Skate on Your Deck, in the Sun

When you think of ice skating, you probably think of a winter landscape scene, a frozen pond or a lake and bundled-up skaters holding hands. Maybe you think about Rockefeller Center or another public plaza that installs an ice rink in winter, or your mind conjures images of a Zamboni coming out to surface the ice at the indoor rink before another figure skater appears or the team comes back out. 

Whatever you’re imagining, when it comes to ice skating, you generally think of cold, and, well, ice. But that image is changing with the advent of synthetic ice.

Synthetic ice tiles are changing what it means to ice skate. No longer does the weather have to be cold enough to freeze water for you to enjoy ice skating.

At KwikRink, synthetic ice is our specialty. We invented a patented formula, and we have installed ice skating rinks in all sorts of fun places for ice skating enthusiasts to enjoy year-round. Check out our gallery to get inspired.

What Are Synthetic Ice Tiles?

 

Synthetic ice is made from high-density polyethylene or ultra high molecular weight polyethylene and other polymers. Today’s synthetic ice has built-in lubricants to improve glide and reduce friction. Most estimates give synthetic ice 90 percent of the glide factor of natural ice.

Synthetic ice comes in long sheets, consistently sized tiles, or custom-cut pieces, depending on your needs. The pieces interlock together, typically with a dovetail system, creating a synthetic ice rink in just the size you need. 

What Size is Best for a Synthetic Ice Rink?

The size of your installation depends on your available space, budget, and how you will use your rink. If you have a budding ice skater or hockey player, a small synthetic ice installation of under 300 square feet will be perfect. Many garages are 12’ x 22’, which means a garage conversion can give you skater plenty of space to work on fundamentals.

If you need a place to get in a workout or practice, a smaller synthetic ice installation works well. You can work on starts, spins, and turns within this space.

Skating on your blades on synthetic ice is far better than attempting to practice on roller blades, which require a different technique and balance. Getting your time in the skates and building muscles is easily done with a smaller installation.

If you are or have a family member who is a future hockey star, a small installation is perfect for practicing fundamentals. Puck glide on synthetic ice is very similar to natural ice, so you can practice stick-handling and shooting easily. Set up a goal at one end, and also practice face-offs and defense as well as skating stamina.

USA Hockey endorses a small rink approach for mastering fundamentals such as strides, pivots, turns, passing, and shooting.

If you’re looking to put in a commercial synthetic ice rink for many people to use at once or to host team practices or games, you’ll need a larger (more than 300 sq. ft.) installation. Here are some places where you can install synthetic ice.

Some Good Places to Install Synthetic Ice Tiles

Your imagination is the only limit to where you can install synthetic ice. Here are some suggestions:

  • Rooftop — Minneapolis and other cities have a lot of beautiful apartment, condo, and loft buildings, many of which have rooftop decks. Add a synthetic rink for community fun.
  • Basements — Concrete slabs are perfect for synthetic ice tiles.
  • Former warehouses or industrial spaces — Convert vacant retail or industrial spaces into a fun synthetic ice rink.
  • Garages — Take out the boxes and vehicles and use the area for skating practice.
  • Swimming pools — If you drain your pool in winter and have a single-depth, you can cover the pool bottom with synthetic ice for three seasons of alternative fun.
  • Parking lots — Is the area flat and paved? It could be a synthetic ice rink.
  • Gymnasiums — convert the gym into an ice rink, then pick up the tiles and play basketball later.
  • Cafeterias or cafetoriums — does your school have a cafeteria? You can lay down synthetic ice tiles for an ice-skating extravaganza.
  • Practice rooms — athletic facilities that have separate practice rooms or studios can convert one into an ice rink for hockey or figure skating drills.
  • Dance studios — if you have a room used for dance or yoga, it can quickly become an ice rink using synthetic ice tiles.

Type and Size of Synthetic Ice Tiles

 

Synthetic ice tiles come in varying sizes and thicknesses. The kind you need depends on your budget, space, use, and plans to clean them. Thinner tiles are more budget-conscious and won’t last as long as thicker ones. However, you can get a good 3-5 years out of them and grow your rink later with higher quality tiles. 

