey.It is Digital (as above), but it is treated with an adhesive/glue to make it more sticky.Generally used as an overlay only for added grip. Digital Tacky (top), Digital (bottom). Warrior Franchise, Digital palm, micronash gussets. Warrior Franchise, Digital palm, Digital Tacky overlay. Mustang: Comes in pearl and yellow.Suede goatskin supplied by Pittards.Considered a “performance” leather.Pearl mustang is the thickest of all the “performance” genuine leathers and has the least grip.Yellow mustang is thinner and has more grip than pearl mustang.Yellow mustang is comparable to kangaroo, but with slightly less grip.Was a popular option mostly for custom Warrior gloves. Yellow mustang (top), pearl mustang (bottom). Warrior Franchise, yellow mustang palm. Warrior Franchise, pearl mustang palm. Kangaroo: Comes in one color, yellow.Goatskin supplied by Pittards.Considered a “performance” leather.Apparently, it was given the name “kangaroo” because of its color! (It’s not made from kangaroo hide.)Supple and grippy material.Similar thickness (thinness?) to yellow mustang.Kangaroo and yellow mustang have a relatively lower durability compared to the rest of the genuine leathers.Was an option mostly for custom Warrior gloves. Kangaroo. Warrior Franchise, kangaroo palm. Horsehide and cowhide: These palms are (presumably) made from their respective source animals.They’re usually very thick and most often used by players who prefer an old-school style of glove.Horsehide is reportedly not as durable as goatskin.Not a common option.SYNTHETIC LEATHERS Nash: Comes in ivory, light grey, dark grey, and black. (No difference between the colors except the look.)Technically described as a “polyester micro fiber, non-woven, synthetic suede”.Synthetic suedes can be made by a variety of companies with a variety of thicknesses, so quality can vary depending on the supplier.(Nash is the biggest point of confusion for me. I believe that “nash” is a generic term for synthetic suede made in a certain fashion. There isn’t a synthetic suede company called “Nash”. There must be a few dominant suppliers, including Clarino by Kuraray and Ennis, that supply the majority of the “nash” product. Whoever is the main supplier might be the nash that is the commonly-used palm that we know.)Thick and durable palm material, usually 1.0 mm.Can be used as a base palm for a durable palm and/or as an overlay for additional durability.Pro players may prefer to use this palm because it’s common and they are used to it.Compared to Clarino, nash will last longer but will become more brittle and hard when dried.Because nash is made with a water-based adhesive, sweat will eventually soak into the palm and break down the bonds, which leads to pilling and splitting.The nash material has no relation to Nash Sports, who supplies hockey products and accessories such as replacement palms.Suregrip (Nash Grip): Comes in grey.Described as an “embossed artificial suede”.It is grey nash (as above), but with a pattern stamped onto the material (“embossed”) to provide a grippy texture.Looks similar to Digital, except Digital is a genuine leather. (Hence, this could be called "synthetic digital".)It is a thick and durable palm that is 1.0 mm thick. Suregrip/Nash Grip (top), grey nash (middle), ivory nash (bottom). Easton Pro, grey nash palm and gussets. Easton Synergy 800, ivory nash palm and gussets. CCM U+ CL, Suregrip palm. Clarino: Comes in ivory, light grey, dark grey, and black. (No difference between the colors except the look.)Clarino is a broad term that describes a variety of synthetic leathers produced by Kuraray.A non-woven bundle of intertwined microfibers that is buffed, napped, and dyed to become a soft and supple suede-like product that resembles genuine leather. (Check out the manufacturing process!)(There is likely a specific subtype of synthetic suede within the Clarino company that is used in hockey. It might simply be known as “Clarino nash”.)It is similar to nash but has a different construction that makes it more soft when dried but less durable.Clarino nash is used by Bauer in the 2015 Nexus 800 for a soft feel. (Though, interestingly, non-Clarino nash is used in the Nexus 1000…)Clarino nash is used by CCM in the 2015 Ultra Tacks for a pro feel.Clarino is used by Warrior in the 2015 AX1 and QR1 for a pro feel and durability. MIA MB22, Clarino palm. Micronash: Comes in (light) grey, dark grey, and beige. (There is no difference between the colors except the look.)Synthetic microfiber.Thin and durable palm material with consistent reports of having good feel.Exclusive