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January 2009

Product Review: Geib Excello Cordless Clipper

The Geib Excello Cordless Clipper, or should we say Cordless Trimmer? I have been testing the Excello since August 2008 as a cordless trimmer, so I'll refer to it in this review as a trimmer.

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The Factory Specifications

Cost: $125.00 for the kit
Speeds: Single speed @ 5500 spm
Battery: 2 NI-Cad, 60 minutes operating time each
Combs: 4
Blade: One, 1 3/4 inch adjustable (3mm to 8mm)


The Evaluation Procedure

I do my own evaluations, I never give anything to a customer to test for me. When I groom on Saturdays, I don't answer the phone, or check dogs, or deal with customers. When I'm finished with one dog, the bather replaces it with another ( its a deal I made with the owner for 25% ). This way I can remain at my station and stay focused when I'm doing evaluations or testing repaired equipment for customers. I insist on checking a new grooming tool over a long period of time, not just a day or two. I want to learn what all its capabilities and weaknesses are when I'm using it during different grooms.
How many times has someone raved about a tool and then you ran out and got one? Then after you used it for a while it wasn't what they claimed it was, and now it just sits in a drawer. This may come from not spending enough time using the product.  Myself as well as the other groomers in the shop have put his trimmer through hell for the last 5 months.


What I look for in a trimmer 
 
-Ease of use.
Do you need to be a scientist to operate it or maintain it?
Can you take it out of the box and start trimming without reading and understanding some very confusing instruction manual? Can you do some of the obvious things like put the battery in and the blade on without calling customer service? Some instruction manuals have ALL the products that manufacturer makes listed in it, then you have to figure out which one is the correct one to follow.

-Quiet. 
We do a lot of small dog faces. I want to be able to do clean faces and feet on skitziod dogs without them reacting to a trimmer in my hand. What kind of noises, if any, does the trimmer make? Is the trimmer loud enough to upset a dog if your doing a face? Would this trimmer work on a cat? Many use trimmers as opposed to clippers on cats because of noise issues.

-Power.
Can it trim all the difficult areas without slowing down? I'll test all the trimmers I own if I find a difficult part of the coat. This way I see how they all react together. Does it slow down, or vary in speed, or does it hold the speed? This is important when you have dogs or cats with difficult fur.

-Battery Life and Charging.
This goes hand in hand. I want good operation out of the battery in light or heavy coat. Ill work on light coated dogs one day, then heavy coated dogs the next so it doesn't skew my results. Does the heavy coat drain the battery more then light coats and how much? When charging the battery how long does it take? We cant wait 15 hours to get a battery back on line, so I'm comparing all battery charging to 3 hours.

-The blade and combs.
Is the blade hard to get on and off? Can it be cleaned easily using my video "How to clean trimmer blades" found on my website? Are new blades available for purchase? Are the combs made tough? Do the combs lock on or clamp on?  Anything I hate is to be going along and have a comb pop off in heavy coat.

-Weight and comfortability in use.
Is It balanced with the battery in? Is it easy to change batteries on the fly.
Where is the blade adjustment knob or setting lever? Is it easy to change the setting on the fly without turning the clipper every which way to do it? Can it be done with one hand so you can still hold the dog?


My Conclusions

The Geib Excello has become part of my grooming kit, and the other groomers in the shop as well. I really loved this trimmer because it surpassed my overall expectations. Its a very easy to use trimmer, it was simple to put the blade on, the battery in, and the combs on without reading the instructions. I did read the instructions about charging the battery before attempting to do so. What really impressed me was the battery life. Both my batteries lasted over 2 hours running the clipper in heavy and light coat. The battery charge time was just about two hours, and I drained them to almost nothing before I put them on the charger. The charging base will charge both batteries at the same time so this cut down on regeneration time.

I trimmed as well as did complete shave downs, and the batteries were holding good charges. We did a few cocker patterns, a few schnauzer patterns, and a sweetheart with no problems so it had some power and battery life. Our cat groomer in the shop used this trimmer on a cat and said it worked wonderful, it had enough battery for the entire groom and was quiet. The combs lock on and don't pop off when you hit thick coat like some other trimmer combs. They didn't twist or catch and it left a smooth cut, not steppy, I was very impressed.

This trimmer is virtually silent, no more dogs or cats backing up or getting stressed out on the table.

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(Picture) Hair behind the blade needs daily cleaning. The blade easily goes on and off no matter where the blade adjustment knob is set at.

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(Picture) Charging stand and battery/comb storage. The charger shuts off automatically when the battery is completely charged. The extra battery is stored on the charger in a second charging slot.

Hair did collect behind the blade inside the head, and also under the cutter blade so cleaning is very necessary. I have a video that will show you how to clean trimmer blades of this type effectively. This is normal cleaning for trimmers of this type.

The blade seemed to cut like a good #10 blade (1/8th inch) on the #1 setting, and almost like a #50 on the last setting. I started using the #4 setting while doing the pads rather than the #5. The #4 took the same amount of hair off and I felt this setting did just as good. The blade is constructed with metal and plastic, and has a wire tension spring holding the cutter on the comb part of the blade.  Hair does get between the blade halves and needs to be cleaned out just like any other trimmer blade of this type. I took this blade apart and found that it can be re-sharpened just like other trimmer blades of this type.

The combs can be stored on the charger base so you don't lose them. They snap on and didn't pop off even when I shaved a cocker with them. I dropped this trimmer many times during this evaluation and it still runs excellent but the case has a few scuffs but no cracks. I used blade oil to lubricate the blade, a tiny drop remained on the blade a very long time. In my opinion, I wouldn't spray any coolant on this trimmer.

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(Picture) Can be secured with rubber band in the mobile, keeps it in the stand while driving to your next stop.

Both Geib trimmers 

(Picture) Both new Geib trimmers in their charging stands.


This is just my opinion of this trimmer using it in my environment and using my grooming style. Other groomers may get a different opinion of it and thats OK. If your looking for something different, and you like the color blue, this may be the trimmer for you to try.

Have Fun, Be Safe, and Read Those Labels :)