Budget-friendly tiles are a good choice if you have a new skater and aren’t sure if they will stick with it. Smaller synthetic ice tiles are also lighter weight and easier to install and remove for a multi-purpose space. 

Larger tiles are better for larger installations since they reduce the number of seams you will have across the surface. You can also opt for tongue and groove seam connections instead of the dovetail design, for an even smoother surface that stays cleaner longer.

Thicker tiles are heavier and better for installations that are more or less permanent. They also last up to a decade or more.

Whatever the size of your planned ice rink, there are synthetic ice tiles to suit your needs and your budget.

Contact KwikRink to Get Started

KwikRink Synthetic Ice® is a Maple Grove, MN company. We have installed synthetic ice rinks in many locations in the Twin Cities area, but you can find KwikRink installations in five continents around the world.

As a pioneer in developing synthetic ice, we’ve been in the business since the mid-1990s. We’ve just introduced our fifth generation patented product, which provides unsurpassed glide and reduced drag. 

Fill out our rink configuration form to get started or give us a call at (888) 275-2345 to speak with one of our friendly staff. Soon you’ll have a synthetic ice rink to hone your puck handling skills or help your child develop stronger skating technique. 

 

Synthetic ice, the new rage

What Are You Skating On?

When you apply pressure to ice, it melts. When you ice skate, the blade of your skate presses against the ice which creates a thin film of water that acts as a lubricant to allow the blade to slide.

While skating, you are really skating on a thin film of water. At Kwik Rink, we’ll recreate that same experience for you using synthetic ice panels. Ask us how.

What is Synthetic Ice?

Synthetic ice, sometimes referred to as artificial ice, is a surface that simulates that of frozen h²o.  Synthetic ice panels have been around for decades, enabling year-round skating but due to a multitude of performance issues, synthetic ice rinks never quite caught on.

Thankfully, we’ve made significant improvements in synthetic ice panel designs that have drastically improved the quality and experience of synthetic ice rinks.

You Need an Even Surface

Most synthetic ice rinks use a puzzle or dovetail system in which ice panels are interlocked horizontally but not vertically. This system can cause a shift in the panels, which causes the ice to be uneven. Puzzle connections are long and can allow dirt and water to enter, creating an uneven surface or shifting panels.

By utilizing a tongue and groove, the ice panels are interlocked both horizontally and vertically. Interlocking the synthetic ice panels this way prevents the panels from shifting in any direction. This connection system creates a smooth, even surface, just like real ice.

Less Friction = Better Skating

Many synthetic ice panels are composed of low-quality materials that cause friction. This friction causes an unsatisfactory skating experience, dulling skates in the process.

A skater’s smooth flow requires there be no friction. Friction makes gliding difficult, requiring more effort, and also makes a skater exert more energy which detracts from the enjoyment of skating. The highest quality materials must be used to create synthetic ice panels to get the best skating experience.

You Want An Authentic Ice Experience

Most companies utilize new technologies to manufacture synthetic ice panels in an attempt to make skating as easy and as pleasant as possible. However, most plastic ice rinks fail to recreate an authentic ice-like feeling on their synthetic surfaces.

You need to look for ice rinks that use the newest high-quality material and create a response identical to that of authentic ice. Only when a skater feels they are truly skating on ice can they reach their highest potential.

No More Shavings and Abrasions

The Synthetic Ice Buyer’s Guide lists shavings and abrasions as one of the top considerations in selecting a synthetic ice panel for purchase. Inferior quality synthetic ice panels cause shavings and abrasions.

These low-quality panels make the ice rink messy, are hard to clean, and leave skaters unhappy. Using self-lubricating panels adds to the quality of the synthetic ice rink.

No Additional Chemicals

No chemicals need to be added to self-lubricating synthetic ice panels to create a smooth surface. However, this alone does not guarantee exceptional performance.

Every aspect of the synthetic rink process from the production of the synthetic ice panels using the highest quality materials, to the mechanism and pattern by which the panels are connected, to the care of the panels themselves, determine a quality synthetic ice rink.

