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Author Topic: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!  (Read 2033 times)

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Offline Isk8NYC

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I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« on: January 20, 2015, 08:21:12 AM »
Not sure which forum this should be in, so here's good enough.  Occasionally, rinks will offer Ice Resurfacer "driving schools."  Thought a consolidated thread would be a good idea if anyone was interested in getting their "License to Zam."



Some background:
http://www.skateisi.com/site/sub.cfm?content=Archive_DriversEd


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Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2015, 08:21:18 AM »
Quote
Extreme Ice Center Driving School
Indian Trail, NC

Have you or has someone that you know always wanted to drive an ice resurfacer? Extreme Ice is excited to announce our first Ice Resurfacer Driving School!

A seminar will be held on March 8th or or April 19th and will include classroom instruction, backroom tour, supervised driving, as well as a complimentary meal. Classes are $150 per person and are for ages 21 or older with a valid driver's license.

Please register at the front desk as soon as possible as spaces will be very limited for classes.

Website: http://www.xicenter.com/
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Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2015, 08:31:15 AM »
Ice World
Abingdon, MD

SUNDAY, March 15, 2015  8-11:30am
$75

Slots are limited.


http://www.iceworld.com/documents/ice%20resurfacer%20driving%20class%20March%202015.pdf
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Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2015, 08:36:21 AM »
In years past, the Toyota Center in California has offered this class upon request.  You have to contact the manager and ask for the details.

The Laurels Ice House in MD also offers this course from time to time.  Nothing's listed currently, but ask the manager when it's being offered again.

Occasionally, other rinks have offered a "Ride the Zam" or "Drive the Zam" events to raise monies for charities.  Again, watch their website and bulletin boards.
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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2015, 08:43:40 AM »
I have always wanted to ride the Zamboni. To the point that my parents jokingly accuse me of forcing my kids into figure skating just to further that goal. :'(

Offline Isk8NYC

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2015, 08:58:29 AM »
I almost forgot: there are some national conferences/trade shows during which ice resurfacer training/certification takes place.

iAIM / ISI
http://www.skateisi.com/site/sub.cfm?content=iAIM_Home

NEISMA
http://assets.ngin.com/attachments/document/0054/1059/Star_-_SIRO_Regristration_Form_-Conf__14.pdf

STAR
http://www.narce.com/citreview?id=438044-star-professional-designations
(These are recognized nationwide so if you're interested in driving the zam at an NHL game, these may be required for the job position.
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Offline lutefisk

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2015, 09:17:58 AM »
Ice World
Abingdon, MD

SUNDAY, March 15, 2015  8-11:30am
$75

Slots are limited.


http://www.iceworld.com/documents/ice%20resurfacer%20driving%20class%20March%202015.pdf

Just may have to look into this one!  About an hour from home.

Offline Query

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2015, 06:00:01 PM »
http://thegardensicehouse.pointstreaksites.com/view/thegardensicehouse_new/programs-37/zamboni-school-6

Laurel, MD: 3/10/2015, $200.

BTW, taking one short class like that may not get you qualified or certified to drive and maintain a Zam at most rinks. If that is your goal, you may want to talk to the rinks where you have an interest in doing so, to determine whether that class is the right way to go.

Another option is to get a lower level job with a rink, and get them to train you. Some rinks do that.

P.S. If you search for

  how to drive a zamboni

on youtube, you see a bunch of videos. If you are just curious about the machines, maybe that will do the trick.

Offline lutefisk

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2015, 06:15:31 PM »
http://thegardensicehouse.pointstreaksites.com/view/thegardensicehouse_new/programs-37/zamboni-school-6

Laurel, MD: 3/10/2015, $200.

BTW, taking one short class like that may not get you qualified or certified to drive and maintain a Zam at most rinks. If that is your goal, you may want to talk to the rinks where you have an interest in doing so, to determine whether that class is the right way to go.

Another option is to get a job with a rink, and get them to train you. Some rinks do that.

You mean actually work?  Perish the thought!  I just wanna drive one for the experience.  The course up in Abingdon is only $75 bucks.  However I would have to get out of bed much earlier than if I just rolled over to Laurel.  Hmmm. $75 vs $200; 7am vs 6pm.  Decisions, decisions. 

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2015, 12:11:29 AM »
.... and even zam driving requires OFF-ICE training! :nvm:
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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2015, 12:56:54 AM »
I always thought a Zamboni was a stick shift.  Am I wrong?  If it is a stick, you may need to practice on a car first, just to get your feet wet.
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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2015, 10:07:26 AM »
Back when I worked at my old rink, I was buddies with all the managers (it was a very relaxed environment so we all would hang out after work and during work we were always chatting, it was a good group of people and the guys watched out for me) and one night after my shift I stayed to help him clean up since the hockey games ran late and he wasn't going to be able to leave until the guys finished their beer in the locker room. So after he cleaned the ice he walked over and said "Wanna drive the zam?"

No hesitation. "SURE!" :D :D :D

I got to drive it outside to dump the snow. It was fun. :)


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We all parked out back behind the rink and it wasn't uncommon to find the managers had dumped piles of snow behind your car after your shift. They always tried to one up the pranks they'd pull on each other. My old boss was cool with it as long as we didn't damage the facility or someone got hurt. :) He thought they were funny.

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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2015, 01:21:55 PM »
I always thought a Zamboni was a stick shift.  Am I wrong?  If it is a stick, you may need to practice on a car first, just to get your feet wet.

Initial Zamboni models had a manual transmission, according to one web source.

But the current Zamboni models use a hydrostatic transmission, which is like having a continuously variable gear ratio - something you won't find in any common car.

Operating instructions can be found in a web search for

"Zamboni operating manual"

which BTW is distinct from the

"Zamboni maintenance manual"

I'm not sure you can legally download Zamboni's manuals in the U.S.

In this video, it doesn't look like there is a manual clutch, but we can't quite see what the feet are doing. The continuous speed shift lever clearly works nothing like a manual transmission lever.

Learning to drive a stick shift is fun, and stick shift cars give you a feeling of a lot more control, especially on slippery ice, but I'm guessing it won't help much with modern Zamboni models.

There is another common brand of ice resurfacer - Olympia. E.g., one of their user manuals is here - it mentions an automatic transmission.


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Re: I Wanna Drive the Zamboni!
« Reply #13 on: January 25, 2015, 08:37:21 AM »
When I was skating regularly in the morning freestyle sessions (now history), the rink manager asked if I wanted to learn to run the Olympia.

I said no.

I figured that if I learned to use it, that I'd be the one responsible for opening up at 5:30 am before the sessions started. No thanks!
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