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Sparx Skate Sharpener - At home sharpener

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On 1/13/2020 at 9:43 AM, lfc26 said:

I really don't care colins. I love my Sparx machine and I can clearly see the benefit for a home-user!!! I just don't love the costs and the fact that they are taking away features yet charging more and more for the sharpening rings!!!

All i wanted to do is to find a way to bring costs down for international users by taking a look at the different consumer/ commercial rings and by pointing out to other customers that sharpenings come around 3,2$ in europe given the quality of sharpenings locally and the amount of cycles you have to do to work things out. (80$ rings!!!!)

The results so far are 25 sharpenings of poorly maintained skates and that's a fact. Basically every skate, except my own pair of new skates, caused an unbearable noise while sharpening. To get rid of that, it took 5-8 cycles per skate=10-16 cyles per pair!!!!

All I wanted to point out above was that Sparx promises a grinding ring mileage that works nicely under isolated conditions. That's all. If you are using the machine for yourself, it's the greatest thing ever, but as soon as there are any variables introduced it's economically unsustainable for international buyers.

that's all from my side

Averaging 6 cycles per skate is absurd.

What kinds of skates/steel are people bringing in? Is everyone exclusively playing pond hockey?

Honestly, this sounds like an economic issue. Taxes in the EU are high, there are import/export dynamics out of Sparx control, etc... 

On a normal distribution, it sounds like your usage is at/near the very tail end. 

Like another user pointed out, surely after a while, your customers will start to show up with a regular amount of usage, rather than outright abuse, which should ultimately ameliorate your frustrations. 

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2 hours ago, lfc26 said:

Sharpening 40, 60, whatever different pair of skates using your first grinding ring is "fake news". As soon as you are introducing any variables you aren't going to reach that mileage. sorry for hurting some liberal feelings.

This is easily one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever seen said on this website, and ho boy have we seen some silly things over the years.

And with that, it’s time to move on. We generally avoid spreading misinformation here. Misinformation that somehow manages to bring politics into it? Definitely a no-go.

Move on, people. Don’t feed trolls. 

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4 hours ago, pgeorgan said:

Averaging 6 cycles per skate is absurd.

What kinds of skates/steel are people bringing in? Is everyone exclusively playing pond hockey?

Honestly, this sounds like an economic issue. Taxes in the EU are high, there are import/export dynamics out of Sparx control, etc... 

On a normal distribution, it sounds like your usage is at/near the very tail end. 

Like another user pointed out, surely after a while, your customers will start to show up with a regular amount of usage, rather than outright abuse, which should ultimately ameliorate your frustrations. 

it is what it is.nothing I can do about it. They are not really customers and that's part of the problem I guess^^. so let's hope they all stick with the quality of Sparx sharpenings and don't go to the local ski service center which happens to be a hockey service center as well:-D. All I can hope for is that they at least pay me a few beer for my expenses🤣

4 hours ago, IPv6Freely said:

This is easily one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever seen said on this website, and ho boy have we seen some silly things over the years.

And with that, it’s time to move on. We generally avoid spreading misinformation here. Misinformation that somehow manages to bring politics into it? Definitely a no-go.

Move on, people. Don’t feed trolls. 

Anyway let's see how things turn out with my other grinding rings. btw: shipping included I'm paying 95$ per ring . Let it be guys:-)

P.S. I wasn't the one who got politically butthurt in the first place because of poor wording or using the word in a non political context. .@Giltis @IPv6Freely

Edited by lfc26

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5 minutes ago, lfc26 said:

it is what it is.nothing I can do about it. They are not really customers and that's part of the problem I guess^^. so let's hope they all stick with the quality of Sparx sharpenings and don't go to the local ski service center that happens to be a hockey service center as well:-D. All I can hope for is that they at least pay me a few beer for my expenses🤣

Are you not charging people to sharpen their skates??? If that's the case, you're getting used and abused.

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4 minutes ago, darkhors said:

Are you not charging people to sharpen their skates??? If that's the case, you're getting used and abused.

no I'm basically the only guy who doesn't have to bring beer every few weeks of hockey. Has some advantages too😂

but to be honest, I wasn't planning on sharpening their kids skates....😥

Edited by lfc26

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2 hours ago, lfc26 said:

no I'm basically the only guy who doesn't have to bring beer every few weeks of hockey. Has some advantages too😂

but to be honest, I wasn't planning on sharpening their kids skates....😥

So, you're sharpening your teammates' skates, but they always come back in very bad shape? 

