New Product Offerings At ASR

Same as it ever was at the fall trade show in San Diego.

The aftermath. No, it’s not another Osiris tour across the U.S. It’s the few days following the annual fall ASR Trade Expo in San Diego, when the flood of information and imagery begin to make sense. During the circus it was difficult to digest what I saw, considering the many distractions all around. Now that I’m back in the office, I can browse the catalogs and refresh my memory as to what was new and interesting at this particular show. So let’s get started.

Footwear

Something is always happening with the ever-expanding shoe market. With skate-style shoes appealing to mainstream consumers now more than ever, shoe brands are un-teching their lines, adding louder, brighter colorways, and offering simple, basic models with heavy stylistic flavor to complement their lines of decked-out tech shoes.

Along with some new models for Spring 2001, Adio Footwear is offering new pro models from Bam Margera, Kris Markovich, and Danny Montoya. New to the line are the Nexus, Quatra, and Supra. The name says it all for the Supra; just about every technical feature possible was utilized: Dio-flex full-length air unit, plenty of mesh, and elevated TPR (thermo-plastic rubber) for additional ollie-abrasion protection, as well as a red colorway.

DC Shoe Co. introduced quite a few new models to their product offering, probably more than any other company. Danny Way and Colin McKay both have new signature models, the Diablo and Tekron, respectively. Other new models include the Epoch, Avant, Eclipse, Digital, Analog, Dash, and Metric. On its toe cap, the Digital utilizes Force-04, a new high-abrasion-resistant material. The Dash is making a statement to the fashion-savvy customer, with simple styling in basic colorways. Expect to see some new color combinations on the Endeavour¿Rob Dyrdek’s shoe, the Williams, and the Kalis. Definitely don’t miss out on the red Kalis.

If you haven’t taken notice of DVS, you’ll soon know them well¿DVS’ newest team addition is Kerry Getz, and the company debuted models from Steve Berra and Keith Hufnagel. The Huf features the new Drop In Midsole (DIM) system. The DIM system replaces the conventional midsole unit with a removable polyurethane insole, which brings the foot closer to the board and allows more control and increased flexibility. The inaugural Berra model utilizes DVS’ proprietary Detech heel cushion and a molded RF (radio-frequency) weld overlayed on a breathable-mesh panel. Also look for the new Chico Brenes model¿the Mayan, and new team models Cass and Reactor.

Sole Technology never ceases to amaze. Each brand under its umbrella debuted pro shoes and new styles. Etnies released Elissa Steamer’s new shoe, along with the Vertex, Simon, Elvir, Scroll, and Metric. The Vertex features all the amenities, like a heel air-cushion and a hidden lacing system, while the Simon is more basic with a suede-and-mesh upper, silithane crash pad, and lace loops.

éS had McCrank’s fresh new pro shoe on display featuring the System O2 heel cushion, a combo synthetic and mesh upper, and recessed lace loops. They also showed Koston’s third pro model to the world, a clean design with minimal seam lines to reduce blow-outs, giving the shoe a Jordanesque style. The K3 utilizes full-grain or nubuck upper with some mesh, a hidden lacing system, and a PU-coated synthetic-rubber toe cap. New to the product offering is the Tribo, a team model featuring a plethora of technical features like a heel air-cushion, a protected lacing system, and plenty of ollie protection.

Emerica produced new pro shoes for Heath Kirchart, Donny Barley, and a new design for Marc Johnson. The evolution from the Johnson 1 to the Johnson 2 includes a heel air-cushion and a high-frequency weld for increased ollie protection on a synthetic nubuck, leather, and breathable-mesh upper. The Barley and rchart were designed with similar technical features, like heel and forefoot air-cushions, protected lacing systems, and synthetic-nubuck and ventilating-mesh uppers. The new Barley shoe even has a tongue pocket to stash your keys.

In its quest to offer girls a comfortable yet functional skate shoe, Gallaz introduced a few new models including a pro model for pro surfer Layne Beachley. The other new models¿Assist, Component, and Oxide¿utilize suede, synthetic, nubuck, full-grain leather, and mesh in varying combiantions for the uppers. Gallaz also introduced a fashionable model, Transit, to its line.

Besides adding a couple new styles to their line, Globe also redesigned Rodney Mullen’s and Gershon Mosley’s models, and debuted Danny Gonzalez’s shoe. Gonzalez’s T1 is styled in three colorways with a combination synthetic and mesh upper and Globe’s Nitrolite Optima outsole. Mosley worked closely with the shoe designers to come up with a new outsole featured on his redesign. The same outsole is also used on the Transporter, a new model for Spring 2001 that makes use of a high-frequency weld overlayed on a mesh panel in the ollie area.

Hawk Footwear added a few new styles into their line, from the un-tech TH101 to the new Hawk Pro V4, which features sonic-welded embossed support ribs over a mesh panel, sonic-welded eyelets, Lycra heel cushion, and an overall lightweight design. The Diolight is a new model to the line featuring a hidden lacing system, heel air-bag cushion, and simple styling. Other new models include the Exocet and Vector, each available in four colorways.

