Adams Ice Rink 06-07

Monday, March 12, 2007

3/11 I Think We're Done

It's been three days now near 50°. That spells trouble for maintaining ice. The forecast isn't looking promising either. So I think it's a wrap for this season, but there may be hope for another day or two later next week if a cold snap hits for a few days (Not holding breath).

It was a great season and a hugely successful version of our rink, even though we didn't get started up until mid-January.

First skate - January 13
Last skate - March 7

Greatest improvement: Either the boards for shooting or the design change for the walls and bracing in the construction. Way better than before with the slanted sides at the deep end.

I love these rinks, even if they are nothing but work.

Monday, March 05, 2007

3/5 Great Skating on This Late Date

This is the latest in our four years to be skating. I'm totally stiff from shoveling the other night, but nights like tonight make it worth it all. The next two days look good but after that it'll be tough with highs in the 40s with bright sun. Not sure how to recover from that. We'll see though.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

3/1 Another Foot

Today we had another foot of snow. I'm not sure I'll be able to get it alll cleared off. It started out as a couple inches of slush then the big dump. All I know is I'm still sore from shoveling last week's storm...but it's for the kids right?

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

2/20 Only a Couple Weeks Left

It's been so fun out there these past couple weeks, but it looks as though the calendar says it should be warming up real soon. Our rink days are numbered. This is OK because we've had a great season so far. Even though we started a month too late we've had countless hours out there. I did have plans on tracking everything but I fell off that wagon early in the process.

It's been pretty warm the last couple days but the ice has held up real well. If we can hang in over the next three days we should eek out at least 10 more good skating days at least. Then all bets are off when March arrives. Hope for an early chill for the months, and then it's just fine to warm up.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

2/10 A Fun Day

Trip had a hockey tournament and Henry had a practice. Before practice we skated on our rink. After we returned from the games we headed out for a skate, and then decided to coll some folks last-minute like and before we knew it the rink was fullk of kids and fun.

Nights like these are the exact reason I build a rink every year.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

2/8 There Are Now Boards

It's cold, but who cares about that when you have something to shoot against? Today I finally spent the couple hours needed to get the boards attached to the south end of the rink today. Those babies are on there solid. I even added letting to keep stray pucks out of the neighbors yard. It's working great. Today Trip and I got out thee after school and took loads of shots against our new toy. It's great.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

2/7 Baby It's STILL Cold Out There

We're freezing. It's almost too cold to skate, but we've been trying out best to get out there and give it a whirl when we can. The length of time for each skating session is certainly shorter, but it's still a gas.

Below Zero is the call for much of the next week.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

2/1 Baby It's Cold Out There

Looks like the rink will not be getting much action over the next few days with the temps starting the nosedive to a place where I sure don't want to skate. The forecast is saying lows in the teens below zero for the next four or five nights. Yikes!!

We've been though this before and it'll just mean the two feet of water in the deep end should totally freeze solid. Now I just need to muster the energy to attach the new shooting boards to the rinks end and hang the net I bought and pour the new bases for the light poles and then get the new light poles out there. So much to do and there's only a month left in the season.

Such is the life of an Ice Master.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

1/24 More Great Skating

Trip and I were out there this morning before school. The ice is perfect and rock solid. There are some good sized cracks in the rink now and some of them start to chip away as we skate hard and push off at just the wrong spot. But a little layer of water will take care of these problems easy.

The kiddos were out all afternoon and part of the evening tonight too. Josie want's to get out there but I'm not sure if she's going to make it this year, next year for sure.Cracks

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

1/16 Nothing But Fun

Trip and his buddy playing hardIt's been cold and the gang has been enjoying the rink a lot over the last few days.

We had about five inches of snow the other day and the slush/water problem is still a little bit of a problem. The slush froze up good and hard. Now I've got a corner which has lots of bumps and ice chipping away...what they call shell ice.

Other than that the rest is really nice. No problems like last year. We're in gooooooood shape. The kids have been spending hours each day out there...even though it's been so cold, they think it's great. And it is! They can go out for just five or 10 minutes and then get back in the house to warm up -- that's perfect.

Now all I need to do is get out there and take care of the corner and do a little resurfacing.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

1/14 Snow and Skating

From across the wayGot out there myself for the first time tonight....but it was to shovel off the three inches of new snow which fell this afternoon. Problem was that with such a fresh rink the weight of the snow on the relatively thin sheet of ice has pushed it down forcing up the water below in a corner. Makes for some good slush and potential trouble.

Earlier today Trip Henry and Evie were out there skating away even though they all had hockey today with their teams.

Should get about six inches total.

Trouble brewing?

Saturday, January 13, 2007

1/13 First Skate of the Year

After just 36 hours of freezing the rink was ready to go for the kids tonight. I stepped on the ice for a short time and it's probably OK but I'll give it another day just in case. There's about two inches of ice on top which seems plenty strong. Evie, Henry and Trip were out there skating away tonight under the lights. Warms a man's heart to see them enjoying it.