Stop Dulling Your Blades

If you want to stop blades from being dulled from friction, you will need a premium glide technology with enhanced molecular structure. Low-quality plastic ice rinks do not incorporate this technology, which makes skating difficult and miserable.

Synthetic ice rinks that utilize a premium glide technology enhance the skaters’ glide and allow you to have a better grip just like real ice rinks. These are the perfect conditions for you to attain your skating goals.

High-Quality Materials are a Bargain

Buying cheap synthetic ice panels will cost you in the long run. There are many lower priced, synthetic ice panels which are also of lower quality that will not last. Low quality, cheap, synthetic ice panels, get discolored from the sun and changing weather conditions, many even begin to break down and degrade considerably.

Assurance Your Rink Will Last

High-quality synthetic ice panels incorporate UV protection. The manufacturers know high-quality raw materials are vital to ensure the life and usefulness of quality synthetic ice panels.

If you purchase a quality synthetic ice rink, it will provide long-lasting enjoyment. A high-quality synthetic ice rink will be well worth your investment

Accessories Are Important

Using low-quality accessories will ruin a synthetic ice rink. If your skates are sub-par or your dasher-boards are foul, they’re going to impact your rink negatively. If you want to maintain that even, flawless, synthetic ice, the use of high-quality, compatible, durable accessories is essential to your success. Don’t skimp on the accessories!

Synthetic Rinks Are Gaining Popularity

Using synthetic ice panels to create ice rinks is gaining popularity. Synthetic ice panels have some significant advantages over traditional ice rinks. Synthetic ice panels can get used continuously without re-surfacing and gliding on synthetic ice panels is much more consistent than that of real ice.

The glide factor on traditional ice starts at 100% then reduces to approximately 80% after just a few hours of usage, unlike glide-factor of synthetic ice panels on which does not diminish over time.

Synthetic ice panels are more economical than traditional ice. There is no need to replenish water or use electricity for refrigeration. Synthetic ice panels are environmentally friendly.

Skate Anytime You Want

By utilizing synthetic ice panels, you can have that ice rink you’ve always dreamed. You can have the flexibility to practice your sport at any time. You can play ice hockey in the summer and fulfill all of your icy desires.

Let’s Get Skating

Are you in the market for a fantastic, all-year ice rink? If so, Kwik Rink has what you are looking for. At Kwik Rink we’ll provide you the realistic feel of an ice rink in the form of the highest quality synthetic ice panels preferred by professionals and experts. We use only the highest quality materials and employ the newest technology to provide you a fantastic synthetic ice rink experience.

Give us a call at Kwik Rink, and we’ll get you skating right away.

home synthetic ice rink

If you think you need a covered stadium to build an ice skating or hockey rink, think again!  The advent of cool, ice-less synthetic rinks means that you can create a place to skate year-round in all kinds of nifty places, and this includes your very own backyard!

At KwikRink Synthetic Ice,™ we’ve been involved in creating and manufacturing synthetic ice since the mid-1990s. We’ve seen the product grow and get even better for feeling like real ice.

We’ve also been part of some advances to make synthetic ice more flexible and affordable. That means that more people and localities can install synthetic ice rinks and enjoy skating without the high costs of refrigeration and maintaining a real ice rink.

Here are some cool places that you can build a synthetic ice rink. Give us a call if you want to get started on one!

Your Basement

A basement can be the perfect place to transform into a hockey rink. You need a flat surface to install synthetic ice, and basements typically have a concrete slab floor. You can turn unfinished storage space into fabulous rink space for practice and fun.

Have a smaller basement? Turn a portion of it into a practice area for stick-handling and shooting. Set up a goal in the corner and have a short space to dribble, pass, and score — or defend.

Your Driveway

A synthetic rink can be built up using side-boards and a foundation to make a flat area, kind of like an above-ground pool. If you have available street parking or a long driveway with an extension, you can turn your rectangular area into a home rink for practicing those skating moves.

Your Backyard

If you have room enough in your backyard for a swimming pool, you have room for a rink. You can build a deck from wood or pour a slab if you want something more permanent. Install your synthetic ice rink on top of it.

