HFBoards

Go Back   HFBoards > General Hockey Discussion > The Rink
The Rink For the not so ready for prime-time players, coaches, referees, and the people that have to live with them. Discuss experiences in local leagues, coaching tips, equipment, and training.

Do those handheld blade sharpening/re-edging tools work?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old
01-28-2011, 01:40 AM
  #26
cptjeff
[insert joke here]
 
cptjeff's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Washington, DC.
Country: United States
Posts: 8,411
vCash: 501
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBLfan View Post
Using it still ruins the evenness on your edges, if your edges are even straight to begin with... which is unlikely considering how many bad sharpeners there are out there. Including a certain mail order "expert" that many rave about.

If you think the likelihood of taking a piece of sandpaper rolled over a cardboard tube, in a little hand-held device with little plastic gears can possibly not unbalance your edges, so be it. I'm sure your Powerbalance bracelet works well too.
The cylinder is wide enough that it tracks straight on the blade. Perhaps if you used a shallow hollow it might wobble back and forth, but if you're deep enough, it stays in consistent contact with both sides of the blade at the same time, and the length keeps it straight. That makes it carve evenly from both sides, unless you're being really careless and applying hugely different forces then it's designed to take. Not to mention the fact that it tightens down on the outside of the blade for tracking as well. Basic physics and a calculation of forces will tell you that much. Powerbalance type stuff is simply utter crap with no real scientific background whatsoever.

Your post really demonstrates something I absolutely hate, but is rather prevalent these days- completely unreasonable cynicism. People just assume everything is a sham, simply because they've seen so many shams, and don't want to believe any evidence that might make them believe otherwise, no matter how convincing it may be. I'm not trying to call you out specifically, but it is something that frustrates me in general.

I sharpen my own skates whenever possible, and am pretty meticulous about them. I always make sure to check 'em for evenness at several points along the blade when I get them done by someone else. Traditionally, that someone else has been one trusted guy at home, or a guy who sharpens them for a NCAA DI team. I know a good edge. And yeah, I use a skatemate, and feel that its use on a worn down edge helps more than it hurts. If you want to give me a good reason other than a claim of 'common sense' and a dismissal of my ability to recognize a good sharpening, I welcome it.

cptjeff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-28-2011, 09:31 AM
  #27
ChiTownHawks
HFBoards Sponsor
 
ChiTownHawks's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Orland Park, IL
Country: United States
Posts: 1,271
vCash: 500
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptjeff View Post
The cylinder is wide enough that it tracks straight on the blade. Perhaps if you used a shallow hollow it might wobble back and forth, but if you're deep enough, it stays in consistent contact with both sides of the blade at the same time, and the length keeps it straight. That makes it carve evenly from both sides, unless you're being really careless and applying hugely different forces then it's designed to take. Not to mention the fact that it tightens down on the outside of the blade for tracking as well. Basic physics and a calculation of forces will tell you that much. Powerbalance type stuff is simply utter crap with no real scientific background whatsoever.

Your post really demonstrates something I absolutely hate, but is rather prevalent these days- completely unreasonable cynicism. People just assume everything is a sham, simply because they've seen so many shams, and don't want to believe any evidence that might make them believe otherwise, no matter how convincing it may be. I'm not trying to call you out specifically, but it is something that frustrates me in general.

I sharpen my own skates whenever possible, and am pretty meticulous about them. I always make sure to check 'em for evenness at several points along the blade when I get them done by someone else. Traditionally, that someone else has been one trusted guy at home, or a guy who sharpens them for a NCAA DI team. I know a good edge. And yeah, I use a skatemate, and feel that its use on a worn down edge helps more than it hurts. If you want to give me a good reason other than a claim of 'common sense' and a dismissal of my ability to recognize a good sharpening, I welcome it.

