Sparx has created a product that any player or parent would be proud to show off. This machine requires little to no introduction because almost every hockey player has seen it.
Eliminate human errors
The biggest question on everyone’s mind must be how is the actual quality of the sharpener. To us, it’s safe to say that this is going to be one of the best sharpening experiences that you’ve ever had. The reason behind our confidence is because the Sparx machine can eliminate the possibility of human error.
When you go to the pro shop or a rink to have your skate sharpened, even the professional workers there might not know what they’re doing that day.
It doesn’t matter how much experience they have; if the workers have been sharpening skates all day, they might be fatigued, they might be slightly off their game or somewhat off form.
You don’t know what is going to happen that day, but the result that you get on your skates might not be the same as the last time that you were there. There’s nothing worse than stepping out onto the ice and not having any confidence in your skates with those inconsistencies.
Now, with this machine, because it eliminates the possibility of human error, you know that the result you get is going to be precisely the same every single time you sharpen your skate. Any player, regardless of the level, having trust and faith in our edges, gives us confidence on the ice. We all know that it is priceless.
Easy to use
So the Sparx Skate Sharpener is designed to be used at home, but how easy is it to use? To be honest, the buttons, the layout, and all of the pieces that you need to assemble in this machine are incredibly straightforward. But the best of all is that anybody can use it because of the way it’s been set up and how clear everything is displayed.
Aside from being straightforward to use, it’s also enjoyable to use. The machine turns skate sharpening into a fun experience that you want to keep doing. It’s not like trying to connect your printer to the Wifi, which never seems to want to work: even though it has ink in it, it never seems to want to print. This Sparx machine is nothing like that. It’s pleasant, and it works very smoothly.
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One of the processes that Sparx Skate Sharpener gets props from us is the calibration process. The function of that process is ensuring that the grinding wheel comes into contact with your skates runner or blade at the correct position, so you get a consistent sharpening. Both of the edges must come into contact with the binding wheel for you to get a good result, not one edge high, one edge low.
This is something incredibly difficult to do with the naked eye, and Sparxs have created a calibration process to do the job. The grinding wheel is in the optimal position that works flawlessly in an incredibly smooth, straightforward process that takes a lot of stress out of using a home sharpener.
Nowadays, there’s a lot of different sharpeners out there, but Sparx Skate Sharpener has nailed that calibration process. From the perspective of us at home, it’s super nice and easy. Anybody can do it and get the best results for their edges every single time they use this machine.
It always amazes us when a company takes what can only be described as a complicated process, and simplifies it to an extent where the person using the machine doesn’t even realize that what they’re setting up is incredibly difficult to do. Sparx made it perfectly smooth and straightforward, which is fantastic.
Aside from that, Sparx has also made this machine completely home-friendly. It doesn’t matter what room you’re using it in because this machine doesn’t have to be hidden away in your basement. It can be used in the kitchen. It can be used in a games room. Any space that you have for this thing to be able to occupy, you’re good to go.
All of the metal shavings or dust particles that come off of the blade when the skate gets sharpened are condensed inside the machine. Nothing is released into the air that you’re breathing. Sparx designed a filter and a dust management system inside of the sharpener to make sure that all of those metal particles stay in the machine.
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Easy to clean
When you look inside the Sparx machine, there’s quite a lot of space there. The truth is Sparx could have probably made this machine smaller. The reason that they didn’t want to do that is because they want you to be able to open up the door, take out the removable tray that collects all of the dust shavings, and then tip that out into your trash. The only thing you need to do to maintain this thing is making sure that it’s not filled up with dust, so it’s performing well, very helpful and accessible.
You can also hoover it up or wipe it, whatever you prefer to do. You are even able to get in there with a cloth or a vacuum. Just remember to use the plastic side, so you don’t scratch any of the pretty components inside because it does look nice inside this machine.
However, frankly speaking, if the device was smaller and more condensed, we could still get inside the machine to be able to clean the areas that would be a little bit harder to reach.
Using the Sparx is incredibly smooth and forthright. The process is straightforward, including opening up the clamp to secure your skate inside, sliding across the protective covers to make sure that nothing gets into the sharpener that shouldn’t be in there like small fingers or hair. Next, just select the number of cycles that you want and press the play button. It’s as straightforward as that.
You just get to sit back, or you can go away and do something else, which is the most significant area of convenience of having this machine. You don’t have to stand over it and watch it, although the first time you get this thing, you probably will do that because it’s cool seeing what it does through the glass.
However, you definitely can get on with other things. So if you run a pro shop, you have a busy house where you need to prepare meals for your kids, or get on with other things in life, you can just set up the skate sharpening there, and then off you go.
Your next question is probably going to be what sharpening options do you have. The answer is, basically anything that you’re used to getting at your pro shop, you’re going to be able to do that from home yourself.
It’s just a simple step of selecting the grinding rings that you want for the sharpen that you’d like to have. They have an option for every style of player. It’s just as simple as picking up that grinding ring and putting it inside the machine, and away you go now.
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How many grinds is this machine going to take to pay itself off? A lot of people are trying to figure out if they want to have a home sharpener or not are going to be thinking like that. That’s a really bad way of looking at it, just think about it.
