The best propane auger?
Add me to the list of guys who have never had a problem with my pro-4 in cold conditions. My auger stays out in the cold, starts on the second pull and first pull every time after the first start. I have a 2nd generation auger. I won't speak on the quality of the newer jiffy propanes as I have never seen them or used them in person.
I have however used the Eskimo propane and I'm not at all impressed with the machine my buddy bought. He had an issue right out of the box that had him without an auger over a week when it counts. Also we had it out in frigid weather and broke a lot of the chincy plastic by the carb and the plastic throttle off by tossing a tip up on it accidentally. And finally the blades are just to delicate on the eskimos. His shaver blades after hitting a little dirty ice were compromised and Struggled the rest of a trip we took. While my pro-4 chipper blades had not been sharpened in 4 years and were cutting strong!
this year I've joined the electric drill revolution and purchased a 1300lb ridgid hammer drill with a 9ah battery and a 7" ht mini Nero hand auger. Total price $275 with a lifetime warranty on the drill and battery. Also the drill can drive ice anchors in the winter and a multitude of uses in the off season.
This is seemingly an old thread, but I'll add my two cents.
Electric will improve but when will it be perfect? Never. For me I love my ION. It's lighter than my old reliable Jiffy Model 30 (until it finally wore out after many years of use), it starts at the squeeze of the trigger, it has reverse. The best auger depends on what type of fishing you do. Late last winter when the ice was thicker I could drill about 30-40 holes. For me that is more than I will drill most days but for some that is barely half of what they will drill.
For me an 8 inch is also plenty big. You can bring a 20# northern through a 6-inch hole. If you have young kids fishing with you and you use a 10-inch auger you are eventually going to have a boot full of water. As earlier, best is defined by what you want and need.
But i was lucky enough to buy a 2HP Eskimo https://under-the-open-sky.com/best-ice-augers/ with a Tecumseh engine on it before they went out of business. Bought it probably 8 or 9 years ago now. Fires up right away, had the carbs professionally cleaned two years ago, still haven't replaced a spark plug. Been a great gas auger. I wouldn't have an issue with buying another gas auger, but it would for sure be a two stroke.
Marbleeyes7, you are doing the right thing with your Propane Auger gas, that way it will not freeze. I would like make or find a can coozie out of that foam material that is big enough to go over a 1 LB cylinder of Propane.
I own an older (30+ years) gas auger with 3.5 Tecumseh motor, but it's not a Jiffy. It just still runs for me. However I have tried my friend's ION and they are smooth, quiet, light, and no gas or exhaust smell. For most ice applications these are ideal.
Any dumass can forget to charge a battery or break something on a machine, that's why a good fisherman just might have a back-up.
That being said, where in the world can I find a clutch for my 30+ year old Tecumseh motor? Still works but starting to slip. Jiffy is no help.