I must be missing something, because I contribute to beer on my team, and even if it were as frequent as every few weeks, and even at American prices, I don't think swapping beer for grinding rings would be a trade I'd want to make (off the top of my head...)

 

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3 hours ago, lfc26 said:

P.S. I wasn't the one who got politically butthurt in the first place because of poor wording or using the word in a non political context.

Drop it.

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5 hours ago, lfc26 said:
 
5 hours ago, lfc26 said:

no, I'm basically the only guy who doesn't have to bring beer every few weeks of hockey. Has some advantages too😂

but to be honest, I wasn't planning on sharpening their kid's skates....😥

You can buy a lot of beer with $40-$50 bucks if you go to Costco. 

Edited by SkateWorksPNW

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Ok, so the real issue here is that you aren't even charging them to sharpen their skates. I'm sorry, but this wouldn't even be an issue if you were charging them, say even 5 euro's (I don't know what the going rate is per sharpening over there, but here it's $10 at most places) you should be able to have new rings on hand that you're not having to come out of pocket for. I charge my customers $6.00 or they can buy a package of 10 for $50. This basically helps me recoup the cost of the ring after 10 sharpenings and the rest of the money usually goes to other stuff hockey related. I could probably charge $10 and most of the guys would be fine with that because of the consistency I'm putting out there for them, but many of the people I do it for are friends or play in my league or their kids. I'm not trying to run a full fledged business, but I do want to be compensated for my time and resources and wear on my machine. There's a reason why not everyone has one of these, they're still expensive.

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Your friends should be willing to pay you you to sharpen their skates, especially if it’s better than what they are getting in a shop. If the free beer doesn’t cover the cost of the rings, you explain your costs and time to them and ask them for some money.  

If they are just using you because you got a new toy, then they aren’t really your friends. 

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9 hours ago, darkhors said:

Ok, so the real issue here is that you aren't even charging them to sharpen their skates. I'm sorry, but this wouldn't even be an issue if you were charging them, say even 5 euro's (I don't know what the going rate is per sharpening over there, but here it's $10 at most places) you should be able to have new rings on hand that you're not having to come out of pocket for. I charge my customers $6.00 or they can buy a package of 10 for $50. This basically helps me recoup the cost of the ring after 10 sharpenings and the rest of the money usually goes to other stuff hockey related. I could probably charge $10 and most of the guys would be fine with that because of the consistency I'm putting out there for them, but many of the people I do it for are friends or play in my league or their kids. I'm not trying to run a full fledged business, but I do want to be compensated for my time and resources and wear on my machine. There's a reason why not everyone has one of these, they're still expensive.

I'm kind of in a similar position. Most of them are good friends but we have some guest players as well. beer's not gonna cover it, I've got that part so far😂. giving out sharpening cards seems like a good idea. I'll think about it. The thing is, if just one guy moves on and makes this public, I'm screwed. That's why charging people turns out to be a bit tricky.

rates are around 8€/ 9-10$. basically the same but the quality is more than debatable^^.

Edited by lfc26

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So, I got one skate sharpened today and the red light indicating a depleted ring came on as the first pass on the second skate started.

How long do you use your rings? Is the red circle light a warning or is the ring finished when it first appears? I ran 3 passes with the light on, is this a good sharpening?

 

 

Edited by 218hockey

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I believe it will stop after the last cycle runs once it turns red. Your sharpening should still be good, but I probably wouldn't do any more after that, if it will even let you.

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8 hours ago, darkhors said:

I believe it will stop after the last cycle runs once it turns red. Your sharpening should still be good, but I probably wouldn't do any more after that, if it will even let you.

No, it turned red and kept on sharpening. Sharpening seemed fine so I guess it's a moot point.

Sooo, my 1/2" Fire is done. I'm going to buy another as soon as I can sell my 5/8" Fire. I wish I could return it. To me, trying different Sparx hollows seems like an expensive experiment. 

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Howdy,

7 minutes ago, 218hockey said:

No, it turned red and kept on sharpening. Sharpening seemed fine so I guess it's a moot point.

Sooo, my 1/2" Fire is done. I'm going to buy another as soon as I can sell my 5/8" Fire. I wish I could return it. To me, trying different Sparx hollows seems like an expensive experiment. 

From the little I've seen, used rings sell pretty quick, at least on ebay.  I casually keep an eye out for a deal on weird ones like a 3/8", just in case I have crazy friend that wants to try it or something, but I very rarely see used rings get listed on ebay and they always seem to sell fairly quickly for not enough off of "new from Sparx" for me to want to deal with a rando.

