How Do I Choose the Right Dasher Board Solution for My Rink?

Ralston_Brad_WilliamsWhen you’re thinking about making dasher board improvements to your facility, it can be quite the puzzle to identify the one best solution for your ice rink. How do you know if it’s best to refurbish your current boards, purchase used boards, or invest in brand-new boards?

The Becker Arena Products team has three decades of experience helping municipalities and private organizations identify the best solutions for their ice rink project. It’s safe to say that we’ve seen it all, which means we can provide clear, straightforward advice. Here are three case studies of projects we’ve worked on to help you make the right dasher board choice.

Refurbishing Existing Dasher Boards | Robert Lorenzen, General Manager, Ashburn Ice House, Ashburn, Virginia
Ashburn Ice House is a private organization that operates 365 days per year, running hockey, learn-to-skate, and summer programs. Like many US ice rinks, we had decided to convert our facility from R22 to ammonia and brine. The conversion would shut down the house for 8 weeks. During the conversion, we also wanted to upgrade our rink’s 18-year-old boards.

My facility’s dasher boards were in great shape, so my team and I did not see any reason to throw them out or replace them with a new set. The boards did not have major damage, though the kick plates had seen better days and screws were starting to poke through. We were also concerned that new boards would not fit well into the existing concrete foundation.

At the end of the day, it came down to numbers. Removing and replacing the dasher boards would have cost $150,000. To remove, recondition, and reinstall them would cost $112,000—a $40,000 savings. Becker disassembled the boards and took them back to our Minnesota facility to recondition them. They replaced the kick plate and rebuilt the player boxes for us. Becker also added a new Zamboni gate. In just eight weeks, we had our boards back on site. Becker installed the product in just five days.

Purchasing Used Dasher Boards | Andrew Rice, Director of Parks, Recreation & Library, Alamosa Multi-Use Pavilion, Alamosa, Colorado
We are a city-owned recreational facility that operates an ice rink at a local park on a seasonal basis. We had purchased our existing 20+ year-old boards from another Colorado municipality several years ago. Subjected to typical high-altitude climates, the boards began to buckle and become difficult to keep screwed together over time. We decided to invest in a partially covered building with a seasonally refrigerated ice rink.

Becker helped us consider all our dasher board options. After eliminating the option of refurbishing our existing boards, we determined new boards were not the best investment for a project largely funded by private contributions and community grants. Instead, Becker recommended used dasher boards to keep the facility affordable.

Becker tapped its network of rinks and other used equipment resources to search for the right boards for Alamosa. They found a great option right in their backyard in Winona, Minnesota. The boards still had a lot of life left in them. We worked with Becker to retrofit the boards to meet our needs.

We already had a great relationship with Becker Arena Products and their reputation as an expert in the field played a huge role in our selection process. Those I worked with at Becker Arena Products/Rink Equipment Resource were very professional, and we are happy to continue our partnership with Becker Arena Products for rink supplies and future improvements.

This was such an exciting thing for the community. It is everything we would have hoped for, and the timing could not have been better. Had we kept our existing rink the way it was, we would have had zero skating days this season!

Investing in New Dasher Boards | John Arbeiter, Senior General Manager, McKendree Metro Rec Plex, O’Fallon, Illinois
We are a membership-based facility with 160,000 square feet of total space. There are two rinks in our facility; one sand-based and one concrete. Our sand rink has seating for 60 to 70 and our concrete rink is an arena with seating for about 2,000. Our facility also houses two swimming pools, a gymnasium, weight room, and walking track.

Becker Arena products had the chance to help my team at the McKendree Metro Rec Plex and I source dasher boards for our brand-new facility, which included one sand-based rink and one concrete rink. I had specific requirements for my NHL-sized rink: 28-foot radius corners, tempered glass, specific color schemes, and a plan for gates. But my most important consideration was quality—I did not want to replace my dasher boards in 10 years’ time. We looked at new boards, used boards, and everything in-between to find the best product for us. In my experience, facilities use dasher boards until they’re falling apart. This made it difficult to find used boards that could stand up to 10 or more years of use.

Becker worked with me and my team to find the right dasher board solution. Though we considered used boards, we eventually decided new boards were the best choice. New boards allowed me to get the maximum life out the dasher boards and customize the boards with my facility’s black, purple, and gold colors. Becker told me that our dasher boards are the only ones they’ve done in those colors, which is pretty neat considering they manufacture 60+ new rinks every year.

In the arena products business, there’s no such thing as one-size-fits-all. We work with you to understand your priorities, your rink’s specific needs, and your budget to find the right dasher boards and other equipment for your facility. Contact us today to find a solution to your ice rink.