With the winter season fast approaching, fishing on our rivers and lakes will now switch to the good ol’ ice fishing. Ice Fishing can be really enjoyable when you have the right equipment, dress nicely for the occasion and you have proper shelter in the event of inclement weather. Finally, it can be a memorable experience if you are in good company and you get the one that could barely come out of the hole.
When you head out on the frozen lake or river, you will require the right equipment. Missing an important piece of gear once you are in the middle of a lake could make an ice fishing expedition frustrating and lead to potential disaster. One of these essential piece of equipment is definitely an ice auger. Finding the best ice fishing auger doesn’t need to be complicated. That is why we make it simple for you. Ice augers can come in manual mode or in gas mode.
The gas type is of course more expensive but you will save a great amount of time and effort with a gas one. if you plan on doing a lot of ice fishing in the winter, I would recommend you invest a few more dollars and get the gas ice augers. If you are looking at the ones sitting at your local outdoor or hardware shop, you may be in for rude awakening. Personally, the brand that brings quality to ice fishing is the Eskimo brand.
Eskimo has been around for years and they will back their products up with a solid warranty. In other words, with the Eskimo brands you know what you will get. Based out of Wisconsin, where cold weather is king, Eskimo redefines the ice fishing sport with excellent tools and accessories. Let’s have a look at some of their ice augers.
I will provide some insights from some of my friends that did get an Eskimo Ice Auger and as well ratify and consolidate some of the reviews you may find pertinent in your ice auger acquisition.
This ice fishing auger comes under three different model numbers. As you know, the more cc you get, the more your price will go up. In general, a power ice fishing auger will range anywhere from $300.00 to $500.00. Is it expensive? It is a bit in my view, but as I mentioned above, the time wasted in drilling a hole manually on hard rock ice, may prove to be a crappy fishing expedition. Energy and time spent in cold weather amplifies the need to abandon quickly and leave the big one under the ice layer you are standing on.
With the Shark Z51, you will get a two-cycle 51.7cc engine that will drill the ice with a clean 8 inches diameter hole. It has a great length for thicker ice at 42 inches. One big feature on this one is that it comes with the blade protectors which is essential to preserve the integrity of your blades. They will stay sharp and without any rust appearance in the long run.
Headed by the viper engine, the Eskimo Shark Z51 weighs 38 lbs. So it has a bit of weight but the power emitted by the engine will make the handling of this beast a short duration. Its power head comes with a lot of features. It has a mitten-grip recoil coupled with a industry-first Hypercoil recoil. The Hypercoil recoil provides the technology that reduces a required pulling force by up to 62%. So you won’t be sweating your heart out when starting your ice auger.
In addition to the Quantum blades mentioned above, you will be glad to see that the Eskimo Shark Z51 has industry-first aluminum handlebars designed with 45 degree rubber-coated grips that allow ideal wrist motion when drilling a hole. The aluminum handle bars are conceived to reduce the weight of the ice fishing auger and concentrate the weight on the engine’s power. The Shark Z51 is quick and easy to control, so you’ll spend less time drilling and more time fishing. Featured is the primer button for quick response starting and the see-through gas tank for easy gas level detection. A muffler guard is there to protect you from hot areas and avoid any burnt marks on your fingers.
Eskimo Z51cc Ice Fishing Auger Features
- 8 inch diameter auger;
- 42 inch auger length;
- 25:1 gear ratio;
- High profile on/off toggle switch;
- Aluminum handle bars; and
- Blade protector included.
The Eskimo Z51 Power Ice Fishing Auger comes with its perfect carrying bag (sold separately but it can be combined when getting it here). The carrying bag is listed at $39.99, which is cheap if you want to preserve your power ice fishing auger for years. It will protect it from snow, rain, slush, debris and humidity. It will also keep your vehicle free of blade scratches and residues from drilling.
We really liked the pocket provided to insert your tools, should you have to perform any unexpected maintenance on the ice auger. Keep in mind and take note that the 10-inch ice auger may be a bit too snug and tight to fit in. The 8-inch diameter will fit nicely.
Eskimo Power Ice Auger Carrying Bag Features
- Carry straps strategically located to offer a balanced load;
- Constructed with heavy duty 600D polyester fabric and full length premium YKK, #10 coil style zipper for long life;
- Universal design fits most power ice augers with up to 10″ auger; and
- Storage pocket for 2-cycle oil, spark plugs, wrenches and other gear.