ChiTownHawks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-28-2011, 12:41 PM
  #28
shoeshine boy
Registered User
 
shoeshine boy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 313
vCash: 500
Quote:
Originally Posted by TBLfan View Post
Using it still ruins the evenness on your edges, if your edges are even straight to begin with... which is unlikely considering how many bad sharpeners there are out there. Including a certain mail order "expert" that many rave about.
well this part probably is true. I have my own skate sharpener and I'm constantly even-ing out edges for friends ruined by the kids at the local rink's pro shop who are just trying to finish the sharpenings quickly so they can get back to flirting with the girls that are hanging around.

shoeshine boy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-28-2011, 01:31 PM
  #29
Jarick
Moderator
Doing Nothing
 
Jarick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: St Paul, MN
Country: United States
Posts: 23,431
vCash: 500
It's still going to screw up the hollow, and even worse on an FBV sharpening. A honing stone will knock down any burrs on the outside without changing the hollow. If your edge is wrecked, nothing short of a sharpening will fix it. The honing stone does a lot less damage in the meantime.

Jarick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-28-2011, 06:45 PM
  #30
TBLfan
Registered User
 
TBLfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,148
vCash: 500
Send a message via AIM to TBLfan
Quote:
Originally Posted by cptjeff View Post
The cylinder is wide enough that it tracks straight on the blade. Perhaps if you used a shallow hollow it might wobble back and forth, but if you're deep enough, it stays in consistent contact with both sides of the blade at the same time, and the length keeps it straight. That makes it carve evenly from both sides, unless you're being really careless and applying hugely different forces then it's designed to take. Not to mention the fact that it tightens down on the outside of the blade for tracking as well. Basic physics and a calculation of forces will tell you that much. Powerbalance type stuff is simply utter crap with no real scientific background whatsoever.
Next time you clamp it onto the blade push it side-to-side and watch it wobble back and forth. Sure it might track well if your hollow is fresh but what about when you're using it and it has burrs. You're pushing it along so it tracks evenly then a burr comes along and pushes it over. If you push hard enough that a burr doesn't do this then you're forcing it and it's pushing it unevenly.

Quote:
Your post really demonstrates something I absolutely hate, but is rather prevalent these days- completely unreasonable cynicism. People just assume everything is a sham, simply because they've seen so many shams, and don't want to believe any evidence that might make them believe otherwise, no matter how convincing it may be. I'm not trying to call you out specifically, but it is something that frustrates me in general.
You know what I absolutely hate? Misinformation and people that speak positively about products that don't work. Plenty of pro athletes swear Powerbalance bracelets work! Do you have a quality edge checker to verify your edges are level?

I have never said that it makes your skates unusable, I said it makes your sharpening uneven.

Quote:
I sharpen my own skates whenever possible, and am pretty meticulous about them. I always make sure to check 'em for evenness at several points along the blade when I get them done by someone else. Traditionally, that someone else has been one trusted guy at home, or a guy who sharpens them for a NCAA DI team. I know a good edge. And yeah, I use a skatemate, and feel that its use on a worn down edge helps more than it hurts. If you want to give me a good reason other than a claim of 'common sense' and a dismissal of my ability to recognize a good sharpening, I welcome it.
Do you use your eye or an edge checker? You do realize how small changes make a big impact on the ice. The difference between hollows are soo small you can't physically see the difference. We're talking 0.125th of an inch, literally. I don't know many people that would argue that they didn't feel a difference if you changed the hollow one click over. I have seen some bad sharpenings including some from NHL pro equipment managers. ..Or like I said before guys with GREAT reputations with hundreds of customers around the country.

TBLfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-28-2011, 11:17 PM
  #31
94now
Registered User
 
94now's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Snow Belt, USA
Country: United Nations
Posts: 6,445
vCash: 500
No, they do not work. You cannot get your skates any sharper with those tools. You can get more bite,but it is not the same...

94now is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-29-2011, 12:18 AM
  #32
DevsFan84
Registered User
 
DevsFan84's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 562
vCash: 500
Quote:
Originally Posted by 94now View Post
No, they do not work. You cannot get your skates any sharper with those tools. You can get more bite,but it is not the same...
I think there is a lot of semantics going on in this thread that can potentially confuse a lot of people who aren't familiar with this stuff.