Lakai has increased their product line to include six new models. Along with adding new colorways to the existing line, Lakai incorporated some new materials into their shoes. Most notable is the pebble-grain leather utilized on the fashionable Staple and the Howard. The Flow and Soty have a bicolored mesh incorporated in the upper for increased breathability and visual appeasement. Other new models introduced include the Fade, Forum, and Code¿each available in multiple colorways.

Osiris showcased something new for them, integrating suede on their uppers in addition to synthetic nubuck. New for Spring 2001 is another Mathias Ringstrom shoe, Grimz, to complement his previous pro shoe, Targa, and team model Omni. Most of the previous models offered from the holiday catalog are carrying over with new color schemes available.

Vans still remains focused on the ‘core market with its line of pro shoes. Recently, the Rowley has climbed its way to the top as its best-selling pro skate shoe. Look for new color schemes to ship early 2001. The Fowl, Vans other un-tech offering is the Ethan Fowler pro shoe and is designed with simplicity in mind. If you’re looking for technical features, look no further than the Cab 7.

Introducing new pro models was a consistent theme throughout the shoe-manufacturing arena. Reef came to the show with four new designs, including a pro model for Jaya Bonderov. Vita also increased its product offering with the release of three new team models and a pro shoe for Reese Forbes.

There were many consistencies and trends among the shoe makers. In addition to louder and brighter colorways, kids’ shoes are now being offered by just about everybody, down to kids’ size ten for most. The next generation is on their way.

Wood Planks

Not too much was happening in the board arena. Dwindle said goodbye to A-Team and launched Enjoi, a new board brand under the direction of Marc Johnson. It seemed like most everyone else just had graphic updates. Powell is releasing a twenty-fifth-anniversary retro-board series featuring the old skull artwork, including the original Alan Gelfand “Ollie” board in an old-school square-tail shape, and a modern 7.625-inch model. Brigade debuted Paul Machnau’s pro model.

On the construction front, NHS developed PowerPlyXS for its new Contraption-series and pro-series decks. PowerPlyXS uses slightly thicker veneers and a slight increase in the concave to help with stiffness. Although PowerPlyXS is not quite as thick as the original PowerPly Santa Cruz introduced in 1997, it’s a middle-of-the-road compromise.

Canada’s Premium Wood previewed its new vertical-grain-core deck. It features wide strips of vertical-grain maple, resembling snowboard cores, sandwiched by standard veneers on the top and bottom.

Atlas Distribution developed Bluecore construction for its Rhythm and Planet Earth brands. Bluecore is a five-ply construction with a thick veneer sandwiched between four thinner veneers. The reduction in the number of veneers actually uses less glue, therefore reducing the overall weight of the decks.

Chapman Skateboards debuted their line of pro decks featuring the Performance Tip System. The Performance Tip System was developed to increase board function and life through the replacement of the space-age-composite-plastic tips.

Darkstar Wood debuted its new series of pro decks at the Dwindle Distribution booth. New pro models from Chet Thomas and Ryan Kenreich complement the line of team models.

Urethane

Ricta Wheel Dynamics is getting ready to ship to retailers. The new urethane company is offering dual-durometer wheels with the skaters’ names and wheel sizes embossed on the cores, and “Ricta” molded into the tire sidewall. Ricta will also have a series of non-core wheels to complement the line.

Atlas Distribution has a consistent theme running throughout its hardgoods. Unlike its decks, the Bluecore wheel is a dual-durometer with a blue inner core. The inner core acts to reduce shock and prevent the urethane from flat-spotting and chipping.

Darkstar Wheels has expanded its product offering quite a bit. New pro wheels from Chad Fernandez, Jayme Fortune, Ronnie Bertino, Frank Hirata, James Craig, Jerry Hsu, Rodney Mullen, and Adam McNatt are available along with a new limited-edition dual-durometer wheel.

Monster Trucks

The greatest expansion in a single category of hardgoods over the past year was probably in truck manufacturing. Giant Distribution is ready to ship the new Destroyer, endorsed by Mike Vallely, but wasn’t ready to show the highly secretive Monster truck headlined by Jamie Thomas.

Grind King has not only increased the number of graphics available for its custom-series truck, but is also working on a new type of truck that will ship around Halloween. The Creeper truck looks like no other, with a bat-wing hanger and skull-embossed baseplate. It’s hard to describe, so you’ll just have to wait and see it for yourself. Grind King has also created a 4.25-inch version of its custom series truck to complement its line of Termite boards for the smaller generation.

The designers at Orion played in the sand at their foundry and created the SP-1 truck. This new model, taking the place of the original Orion truck, is a more robust design with a bit taller geometry than the Ultimate to cater to all types of skating.

Rodney Mullen has been spending lots of time over at the foundry perfecting the new Tensor truck. It’s a beefier version of the original, with a greater grinding surface and a reinforced baseplate; the truck still features the slider piece and low-profile kingpin. Tensor has accessorized by offering its unique bushings separately and even developed a new skate tool shaped like a mini power drill.