You could also create benches or other seating areas for spectators and other skaters. Imagine sipping a cold one on a summer’s day and watching your kids play hockey in the backyard. It could happen!

Game Courts

If you have a multi-purpose room at your school, community center, or parks and recreation site, you can turn your game court into a hockey rink by installing synthetic ice. If you need to use the court for many purposes, you can install a synthetic ice rink by snapping the panels together on the floor.

It’s quick and easy and only takes a rubber mallet to get the job done. It’s not a permanent installation, and you can lift the synthetic ice panels and store to convert the gymnasium back into a basketball court or for dodgeball.

If you do want a year-round ice rink solution, you can still use synthetic ice. The installation changes slightly to put in anchor plates to make it a permanent fixture.

You can keep it synthetic ice at all times, for the closest thing to real ice you can find. KwikRink’s synthetic ice has 90% of the friction of actual ice, and skates and pucks behave very similarly.

Synthetic ice means you don’t have to maintain refrigeration of the ice or use a Zamboni to maintain it. A synthetic ice rink can be a cost-effective solution for many rec centers.

If you install a synthetic ice rink but have cold winters where keeping ice frozen is not a problem, you can have your cake and eat it too. In the winter, you can flood a synthetic rink with water and create an actual ice rink on top of it.

When the weather warms, thaw and remove the ice, and your synthetic rink is ready to go with a little mopping.

Garages and Outbuildings

You can easily convert your garage, with its poured concrete floor, into a synthetic ice rink. Our KwikRink synthetic ice is strong enough that you can even park your car on it. That means you don’t have to remove the synthetic ice to use your garage for your car sometimes.

Just remember to back it out when you want to skate and remember that although synthetic ice isn’t as slick as actual ice, it is still slippery. When you walk to or from your car, treat it like real ice to avoid falls!

You can also construct or use a pre-fab shed or outbuilding with a poured or wooden floor to create a synthetic rink. Sheds are low-cost additions, and synthetic ice rinks do not require access to water, plumbing or power, so you can save money and still get your covered rink on your property.

On a Rooftop

You’ve heard of rooftop pools and patios. Why not a rooftop synthetic ice rink? Many condo buildings, apartment buildings, or hybrid towers have large flat roofs that they have turned into community amenities and features. A synthetic ice rink doesn’t create the weight of an actual ice rink, so it doesn’t stress your roof’s structure.

Imagine a multi-purpose rooftop patio with some folks barbecuing in the corner, some others sunbathing, reading, or looking at the views, and still some others playing a pick-up game of hockey.

If you don’t want to have the hockey rink installed all-year-round, synthetic ice comes in panels or tiles that you can put down and pick up again quickly.

Get Started on Your Custom Synthetic Rink

As you can see, you can install a synthetic ice rink almost anywhere! When you’re ready to consider a project that turns underused space in or near your home or business into a fabulous place to play and exercise, give the pros at KwikRink a call or complete our rink configuration form.

We’ve got a bank of ideas for cool places to build synthetic ice rinks and a gallery of completed projects to help spark your imagination.

At KwikRink, we stand by our product and have a customer satisfaction guarantee. Enjoy long-lasting durability and superior performance with a KwikRink synthetic ice rink. Give us a call, and let’s see what we can build for you.

Is an underlay for my new synthetic ice rink necessary? Well, this depends on a lot of variables. It is very important that the synthetic ice panels be laid on top of a hard and flat surface. In this article, we will dive into three categories that all sub-floors fall into when it comes to the necessity of having a synthetic ice underlay; no underlay, simple underlay, and advanced underlay.

No Synthetic Ice Underlay

When no underlay is needed for a synthetic ice rink, it tends to be in an inside space with a very flat and hard sub-floor. We also see this outside on sport courts that were done correctly by the contractor. These are any floors with no flaws.

  • Indoor rooms/basements
  • Sport courts
  • Tennis courts
  • Leveled decks

Simple Synthetic Ice Underlay

A “simple underlay” is needed when the sub-floor has some flaws, but is mostly hard and flat. Undulation in the sub-floor is the biggest reason for a simple underlay – most of these surfaces are still hard (concrete,asphalt, wood, etc.). This can require something as simple as using 3/4″ OSB tongue and groove plywood. The plywood is very flat, and will provide extra forgiveness in a flawed sub-floor. Rubber matting can also be used as an underlay for your synthetic ice panels in these type of scenarios.

