How Many Holes Before Changing Blades?

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Kenneth L. asks:

On average, how many holes do you drill before you change or sharpen the blades on your power augers?

Kenneth! – thanks for the question.  I wish I could tell you that there was an “average” but to be honest, they’re always fine until they’re not.

Chipper blades are much more rugged, but cut more slowly.  I use shaver blades exclusively for their speed and overall effectiveness at cutting.

While there are times I’ll replace them every 1-2 years just because I feel I can get more speed from new and sharp ones, most of the time I’m switching blades because of some unforeseen issue.  That can be sand or blown topsoil that formed with the ice, and most often on high-traffic lakes where a truck sat, dripping salt, sand, and grime right where fresh snow covered it up and I end up drilling through.  All kinds of crazy things can happen.  I’ve hit shallow rocks/sand, and have even overtightened and broken the set screws that hold blades on.

Point being, it’s best to have replacement blades (AND THE TOOLS TO CHANGE THEM) out on the ice with you.  If it hasn’t happened yet, someday it will, and who knows where you’ll be and whether or not blades in your size/brand will be handy.

Here’s a link to the replacement shaver blades I use. Chipper replacement blades here. Consider it cheap insurance especially if you travel any distance to fish any destination lakes.

Joel