Which is all a long way to say... I bet if you list it here it'd sell pretty quick.  🙂

Mark

 

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5 minutes ago, marka said:

Which is all a long way to say... I bet if you list it here it'd sell pretty quick.  🙂

Mark

 

You're probably right.

I've had Sparx in my saved ebay searches for a while. Used machines come up every now and then but people pay way too close to new prices for them. I guess I did pick up a brand new blade holder for $25 a few months ago, so that was good.

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2 hours ago, 218hockey said:

No, it turned red and kept on sharpening. Sharpening seemed fine so I guess it's a moot point.

Sooo, my 1/2" Fire is done. I'm going to buy another as soon as I can sell my 5/8" Fire. I wish I could return it. To me, trying different Sparx hollows seems like an expensive experiment. 

I try standard hollows at my LHS to see if I like them before buying a ring.Sadly I can’t do that with Fire rings, so I suspect I will never buy one. I believe that in North America you can send blades to Sparx to be sharpened. 

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I've just received my sharpening rings and there's a different number of sharpenings stated for these rings???? For some odd reason this is not stated on the Sparx website. Again...again that's poor transparency. I've ordered ES100 rings!!!

I think that's really unacceptable. There's no information on the Sparx website that different rings will yield different number of sharpenings!!!!

40 vs 60 sharpenings. what's the defense on that??? I 'll provide pictures asap!  rings are 1/2'' and 11/16''.  Am I the only one who realized that???

 

 

 

Edited by lfc26
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2 hours ago, lfc26 said:

I've just received my sharpening rings and there's a different number of sharpenings stated for these rings???? For some odd reason this is not stated on the Sparx website. Again...again that's poor transparency. I've ordered ES100 rings!!!

I think that's really unacceptable. There's no information on the Sparx website that different rings will yield different number of sharpenings!!!!

40 vs 60 sharpenings. what's the defense on that??? I 'll provide pictures asap!  rings are 1/2'' and 11/16''.  Am I the only one who realized that???

 

 

 

Then sell it and buy a ProSharp Home!!!!!!  Have you ever managed a product?  Do you know what goes into it?  There are myriad explanations why you are seeing this discrepancy.

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34 minutes ago, BenBreeg said:

Then sell it and buy a ProSharp Home!!!!!!  Have you ever managed a product?  Do you know what goes into it?  There are myriad explanations why you are seeing this discrepancy.

This has nothing to do with the Prosharp. How would you feel as a customer if someone sells you a product that costs exactly the same, but t yields 33% less on average from the get go. And they don't even bother to inform you beforehand!!!You are kidding right? They sell these rings for 75 euro so there should be some degree of consistency. I'll upload the pics when I'm at home. This is unbelievable stuff and much worser than I thought it would be..  Guys please listen...I'm not moaning about different user scenarios here !!!! These are the officially stated numbers on the packaging which aren't published anywhere else and they are different from one ring to another!

1/2''= 60 sharpenings

11/16''= 40 sharpenings

this is not published on their website!!!

Edited by lfc26
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Sparx did explain why they changed the verbiage from 40 to 60 in a blog post. It had to do with typical consumer use. I didn't count how many sharpens I got out of each ring but I do 1 - 2 passes every other skate. I skate 3 to 4 times a week and my first ring lasted over a year. My second ring is about cashed and I'm just over a year on that one. I had consistent and reliable edges every time.

To summarize:

Old boxes say 40

New boxes say 60

It's based on average consumer usage. 

Congratulations, you are above average.

 

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4 hours ago, lfc26 said:

I've just received my sharpening rings and there's a different number of sharpenings stated for these rings???? For some odd reason this is not stated on the Sparx website. Again...again that's poor transparency. I've ordered ES100 rings!!!

I think that's really unacceptable. There's no information on the Sparx website that different rings will yield different number of sharpenings!!!!

40 vs 60 sharpenings. what's the defense on that??? I 'll provide pictures asap!  rings are 1/2'' and 11/16''.  Am I the only one who realized that???

 

 

 

No, they were very transparent about it. Older rings were labeled 40 per, newer rings are labeled 60 per and that reflects what's listed on the Sparx site.

Nothing nefarious about it. They were conservative with the original numbers, which were then upgraded based on average customer usage. Repackaging every ring would have been costly and not really necessary.

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