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Dołączył(a): 7 lut 2011, o 15:54
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Rollerblade Metroblade

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This year, on the market will appear the new Rollerblade skate for freeskate, which as a first one doesn?t base it?s construction, as it was till now, on a plastic shell, but ? this time ? on a composite shell covered with soft boot.
Thereby, Rollerblade company joins the rest of leading skates producers, that manufactures skates with soft boot and composite shell.
For the record, the analogue concept in the Powerslide account is all-purpose Ultron skate, that works well both in slalom, and in freeskate.
Seba?s got SX model ? also versatile, but in the other way. In this case it?s universality is based on UFS, that allows you to attach an optional grind plate under the boot and thereby converse the skate to an aggressive skate.
In this group we also have K2, that from the beginning produced skates with soft shell. We have here Midtown and Uptown models. Also in UFS, although a boot?s construction allows in this case to grind without making any modifications.
Rollerblade Metroblade has a very similar construction to Powerslide Ultron (although in this case they didn?t use a carbon). In both skates a shell made of plastic material is a base for a soft shell. Both of them have also SSM frame mounting system. The basic difference is, that Metroblades are equipped with stiff, solid, carbon base.

DESIGN
Regarding the appearance, Rollerblade company decided to construct the boot in some other way than the competition. This skate definitely stands out against other slalom and freeskate models. It resembles trekking boots ? mostly because of the material color, way of sewing and some details. This effect is intensified by total lack of buckles ? so characteristic for the most freeskate skates. In this case we only have two Velcros and laces, which makes this skate even more similar to a boot.
You can see, that in case of this product constructors decided to go beyond the idea of a typical ?plastic? roller-skate, that majority of people associates with fun or sport.
Subdued colors and outside appearance assimilating Metroblade to boots makes this skate more serious and resembles such aggressive skates as USD Carbons, that were inspired by Jordan boots. Was it a right move? We shall see in this season.

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SKATE?S CONSTRUCTION
Differently than in others skates producers, Rollerblade doesn?t hide construction?s and material?s specifics of this model and even ?shows off? with its technology, which I find a very smart move. For some time in the network there?s a graphic available, presenting, how this skate is build and with what kinds of materials.
As I wrote in the beginning, the boot is made of soft skin-imitating material. For reinforcement, boot?s edges are coat with a stripe of a black rubber, that purpose is to extend the skate?s suitability for use.
In the front, at the external side of both skates there are screws in a carbon base. Producers gave us an option to mount there protective plastic overlays, that partly would overlap the boot in its upper part.
The skate is built in the upper part of composite shell ? made of plastic material, while the base is made of carbon. Carbon base is in both models the same. It looks really reliably. The part, where the frame contacts with the boot, is additionally thickened for boot?s better stiffness in this area. In Rollerblade the base is visually the most solid. Carbon element is definitely most nicely made, when you compare it with competition products.
Velcro?s fasteners are made of the same material as the surface layer of whole boot. The upper Velcro goes through the loop sewed to the tongue of the boot, what additionally stabilizes both parts of the skate.
Metroblade models differ most of all in ?chassis?(frame, wheels, bearings) and color.
For incoming season Rollerblade gives us two models.
First one ? Metroblade C Black ? a bit cheaper from another one, equipped with HotRod 243 mm frame (well-known from RB Twisters), standard 80 mm/85 A wheels and SG9 bearings.
Second model ? Metroblade GM ? it?s the next PRO skate from famous French freeskate rider. This model will be available in brown, it?s equipped with the other frame, Hydrogen 80 mm/85 A wheels and ILQ9 bearings.

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SKATING
I got these skates from polish distributor long before they entered the market. The disadvantage of this fact was, that it was a sample skate. It means, that it was available only in one size ? unfortunately for me ? 42.
While a year ago I was able to fit in sample Twisters PRO sized 42,5 ? and I successfully skate in them ? this time, I couldn?t, in no way, fit into 42 Metroblades, so I would be able to comfortably skate in them? However, it was sufficiently well to spent some hours inside those skates (in domestic conditions), so I could find something about them out.
The first impression? Skate is pretty light and tightly-fitting (skipping the fact, that it wasn?t long enough for my foot). In width, in instep or in the upper part it fits very good to the leg. There?s no spare loose or uncontrollable movement of heel.

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It shouldn?t be surprising, because this is a linerless skate and those kinds of constructions are always better-fitting in comparison with typical shell with liner. The boot is definitely smaller than skates with plastic shells. Comparing Metroblade with other constructions like this one (e.g. Seba SX) ? it has a lot narrower boot with significantly lower instep and also is lower in the front part.
Even before fastening and tying, the skate ensured stability in the ankle, the calf wasn?t moving side to side. Boot?s construction for sure classifies as one of the stiffest.
As regards the cuff, there?s no additional element with a movable joint, that would be responsible for stiffening the foot in the upper part ? but the construction doesn?t require such an element. As I wrote before, the boot maintains proper stiffness and stabilization in this spot, not to mention after fastening and tying laces. Despite that, spontaneous bending forward and backwards is preserved and you can do it freely, without any difficulty. The excision in the back of the boot is really deep and, additionally, the cuff itself is really low.
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The boot?s interior is made of pleasant-to-the-touch material, the same, that they used in Twister?s PRO 2015 liner in the upper part of a cuff. There?s a lot of thick sponge in the upper part, except that, the liner inside is nicely profiled in spots under the heel and around Achilles tendon.
Absorber? like an absorber in SSM skates ? which means ? poor. The producer decided to put in here a standard, thin insole with an additional thin soft sponge layer under a heel. So, under the heel there?s, simply speaking, uncomfortably hard.
Summarizing, from my impressions after just fitting the skate, Metroblade seems to be a nice, well-designed product. The skate is light, stiff, made of appropriate materials. It?s rather small and it stands out with its unusual design, recalling usual boots.
However, the skate couldn?t avoid having some disadvantages. Metal elements, Velcros go through, are attached to the boot permanently. In the upper part they are attached with a rivet, in the lower they?re sutured directly to the outside material. Of course, Velcros themselves you can easily take out from the boot, but what if their attachments would be damaged or scuffed? It would be really hard to change them? If it?d be necessary, naturally.

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