CCM JetSpeed, Tacks, & Ribcor: Which One Is Right For Me?Posted by Drake Martin
Not too long ago, we made a comparison article for Bauer Vapor, Supreme, and Nexus equipment lines and had several requests to make one for CCM. Ask and ye shall receive! This article will give you a brief overview of each line of CCM gear and will show the closest equipment line from Bauer. Let's get started.
Beginning with skates, as of October 2019, CCM has three skate lines: JetSpeed (formerly RBZ), Tacks and Ribcor. The top-of-the-line models from each line are as follows: JetSpeed FT2, Super Tacks AS1, and Ribcor 80K.
For a more comprehensive look at the differences between the CCM skate lines, make sure to watch our video with CCM expert Dennis Danforth!
CCM's JetSpeed motto is trademarked as "Fit to Fly," which means they are designed for players who are looking to maintain high rates of speed after "takeoff." These are CCM's second full composite skates, which makes them incredibly lightweight.
Unlike the original RBZ skates that launched in 2013, the JetSpeed skates have a medium-volume, snug overall fit that's similar to the anatomical fit found in Bauer Supreme skates. However, the JetSpeeds have a lock-tight fit in the heel, which is more similar to the tapered fit found in Bauer's Vapor skates. If you are looking for a stiff skate that's more of a "Vapor-Supreme hybrid," look no further than JetSpeed skates.
NHL players wearing CCM JetSpeed skates: Patrice Bergeron (BOS), Connor McDavid (EDM), Nazem Kadri (COL).
Connor McDavid carries the puck in his JetSpeed FT2 skates. Photo courtesy Andy Devlin / NHLI via Getty Images
Featuring MonoFrame 360 technology, Super Tacks AS1 skates are a one-piece boot frame providing a fully anatomical heel-lock with a 360° fit around and under the foot. The Super Tacks construction eliminates the need for an outsole, providing a greater foot-to-skate contact area and an unprecedented direct force propulsion system to help generate maximum power.
The first generation of Tacks skates had the widest toe box, highest boot volume, and stiffest outsole of the three lines, so they were geared towards players with wider feet or towards those who want a little more room inside the skate - similar to Bauer Nexus skates. Now, the current generation of Super Tacks skates fit much more snug and closely resemble a Bauer Supreme skate.
NHL players wearing CCM Tacks skates: Alexander Ovechkin (WSH), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (EDM), Brent Burns (SJ), Seth Jones (CBJ).
Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals rips a shot while wearing his CCM Super Tacks AS1 skates. Photo credit Alex Brandon, AP Photo.
CCM Ribcor skates are geared towards players looking to make agile, quick and extremely tight turns. The FlexFrame™ technology provides excellent forward flexion to help players generate power and lateral stability which helps to maximize energy transfer with every stride.
Somewhat similar to Bauer Nexus skates, the CCM Ribcor skate line has a low volume forefoot, medium-high instep, and narrow-to-medium heel width.
Similar to the JetSpeed skates, the CCM Ribcor 80K skates are a one-piece boot, helping skaters feel more lightweight without extra materials weighing them down. Also, the 80k's holders are attached to the boots via an outsole, unlike the FT2 and Super Tacks, that are attached directly to the boot.
NHL players wearing CCM Ribcor skates: Sidney Crosby (PIT), Matt Duchene (NSH), John Tavares (TOR), Carl Hagelin (WSH), Nathan MacKinnon (COL).
Nathan MacKinnon of the Colorado Avalanche carries the puck wearing his CCM JetSpeed FT2 skates. Photo credit: USA Today Sports.
CCM has an incredibly fast turnover time with their sticks, meaning they usually release an updated version of each one of their stick lines every year. As of October 2019, the top-of-the-line sticks in each family are as follows: JetSpeed FT2, Super Tacks AS2, and Ribcor Trigger3 PMT.
CCM JetSpeed sticks step away from the custom kick point found in their predecessors, such as the RBZ, RBZ Stage 2, Superfast, Speedburner, Revolution, and FT1. Instead of having the stick's shaft flex wherever the lower hand is placed when shooting or passing, the JetSpeed now uses a hybrid kick point. This kick point creates a power hinge effect that allows the player to fully load the shaft without it twisting. This will result in hard, accurate shots and crisp passes time and time again.
In terms of kick point and shooting, the JetSpeed stick line is most similar to the Bauer Nexus stick family. However, players who liked Bauer's Vapor APX2 stick will absolutely love the CCM JetSpeed FT2 stick.
NHL players using a CCM JetSpeed FT2 stick: Artemi Panarin (NYR), Brock Boeser (VAN), Cam Atkinson (CBJ), John Tavares (TOR), Robert Thomas (STL)
Robert Thomas of the St. Louis Blues waits to pass to a teammate with his CCM JetSpeed FT2 stick. Photo courtesy Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports.
The Super Tacks AS2 stick is considered to be CCM's true all-in-one stick. Trusted Tacks performance has been taken to the next level with its two distinctive loading zones. It allows for maximum loading on both wrist and slap shots due to the different stiffness zones. The ACU2 blade is even stiffer than the Aculite blade from the Super Tacks and the durability of the shaft has been increased, thanks to Sigmatex Carbon Fiber. The Super Tacks AS2 is a stick you can rely on no matter what the game situation.
