How do you handle soft ice?

Discussion in 'The Rink' started by gintonic, Dec 21, 2010.

  1. gintonic

    gintonic Registered User

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    I play in a league where the arena has some soft ice. For a while I thought it might have been my skates, but then heard others with the same complaint, and also recently skated on other rinks with good ice prior to the rink I play at and could feel a definite difference. The skates don't have the same 'bite' on turns. I normally get them sharpened at 7/16 and that works great at other rinks with good ice. So is the answer for soft ice to have skates sharpened with a greater hollow?
     
  2. Daryl

    Daryl Registered User

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    Does this happen at the begginning of each game or overall all the time?
     
  3. Pog Form

    Pog Form Registered User

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    Normally with softer ice, you would be looking for a shallower hollow to compensate, but it's interesting that you say you feel like you're getting less bite than normal. It's usually the opposite.

    If you have a spare pair of skates lying around, maybe use those to experiment with a different hollow (deeper or shallower depending on your preference) and see if you notice a difference on the soft ice.
     
  4. gintonic

    gintonic Registered User

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    Throughout, even right after they zam.

    In a sharp turn they're fine, they cut in there, but in a slower moderate turn they slide out a bit. And like I said, I've done the same thing at other rinks and never have that problem, and many others are complaining of the same thing.

    And I'm assuming that it's soft ice, otherwise I wouldn't think that issue would occur.
     
  5. gintonic

    gintonic Registered User

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    so you're saying with soft ice you get more 'bite'?
     
  6. ChiTownHawks

    ChiTownHawks Registered User

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    Yeah, think about the physics of it. On soft ice your blade will dig further down into the ice giving you more bite on turn, stops, etc. When the ice is hard the blade does not dig in as far and your blade will skim across the top easier.
     
  7. gintonic

    gintonic Registered User

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    Ok, here's my logic on it, and I'll preface this with I am not a scientist -

    Skate blades are hard steel that have sharp edges, if the ice is hard and firm the edges cut into the ice and hold, if the ice is soft then the skate still may cut into the ice but because the ice isn't as firm, will then give some and not hold the blade cut into the ice as well.

    That's my thinking on it. Plus I thought I heard someone on the team saying that you'll get more lateral slide on softer ice.

    Is there an ice doctor in the house that can explain all this? :help:
     
  8. shaolin95

    shaolin95 Registered User

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    I am a noob but I agree with the comments about more bite in softer ice. Yesterday I got to skate two hours in the rink normally used for Hockey then we switched to the one used for figure skating and publick skating (softer ice) and I was biting into the ice like there is no tomorrow...in fact I enjoyed the feeling of going so deep into the ice :yo:
     
  9. flamer82

    flamer82 Registered User

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    To the OP im actually quite used to playing on soft ice its all ive ever played on its what happens when you play in Australia i think theres only one rink that is what you would describe as hard ice and everyone falls over alot more cause theyre not used to the hard ice.:laugh:

    I think you get used to it as you play on it more its not gunna really matter what or how much your skates are sharpened personally its just adapting to it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2010
  10. gintonic

    gintonic Registered User

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    After talking with a few people on this, there seems to be a lot of confusion. It's about half and half. Half of those say that with soft ice, the skate blade really grips, and half say no, that the skate blade will give and slide more laterally.

    There surely must be someone here that knows the science of ice well enough to explain which is correct.
     
  11. kr580

    kr580 Who knows.

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    Softer ice gives more, so your blades sink in a little easier, I would think. That means you wouldn't need as deep a hollow as 'hard' ice. I use 11/16 on our soft ice here and I have more grip than I need.
     

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