    • driveways
    • parking lots
    • streets
    • on pavers

Advanced Synthetic Ice Underlay

An advanced synthetic ice underlay is necessary when hardness of the sub-floor is not up to par and/or the sub-floor is very un-level. These tend to be a little more work, as these have the worst sub-floors to place synthetic ice panels on. The best ways to remedy this is to pour a concrete slab (like a sport court) or build a raised wooden deck. The deck platform does not have to be very high off of the ground, but does need to be made level.

  • grassy areas
  • some parking lots
  • turf
  • carpet

Synthetic ice rinks are possible anywhere with the right sub-floor. It is important to assess to which degree a synthetic ice underlay is necessary for optimal performance of the skating surface. Often times, no underlay is needed at all. Don’t fall for these added costs from other suppliers…We will help you determine the best underlay treatment for your synthetic ice rink!

 

 

Are support beams or other obstacles stopping you from adding synthetic ice to your home or commercial space? it shouldn’t! We work with several clients that are hesitant to add synthetic ice due to support beams, “jut-outs”, or odd shaped exterior dimensions, in their potential space. At KwikRink, we have the capabilities to custom cut your synthetic ice rink to exact specifications. As a wise man once said, there is always a way! Often times, we find that these obstacles work as training aids, creating better hands and agility.

Support Beams

With proper on-site dimensions, we can have our expert programmers devise a CAD tailored to your space. When working with support beams, it helps to work off of two adjacent walls to nail down exactly where the support pole(s) line up. The goal is to always have the supports lineup on the seam of the synthetic ice panels. This allows the client to make a nice and neat cut around the support pole, without wasting excess material.

Spaces with “jut-outs”

In any scenario where a room has portions that “jut-out”, have no fear, as there are easy ways to work around these obstacles, as well. Any small obstacle like this is best dealt with on-site for the tidiest cut possible. If necessary, we will also line this up on a seam of two connecting panels, but often times we do not need to do this. We recommend using a skilsaw with a 24 tooth blade for cutting around the obstacle. The synthetic ice will cut like butter – no problem!

Odd Shaped Rooms (Exterior)

This has been discussed in other blog posts, and you can click here for more information. When filling a hard room in wall-to-wall, it is quite rare to find that some amount of customization is not needed. Our machines are very precise and can save you a lot of money in a custom space. We can send you your rink with precision cuts to the exact specifications of your room. All you will need to do is simply connect the panels, like a giant puzzle! Most home synthetic ice rinks can be installed in 20-30 minutes depending upon the amount of on-site cutting involved.

Don’t let on-site obstacles stop you from your dream synthetic ice space. These types of obstacles are common, and can potentially be seen as a plus rather than a negative!

 

 

 

The temperature was hovering in the teens all day, but it could have been much worse on a late January day in Minnesota. The installation took place on January 28th and was completed in approximately 12 hours. This is one of the most complex jobs that we have done and certainly is one to be proud of.

 

The synthetic ice surface was to be cut around the Medtronic “Horn” sculpture. This is not your standard synthetic ice rink installation. When dealing with a very abstract project like this, it is important to be able to ad-lib as you go. There is no blueprint for this type of installation.

 

The flooring/substrate around the sculpture was very unlevel with a lot of undulation. This can pose problems for the seams on any synthetic ice surface. We were forced to individually shim each panel as it was laid down. If this rink were to be permanently placed here, an underlay substrate may have been necessary.

Once the installation got towards the arms of the Medtronic Sculpture, the project slowed down a bit. It was important to make precise cuts around these arms. Skaters will be skating through this sculpture during pregame Super Bowl LII festivities – open to ticket-holders only.

 

As we close in on our 11th straight hour on the job, we see the end in sight. Day turns to night, and the Medtronic Sculpture lights up creating a beautiful visual of the rink right in front of U.S. Bank Stadium.