The rink is in fine shape. There are a couple very small leaks, probably from cat cats chewing on the liner. I patched about 40 little holes in the plastic when I made the collar for the tree. The bracing system I put in this year is a winner. The full height boards are working super good and there's no sign of failure anywhere. This is all good...especially after all the disasters from the previous only took four seasons and seven tries to get it right (three times the first year after two total blowouts, one time the second year when I lucked out with my bad design, two times last year after getting cocky and creating a disaster, and this one).

It only took about 30 hours to get it set up...and that sounds like a lot...and it is but now that we've got ice and some cold temps it looks like at least seven or eight weeks of great skating for the kids is in store. Better late than never.

Friday, January 12, 2007

1/12 Finally Some Ice

I dropped the liner in the rink yesterday because the big chill is headed our way. I used a heat gun to help warm the plastic and tape to aid in the seaming for the tree. Once that was all done then I set the liner in place as best I could. The wind was a bit of a problem trying to catch the liner and fly it away.

Once set in place I turned on the water. I set up three hoses, one from the front, one from the back, and one from the downstairs utility sink. That water was moving...and three hoses is the way to go. It was filling at a rate of 1000 gallons or so per hour and ran for almost 13 hours. 12,400 gallons total.

By tonight the temperatures were at about 4°F and the rink was covered with about an inch of ice. This is a good start. I predict skating by Sunday, for sure by Monday.

Friday, January 05, 2007

1/4 Still nothing

Maybe at the end of this upcoming weekend it should start to cool down a bit. But until then we're still looking at a grass rink...nothing.

Friday, December 29, 2006

12/28 Still Nothing

I've been waiting and doing nothing while temperatures hover near and over the freezing mark. If I had done this earlier this month I think I would have pretty much a whole month of skating under the belt...but as it sits right now...with this being the fifth warmest December on record...I've still got good grass outside.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

12/21 First Snow, No Ice Yet

We're patiently waiting. I finally finished the boards securing them totally. Those babies are rock hard...super solid. If those boards fail this year and I get leaks...I'm calling in an architect next year.

Now we wait for the cold. I do have to fabricate the liner still but that shouldn't take too long. I can get that done sometime in the next few days before we drop her in the rink and fill it up.

Monday, December 18, 2006

12/18 Nothin Yet

Spent another five hours yesterday bracing up the outsides. If there's anything I can recommend when building a rink is to design it with enough strength to hold all the water, and then multiply that by five and you'll then be half way to the strength you'll really need. Don't forget...water is heavy, heavy, heavy.

The weather is looking cool but not cold any time soon. Maybe by Christmas I can get something flowing in there ready to freeze.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

12/16 Boards are done, finally

Well, the boards are finally complete. Next step is to brace the whole thing around the perimeter. This has been a source of constant battle in the past. This'll be my fourth rink and I'm determined not to allow the same bone-headed mistakes take me down again. And they have always been a function of how strong to make to bracing. I've always gone too little and it's not going to happen again this year.

I'm in for 14 1/2 hours construction so far, still no water or ice.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

12/5 Still No Action

Empty rink with cold everywhereI'm a little bummed out on the rink front. Things have been so crazy with our schedules revolving around Josie's hospital thing and Trip's hockey and family and friends...I just haven't had time to get the rink underway. It's too bad because we just had a stretch of weather which couldn't be more perfect for ice making.

So there the empty rink sits and the yard is a mess with construction materials waiting for the several hour board-reinforcing project, then to fabricate the liner around the tree and drop drop it in the rink. Maybe by next week I can get something done. In the mean time I sit and watch the cold dreaming of the ice that could have been.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

11/28 Way Behind

I'm so out of it. The temps are heading south in a hurry and I'm so far behind...not even close to getting going. The top boards are up and ready, but there's no bracing yet and there are huge gaps under the boards which need to be filled. The liner needs to be fabricated to accommodate the tree yet, and only then can I get it out there and start the fill.

Highs in the 20s and lows in the teens to single digits...and I'm not even close to ready yet.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

11/26 2/3 done with the boards

5 hours today - 8 hr 15 min total build time so far.

Today I got the entire top rim of the boards completed. Now there are all kinds of gaps under the boards which need filling. This has proved to be a big challenge in the past, but this year I'm going to actually try to do it right rather than goof around with rigging up a fix all winter.

I've scrounged up some more lumber which i need to cut up to fit under the boards. This will likely take several more hours.

Friday, November 24, 2006

11/24 It's underway

We emptied out the garage this afternoon and got started on this year's version of our famous annual time-sink. The Rink!

Henry and I hauled everything out...checked it over and were in a little disbelief that there were so many parts. All the stakes, and the nails, and to boards, and the braces (including all the ones I DIDN'T use last time), the lights, the concrete bases...everything.

Last year I stored all the side boards up and down in the garage only to find that they had totally twisted over the summer which made it super hard to get straight sides. Last spring I laid the boards flat for storage and put the most twisted boards at the bottom and stacked everything on top in hopes that it would straighted out over the summer. It worked and the worst twists were now straight..lesson learned.

I only got about 1/3 of the boards up so far for about 3 ½ hours work.

More to come