Sunday, December 2, 2012

Ice Screw Sharpening

We've all done it.  Leading an ice climb, forearms pumped, calves burning, and it's a long way down.  Time for an ice screw.  The ice looks thin here.  Well, it's at least better than nothing.  So you grab your shortest screw and start cranking.  Cool!  Look's like it will go the whole way....crap! 

So now you have an ice screw that needs sharpening.  It's easy enough to touch up a tooth with a file, just try to make it look like the other non-damaged teeth.  But what happens is the tooth you just sharpened is a tad shorter than the others.  The screw works fine but you notice maybe that it takes an extra turn to get started.  This is where you are probably better off putting your file away and finding someone who really knows what they are doing.

I looked through my ice rack and picked out three screws that needed sharpening and one that needed the teeth completely re-done.  A quick internet search and I found this article.  I ended up sending them to Jason Hurwitz at a nice screw.  He charges 8.50 per screw and 24.00 if it's really bad.  In addition he has other services like ice screw personalization and ice pick sharpening.

I sent the screws on October 25th and received them back November 29th.  It took awhile but I imagine this is a busy time for him.  The resulting screws are pretty ridiculously sharp.  In my opinion even sharper than new.

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