Siwy of www.fsknews.pl sent us a link to this review he put together for the USD Carbon III Powerblading skate. The original news item can be viewed in Polish here: http://freeskatenews.pl/showthread.php?tid=711 Full gallery of images and details can be found at the end of the post.
USD Carbon III PB – mini review
The following text and photos were courtesy of Powerslide Poland, thank you for providing the equipment for this review.
First, some history.
This skate’s ancestor was originally the Deshi Carbon. This boot then began to be produced under the USD brand, known as the USD Carbon. Through all the USD Carbons, the presence of Carbon in the USD models has undergone major changes, always improving the skate experience in these skates. The latest, very important change was the use of a separate cuff (upper), which erased the problems with excessive flexibility in the ankle area and above.
The USD Carbon model reviewed here is the USD Carbon 3 PB which differs in some details from previous models of Carbon aggressive skates.
With the USD Carbon we are already dealing with something different. The skate does not have any plastic in its shell, unlike most most other skates.
The Carbon skeleton is made of fiberglass and carbon fiber, covered with soft skin, which consists of leather and synthetic materials.
The use of such materials significantly reduces the weight of the boot, making it one of the lightest skates currently manufactured in the market.
In size 44, the weight of one boot including UFS bolts is only 1209 grams.
The following photograph is of the whole setup using the USD Carbon 3 PB, KizerArrow frames and 4x80mm Matter FSK wheels.
The interior (liner).
The Carbon PB does not have a traditional removable liner, it has been integrated into the overall design so that the skate reduces the mass of the boot.
An additional advantage of this solution is a better “feel” on the roll, control and fit.
The interior is a bit different than the traditional thick liner to which I am used to.
Going from the highest point:
The sponge contained in the cuff is quite thick and springy, but also quite hard.
The surroundings are a suitably contoured heel, with a recess. The result is your ankle “sitting” in its place and not sliding about freely.
This reminds me of the Salomon ST liner, with a very similar contoured interior.
Near the ankle is a thinner layer, and this continues in this way through the area along the feet and toes, where the sponge layer is minimal.
It is worth mentioning that the interior is made of three different materials:
• The upper part of a smooth material, facilitating insertion of the foot.
• Ankle and heel has alternative material to hold your ankle from movement.
• The area along the fingers is made of smooth, velvety material.
The sewing trim is on all parts is very accurate.
All seams are equal with no protruding threads.
Inside surface is smooth and in no place is there any discomfort to the foot.
The top layer is made of soft materials.
Around the tip of the heel and the boot in this model is black leather.
Other elements, white, are made of synthetic material.
By contrast, the heel is left bare, where you can see the Carbon fragment which shows the reason for the price of the skates.
There is also a carry loop at the back, facilitating the transport of the skates.
As for finishing skate materials and details, they are also perfectly done, with no protruding parts or protruding threads.
Besides this, there is a lot of reinforced seams, double stitching, and attention to detail on the skate.
In this model USD abandoned the traditional, separate absorber used on previous Carbons. This has now been replaced by an insoul which in the heel has a thickness of 2cm (at the thinnest point it is about 5mm thick). In addition, the rear part is further strengthened.
Carbon PB differs from the other USD’s as it is equipped with an additional bracket mounted at an angle of 45 degrees.
It is made of aluminum and plastic, and equipped with an integrated cap, designed to protect against possible damage during falls.
The same closure is called “pump”, the buckle is fastened to the tilting aluminum element to the outside as it is in xsjado or RB Fusion.
To release the buckle, just press the plastic piece.
The whole thing is completely removable and is made from three main elements: two bars and a ratchet mechanism, so there will be no problems with the possible replacement of the damaged parts.
For a tight enough hold on a narrow foot four “clicks” is enough.
The buckle does not release by itself while skating.
The upper buckle is the same as that used in previous models for aggressive skating. Made of aluminum, with a spring that causes adhesion to the cuff. The whole closure can be removed by unscrewing the three screws.
Of course, the PB Carbon traditionally has laces.
The cuff in this skate is the same as in the aggressive model. There are protective tabs buckle, receptors and screws.
The earlier models lacked this cuff element, the current Carbon cuff provides optimum support in forward flex.
The soulplate is an essential part of the skate, without it the skate can not be used. It is mounted to the boot with two UFS screws. In size 44, its width is 11-12cm and meets the standards in terms of efficiency when grinding.
The soulplate is designed also as an additional safety feature for the boot, projecting for some distance around it.
Impressions After putting feet inside the skate.
The material seems very strong and resistant to wear and tear.
To confirm this assumption we will have to spend some time testing the skate.
The rigid design of the skate is only up to a certain height, giving the sensation of an open shell.
Such a feeling can also be found in the Remz OS open shell.
With this feeling we obtain a solid skate, with very good fit on the foot.
This has its advantages as it translates into better control and response during jumps and landing.
Laces also play its role here, since the upper part of the shoe is completely soft, with no rigid shell.
Complementing this solid controlled feeling is the 45 degree strap for fast and accurate closure.
Additionally the leg is supported by a well shaped cuff and liner.
I can not objectively assess due to the fact that I have only been able to roll on these skates for a few hours so far, so I leave the decision to potential buyers.
I can only share what I have observed at this time.
I did not feel any discomfort at all. This is quite a good feeling when it comes to brand new skates. Also the fit matched my expectations exactly.
The lining was very comfortable and correct. The shock absorber on the heel seemed very soft compared to the absorbers that come with the RB Fusion, which I’m used to.
The only downside was a noticeable crease in the upper leg, where the foam in the shoe is the thickest, but also fairly rigid.
Allthough the skates are extremely light, you hardly notice this with the addition of a flat 80m setup and an aluminium frame.
The final weight seems similar to that of Xsjado or K2, despite the addition of four 80mm wheels and an aluminum frame.
For my personal opinion I think I would have liked more side protection on the skate, to make sure it has a long life and protection from abrasion.
The original, complete setup with Kizer Arrow frames is definately a top setup with great parts.
No doubt that this is the flagship model for Powerblading