Tis the Season! Then again it seems it’s always the season for hockey training these days! It’s become a year around sport for training, and what better way than to have sales of synthetic ice year round as well. Players want to be able to train when they want, where they want. More importantly – so do their parents! I can tell you first hand how awesome it really is to have your kids grab their skates and head down to the garage rink and take a few hundred shots.
When I decided to get into sale of synthetic ice I knew that it was going to have to be a better product than what my kids had been paying to practice on at a private training facility. Whatever it was it was extremely difficult to turn on and forget about doing a nice smooth pivot. Basically it was only good enough to takes shots with skates.
I discovered a company in Europe that manufactured sinter pressed synthetic ice and once we tried that it was all the difference. When people skate on our panels they notice right away that something is different from the typical EXTRUDED panel material. Not only are they gliding better but there is no tell tale white dusty powdery residue coming off the surface. In our home rink that’s been skated on for years there is nothing to clean up on the synthetic ice surface – except dirt. Sales of synthetic ice proved to be a rewarding experience as well because not only did our clients really love our product, but it got my kids involved in the business from time to time doing exhibitions, skating demos, and taking care of the home practice rink.
SmartRink is a Canadian company that started sales of synthetic ice from scratch back in 2007. Since then we have become the largest Distributor and reseller of OKULEN and NOICEONE in the world. We have sales of synthetic ice all over the world and have successfully built hundreds of rinks during this time. Our biggest sale of synthetic ice was a full sized surface including all the hockey lines and markings. Its located at the Horizon Camp outside of Fort McMurray Canada. We believe it to be the largest permanent synthetic ice rink in the world. Others have tried where we have succeeded.
Sales of synthetic ice is not always easy. There are significant technical challenges especially in climates where the temperature variance between winter and summer can be a swing of 70 degrees centigrade. We compete and have sales of synthetic ice in these climates because we understand the value of a proper application based joint connection system. Other synthetic ice companies attempt to say that their system is “heavy duty” – but ours truly is and we have the data to back up this claim. Heavy duty synthetic ice is not a term describing the thickness of the material – but it refers to the material in combination with the connection system. If you are interested in sales of synthetic ice and a company suggests their “heavy duty” system – simply ask them to show you their test results for “sheer pull out strength”. Those test refer to horizontal AND vertical pull out strength tests. I certainly know of several rink failures that wished they had understood what these terms meant! They would would have selected a different product. But life is a lesson and we try to educate the industry one application at a time. We love sales of synthetic ice as much as our competitors do but we do not compromise skater safety and our success rate by sales of synthetic ice that are less than what a client deserves.
Some of my competitors in sales of synthetic ice say they have been in the business for over 30 years and that if not for them there would not be a synthetic ice industry!! Well, to them I say then they should know better and learned more! How can they still be selling panels that come apart with a temperature change? When it comes to sales of synthetic ice – please do your homework!