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BEST! Nils Master
Hand Augers
Clam Bigfoot
Jiffy Propane
Quick Fish III
3 man
Striker Ice Fishing
Suit Reviews

Nils Master Ice Auger

Nils Master Ice Augers

I bet you have at least three different hand augers all dusty/rusty in the garage or basement. At about $50 per auger average price, you have about $150 worth of slow-cutting junk. You need new auger blades and they are harder to find because your hand augers are old. When you pick the best and most expensive one out of your pile, you probably grab the Strikemaster Lazer Hand Auger in the 5" diameter. Then you and your buddy head out on the lake.

You start drilling the first hole with your left hand pushing down on the mushroom and the right arm turning the auger in a clockwise rotation. As the auger cuts into the ice, 30 turns later and 1 inch down, you switch hands to give your turning arm a break. Then another 30 turns, with only 20 inches of ice to go, you grasp the mushroom with both hands and push down as your buddy grabs the rotational handle of the auger with both hands and spins wildly. Then you both switch. When you finally get thru the ice with your 5" hole, you are both sweating like pigs. You make the decision to both fish out of the same 5" hole because it's too much work to make another hole. Your jigs get tangled constantly. You hang it up and go home all dejected.

Here's the solution: Get a Nils Master Hi-Velocity Hand Auger. I know, it sounds like a sales pitch, but with an 8" Nils Master auger, you will cut an 8" hole in 26 inches of solid ice - by yourself - in about 22 seconds FLAT!!!!!!! I've done it myself. I had witnesses! NOTHING else cuts like this auger. The Finlanders who built this ice auger know more about cutting holes in ice than anybody on the planet. From a hand auger standpoint - they are gods! When it comes to the advancement of ice fishing, Finlanders are the absolute experts. Want to catch fish? Get a Finlander to join your group. It's like having a lake trout magnet.

Note the DIFFERENCES between this auger on the left and all other hand augers. The first big difference is that the Nils Ice Auger has OFFSET handles with NO flares on the bottom of the handles. It is designed on purpose to not have a significant way to push down on the hand ice auger. With a Nils, you let the auger do the cutting. All other augers intend that you PUSH down on them that's when you push with both hands and your buddy turns the crank. No need for that with a Nils Master Auger. Turn it using both hands an watch the shaft of the auger keeping it from wobbling. It's hard to do in the first 30 seconds because you are used to the old design, but just watch the shaft and keep it straight. Approximately 10% of the hand auger world will get this important detail wrong, over and over and over. Be one of the 90% and keep the shaft straight while turning the auger and don't push down hard. You'll be shocked at how this auger slices through the ice. I'm not making this up: I have different customers who have witnessed a guys with 6" Nils hand augers beating gas power augers several different times in Michigan. By the time the guy over there gets his Jiffy Gas Auger out, cranks it up, warms it up and starts to drill, the Nils has two holes in the ice. Unlike the Jiffy or an other gas auger, the Nils Master Hand Auger always starts in any temperature.

Now, if you will be drilling in 20+ inches of ice all the time, maybe owning a gas powerhead is warranted. It is for me. I can drill about four, eight inch holes in 26" of ice and then that's it for me. Takes about 2 minutes but that will wear me out for at least a half hour. So, if you are an "ice troller", get the Nils Power head. When you buy a complete Nils Power Auger, you get the hand-crank handle, and the Tanaka industrial quality motor. The Tanaka motor in the Nils package is made to run about 600 hours. A regular power auger motor is made to last about 200 hours. Now, granted that's a lot of holes, but this is more of an illustration of the quality of engines and tighter tolerances. You're getting a much better engine with the Tanaka as opposed to all other engines on other augers. With the Nils Power Auger package, you're good to go for any situation, motorized or motorless and comparatively, it's really lightweight.

The difference NIls has over other power augers is weight and speed. Nils ice augers are just faster right off the bat and they weigh a lot less than conventional power ice augers. This particular ice auger weighs in at about 22 pounds and will drill an 8" hole in 26 inches of ice in about 11 seconds - half the time of drilling by hand. The Tanaka motor is quiet and you can actually talk while it's running at full throttle unlike our older Strikemaster Tecumseh Engine that shuts down all communications except hand signals for a 30 foot radius. Some of those cheap, big-box-retailer, chinese-engine ice augers sound like a Harley attached to an auger. You hear them all over the lake from 5 miles away. Need hearing protection when using them and they're probably not allowed in California or Massachusetts. I can't imagine trying to drill out holes inside of permanent fish houses with those noisy, blattle-trap, smoky junkers with one chipper blade at the bottom.

We usually outfit all the Nils Master Power Auger packages with the optional Power Points. This is a little mini auger built on to the end of the main blades that serves as a pilot for guiding the auger in a straighter line through the ice. Can you use the hand auger with the Power Point: Absolutely!!! Will it slow you down? NO. Do you need the Power Point on the power set up: NO. Can the Power Point be a pain in the neck: YES - when you crack off one side by hitting an obstacle that is not ice (like the top of a reef), or doing the really stupid maneuver I watch SO MANY ice fisherman do when drilling. Right at break-through at the bottom of the hole, they literally pound their big-pig auger at the final one inch of ice to break through because it wants to hang up when it finally slices through the last bit of ice. You see 'em all the time, bouncing the auger in the hole to punch it through. No friggin' wonder why they crack their blade bolts on regualr power augers. HOW STUPID is THAT! Don't do that with the Nils and you should be fine.

With any power auger, you should pull up slightly at break-through so it doesn't catch the ice so hard and get stuck. That would be the common sense part. Shave less, don't pound. It's not a hammer. However, when you do get stuck as I have done myself with a Strikemaster Electra, you're kinda hosed for a bit. Wind the moter backwards and it just spins. You end up having to wiggle it around and I worry about changing the blade pitch by bending when I'm trying to unstick it. If the blade angle changes just 1 degree by bending or pounding thru, it never cuts right again no matter how new the replacement blades are. With the Nils Master it's different. Unlike all other power augers, NIls' powerhead has a transmission lock that allows you to flip a switch and lock the transmission. Then you just unwind the auger by hand. I don't know any other power auger that comes with this feature and they really all should. Also, Nils Master blades are not individual pieces on opposite sides of the auger. The Nils blade is one continous piece of metal. To change the blade, you pull one bolt, slide the whole unit off and slide another in place and replace the bolt. The bolt is there to keep the blade on the end of the augershaft and does not experience any stress from the turning shaft. The fluting of the auger is the part that actually drives the blade. There is nothing to shear off or jam up, no two bolts thru each blade like you see on regular augers. Those two bolts that hold the auger blades in place on regular augers experience a ton of stress as the blades are forced against the ice. Snap one off and see how the rest of your day will go. They also interfere with chipping ice requiring a bigger motor to turn them. On a Nils auger package, everything is smooth and designed to slice thru ice with less resistance. As a result, you can use a smaller, lighter powerhead. This is just a superior auger, plain and simple.

Can't afford the whole thing today? Just get the hand auger. Buy the Nils power head when your finances are better. You will not be disappointed.

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Hand Ice Augers

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Comparable Models from a Size Standpoint:

Lighter and faster than other power ice augers. Only power auger made that can be converted to hand auger, period.


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