Jump to content
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
CigarScott

Hockey gear in the USSR/Eastern Bloc

Recommended Posts

Here's a random topic that has been bouncing around in my head for a while: what did the Soviet and other Warsaw Pact countries use, especially before the fall of the Berlin Wall? Did they use Tackla gear since the Finns were halfway friendly with the Soviets? Where they able to get their hands on Jofa gear? Were they able to to obtain gear from the Canadian companies like Bauer or CCM? Did they smuggle in examples from other countries and copy it? Or did they have their own companies who manufactured their own gear using their own research and designs?

Thanks for reading my random thoughts.

Edited by CigarScott
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Growing up, I watched hockey on TV probably daily. However, I do not remember being brand aware at all. One thing that I remember is that the sticks we're Koho. I also remember Jofa on the helmets. USSR were making their own stuff and used prior to 80. Hockey skates Salvo and Dinamo were pretty popular on the higher level. These looked like Langes... Probably were copies or at least inspired with elements of figure skates... Had hooks instead of eyelets at the top 4 rows. I think gloves were Czech.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I grew up playing in Russia in the 90s as a kid. We had a ton of local teams playing on outdoor rinks and then a select team that was part of the local pro team organization. Kids playing on outdoor rinks had all hand me down government issue soviet gear, all of the protective gear was from like the 60s and 70s, skates were a bit newer, kinda looked like langes like kgb said, sticks were all cheap mass produced wood things with no curve. You'd soak it in hot water and then bend it over the radiator overnight to get any kind of curve on that thing, which also made it really brittle. Gloves were in short supply, most kids played with padded mittens.

Select teams weren't a ton better, nobody had anything resembling matching gear, but at least everyone had gear. Koho and Jofa were most common, some louisville and montreal sticks, most skates were sort of low end bauer and ccm, some kids had grafs. The closer in age you got to the pro team the better the gear got. Pros played in the Russian superleague, which was the predecessor of the KHL and they basically had almost all the same stuff as average NHLers at the time.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its not that bad, if you google it you can find a bunch.

https://thejerseyhub.com/index.php?route=product/category&path=36

These are all from like late 90s early 2000s. Current jerseys are certainly a bit classier looking (https://lutchusa.com/shop/khl/khl-clubs), there are also a bunch of teams that used to be in the Russian Superleague that didn't go to the KHL and got bumped down to the VHL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, past 90s they got into Western gear a lot, especially with skates. CCM, Megas, etc... Basically the same as in NHL, but kids in the cities still had locally made shite. I remember wooden sticks in the radiator... that was fun. I also remember these dreadful "composite" sticks where shaft was a fiberglass square tube, with glued in plastic blade. These would last one good shot and then the shaft would fold on itself. Some wooden sticks we're pretty solid, I would say on par with today's wooden sticks where the blade had some fiberglass wrapping and had some curve to it that was pretty nice, that was one of few sticks one could wind up for a hefty slapper day after day. Those would always break right at the blade to heel transition so you can still play with the heel (try puck handle with that). Those were good days, lots of fun. My favorite hockey person was Tretyak... had his name written on my stick when I was 5.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the 70s/80s, when Dynamo and a few other Soviet teams would come over for exhibition games against NHL teams, they would buy up a lot of Canadian made gear. Also in 2011, we hosted a few tiers of hockey for World Police/Fire Olympics at our rink. The Moscow Police team(basically ex-pros, not cops) in the over 35 division cleaned out our pro shop on skates, sticks, and accessory undergarments.  “You give deal for cash?”

No. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 2/5/2018 at 10:32 PM, g3k said:

If you guys haven't seen it, a really great documentary on the soviet hockey team is Red Army (2014)  http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3264102/

I don't think they ever went over anything related to the gear but other than that it's really informative.

I did get around to watching this last night. I did notice KOHO sticks and a lot of Jofa gear, even saw the odd Graf shirt. I did notice that they were using CCM lids when they came to play in Canada so perhaps the NHL teams or CCM directly hooked them up...

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I worked with a few guys who traveled to play there in the 70's. They said players would barter their gear for things knowing they could replace it in Canada when they returned. Some places they would travel in the air wearing their gear because airport security was know to "confiscate" bags and gear for one reason or the other. Basically confiscated it to give to national players. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...