Web/Tech

Scissor Care That Every Groomer Can Do

When you get new shears, or shears back from the sharpener, they are adjusted to cut. We at Northern Tails service Pet Groomers only, and we adjust shears they way we want them to cut focusing on the tips and the front end of the shear.

The adjustment for tension (or balance as some call it), is a screw or thumb wheel on the pivot of the shears. Beveled edge shears are adjusted to where the blades grab about ¾ an inch from the tip. This enables the blades to slice from the pivot all the way to the tips. If tension isn’t set like this on beveled 10” shears, the blades may push apart from one another in thicker coat and fold at the tips. There is a space between the blades of beveled shears that has to be there, this gives this shear the “slicing” action it needs to get through tough coat with ease. This type of edge is the workhorse of the grooming industry and can be used on any type of coat. This edge lasts for months unless you drop them or hit something in the coat and create a nick.

Convex shears have a different edge all together. This edge is a razor, and is also sharpened differently. Convex edges are honed on both sides, first on the diamond wheel to create the edge, then honed on the interior of the blade to make that edge a razor. Convex shears have little or no space between the blades because they are so sharp they “chop” through hair rather than slicing to produce a beautiful cut used in finish work. Tension is adjusted to where the blades start to grab 1/3 to ½ way down from the tips keeping the blades as close as possible to each other. If the tension is too loose on a convex shear two things can happen: the blades may grab ¾ of an inch from the pivot creating a gouge, and they can fold hair at the tips.

Note: The tension adjustment is for adjusting the way the shear cuts, its not for the convenience or ease of the way the shear opens and closes. Tension can be adjusted a little, but if its adjusted so the shear feels loose to you because of hand or scissoring problems, thats not good because they may fold at the tips. There are shears available with ball bearings in the pivot. This type of shear feels loose no matter what the tension is adjusted at.

CLEANING YOUR SHEARS

Cleaning shears

Clean your shears daily. Wipe all the hair from the inside of the blades, this attracts moisture which can rust your shears. If the blades have grime or hairspray on them, take a Handy Wipe and rub all this off. Never leave shears dirty because it will cause problems down the road.

LUBRICATION

Lubing shears

Lubricate shears with shear lube only, it contains silicon and a light solvent. Not lubricating can cause the screw to rust and not stay tight. There is moisture in your pivot from scissoring, lube gets rid of it. Not lubing can cause tiny pieces of hair and pet dander to remain in the pivot. This will tighten the tension, slow the shear down, and may cause a binding feel when scissoring. Lube the shear, then open and close them a few times to get the lube around the pivot good. Convex shears need to be lubed more than beveled shears. Never use blade oil on a shear, it will stiffen over time. Most beauty supply stores carry shear/scissor lube.

Have a great day grooming, and read those labels.

Jeff


Spamming My Blog or Any Other Blog

One thing I won't tolerate is posting a comment that doesn't pertain to any blog, or your doing it to advertise your business in some way.

These blogs are important to groomers all over the world who seek advice on the topics we are trying to cover. If your comment is unrelated, spam, or written in a language other than English (if you can read English you can write English), it will be reported as spam and deleted.

I hope other bloggers will do the same, and keep this forum clean for the folks who appreciate it.

Read those labels, and have a great day grooming!!

Jeff


WHAT DAMAGE CAN HAPPEN WHEN YOU DROP YOUR CLIPPER

We all hold our breath when we drop a clipper because we hope it still runs when we pick it off the floor. Our clipper is the most important tool we have as a groomer, so we have to do our monthly maintenance, clean the hair from it, and make sure it doesn’t hit the floor.

All clippers have the same problems when they are dropped, but we will look at the Andis AGC Ultra Edge because its the most common clipper among most groomers.

THE SWITCH

When the clipper hits the floor, it jars the insides very much. The switch has a capacitor on it that can bust loose from the curcuit board. It has two small wires that are only soldered to the board, and when the clipper hits the floor they can break.

AGC Switch_capacitor

If just one of these wires is broken, you will loose your high speed. The switch is screwed into the rear motor mounts of the clipper. The motor mounts are just two plastic posts located on the bottom clipper body that holds the rear of your motor. If either of these mounts break off when the clipper is dropped, it can cause your clipper to get hot when running. The motor vibrates because nothing is holding it at the back thus causing the heat. This ever happen to you? Lower clipper bodies are about $10.00

THE MOTOR FIELD

This is a big thing that can short out your armature, blow your switch, and possibly cause smoke to come from the clipper. Figure about $90 to fix this if the damage is this extensive.

The motor field is a round steel tube lined with two curved magnets, your armature spins inside this tube. When your clipper is turned on, your brushes cause a negative polarity to the magnets and this causes the armature to spin, which moves your blade drive back and forth making the blade cut.

Broken magnet

If you drop your clipper, and it hits hard enough, you can crack these magnets. They can fragment causing shorts which can blow the armature and switch. Also, if one the the fragments is small enough, it can lodge against the aramture inside and pin it so it doesnt move. Usually when this happens you can hear the clipper “hum” when you turn it on, but it wont run. If you experience this, don’t try to use it anymore and send it in for repair. A new motor field can cost about $25.00, armatures are about $40.00, switches are about $15.00, plus the labor charge.

Since your clipper is so important to your working or not, you need to take care of it. I learned by experience a long time ago that setting a clipper under a dog on the table can really ruin your day. I use a small table next to my grooming table, and I set shears and clippers on it when not using them. It may be a lifestyle change for you to start doing that as well if your having your equipment kicked off the table on a regular basis.

Read those labels, and have fun grooming!

jEFF


Having trouble with cords shorting out all the time?

There seems to be alot of groomers with cord problems recently. Many think the cords are made of junk, but really they are not. All the twisting and pulling on the cords during a groom can break the wires on the cord right where the cord enters the clipper body. Then as you move the clipper around during a groom its starts to short out momentarily which can drive you insane. There is an "Old School" trick you can use that saved our cords from breaking and shorting out. In fact, once we did this little trick we never had a cord problem again unless a dog bit through it.

If your clipper has stiff a "hanger" on the back like Andis or Wahl your in luck. Swivel hangers like on LAube and Oster clippers aren't rigid enough to do this trick properly, but it can be done. All it takes is a zip-tie! You zip-tie your cord to your clipper hanger to prevent the cord from bending or twisting at the clipper and it won't break. Thats where the break in the cord is usually at....right where the cord enters the clipper. So when you prevent it from bending in the thick part of the cord where it goes in the clipper, and force it to bend where the cord is flexible, it won't break. We did this to all our Andis clippers a few years back and haven't had a cord problem since. Below is a picture of an Andis clipper, and a Wahl clipper with the cords "zip-tied" to the hanger.

Clipper hangers

Now your thinking "If I zip-tie the cord to my hanger, I won't be able to hang my clipper up anymore" Don't worry you still can. We use a "key ring" from the hardware store that cost less than a dollar. We thread it though the hanger like you would a key and it gives us a better hanger to hang the clipper up with. Below is a picture of a 1 1/2 inch key ring.

Key ring

Just attach this key ring on the hanger, either side of the cord that is zip-tied to it, and your good to go. Hope this helps with your breaking cords all the time.

Have a great day grooming and read those labels!