The price of the Eskimo Shark Z51 is very affordable for its engine driven power at $369.99USD. A friend of mine got it and is extremely happy. He notes the this HTML class. Value is http://amzn.to/2dT1Ishort time needed in drilling his holes, which allows him to spend more time focusing on fishing. You will easily find other ice auger at a much higher price with less features and power. There are other Eskimo Ice Augers available online, which we identified as top notch ice augers.
The second one we came across is the Eskimo High Compression 40cc Propane 8-inch Quantum Ice Auger.
The Eskimo High Compression 40cc ice fishing auger brings the same Eskimo quality to an ice fishing auger. This one comes as a 4-cycle propane powered ice auger. The advantage in this case is that it is a clean burning engine and it comes with low maintenance. The disadvantage resides with the weight. It is a bit heavier and they are harder to handle.
In addition, those propane fuelled type are lightweight and they can lack power. In this case Eskimo took the time to design this ice fishing auger from the ground up. They created an auger that is lightweight while being powerful enough to drill an 8-inch hole in no time. What is particular with this 40cc propane ice auger is that Eskimo created an engine capable to run on a higher octane with its propane fuel capability. The HC40 higher compression ratio creates more power out of a smaller package. In return, the ice angler will enjoy the lightweight and power provided.
Durable, the powerful high compression engine will perform for years when paired with the all-metal, sealed, ball bearing transmission and fast cutting 2 blade Quantum augers. The Eskimo HC 40 Propane Driven Ice Fishing Auger brings a certain reliability in your equipment like many ice augers won’t. Like the Shark Z51, it has a length of 42 inches so thick ice won’t be a problem. It is lighter than the Shark weighing only 27 lbs. The Auto-Prime Fuel system is a nice feature in the Eskimo High-Compression 40cc. The Auto-Prime cuts the need to prime the engine before starts. All you are required to do is flip the switch to ON and start to drill.
Eskimo HC40 Ice Fishing Auger Features:
- 8 inch diameter auger;
- 42 inch auger length;
- High compression 40cc 4-cycle engine;
- Quick release bottle holder holds 1 lb. propane cylinder; and
- Auto-Prime Fuel System.
The HC 40 from Eskimo Ice Fishing Auger is well worth the money if you don’t want to have to deal with gas and having to endure the smell of gas in your vehicle. Its price is in the window of quality ice fishing augers at $449.00. You can always check online and see if any discounts are in effect.
If you are ice fishing more on a budget, then you may want to consider a hand auger. A hand auger can still drill a hole in the ice but it will not be power-driven. All you use is your arms and hands. It takes more time, but if your blades are very sharp, a hand ice fishing auger may be the solution for you.
The big advantage is the cost, of course. You can easily get a hand auger under a $100.00. Again if you are to choose this route, expect you will take a bit more time to get set up and get your fishing holes done. But if you are ice fishing on a budget, Eskimo has a great hand auger available that many customers found outstanding.
In other words, if you are to go the manual way the Eskimo Hand Auger is your best bet. The Eskimo Hand Auger easily cuts through the ice to create clean fishing holes in a snap because of the sharpness of its blades. It has replaceable steel blades which are very easy to change in the event you need to replace them due to dullness or chips. The Eskimo Hand Ice Auger can drill hoes of: 6″, 7″, or 8″ diameter.
The ice fishing auger comes with a cross bolt fastener system which makes it easy to assemble and disassemble the blades. In addition, you will notice the Eskimo Hand Auger has a pommel design which provides a great grip when drilling. The length of the Eskimo hand auger varies in length. You can get this auger at a adjustable length of 49-58″ length with 6″ cutting diameter, 49-58″ length with 7″ cutting diameter, or 49-58″ length with 8″ cutting diameter.
The Eskimo Hand Auger is fairly light, so it is easy to carry and easy to maneuver. It weighs only 6 lbs. Finally the hand auger comes with a one warranty, should you break a blade or warp them.
The bottom line in getting an ice fishing auger depends on two important factors. First, how much ice fishing will you do during the winter season. Based on that response, it will determine what type of ice fishing auger you will get. If you plan to go ice fishing less then a dozen time, a hand auger may be more economical. If you plan to go many time over the winter, the Eskimo Shark z51 or the HC40cc may prove to be a life savior.