You going to the arena or to a pro shop to have your skate sharpened isn’t just a simple case of you paying some money to be able to do that. You have to consider the time it takes you to drive there, which is about several hours.
If you are going to the store, that’s a big chunk of time, not to mention the fuel you are using. Most importantly, it’s the time aspect that you can never get back.
Having a home sharpener eliminates the hassle, as well as the time of having to wait, or planning to be able to get your skate sharpened. That is the best way of thinking about how much value for money you’re getting in.
If you spend 2 to 3 hours a week getting to a skate shop, waiting in line, hoping the right person is there and then hopefully they do an excellent job on your edges, that’s a lot of time, a lot of worry, a lot of stress, and a lot of hassle.
And those are precisely what having one of these home sharpeners eliminates. You will be able to take all of this into your own hands with a very easy to use machine, and remove all of that stress.
Also, this isn’t something that you use just by yourself. Your friends can use it, your family can use it, your team can even use it. It’s something that will benefit all of the players around you. We all have busy lives of our own.
Whether we have kids that we need to look after, family members that need help, demanding jobs, or maybe even partners that don’t like us going away for hours on, and being at a coffee shop talking to people while we’re getting our skates sharpened.
If you’re able to get 3 to 4 hours a week back by owning a Sparx Skate Sharpener, that’s the real value of the machine. Not only is the Sparx giving us back time, which is that one commodity that regardless of what we do, we can never get back;
it’s also giving us the convenience of not having to worry about journeying out to get our skates sharpened. Aside from that, it also provides us with the consistency that having somebody else sharpened your skate will never give you.
Grinding Wheel Lifespan
As we have options when it comes to the grinding wheels, the next question is probably going to be how long do these things last. You’re looking at about 40 pairs of skates per wheel, and in US dollars, they cost 50 to replace them.
One of the best features of the Sparx is that the grinding wheels have a display on the machine that shows you the lifespan of the wheel. You’re able to monitor how much life is left in this thing, and you can see on the display when it’s time for you to order another one.
A feature that’s even more impressive about these grinding rings is that they have a microchip inside of them. That’s how they’re able to communicate with the Sparx Skate Sharpener to let you know how much life is left in them.
There’s a lot of features and capabilities packed into this tiny little grinding ring, and it’s going to be interesting to see how Sparx adapts and modifies those features later on in the future.
The Sparx retails for $899 US, and currently, it’s only available on the Sparx website. However, something that doesn’t come across when you’re looking at the Sparx on film is its build quality.
Through the camera, it seems like a lot of it is constructed from plastic, but it’s solid. There’s a lot of metal in there, and it’s one of the best-presented sharpeners that you will ever see.
Sparx paid a lot of attention to details and to the way the machine looks and performs. This comes across even when you look at their accessories. Nothing about the Sparx feels cheap. It all feels incredibly well-made and built-to-last, which is always going to be a bonus when you’re spending that amount of money on a sharpener.
Let’s take a detail like the screen that lets you see into the Sparx as an example. You may think that was plastic when you saw it on the video, but it’s actually glass.
The glass is also shadow proof, so it’s incredibly robust, and you won’t have to worry about scratching or breaking. We are in awe with the fact that they’ve added glass where they could have added plastic, which would have probably saved money, to make the machine look and feel so much better.
Weight and Mobility
No product is perfect, but with the Sparx Skate Sharpener, we have to say that there aren’t many negatives or things that we’d like to see them improve in the future. However, one of them is the weight of the sharpener.
It’s not the lightest sharpener out there by any means. However, this weight adds stability to the machine and reduces the vibration that’s created when the skate sharpener is in use.
The heavyweight contributed to giving you a better overall result, but it means, of course, the machine is going to be slightly heavier. Moving this thing around is not easy, and it’s not going to be the sort of thing that you can carry with one hand. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s not portable.
Heel & Toe Contact
One more of the things that we also noticed was during the sharpening process, the toe and the heel should be sharpened a little bit more. More contact with the grinding wheel should be added up to the heel, and back across to the toe. However, there are two ways that you can remedy this.
You can either adjust the height of the grinding wheel, which is incredibly easy to do inside the machine, or you can also do it by reversing the skate. If you flip the skating the other way around how you see it positioned on the Sparx website during their demos, this issue is remedied.
So it isn’t something that you can’t get rid of. It just requires a little bit of thought process to be able to find out the best way to get around it.
Overall, this Sparx Skate Sharpener is an incredible machine at a phenomenal price. It liberates us from having to rely on someone else to take care of an essential piece of our hockey equipment.
Having one of these machines is not only going to give you the convenience and the consistency that so many of us just don’t have with our skate sharpening right now, but it’s going to give you your time back, which is probably going to be the most valuable thing that you can get.
Puck Drawn Hockey has seen so much development in hockey, from the sticks to the skates and other equipment that we use. However, a process that never changed for so many years is how we get our skates sharpened.
Your father, your grandfather that played hockey, had to go through the same steps, which are lining up and waiting to get their Sparx Skate Sharpener. That just doesn’t fit our modern lifestyles.
Nowadays, people are super busy. They need their time back, and that’s exactly what this thing does. It’s skate sharpening evolved!