- Last Updated: 15 February 2007
One question I see a lot is "Are the kits I see online worth it?" Well, that all depends I suppose.
First off there are a few different types of kits out there that I have come across.
One is by NiceRink and includes the liner and brackets, but not the wood you will need for the frame. Depending on how "deep" the deep end is this is not a bad kit, the brackets seem to be very well designed. The brackets will only work with 3/4" wood though, so if your deep end is REAL deep your frame will probably bow a bit from the pressure of the water. They carry a ton of other stuff too. From boards, to stakes, to liners and so on. Check out their website. If the cost of your rink isn't an issue, you could get one hell of a setup from them and have a very nice rink (nice pun there).
Another is called the "Ice-n-Go" and is actually a pretty decent kit as well. The only trouble with this kit is that it is intended for closer to level yards and anything more than say 10" is probably too much for this kit. It comes with everything you will need to make your rink except the water. They system is pretty easy to put together and you only need a second set of hande to put in the liner. I originally started with one of these kits and had my yard been closer to level I am sure it would have worked out perfectly. as it turned out it didn't go that way.
I have also heard of these "rink in a bag" kits. From what I can figure out you lay out this water mattress of sorts, fill it, close the fill plug and wait for it to freeze. Once frozen solid you cut away the plastic bag and tada!. I would guess that this absolutely needs a level surface. Also that it doesn't hold up to thaws very well. I am not sure this is a great solution compared to the others, but it is an option.
So, to answer the question from my point of view...
Yes some of them are worth it as long as you get the right kit for your yard. You really need to check your yard for level, decide on the size of the rink you want and decide on how much you are willing to pay to get the rink you desire. If you have all this figured out and a kit makes sense, then buy it. Anything that can make a little of the rink building process easier can't be a bad thing.