Here is my opinion on it, and please correct me if I'm wrong (I had a few adult beverages this evening)

The sweet stick and other handheld sharpeners should be used as a last resort- as a "sharpener" that is. It's fine to use as a stone to deburr your skate whenever necessary. Deburring your blade is when you run the stone along the outer part of the blade to take the burr off that develops on the outside of your edges. This alone can potentially add life to your sharpening if you aren't doing so already. Doing this can potentially give you the "bite" that is referenced above. You can get a regular stone for like 5 bucks, which makes the sweet stick a very expensive tool to do that alone.

To a person who sharpens skates or otherwise knows a bit about this stuff, saying that something makes the blade sharper would refer to changing the radius on your hollow- for example, if you normally get a 1/2" hollow and then ask for 3/8" that would be a "sharper" skate. What the sweet stick, etc. claims to do that a regular stone cannot do is "rolling in the outside edges" which I think basically means it tries to do the equivalent of what a stone does, just on the inside of the hollow as well.

I've used it, seen it used, and think it's a decent product. You can't have unrealistic expectations for it though- it's good to have around in a pinch but you definitley should not rely on it to work if your blades are completely shot. Will it make your blades uneven? Possibly. I don't know for sure. I do know that I've used it and made people's skates feel a lot better on the ice than they did, but I didn't have my trusty BR100 to check if it was level afterwards.

Also, don't use it on FBV and don't push down too hard, you'll be unhappy.

Just my .2

DevsFan84 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-29-2011, 12:42 AM
  #33
HF007
In Roy we Trust
 
HF007's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: calgary
Country: Canada
Posts: 3,154
vCash: 50
It works for me and helps me get more edge between sharpenings if that makes sense lol.
The key is too use it after 4 or 5 ice times and twice on each skate.

HF007 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-29-2011, 12:56 AM
  #34
1stoverall
Registered User
 
1stoverall's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 465
vCash: 500
Are you referring to the tool that i believe is porcelain and has a Y shape at the top? My buddy's got one in his bag and i gave it 2 passes on each skate. Lets just say in warm up my edges were so messed they would just bite the ice and i would almost fall over. I spent the next 5 mins of the first period dulling them on the wooden bench. I either used it incorrectly or the thing was just junk.

1stoverall is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-29-2011, 12:46 PM
  #35
AmazedRink
Nifty Mittens,ATTACK
 
AmazedRink's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 3,223
vCash: 500
The main thing using these tools is technique.

If you're using a rock, make sure it is FLAT and NEVER slips directly on one of the skate edges. These rocks are meant to file out the outer part of the metal, bringing in the concave just barely shorter enough to make a difference.
Once the rock slips and grinds that edge out, well you ****ed up.

Some blades are still way too dull for a rock to do anything sometimes.

AmazedRink is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-29-2011, 03:13 PM
  #36
TBLfan
Registered User
 
TBLfan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Tampa, FL
Posts: 1,148
vCash: 500
Send a message via AIM to TBLfan
Quote:
Originally Posted by DevsFan84 View Post
I think there is a lot of semantics going on in this thread that can potentially confuse a lot of people who aren't familiar with this stuff.

Here is my opinion on it, and please correct me if I'm wrong (I had a few adult beverages this evening)

The sweet stick and other handheld sharpeners should be used as a last resort- as a "sharpener" that is. It's fine to use as a stone to deburr your skate whenever necessary. Deburring your blade is when you run the stone along the outer part of the blade to take the burr off that develops on the outside of your edges. This alone can potentially add life to your sharpening if you aren't doing so already. Doing this can potentially give you the "bite" that is referenced above. You can get a regular stone for like 5 bucks, which makes the sweet stick a very expensive tool to do that alone.

To a person who sharpens skates or otherwise knows a bit about this stuff, saying that something makes the blade sharper would refer to changing the radius on your hollow- for example, if you normally get a 1/2" hollow and then ask for 3/8" that would be a "sharper" skate. What the sweet stick, etc. claims to do that a regular stone cannot do is "rolling in the outside edges" which I think basically means it tries to do the equivalent of what a stone does, just on the inside of the hollow as well.

I've used it, seen it used, and think it's a decent product. You can't have unrealistic expectations for it though- it's good to have around in a pinch but you definitley should not rely on it to work if your blades are completely shot. Will it make your blades uneven? Possibly. I don't know for sure. I do know that I've used it and made people's skates feel a lot better on the ice than they did, but I didn't have my trusty BR100 to check if it was level afterwards.

