Thursday, December 10, 2015

New Gumball and Superball Stoppers Toe Stops From Grn Mnstr

Revamped Gumball and newly introduced Superball toe stops have arrived, but are they worth trying out?

The original Gumball toe stops were the first stops developed specifically for Roller Derby and they were amazing compared to the other options available; but they had two annoying flaws.

  • They needed to be broken in which usually involved a lot of turn around toe stops on a rough surface; and
  • They wore down rather quickly.

Let's take a look at the new Gumballs.  

The packaging is almost the same as the old style, retail at $20/pair, and they are available in two stem lengths; Standard 30mm and Short 17mm.  However, this is where the similarities end.  Grn Mnstr listened to skaters when developing the revamped Gumball stops, which now feature:

  • More material;
  • Better durability;
  • A pre-molded flat spot for more usable surface area; and 
  • Fancy new multi-colored stems: Blue, Green, Magenta, Red.

When I first received these new toe stops, I was skeptical.  The material felt the same to me as the old ones and I thought I'd have to do a bunch of turn around toe stops to break them in; however, that wasn't the case.  They performed well right out of the package.  

One of my teammates also tried them and had this to say;

"The new ones break in a lot easier! I didn't have to go outside to wear a flat spot, which was nice considering the snow ruined that plan! The transition wasn't weird at all, I played in a game right after putting them on with no issues. I also like the pretty colors!"  -Purrenrage, Rage City Rollergirls

Both the new Gumball and Superball stops come with 4 different colored stems, which are randomly placed in packages so skaters don't know which colors are included until the package is opened.  The stems are unmatched, which makes my OCD twitch a little, but the 12 year old girl in me secretly likes that every package contains two different colored stems.

The Superball toe stops come packaged in an interesting cube box which features illustrations of a caped, roller skate wearing super hero stopping a train and bounding over tall buildings.

There is also a window which shows off the most unique aspect of these stops...they are the first dual durometer (dual hardness) toe stops.  The majority of the Superball Toe Stops is comprised of classic natural Gumball rubber for ultimate grip and traction; however, for better durability, eight slightly harder pods that run through the stop were added.

Dime for Scale (sorry, out of bananas)

The packaging is much larger than any other toe stops I've come across, but after opening the box the reason becomes clear.  Superball toe stops are HUGE!  At 60mm wide (2.36"), these are the largest toe stops I've heard of.  They are 3mm larger than the Big Bloc toe stops and just over half an inch smaller than a regulation size hockey puck.  (see image to the left for scale).

The stops are shaped in a way to prevent wheel bite (when wheels grind against toe stops) and I found this to be essential due to their size.  They also feature hollow stems which makes them lighter than they look (see image to the right).

Grn Mnstr states that this combination of dual compounds and oversized stopping surface insures the best in stopping power and stability, and I must agree.  I am often skating backwards, bracing my teammates as a jammer attempts to break through our wall.  With other toe stops, I would find myself sliding a bit but with these I was able to keep the wall stationary.  The grip and stability really are incredible.  Here is what another teammate of mine thought about them:

"Pros- Super stable & solid and good to go right out of the box.
Cons- Aesthetics. They're comically, almost obscenely large and goofy looking.
Looks aside, I really like them and am looking forward to seeing how they wear."
 -Cybil Shephurt, Rage City Rollergirls
Superball toe stops retail for $32/pair, but considering they all the features they offer and their performance so far, I think they are worth it.

If you are interested in purchasing either of these stops, here are links to the 2N1 Skate Shoppe pages for each of them:


Until we skate again! Shocker