Sharpening - accuracy of the equipment

Discussion in 'Moves In The Field' started by treesprite, May 22, 2014.

  1. treesprite

    treesprite New Member

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    It suddenly occurred to me that no matter how skilled someone is at sharpening, if the equipment is not accurate or consistent, the sharpening job might not be. So you might want to find out what equipment your sharpener is using. I happened to notice from sharpening dozens of pairs of rental skates with the old equipment the rink uses, that the thingamajiggy sometimes moves very slightly (though unintended) which is enough to make a difference on the ice. It's fine for sharpening rentals and recreational skates, but I don;t want my skates sharpened on it no matter how good of a sharpener someone is.
  2. J-Ro

    J-Ro Member

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    The equipment is a huge factor in the quality of the sharpening. The Blademaster (made in Canada) is by far the best. Those other kinds where they rig the blade to this holder on a track are just not going to line up correctly. I got my husband--a lifelong machinist by trade--to sharpen skates because everyone else was doing a lousy job. He knows metal and how to cut it. We researched sharpening machines and talked to a lot of skate sharpeners. The Blademaster stood out so we invested in a brand-new machine. Any other machine has more of a margin of error despite any claims to the contrary.
  3. treesprite

    treesprite New Member

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    The equipment I'm talking about is Blademaster equipment.
  4. J-Ro

    J-Ro Member

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    There are different ways to use the equipment. There are also different grit levels on the grinding wheels for different types of skating. There is less of a margin of error on the Blademaster machine than on that one that has the skate holder on a bar away from the machine. Either way, both machines require a skilled person doing the sharpening. My husband, being a machinist who cuts metal for a living, uses machinist's tricks to ensure that the edges are even. One of them is simple: he colors the bottom of the blade with permanent marker; do a tiny, tiny test to see if the marker is ground off evenly. If it isn't, then he makes adjustments to the machine accordingly. Another problem that results in less-than-ideal sharpenings: bent blades. Many blades are mounted in a way that has caused a slight bend in the blade. If the blade is bent, there is no way it can be properly sharpened until it is removed, straightened, and re-mounted.
  5. treesprite

    treesprite New Member

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    I guess I am stuck with it then. I sharpen rental skates at the rink where I work, and had to sharpen a couple customer skates (they were cheap skates - I'm not touching good ones). I'm just REALLY, REALLY careful when I dress the wheel so there isn't that slight movement when doing it that will affect accuracy; problem is, I doubt everyone is being that careful. I would like to take a drive out to Mike Cunningham, which I guess is about 40-50 minutes away, but my schedule is nuts. Right now my blades are so dull that my edge is slipping.