 

A clean look at the finished synthetic ice installation. This is game-day ready as soon as the perimeter fencing is installed. Freestyle skaters and figure skaters will be providing some eye candy for those walking into the big game!

 

Contacts: Don Mason: 612-483-3020; Brett Mason: 612-387-1288

Synthetic Ice Rink At U.S. Bank Stadium For Super Bowl
Minnesota-Based Company Constructing Skating Rink on Plaza at U.S. Bank Stadium

What Is Synthetic Ice:
The KwikRink Synthetic Ice provides skaters about 95% of the speed of a natural ice surface. It can be installed virtually anywhere, in any climate and temperature.

When Is The Rink Being Constructed:
Installation will take place on Sunday, January 28 starting at 8 a.m.

Where Is The Synthetic Ice Rink Being Constructed:
At U.S. Bank Stadium at the Medtronic Plaza, right outside of the Legacy gates. The rink will be intertwined with the Medtronic “horn” sculpture.

Why Is The Rink Being Constructed:
Minnesota is proud of it’s skating heritage, with more than 200 indoor ice facilities and thousands of natural ice rinks at parks and frozen ponds that are used all winter for ice sports. The KwikRink Synthetic Ice will capture the spirit of this history and feature skaters on the surface only for ticket holders to enjoy, only on February 4 from noon until game time.

Who Is KwikRink:
KwikRink is a Maple Grove, Minnesota-based company founded, owned and operated by Don Mason. KwikRink synthetic ice surfaces can be found around the world in private homes of athletes and celebrities, training facilities, ice shows, five-star resorts, garages, backyards and even on the beach! For more information, pictures, and videos, log on to www.kwikrinksyntheticice.com.

In Vadnais Heights (MN), you can find a brand new hockey school called Gentry Academy. The beautiful building that houses this school just completed in March. The Gentry Academy Galaxy are a sanctioned Tier 1 hockey program.

The training area is in the basement and will have a fully equipped surrounding workout area. The synthetic ice portion covers a roughly 35′ x 30′ area using KwikRink V synthetic ice. There is one NHL goal crease in the surface to accommodate goalie training.

The area will be available for students to practice for fun during downtime. There will also be formal training sessions with experienced instructors to supplement on-ice training. Gentry Academy has it all!

 

21
September

10 Dream Home Rinks

Posted by KwikRink

Hockey nuts will love what this article has to offer. At KwikRink we have serviced several private residences with their own home ice advantage. Generally, the client installs a home rink for their kids (or themselves) to have fun and train for hockey. Others will dedicate an area in the house for shooting pucks in between periods of the game. Some do it, simply because they can, and they love hockey. Below are 10 ideas for your dream home rink. “If you build it, they will come” rings true. You wont be able to get the kids off of this (or their teammates), so I would recommend investing in convenient feeding strategies like the pizza oven offers. The best perk for parents is that the home rink acts as a babysitter, so mom can get a little more of that “me” time she deserves. Some supervision may be required for when the games get a little heated. We have yet to hear of any bench clearing brawls, however.

 

Basement Overlook Rink

 

This Indoor Basement rink is actually a level lower than the rest of the basement. It features a plexiglass protected overlook viewing area equipped with a ledge, and bar stools for the parents. How about some ice cold beverages and hockey?

Pole Barn Rink

Indoor Synthetic Ice Hockey Rink in Rochester

This hockey family put a home rink in an added on pole barn. Roughly 50′ x 25′ area allows some fun and fast paced games. The high ceiling is an ideal setup for flying pucks!

Backyard Rink

 

This 32′ x 16′ back yard rink is one of our favorites. There is nothing like skating in the middle of July surrounded by woods, is there? I can envision some backyard hockey tournaments complete with a family BBQ. Maybe even some fireworks, as the teams enter!

Garage Stall Rink

 

If you have one garage stall to spare, this 18′ x 10′ size area could become a nice little home rink for you. This rink has enough size to improve stick-handling, shooting, and skating agility. Check out our blog on small area games if you aren’t buying it.

Under Garage Rink

 

An under garage space with odd dimensions, and cut outs, turns into a game-ready indoor rink. This one has an off camera penalty box, and mom is the referee.

