Griz Guides offers a full-service sharpening for all of your expensive ice gear.
You have invested close to $1,000 in ice equipment It only makes sense to maintain that equipment so that it will continue to be efficient, safe and secure. For about the cost of one new ice screw, you can have 6 of your favorites refurbished to like-new condition!

Why should I sharpen my stuff, it's not THAT dull?
Dull ice gear is like a dull knife, it's way more unsafe and does not perform its job properly, possibly leading to injury. Tools, screws and crampons are your connection with the ice, wouldn't you want to be 'connected' as securely as possible? Dull tool picks fracture the ice more and can be more difficult to place. Dull crampons 'skate' off the ice when they should be 'sticking' to it. Dull screws are extremely difficult to place, especially when leading ice, putting the climber in a dangerous situation. Sharp gear is more efficient, safe and secure. Get your stuff sharp!

What do I get for my money?
Expert sharpening, Fast turn-around (usually 1-2 days), and the shipping mode of your choice, plus FREE new, bright-red high visibility end-caps on all screws! I also sell new end-caps for $0.75 ea.

How do I go about getting my stuff sharp?
I have kept my sharpening system as simple as possible. I offer a flat rate for sharpening items (see Pricing below) and leave the shipping options completely up to you. By allowing you to control the shipping, you choose the best price/speed option that works for you, going out and coming back.

Where do I mail my gear to? Send your gear any way you like (USPS, Fed EX, or UPS) to the following address listed below:
Griz Guides
39 Hawn Drive
POB 1876
Frisco CO 80443

A few important notes:
  • DO NOT request a signature of your gear shipment. I am NOT available to sign for delivered packages and your package WILL BE RETURNED to you by your carrier, unopened and unsharpened of course.
  • Insure your gear if you so desire, one way or both ways. I have not lost a package yet, coming or going.
  • Your tracking number will be your way of keeping tabs on your package. Please include my entire address as listed exactly above to ensure I receive your package. I live in a very small mountain town that is particular about how my packages are labeled.
  • Packages that do not include payment (or return shipping), will be sharpened and will be awaiting payment. Once payment arrives, the gear ships back out to you. Sometimes folks forget, I understand.
  • DON'T forget to include return shipping, wether it be stamps, a prepaid label or even cash. I will be happy to purchase a return label for you, with your included additional monies for that return shipping.
  • Turn around time is usually 1-2 business days. There are times during the Holidays and the occassional climbing trip where I may be unable to sharpen gear in such a short time. Feel free to email me if you are under a timeline. Thanks so much for your business!
How I sharpen screws:
To understand how a screw must be sharpened, one must understand the way a screw works. An ice screw's sharp pointed teeth help the screw to 'stick' into the ice and 'bite or cut' the ice. A sharp screw will typically (but not always) stick in the ice with a forceful thrust and 1/2 to 3/4 turn. As the screw turns into the ice, the teeth shave or cut the ice and the inside angle of the teeth force the shavings into the hollow screw shaft. It is important that the inside angles are maintained to funnel the ice to the center of the screw. Finally, as the screw bores into the ice, the high-relief threads offer the holding power of the screw.

Due to the complex angles of ice screw teeth machined at the factory, a resharpened screw will never attain the exact original, factory look. A properly sharpened screw, though, will retain its functionality and restore its ability to be placed efficiently, effectively and safely.

The screw is held in place using a special softwood jig in a vise. Using a fiberglass reinforced disc, a low-speed Dremel tool and a Mill Bastard flat file, I first de-burr and level out all teeth. I then cut the inside, angled bevel and work the vertical backside of each tooth. Finally I dress the teeth with a small hand file, lightly oil and cap. Contrary to using a grinder, the low RPM of the Dremel will not damage the temper of the screw. Tools used: Flat file, Ignition file, assorted jeweler's files, various grits wet-sandpapers, variable-speed Dremel tool with fiberglass reinforced disc.

How I sharpen crampons:
I hand flat file all frame points in the correct orientation. I then restore the front-point angles and sharpen the bevel. A light coat of oil finishes out the job.

How I sharpen ice picks:
I hand flat file the nose to the correct angle. I then sharpen the sides to the 45-degree bevel. Using a small jewelers/chainsaw file, I'll clean up the first tooth in, on the pick. A light coat of oil finishes out the job.

Note: As with any sharpening job, material will be removed, shortening the item being sharpened. I can only restore items to a point. I'm not a magician! If you send me something that I deem is beyond reasonable sharpening, I will be happy to refund your money when I reship the item to you.

Disclaimer: Sharpening an item will not compromise its functionality or safety. In most every case, it will make it safer to use. I do not touch any part of an item that deals with its structure or safety (ex: I don't tighten crampon frame bolts, check modular frontpoints, inspect hangers, ect.). If an item should fail after I have sharpened it, it would only be because of a manufacture defect or improper use or adjustment.




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