Everything Else

One item I saw in just about every hardgoods booth was the hard baseball hats that once featured the color schemes and logos of your favorite Major League Baseball team. But these hats now feature the graphics of your favorite skate companies. They are not certified, but are lightly padded and will probably be received by the kids because they don’t look or fit like your normal helmet.

Tum Yetonew Contraption-series and pro-series decks. PowerPlyXS uses slightly thicker veneers and a slight increase in the concave to help with stiffness. Although PowerPlyXS is not quite as thick as the original PowerPly Santa Cruz introduced in 1997, it’s a middle-of-the-road compromise.

Canada’s Premium Wood previewed its new vertical-grain-core deck. It features wide strips of vertical-grain maple, resembling snowboard cores, sandwiched by standard veneers on the top and bottom.

Atlas Distribution developed Bluecore construction for its Rhythm and Planet Earth brands. Bluecore is a five-ply construction with a thick veneer sandwiched between four thinner veneers. The reduction in the number of veneers actually uses less glue, therefore reducing the overall weight of the decks.

Chapman Skateboards debuted their line of pro decks featuring the Performance Tip System. The Performance Tip System was developed to increase board function and life through the replacement of the space-age-composite-plastic tips.

Darkstar Wood debuted its new series of pro decks at the Dwindle Distribution booth. New pro models from Chet Thomas and Ryan Kenreich complement the line of team models.

Urethane

Ricta Wheel Dynamics is getting ready to ship to retailers. The new urethane company is offering dual-durometer wheels with the skaters’ names and wheel sizes embossed on the cores, and “Ricta” molded into the tire sidewall. Ricta will also have a series of non-core wheels to complement the line.

Atlas Distribution has a consistent theme running throughout its hardgoods. Unlike its decks, the Bluecore wheel is a dual-durometer with a blue inner core. The inner core acts to reduce shock and prevent the urethane from flat-spotting and chipping.

Darkstar Wheels has expanded its product offering quite a bit. New pro wheels from Chad Fernandez, Jayme Fortune, Ronnie Bertino, Frank Hirata, James Craig, Jerry Hsu, Rodney Mullen, and Adam McNatt are available along with a new limited-edition dual-durometer wheel.

Monster Trucks

The greatest expansion in a single category of hardgoods over the past year was probably in truck manufacturing. Giant Distribution is ready to ship the new Destroyer, endorsed by Mike Vallely, but wasn’t ready to show the highly secretive Monster truck headlined by Jamie Thomas.

Grind King has not only increased the number of graphics available for its custom-series truck, but is also working on a new type of truck that will ship around Halloween. The Creeper truck looks like no other, with a bat-wing hanger and skull-embossed baseplate. It’s hard to describe, so you’ll just have to wait and see it for yourself. Grind King has also created a 4.25-inch version of its custom series truck to complement its line of Termite boards for the smaller generation.

The designers at Orion played in the sand at their foundry and created the SP-1 truck. This new model, taking the place of the original Orion truck, is a more robust design with a bit taller geometry than the Ultimate to cater to all types of skating.

Rodney Mullen has been spending lots of time over at the foundry perfecting the new Tensor truck. It’s a beefier version of the original, with a greater grinding surface and a reinforced baseplate; the truck still features the slider piece and low-profile kingpin. Tensor has accessorized by offering its unique bushings separately and even developed a new skate tool shaped like a mini power drill.

Everything Else

One item I saw in just about every hardgoods booth was the hard baseball hats that once featured the color schemes and logos of your favorite Major League Baseball team. But these hats now feature the graphics of your favorite skate companies. They are not certified, but are lightly padded and will probably be received by the kids because they don’t look or fit like your normal helmet.

Tum Yeto had a million new products, but what caught my eye was the Toy Machine Transmissionator poseable figurine. In the future be on the lookout for more Ed Templeton-influenced figurines.

Packaging products was a major issue with some companies. Dwindle’s Speed Demons are now offered in a clear dispensing device similar to a familiar candy dispenser. And Ghetto Child is packaging some of their wheels in a mini ghetto blaster. Who inspired that?

If you’re reading through this article and you didn’t go the ASR show in San Diego, it may seem like you missed a lot. Don’t fret. Just call your company contacts and browse their catalogs. You really didn’t miss that much.Yeto had a million new products, but what caught my eye was the Toy Machine Transmissionator poseable figurine. In the future be on the lookout for more Ed Templeton-influenced figurines.

Packaging products was a major issue with some companies. Dwindle’s Speed Demons are now offered in a clear dispensing device similar to a familiar candy dispenser. And Ghetto Child is packaging some of their wheels in a mini ghetto blaster. Who inspired that?

If you’re reading through this article and you didn’t go the ASR show in San Diego, it may seem like you missed a lot. Don’t fret. Just call your company contacts and browse their catalogs. You really didn’t miss that much.

CATEGORIZED: News