material to Warrior gloves, and sometimes underrated. Warrior Franchise, Micronash palm and gussets. AX Suede: Polyester suede, which allows for a variety of colors.AX Suede Quattro+ is exclusive to Bauer and is a “triple-fiber blend palm” in the MX3 and APX2 used for soft feel, abrasion resistance, and moisture management.AX Suede is used by Easton in the 2015 Synergy HSX as a two-piece palm for a tactile feel and abrasion resistance. (0.75 mm thickness)AX Suede is used by CCM in the 2015 4R Pro for durability, soft feel, and grip.MSH3: Polyester microsuede that is (likely) from China.MSH3 is a thin and durable material, per Eagle.MSH3 in an evolution of MSH2, which was popular when first launched and had a strong run of popularity.Exclusive material to Eagle gloves, though reportedly can be repalmed on other gloves. Eagle Aero Pro, MSH3 palm. (Pic courtesy of The Hockey Shop.) TPS HGT, MSH3 palm. Eagle X70, MSH2 palm. VX Suede: Synthetic suede leather with a soft feel, per Eagle.VX Suede is used by Eagle in the 2015 Sentry II for feel and durability.Tactik Microsuede: Microsuede palm used by Easton in the 2015 Stealth CX for soft feel and abrasion resistance.0.8 mm thickness.DURABILITY From the most durable to the least durable, based on discussion with Pat Rivest: nash (most durable)Micronashpearl mustangkangaroo/yellow mustang/Digital (least durable)Compare with the list generated by JunkyardAthletic. THICKNESS From the thickest to the thinnest, based on discussion with Pat Rivest: nash (thickest)pearl mustangDigitalkangaroo/yellow mustang/Micronash (thinnest)Compare with the list generated by Eagle Hockey circa 2008. OVERLAYAn overlay is an additional layer of material that goes overtop the base palm, typically over the middle portion of the palm but can also be found on other parts of the palm. One reason for an overlay is added durability. The overlay can be the same material as the palm to double the thickness of the palm. Another configuration is to have a thin palm but a thick overlay for a mixture of feel and durability. Some players might order without an overlay, therefore creating a single-layer palm, for increased feel. Bauer NXG, single layer (Clarino?) nash palm. Another reason for an overlay is added grip. The middle of the palm is where the stick rests in the hands, so that’s where the grip is added to the palm. In this case, materials that are used are often Suregrip, Digital, or Digital tacky. Bauer APX Pro, nash palm, Suregrip overlay. If you’re a pro player with very specific requests, you can have a special overlay pattern like Marian Gaborik! Gaborik glove overlay on palm and fingertips. GUSSETS The gussets are the materials between the fingers that connect the palm to the foam body of the glove. The gusset is usually the same material as the palm. For example, nash palms will have nash gussets, and Micronash palms will have Micronash gussets. Bauer 4-Roll Pro, (Clarino?) nash palm and gussets. In the case that a less durable material is used (e.g. Digital), the gussets will often be a more durable material, such as nash. Easton HSX, Digital palm, nash gussets. A popular custom choice is sponge mesh. Colors include white, black, and grey. It is lightweight and breathable. It’s found on pro gloves. Easton Pro, nash palms, white sponge mesh gussets. Another option is poly knit, which is a stretch material. Colors include white and black. It’s lightweight and breathable. It’s found on pro gloves. Bauer X60, nash palm, unknown overlay, black stretch gussets. Warrior Covert, Digital palm, kangaroo overlay, white stretch gussets. REPALMING SERVICES You may be keen to repalm your glove using a YouTube video, but I’d suggest going with experts who have the equipment and experience to do the job nicely. Mark “Peaches” Brennan of Peaches Pro Repair is a nice person with a good reputation who has done consistent good work for ModSquadHockey users, such as Harv and halfmoonyote. He’s a former NHL equipment manager and president of the Society of Pro Hockey Equipment Managers. His shop located in Portland, Oregon. Ralph Beavis of Nash Sports is a good guy who is also well regarded for his knowledge and experience in the industry. Peaches sends clients in Canada to him. His shop is in Lakefield, Ontario. Pat Rivest of Custom Pro Repair is a former employee at Warrior Hockey employee who teamed up with his colleague Ken to run their own glove repair and modification operation. He does a lot of good work and accommodates special requests, like the super-modified gloves from ibeck. His shop is in Lasalle, Quebec.