Upstate NY Outdoor Rink

 

Ignore last nights rain on this one. Let’s just say the Zamboni driver had a few too many, and didn’t resurface properly. This 40′ x 20′ outdoor rink with markings and boards is really something to admire.

Ex-storage Room Rink

 

Another 18′ x 10′ size rink with a view from the locker room, fully equipped with rubber matting for changing into skates. This rink offers a crisp and clean look, completed by the NHL style dasher board system.

Ex-Playroom Rink

 

How about a playroom that the kids will never grow out of? This family dedicated a portion of their home for this, roughly, 34′ x 13′ size rink. I would look for these kids in the 2030 NHL draft.

Minnesota Wild themed Rink

 

Building a home rink is all about getting creative and having fun with it. This rink was certainly fun to install. A really nice sized 20′ x 13′ rink equipped with a shooting tarp, and NHL player Fatheads, bringing this one to life. What team do you root for?

Castle Rink

 

Okay, so this actually isn’t beside a real castle, but it sure looks like one, and provides a really cool home rink. Beware of flying pucks above to the king and queen of this castle.

The above pictures just show some of the ideas out there that have been done. These home rinks certainly require some dedication, and most likely some passion for the game of hockey. Having a home rink allows unlimited ice time and fun. If you get creative enough, you can probably do something like this at your home, and the hockey players of the house will surely be happy. The first step is to find an available space around the home, and then send in an inquiry for a quote, and free design ideas. KwikRink are the experts in the synthetic ice industry, and have been designing layouts for home rinks and training centers around the world for the last 20 years.

 

You can find a beautiful synthetic ice facility in Sioux Falls, SD. The Hockey Headquarters did not hold anything back with their 76′ x 32′ size training rink (pictured below).  In front of the building is a full on hockey store, selling the latest and greatest skates and twigs to hit the market. The rink is located in the back, and is fully equipped with NHL style boards and glass.

1. The Synthetic Ice arrives

Roughly 75 panels weighing 80 lbs each arrive on the work-site… The panels are 8′ x 4′ in size, with some other custom cut pieces. Ideally, having a  forklift will save a lot of time during the unloading process. Luckily, we had several high school hockey players on site to help unload the heavy panels from the semi-truck to the rink site. It took a couple of hours to hand unload each panel one by one.

When you have the synthetic ice budding up to a wall or boards, there is quite a bit of strategy that goes into how it is laid out. It is important to allow for expansion and contraction of the synthetic ice surface during hot and cold temperatures. We prefer the boards to be installed first, which is what took place here. The boards are actually lifted slightly to allow the ice to slide underneath them.

2. Installation begins…

We decided to first put the crease together and then build around it. The crease has a few more parts, and does take a little bit more time than laying down the basic panel, but it sure looks awesome in the rink. The crease is then essentially a floating slab of many pieces that we have to move to a perfect center.

From here, we can build forward and really get going on the installation. It is important to start on a side wall and build it vertically before going side to side. We set everyone loose on pounding the 8′ x 4′ panels home. This application was beginning to take the form of an ice rink.

3. The Tricky Parts

After we had most of the rink completed, besides the far end and entire last row of panels on the right side, we ran into a few tricky parts. As you can imagine, with the boards in place, the custom dimensions need to be spot on. For the entire right side, we connected about 8 panels vertically (64′ x 4′). With a lot of man power and good timing we slid this one long piece under the board slot and into place on the right side.

Lastly, On each end where the boards circle, we had to do some custom cutting to create that authentic round about look. This is done with precision cutting, as there were no pieces to spare.

4. Finished project

The rink turned out to be an absolute beauty, and is a site that both KwikRink and The Hockey Headquarters are proud of. Many items have to fall into place to complete such a perfect installation. When installing synthetic ice, you are always “last on site”. By this I mean, if the previous work in the building is off (crooked walls/incorrect board dimensions), you have to be able to adjust. The naked eye wont notice a small misstep on the boards installation, but it can completely change your approach with the ice surface. We worked with top notch professionals on every level of the install, and the below picture shows the outcome.