Introduction: Sharpening Skates Process

Ice skating, a leisurely activity, dating back to 1740, that means to move across a surface of the ice with the use of steel blades. The steel piece on the bottom of an ice skate is the only reason why ice skating is an activity and these steel blades need maintenance to function properly. To keep the steel blades in working condition, they need to be sharpened, not after every use, but it is best to have them sharpened after 7-8 uses.

Step 1: Tools and Safety

Sharpening a skate is an easy process, but it is the most important part of ice skating. Before starting this process, there are a few tools that will be needed. The main tool for sharpening ice skates is a skate sharpener which is an electrically powered machine that has a spinning wheel that is made from an abrasive stone, commonly called a grinding wheel. Some other tools are a level and a deburring pad. Also, make sure to be wearing proper PPE, Personal Protective Equipment, which are safety glasses are closed toed shoes.

Step 2: Turning the Machine On

Before turning the machine on, put on safety glasses and closed toed shoes. Now the skate sharpener needs to be plugged in, once that is done, the machine can be turned on. After the machine is turned on, take one of the ice skates and tuck the laces into the skate. Doing so will prevent any accidents from happening. Once laces have been tucked in, the skate is ready to be sharpened.

Step 3: Getting Started

Start off by placing one hand on the heel of the skate and
the other hand on the toe of the skate. Next, gently touch the steel blade of the skate to the spinning grinding wheel, this is to get a feel of the wheel on the blade.

Step 4: Sharpening the Blade

Steady hands are key, so the next step is slowly to grind The steel blade from one end to the other, always starting at the toe of the steel blade. Repeat this step 4 more times, then sharpen the other skate by following all of these steps.

Step 5: Deburring the Blade

Now that both skates have been sharpened, this next step is when the deburring pad will come into effect. A burr is the raised edge that is attached to the steel blade after the sharpening process. Using the deburr pad, press against the flat side of the steel blade, this is the side that doesn't touch the ice. Firmly Rub the deburr pad back and forth along both flat sides of the steel blade to remove the burr. Deburring is an important step because the excess material could jeopardize the functionality of the skate.

Step 6: Finishing Touch

The is the last step, take the level and place it on the steel blade. Check the levelness of the steel blade by holding the skate at eye level while also holding the level. A completely level blade is the goal, however, this will take practice. If the steel blade is level move on to the next step, if not, please redo all of the steps of sharpening the steel blade.