The Tacks line features a mid-kick point with great puck feel which makes it ideal for heavy and precise slap shots, accurate saucer passes and incredible stick handling. It is also perfect for players who are looking for a durable stick that will be put to the test game after game. CCM Tacks sticks are most similar to Bauer's Supreme stick line.
NHL players using a CCM Super Tacks AS2 stick: Conor Sheary (BUF), Jake Gardiner (CAR), Roope Hintz (DAL), Filip Forsberg (NSH).
Conor Sheary of the Buffalo Sabres prepares for a game holding his CCM Super Tacks stick. Photo Credit Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers.
The CCM Ribcor Trigger3D PMT brings players a low-kick point with amazing puck feel, thanks to the Ascent 3 blade. This blade has a soft heel for puck handling and a super stiff toe for shooting power. Then, the stick is reinforced with Sigmatex Carbon Fiber for ultimate durability. Therefore, the CCM Ribcor line is designed for players who like to stick handle through traffic and snipe one home with a lightning-fast release.
If you have been looking to replace that Bauer Vapor stick for a while, a stick from the CCM Ribcor line would be a great place to start.
NHL players using a CCM Ribcor Trigger3D PMT: Vladimir Tarasenko (STL), Matt Duchene (NSH), Sidney Crosby (PIT), Nathan MacKinnon (COL).
Nathan MacKinnon searches for the puck with his CCM Ribcor stick. Photo credit Matthew Stockman, Getty Images.
CCM does not have a Ribcor gloves, pants, or protective line, so from here on out, we will just be comparing the JetSpeed and Tacks lines.
CCM JetSpeed gloves have a tapered fit, meaning they are more snug around the fingers and backhand for improved protection and have a looser fit around the wrist for better wrist mobility when stickhandling. JetSpeed gloves fit most comparably to Bauer's Vapor glove line.
CCM's Tacks gloves come in two different fit types - anatomical and classic. The anatomical fit style, found on the Super Tacks AS1, 9080, 9060 and 9040 models, has a close-to-the-hand fit all throughout the glove. This fit type provides a great level of protection while sacrificing some wrist mobility and fits closely like a Bauer Supreme glove.
The classic four-roll style has a wide, roomy fit from the wrist down to the fingers. Classic style gloves are not snug at all and feature a shorter cuff to provide maximum wrist mobility. The extra room in the gloves makes the hands and wrists a little more exposed, but the mobility is unmatched. Tacks 4-Roll gloves are most comparable to Bauer Nexus gloves.
JetSpeed (Formerly QuickLite & RBZ)
CCM JetSpeed pants (the next generation of QuickLite and RBZ pants) are a more traditional fitting pant, meaning the legs are straight, have a more high volume fit and offer a great amount of protection. JetSpeed pants are known to sit a little higher above the knees, but the higher end pants in the line all have a zipper along the waist to give taller players a 1" length extension option. This extension is also ideal for those who like a longer fitting pant.
In comparison to Bauer, CCM JetSpeed pants fit similar to Nexus pants.
CCM Tacks pants have a very similar fit to the JetSpeed pants, but they have a lot more foam (D3O specifically - described below in the Tacks Protective section) throughout the legs and hips. This makes them geared primarily towards defensemen who block a lot of shots or forwards who like to screen the goalie and look for those rebound goals.
Like the JetSpeed pants, the CCM Super Tacks AS1, 9080 and 9040 pant models also have a 1" length extension option.
CCM's JetSpeed protective line (the next generation of QuickLite & RBZ protective) brings players a lightweight, low volume and highly mobile line of pads. They use a combination of molded DryFoam technology, which is a foam that absorbs less sweat to keep the player dry and the pads as lightweight as possible.
With its low profile fit, CCM JetSpeed protective gear fits the closest to Bauer's Supreme protective line.
CCM's highly-protective Tacks line offers D3O™ SmartFoam, which changes its rigidity depending on impact intensity. With a soft impact - such as a gentle bump into another player - the pads will stay soft and flexible. With a hard impact - such as a slash or blocked shot - the pads will harden on impact and quickly return to its flexible state.
In regards to fit, Tacks pads have an unhibiting anatomical fit, like Bauer Supreme pads, where the pads will move with the player without inhibiting motion, but are extremely protective like Bauer Nexus.
If you are in the market for the protection of Bauer Nexus pads but with a little less bulk, then look for protective pads in the CCM Tacks family.
In conclusion, each type of pad, stick, and skate is designed for a specific playing and shooting style. When shopping for new CCM gear, the fit type should just be the starting point for your research.
Every level of product in the same CCM family will have the same fit type, but will just have different features. For example, the mid-range JetSpeed XTRA Pro skates will be a little heavier than the top-of-the-line JetSpeed FT2 model and won't have features like a full composite boot or HyperGlide steel runners.
You can find all of the items above in our New Jersey and New York xHockeyProducts Pro Shops and online at DiscountHockey.com. Thanks for reading and we'll see you on the ice!