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Thread: Ice Auger-which is the best buy?

  1. #1
    Member Nukalpiaq's Avatar
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    Default Ice Auger-which is the best buy?

    I am gonna buy a gas powered ice auger and would like to find out which brand/model is the best buy for the money. I have never used one before so I don't know too much about them. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
    Member Wyatt's Avatar
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    I like StrikeMaster but there are many good brands. Weight and auger size matter. What size species are you fishing for and are you snow machining or lugging it from your vehicle. Do you plan to "run and gun" or more stationary fishing? I think 8" in the 20-25 pound range is ideal. Just make sure parts are readily available.

    Wyatt

  3. #3
    Member akriverrat's Avatar
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    i have the eskimo shark z-71 and i love it. its big and heavy but it sure drills a nice 10 inch hole . there are lots of choices out there and i agree with wyatt on what it depends on. what species you are fishing, how much moving and how you are getting it around, and how much money you want to spend.

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    Default eskimo

    i got the "cheap" one from sportsman's a few years ago and it has done well for me. i'm sure there are better augers, but i'm very satisfied with mine. i did have to buy some new parts this year and change the plugs. the ardisam (eskimo brand) web site has all the parts a guy needs, and they ship it quick. as far a "value" goes eskimo augers are good. of course there are better augers, but they cost more.

    go get 'em.

    n8r

  5. #5
    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default Eskimo all the way!

    I got mine in '95 or '96 and have used it hard every winter since. All I have had to do was sharpen the cutters, change the plug, and make a modification on the throttle trigger when it broke after snagging on a tree. Arnisdam makes/markets good stuff. And my Eskimo wife jokes that my Eskimo auger and my Eskimo ice tent are keeping it the Eskimo way!

  6. #6
    Member pike_palace's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Eskimo 8"

    I agree with most of the replies, go with an Eskimo, but get it in 8". There is no point in getting a 10", it takes just that much more gas, is heavier, takes longer to drill holes and is that much spendier. Keep it clean though, you get any stuff in your carborator and you will have some minor problems. The spring on mine also had to get replaced as it got bent and was installed in a stupid place IMO. But an 8" Eskimo will do all you want it to.
    "Ya can't stop a bad guy with a middle finger and a bag of quarters!!!!"- Ted Nugent.

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    we've got a strikemaster mag 2000 10" and never had any problems with it, even in really cold weather. jiffy get good reviews. i would go with the 10" auger because you never know what your gonna pull up

  8. #8
    New member AKDSLDOG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by komocazie74 View Post
    strikemaster mag 2000 10"
    I have owned this one for the last 12 yrs and it has served me well. I have heard good things bout the "JIFFY'S" as well. General maintenance and any of these models will serve you well.

    I too recommend the 10" , especially if you are set fishing for pike or burbot, that extra 2" dia helps chipping the hole free at the end of the day.

  9. #9
    Premium Member Wyo2AK's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Eskimo 10"

    I'll add another vote for Eskimo. I had an 8" Eskimo for 8 or 9 years back in Wyoming, and it always worked great for me. Just had to change the plugs from time to time, but it was very reliable. When I moved to AK last year, I sold the 8" to a buddy and bought a 10" Eskimo up here. I went with the 1.8 hp Mako (the "cheap one" from Sportsman's). After a couple dozen trips last year, I've got no complaints. It runs reliably, even on the real cold days, and cuts great.

    Having gone to a 10", I'll never go back to using an 8". The auger cuts just as fast and easily as my 8" used to (as long as you keep the blades sharp) and I like having the extra room to maneuver a big fish into the hole. Plus, if I'm fishing shallow water I like the extra visibility I get through the bigger hole.
    Pursue happiness with diligence.

  10. #10
    Member JediMasterSalmonSlayer's Avatar
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    Default Strikemaster

    I recommend a strikemaster, my 10 inch has been in use for 6 years, never a problem. I have seen my buddy buy a shark 2 years ago, broke the starter cord 5 times, and the motor housing leaked bearing fluid or something and finally ceased up just after the warranty expired.

    My friends give me a hard time about old justy cause its heavy and only has a single chipper blade, lI am sure other models work fine.

    Good Luck either way.

    TSS
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  11. #11
    Member Nukalpiaq's Avatar
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    I am gonna pack the auger in my plywood sled behind my snowmachine, will be fishing dollyvarden smelt and whitefish mostly, will probaly head upnorth to another river where folks fish for pike and burbot too. Been chopping holes in the ice for years with a long handeled ice pick, not fun at all when the ice is 2-3 ft thick, especially when the family wants dad to chop fishing holes for everyone in the family. So either an 8" or 10" two blade would work. I will research the brands that you fellas recommended and decide from there. Hey maybe I can get my family to pool their funds together and buy me one for Christmas, since the holiday is just around the corner.

  12. #12

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    very pleased with my Jiffy 3110

  13. #13

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    I have a 10" Strikemaster and it works but the pole is slightly bent causing it to take longer to drill i learned. It is single bladed and noticed it taking longer to drill holes than the dual bladed ones. It is a lot better than manual when you compare amount of labor to hole ratio.

  14. #14

    Default Eskimo Shark 10"

    I have only had mine two seasons and love it. Light but easy to start and drills 4' hole on long lake. I usually drill 15-30 holes per day while ice fishing. Maybe burn one tank of fuel with every 20-30 holes.

  15. #15
    Member frozen okie's Avatar
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    go with a jiffy its a little more money but worth it but any thing is better than drilling them by hand when it get thick

  16. #16
    Member AKFishOn's Avatar
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    Had a Jiffy in Montana, my father is still using it and I think it is 20 or more years old. I remember putting it in the front of the pickup sometimes when it was 20 below. We use to run tip-ups a lot and many times we would dig a couple hundred of holes in a weekend. Plus 4 or 5 different spear holes which we dug 3x4 holes in size then pulled the block out with a big fork or even chain when really thick. I also sold bait for over 10 years and trapped minnows all winter long, the Jiffy was my best friend when drilling 2x3 holes for the traps.

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    I've been useing a Jiffy model 30 10" (3hp) for the past two seasons, what a great auger! I'd guess it's a bit on the heavy side for alot of folk's, if weight is a concern I'd go with one of their 2hp models.

    A buddy of mine uses a Strikemaster Lazermag and from what I've seen it's a good performer, on a couple of trips it was tough to start-could be from how he stored it.

  18. #18
    Member Nukalpiaq's Avatar
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    Just found out that Husqvarna makes ice augers too, here are pics of 2 of their models, first pic is a 326AI25 second pic is a 225AI25. They have a third model; 225AI15. Anyone try one of these huskys out before? Thanks
    Last edited by Nukalpiaq; 01-04-2009 at 13:50.

  19. #19
    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Default Looks like a good rig

    Husky makes a great chain saw (motorcycles too). I've never seen these sold in Alaska. Like the handle set-up. Makes my old Eskimo look like stone age Pricey I bet.

  20. #20
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    Default Any will do

    As long as you treat them decent. Fresh plugs, fresh fuel and oil, heck even bring it inside to warm up and dry out every once in a while. I've seen guys ride around all winter with the gas auger in the bed of the pickup and wonder why it doesn't work sometimes.
    I guess that goes for anything mechanical.

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