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Author Topic: 1 Yr Experience With Sparx Skate Sharpener  (Read 5621 times)

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1 Yr Experience With Sparx Skate Sharpener
Topic: April 01, 2019, 08:06:06 AM


It's slightly shy of 1 full year with the skate sharpener.

Last May we bought the machine after careful consideration reading reviews and making contact with Sparx directly for more detailed information. We knew of one other family who had the machine and they had nothing but good things to say about their experience.

Our boys used the 7/16" radius wheel, they sharpened their skates a total of 102 times over the course of their season. That's 102 sharpenings combined. We were skeptical at first as I read several different reviews, many of which were in support of, while there seemed to be quite a few against as well. Those of whom were against seemed to be more of the traditionalist who will only have their skates sharpened with a stone. Additionally, a good chunk of those against were also skate shop owners who are completely against personal skate sharpening machines because it takes revenue away from them. I get that and completely understand their point.

With that said the machine has paid for itself over the course of the season and then some. Yes one grinding wheel lasted the entire season. All of the grinding wheels are something like $57 a piece but if you take into consideration the cost of getting skates sharpened in a shop versus doing it yourself after it's paid off, you will be saving a lot of money.
 
The machine is small and sits on a bench in the basement. Both boys have no problem sharpening their skates on their own, 13 and 15 yrs old respectively. Knock on wood, we haven't had a single problem with the machine, including cleaning, and switching out grinding wheels.

If you've been thinking about buying your own sharpening machine, I absolutely recommend Sparx. It's simple to use and their support staff is great, they answered every question I had about grinding wheels on two separate occasions, same day.

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Reply #1:
 April 01, 2019, 08:51:48 AM
Curious on why they needed so many sharpenings. That's over once a week.  Does the machine not sharpen as good as a regular machine?  We usually don't need a sharpening for at least 3 weeks after the last.

Thanks
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Reply #2:
 April 01, 2019, 09:08:09 AM
They were skating straight through the summer. That was 9 months on one wheel. Both played club and school and skated at least 5 of 7 days of the week between practice and games. They both sharpened every 3-4 skates, give or take.
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Reply #3:
 April 01, 2019, 10:28:49 AM
We have been using ours since Sept. 2016.

Love the machine and the sharpening. We sharpen every 4-5 hours of ice time, so that his edges are always razor sharp.

The machine has allowed us to experiment with several different radius hollows. We even ran with the flat bottom radius for two season before switching back to a standard radius.
 
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Reply #4:
 April 01, 2019, 10:38:42 AM
I have a 1/2" FB Fire but was reluctant to have them try it out during the season. Going to give that a shot over the off season. Now that they're done club they have a lot more opportunity to try a different profile.
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Reply #5:
 April 01, 2019, 10:56:08 AM
The one thing I learned with the flat bottom profile was that the radius used will feel about one radius higher on the edges. We ended up using the 3/8" Fire Radius (coming from a normal 1/2" regular radius). We tried the 1/2" Fire Radius first, but my son said the edges didn't hold as well into sharp turns and stops.

The frequency of the sharpening has increased as we noticed that the edges would loose their sharpness quicker. We ended up sharpening the skates every 3-hours of ice time and that maintained the optimal performance of the flat bottom cut.
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Reply #6:
 April 01, 2019, 11:18:54 AM
Funny, we had a team from Ukraine here some years ago, and they all had the worst gear, entry level bauer plastic skates, probably never sharpened the one month they were here in North America! They beat AYHL Tier 1 top level teams by scores of 26-1, and 18-1! You folks don't have a clue!
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Reply #7:
 April 01, 2019, 12:27:41 PM
The one thing I learned with the flat bottom profile was that the radius used will feel about one radius higher on the edges. We ended up using the 3/8" Fire Radius (coming from a normal 1/2" regular radius). We tried the 1/2" Fire Radius first, but my son said the edges didn't hold as well into sharp turns and stops.

The frequency of the sharpening has increased as we noticed that the edges would loose their sharpness quicker. We ended up sharpening the skates every 3-hours of ice time and that maintained the optimal performance of the flat bottom cut.

Ours like the bite from the 7/16 radius but felt they weren't getting the speed. So, trying something different, if they don't like it, no biggy, they stick with what they know.
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Reply #8:
 April 01, 2019, 12:39:59 PM
My son is on 1/2 FBV fire ring. It's more of a profile than a standard radius hollow. It forces the player to use his edges more proactively. It's not for everybody and takes some time to adjust. He said when he started using it he felt like his blades had no edge at all.
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Reply #9:
 April 01, 2019, 02:45:47 PM
Sparx is great we got it right after it was released from kick starter. My little bender always has sharp edges. Never have to run out for special trips just to get skates sharpened.
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