You would be amazed at how a quick touch up of the two cutting edge surfaces on an ice auger will help the total operational performance of your auger.
A good file is critical and well worth the investment to tune up the edges effectively. I carry a 6" diamond impregnated fine grain file to make for quick work of touching up the main ice blade and the center point.
The key to the whole process is to maintain the factory angle of the cutting edge. What you do is basically mill the cutting edge surfaces to regain or restore the original factory edge.
Start by laying the file flat on the true surface of the cutting edge. Be sure the file spans the entire surface of the blade. This is to make darn sure the edge is even all the way across the blades entire cutting surface. This is very important to insure a true edge. Just as a professional mill would accomplish if you were to send it in to be re-tooled.
With even flat pressure stroke the file up the surface of the blade. One short stroke at a time you begin to see the surface develop, increase the stroke length until the entire surface exhibits a consistent even sheen. You may do this right on the auger, as I often do, or remove the main blade and do it in a vise. If you do not use a vice wear a pair of leather gloves or you may get a nasty cut before your finished.
The center point is the same thing although the surface you need to mill is much narrower and tougher to keep the file exactly flat. What works for me is to apply light pressure with one hand while working the file upward with the other hand. You accomplish this by stroking the file up the narrow edge of the centering point in the same direction as the shaft of the auger. Remember most metal files are designed to function in only one direction, you should stroke the edge forward only.
You will notice the cutting edge surface slowly plain to a flat smooth cutting edge. Slow, flat, and even is much better then quick and sloppy.
Once the true edge has been re-established it is short work to touch it up again between outings. Just a few strokes of the file and it will cut like a hot razor through butter.
This method is for flat surface cutting edges only. Swept or tapered blades need to be placed in a jig to get them correct. A much trickier process, however not impossible if you take time to build the jig required. This is one big reason I remain a fan of the Jiffy ice auger is their ease of maintenance. It is a simple process to touch them up almost anywhere and anytime.
To insure your performance on the ice this season is at it's very best. Be sure to take the time to up your odds by performing the basic maintenance needed. It will get you on the fish faster, and keep you on the fish tell your ready to call it a day.
Ed Carlson "Backwater Guiding" 1-(701)-281-2300