Only a couple of months after releasing their new and improved Gen4 shafts, Epoch is now getting set to also release their Gen5 shafts onto the market. The Gen4 shafts were lighter than the Gen3 shafts, and had a slightly different look. The Gen5 shafts take things a bit further, and offer Reload Technology that helps the shaft snap back into shape. Epoch is an LAS partner, and will be shipping us shafts to check out ourselves shortly. For now you can find a lot more info on the new Gen5 products from Epoch on their website.
Even though we haven’t tried them yet, we got to speak to someone who HAS tried the new Gen5 shafts, and since he’s a pro, and a guy we know well, we tend to trust his opinion. Joe Vitale is the guy bombing away in the video above, and while he’s not an Epoch employee, he has been testing some of their products. So here it is, a firsthand account of the Gen5 Shaft from Epoch Lacrosse, from someone on the inside:
What’s up LaxAllStars? Today I am going to talk to you about the upcoming release of the new Epoch Lacrosse Gen5 Dragonfly Shafts. I was fortunate enough to be brought out to Minnesota to do some video footage and some shooting with the new Gen5 stuff recently. James Miceli, like myself, is an Adelphi alumni (go Panthers!) and he had reached out to my girlfriend and myself about flying out to Minnesota to test out the new stuff. Of course I said yes, as I would be crazy to turn that offer down.
I have used the Gen3 and Gen4 shafts in the past and I really did like the product. It wasn’t too heavy, had a nice texture to it, and I really enjoyed the flex aspect of it. However, as a big powerful shooter, I almost felt like when I shot, the shaft had too much flex for me. Truthfully, I wasn’t sure what to expect with the new Gen5 series. James and Ryan (Hurley) kept talking to me about them being lighter, having a new feel, and a new technology called “Reload”, which basically means that after the shaft flexed, it is sent it back to its normal state.
This is where it got interesting.
Immediately upon seeing the shaft I fell in love with it. It was noticeably lighter then the Gen4, it’s got a smokey black carbon fiber look to it, and a smooth finish. Now let me talk about the finish real quick. I shoot A LOT, and by a lot I mean I have my stick in my hands for over 3 hours a day. Most of the time this is without gloves so from time to time I do get blisters, which is never fun. The new smooth finish (no longer that sandpaper feel) is amazing. It’s not a slippery smooth metal or rubber feel but a nice comfortable feeling that I wouldn’t mind shooting with for hours on end without gloves.
I told James I wanted to experience the full flex and reload technology so I had him give me a c30 9 flex(which is the highest I believe and the smoothest feel on the edges). I thought it would be too much flex for me but I wanted to test it out for myself. It turns out I learned I was wrong after just the first shot, and I never wanted to shoot again with a metal shaft. Not only do you feel the flex but you feel the Reload, and it’s almost like a snap back into place, which in essence, feels like it’s shooting the ball out harder, and more accurate. I immediately felt a huge difference in shooting. I am almost positive it made me more accurate.
The reload technology, in my own expert opinion (I have had over 50 shaft combos in my life, so yes I’m an expert haha) is revolutionary. I’m not just talking about for shooting, but even passing; everything just felt quicker and more snappy. It created a feeling of having a decent amount of whip without having to exaggerate a pocket like you would with a metal shaft. Epoch has really created the best shaft that I have ever used.
The Gen5 is lightweight, extremely durable, and I am confident when I say it improves speed, power, and accuracy. What else could you ask for?
When I returned home to Long Island and headed to Turf Island to get some shots in, I immediately felt like I was missing something. I had my regular set up back, which is an Evo 3 on a Diamond, because I could not carry any Gen 5s onto the plane. This is when I truly noticed that I missed the flex, and for the first time in my life I actually cared what shaft I was shooting with… and I very much disliked that the one I was using was metal. So, like you fellow players and readers here on LaxAllstars, I will be patiently waiting for my Gen 5s to come in (which are in the mail as we speak) and once they do I will be retiring the metal for good.
As was said above, we’re excited to try the new Gen5 shafts out… and Joe Vitale’s endorsement only reinforced it! Once we get some of these bad boys in, we’ll give them a thorough Gear Review, and fill you in a little further. So far, it’s looking like a bright start though for the Epoch Gen5.