Also, don't use it on FBV and don't push down too hard, you'll be unhappy.

Just my .2
Anything shaped in a V-shape is going to roll your edges inward, this just ruins your edges and it's IMPOSSIBLE to do it straight. Do you really think that you can hold your skate in one hand and rub some stick freehand within a 0.125 tolerance? Draw a perfectly straight line on a piece of paper, can't do that? Odd, it's easier than being perfect using a sweet stick.

A honing stone deburrs the outside of the steel. It's the only thing that will prolong the life of your sharpening without changing your hollow.

If you look at my history on multiple forums you'll see consistency. I don't bash a product unless it's founded. The SINGLE exception was the PowerBalance bracelet, but come on. There is a reason companies come to me for reviews; they know I'm going to be honest, unbiased and I know what I'm talking about. The first time I skated on FBV I told my sharpener and Steve from Blackstone that his chart was "off" on equivalents. He has since changed it to reflect this after discovering by data that this was a correct assessment... I know what I'm talking about, I could be a jerk and not say anything but guess what? I don't want a bunch of players using products that do more harm than good, it's part of my nature as a coach. If you like using it, go ahead and use it but don't say you weren't warned. I'm done addressing things here, thanks.

TBLfan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
01-29-2011, 06:32 PM
  #37
StrykerB
 
StrykerB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Country: United States
Posts: 66
vCash: 500
For me, there are two reasons why I use a portable sharpener. I keep two in my bag. One is a Sweetstick and the other is a Pro-filer (similar to a Skate-Mate).

I use the Sweetstick on dull edges ONLY. Like some other poster stated, this device rolls your edges. You have to be extremely careful not to swipe too much or apply too much pressure. I use this when I have those 10:20 beer league games or when my son skates at 6 in the morning and I forget to take the skates for sharpening. A Sweetstick will not repair a lost edge. This device has gotten me through literally hundreds of games with an edge that will hold versus an edge that will not hold in a sharp cut or turn on the ice. It has held up for years because I believe it is ceramic. It is worth every penny I spent on it.

The Pro-filer in a 1/2" hollow is used to repair lost edges ONLY. It was originally used to repair bad sharpenings until I wised up and just checked the unevenness of the blades before I paid for the sharpening. This device is a diamond impregnated tool and is a bit more expensive than the Skate-Mate. But I've used both and got the Skate-Mate to do the job to repair a lost edge also.

In any case, I think all these devices have a lot to do with experience in using them. It actually took me a while to figure out how much pressure, swipes etc. to go with before everything felt comfortable. Trial and error showed me the way.

They may not be as good as a proper sharpening, but when I'm either too lazy to make a special trip to get them sharpened, don't have the 5 bucks in my pocket for a sharpening, or loose an edge, both devices simply work for me.

Note: I use a regular hollow and not a FBV.


Last edited by StrykerB: 01-29-2011 at 08:01 PM. Reason: Added note
StrykerB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old
02-01-2011, 07:38 AM
  #38
shoeshine boy
Registered User
 
shoeshine boy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 313
vCash: 500
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1stoverall View Post
Are you referring to the tool that i believe is porcelain and has a Y shape at the top? My buddy's got one in his bag and i gave it 2 passes on each skate. Lets just say in warm up my edges were so messed they would just bite the ice and i would almost fall over. I spent the next 5 mins of the first period dulling them on the wooden bench. I either used it incorrectly or the thing was just junk.
that would be the former. you used it incorrectly, most likely putting waaayyyyy too much pressure on it. I would never just give a friend my Sweet Stick and say "here, have at it." because most folks haven't read the directions and don't know what they're doing. it's a very, very light touch that's needed and at the proper angle.
I use mine about once a year if that but at least it's there if I really need it.

shoeshine boy is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Forum Jump


Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:49 AM.

monitoring_string = "e4251c93e2ba248d29da988d93bf5144"
Contact Us - HFBoards - Archive - Privacy Statement - Terms of Use - Advertise - Top - AdChoices

vBulletin Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
HFBoards.com is a property of CraveOnline Media, LLC, an Evolve Media, LLC company. 2014 All Rights Reserved.