Only a few short years ago you only had a couple reasonable options for boring holes in the ice, a manual ice auger or a gas powered unit. Gas power augers were big, bulky, temperamental units that were often a pain to start and inconvenient to transport to your favorite ice fishing destination.
Recently a number of companies have come up with an awesome solution, a cordless drill adaptor that attaches to your manual ice auger in place of the handle.
I picked up this Ice Master adaptor at OP Fishing & Hunting and I find it fantastic. It has a collar and safety strap (originally it had a black bungee but it broke). This wire loops back over the drill and secures the auger in case your drill chuck loosens up, saving your auger from slipping into the pond!
Other adaptors are available cheaper without the collar and work equally well for boring holes.
The adaptor attaches in place of the handle using the original hardware, in my case a plastic handled wing bolt, so you can easily switch back to the old handle if your drill stops working.
Most any cordless drill will with a 1/2" chuck work fine, my drill of choice is a Milwaukee M18 Fuel. This drill has a brushless motor that delivers much more torque and better battery life than the standard M18 or other drills. I also have Milwaukee's newer style Red Lithium batteries which are less affected by the cold. When boring 6" holes I use this drill in Low gear and always with the extra handle attached, it's a very torquey drill and when the auger bites into hard ice you'll know it!
I haven't reached the end of my M18 Fuel's battery life drilling holes in the ice. Last year at Sooley's cabin we drilled over 40 holes in 18" of ice with the battery showing 3 out of 4 bars battery power remaining. Overall its a fantastic product that I highly recommend especially if you have a quality cordless drill.
Copyright © 2011 Michael Smith