I wrote an article in the past comparing an Icetool to a Prismaster. I got alot of emails asking for a comparison, so I put it up. In the past few weeks, I've gotten more emails saying, "Ok, we see the comparison, but how do we use this Icetool? How do we clean it? What's the difference in sizes?" So, today, I'm going to go a little more in depth on the Icetool, the sizes, usage, cleaning, etc. When I got my first one, I was pretty lost on how to use it, so I hope to do a little enlightening for anyone in the same boat.
The Icetool comes in 3 sizes, the 0.3 ML, the 0.4 ML, and the 0.5 ML versions. Not only is there a variety in sizes, there's also a large variety in colors - often times varying from store to store. The Icetool is the ultimate snus accessory. And it's really cool to use in public when you're wanting a pris of los, it's an eye catcher and often times will strike up a conversation about snus from curious onlookers.
Those who use lossnus on a regular basis will almost unanimously agree that the Icetool is the industry standard when it comes to portioning los. As you saw in my comparison last time, the Prismaster is an inferior snus portioning tool. Not to say it doesn't have it's purposes - when you're new to los, it's a great way to start out (at $1.00 or less) to see if you like los. But once you pursue los as a snus interest, an Icetool is the best option to upgrade to. The Prismaster only makes one size, it's bulky, uncomfortable, and does not stay together.
The Icetool, however, makes 5 sizes, referred to as "clicks" by snus users. A 1 Click pris is going to be the smallest, a 5 Click pris will be the biggest. It all depends on how much snus you like and what size portions you use as to which Icetool will fit you best and what size click you're going to be the most comfortable using.
You can see the different sizes of pris Icetool makes. The 0.3 ML, of course, makes smaller ones, the 0.4 ML (my preference) makes middle size ones, and the 0.5 ML Icetool makes massive, man-sized pris. A 5 click on that one and you're out on your ass. Seriously. It's big. The 0.3 pris is a little less in thickness than a pencil, the 0.4 is a little bigger than a pencil, and the 0.5....well, it's just big. If you want a nice hillbilly lump in your lip, the 0.5 will do that. The variety in these is a good thing. I know people getting into los who don't want a big lump and don't want that much snus - so the 0.3 is perfect for them. The 0.5 is perfect for those who like alot of snus (former dippers use this one alot), and want a nice big lip buldge. The 0.4 is just about perfect for me. Portion size is average, middle area, and comfortable. A 2-3 click on a 0.4 ML is about as perfect as it gets for me.
Using an Icetool couldn't be easier. Granted, at first, it can be challenging. But once you know the basics it will be second nature to you. I can do it while driving now, but I advise you not to do that. First step is to set the Icetool plunger on the line you want, for example in this picture we're making a 2 click pris. Usually, if I'm just using los interchangeably with portions, I make a 2 click pris. If I'm wanting a little more bang, I'll go up to a 4. A 5 click pris I reserve for armageddon days at work.
Next, insert the Icetool into the snus. Different grinds are easier to form a pris with, some are more difficult (in terms of what stays together longer and what falls apart/mudslides quickly, but that will be for you to discover in your snus journey). There are many different methods, but the one I've found that works best for me is to insert once, pull it out, and then insert again into the snus, just to make sure it's full. The snus will usually fill the barrel in the first time, unless you're making a bigger than 2 click pris, then a little extra love may be needed. This is the way that I do it, but after using Icetool long enough you may find a system that works for you easier than mine, but for now - if you're new to Icetool, this is the easiest way I have found to do this after much experimenting.
The third step can be done one of two ways. I do both of these, but it depends on the situation. If I'm driving (again, don't do this yet...give it some time), I do the "palm push". (RIGHT). Do the above two steps, then push the barrel against your palm and push the plunger down to compress. If I'm at home, I usually just do it against the inside of the can lid, it's easier, quicker, and no mess on the hands. Put the barrel up against the can lid, push the plunger down, and it will compress.
For the fourth step, insert the Icetool under your lip. As pictured, I rest index finger and middle finger on the Icetool, and use my thumb to push the plunger and insert the lossnus into my lip. I usually do it the other way around, but in the picture I flipped my hand over to show you a better image of how I actually do this.
When I clean my Icetool, I keep it really simple. Not alot goes into this. Take the plunger out and run water through the area the holds the snus. Run water over the other part as well, and hand dry both with a soft cotton towel and then sit the Icetool out to dry. I have done this every time I've cleaned it, and it's worked just fine for me. Another important thing is to clean it before and after every use. Maybe that's just me working in the food business for so long, but I think it's best to clean it as often as possible, before and after each use at least, to keep it clean. When you purchase one and it comes in the mail, I advise washing it extensively before use, just to be safe. After all, this does go in your mouth.
From time to time, it is important for you to lubricate the Icetool's O-Ring. Eventually, you will get a system for when you should do this, but until then, if you notice any drag in the way the plunger moves, or length of time it takes to push the snus out into your lip or any slowdown in performance, simply take the plunger out, and lubricate the black O-Ring at the end. The easiest way to do this is with Vegetable Oil. Pour a small amount into a cap, and put a little oil on the end of your finger and run it along the O-Ring. It won't mess up the taste, this is how I do mine and I've never noticed a change. Also, when you purchase an Icetool, it comes with a ring, so you have a backup. I'm still on the same ring on my frequently used Icetool that I received months ago.