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Electric Dog Hair Clippers Recommendations

As our pet grooming place has shut down and our little dog is way overdue for a trim, we are looking at buying a set of clippers, probably Wahl and preferably battery.

I am looking at the Wahl Lithium Ion Pro Dog Clippers at $179.95 and would like any suggestions or experiences other members have.

https://au.wahl.com/Products/Australian-Products/Home-Pet/Consumer-Clippers/Lithium-Ion-Pro-Series-Clipper.aspx

Thanks in advance.

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Hi @Fred123, I can’t comment on Wahl dog grooming products but I have purchased a Wahl hair clipper set. I rate it as one of my best buys. Robust, clippers stay sharp. No complaints. Unit is corded so I can’t comment on battery life.

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Thanks. I bought one the other day as my barber shop has closed.

Great so far.

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I had one some years back and the Wahl basic set was great. Someone more important borrowed it to groom the dog. It worked so well on the spaniel, I had no heart to ask for it back. Assume the dog drooling kit may have a slightly different selections of combs. Or are they the same renamed with doggie speak?

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When I bought a Wahl cordless clipper for myself a few days ago, I asked the young lady if there were any models suitable for people and dogs, and she said no as dogs, particularly with those with thick coats, require a much more powerful model.

She only had one Wahl pet model left which she said would not be strong enough for our little dog and she suggested I look at their website and order the heavier duty online.

As I commented to my wife this afternoon, this little dog probably has around 100 times as much coat on his body as I have on my head, and his coat is mainly Poodle wool, so I can understand the need for a heavy duty clipper with a long battery life.

Tomorrow we plan to try my clippers on our little dog to see how they cut, and how he copes with it with his PTSD, prior to buying a pet model.

From experience, the Wahl brand is hit and miss in terms of quality. It is a well known brand due to their marketting extensively, but no better than many other brands.

The expectation is that if it is a pet clipper then the motor and battery SHOULD be stronger, but that is not always the case. A lot of the gear is manufactured in China, and the feet (the spacers that clip onto the head) that come with the pet or human clippers are much of a muchness in both lines. They can be differentiated by number, metric or imperial measurements. Usually the much bigger feet (larger spacing) sometimes needed for pets are usually an extra option.

Things to look for are:

  • ceramic cutting blade and head which do not go blunt the way the steel ones do,
  • metal body is much more resilient (plastic is OK for light duty),
  • a lever to move the blade closer to the front of the teeth to give a closer cut,
  • a suitable range of strong feet which easily attach to the clipper to vary the cut length
  • a warranty that is at least two years,
  • preferrably local service agents, and
  • availability of spare parts and optional extras if needed that don’t cost the earth.

and in cordless clippers also look for:

  • LIon batteries are obviously better then NiCad batteries,
  • a decent size battery that will give you more than one or two haircuts,
  • fast charging,
  • some sort of charge level indicatior, whether LEDs or a LCD display, and
  • ability to cut while charging (connected to AC power).

Clippers must be thoroughly cleaned of hair/fur after every use, including just above the foot, and the blade must be kept lubricated preferably wwith HIGH SPEED oil.

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Wahl branded oil is readily available from the shops that sell clippers. It’s a graded oil that is the right viscosity for the application. Importantly it is compatible with the plastics used in the bodies and clipper feet - accessories. There may be other brands. A little lasts a lifetime.

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Any high speed oil will work, and may be significantly cheaper without the Wahl branding.

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Hi @meltam, I have a few queries regarding your post.

  1. You say that, in your experience, that the quality of Wahl products are “hit and miss in terms of quality”. Of the Wahl products you have purchased, which were hits and which were misses.

  2. You also state that Wahl are a well known brand due to “marketing extensively”. I do not recall seeing Wahl advertised on television, radio or public billboard. If you walk into the Shaver Shop they are advertised but also along with many other brands. Can you expand on the extensive marketing campaign that Wahl has embarked on.

  3. In reference to the original post by @Fred123, based on the very detailed criteria you provided, which brands should @Fred123 consider.

Thanks

Hi @meltam.
It’s an interesting option.
I did find a number of references to hobby oils one branded as Boca - High Speed Oil, for bearings. ‘High speed’ oil is not a specific industry product definition.

It appears Boca and perhaps others in the market place have their own take on what is commercially produced as Spindle Oil. A product specifically used in precision and high speed bearing lubrication. Each petroleum products supplier offers a number of different product viscosities. Which grade Wahl selects or Boca chooses, and any differences in additive packages who knows.

The Boca product and it’s like competitors products may be a suitable alternative. Trial and error if you are looking at an alternative, not produced specifically for clippers. Wahl oil is readily available (Hair products suppliers, Shaver Shop, Goodguys, HN etc) in various sizes up to 118ml for around $10. A life time supply around here.

Spindle oil grades, one supplier’s products.
https://www.mobil.com/en-us/industrial/pds/gl-xx-mobil-velocite-oil-no-series

Note that petroleum products sold as ‘instrument oil’ may be similar to spindle oil. They are typically intended to provide corrosion protection of hand tools and instruments.

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My mind is installed backwards, my first thought was why would an electric dog need its hair clipped?

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We have a small dog, an Australian Silky Terrier. We use a Wahl beard trimmer for her as anything else is too big, but she does have hair not fur. I do her ears with it always as Silkies are meant to have smooth ears. Works an absolute treat.

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As background, the boss lady was a hairdresser, and so we were exposed to a vast variety of both professional and ‘retail’ equipment both in the business and from attending industry events over the course of many years.

We bought equipment either from specialist hairdressing suppy stores or at events directly from suppliers. Over time we had Wahl equipment, some of which lasted well, and some which failed fairly quickly.

Wahl advertised & promoted extensively in industry (hairdressing and pet) journals and events. I have no doubt that they do the same with relevant retailers such as the Shaver Shop. The brand is then supported and promoted by practitioners who buy the gear cheaply (wholesale or better deals) and make considerable profit selling retail.

We ended up finding a wholesaler in Sydney that sold “pet clippers” and we used their products for hairdressing because they met the criteria I listed in the earlier post and worked well.

As evidenced by the Choice testing, the well know brands aren’t nevessarily the best performers, nor is price an indication of performance. I don’t want to recommend a particular brand or product, but I do want to emphasise that the Wahl brand is not the bees’ knees.

I suggest you use the list I provided to select a product for yourself.

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I cannot recall being to a barber or hairdresser who does not use Wahl.

Wkich brands use ceramic blades?

I suggest that you do a browser search such as ceramic blade hair trimmer or ceramic blade hair clippers.

Hi @meltam, thanks for the background. Given you have established that you have hairdresser experience with professional clippers and the extensive advertising referred to was for hairdressers and not the man in the street do you think this is relevant for domestic use. It’s a bit like a Ferrari is great for F1 racing but a bit over the top for my needs.

Without asking for a specific recommendation, which brands did your boss usually buy? We could then dumb it down and compare their more basic models.

Thanks again.

Not me. It was the wife woman, AKA know as the boss lady. I attended as the business partner/side-kick/support person.

We closed the business down nearly 10 years ago, so memory is fading, but we used a variety of brands including I believe Oster. They were more expensive, but they lasted, could be repaired, and had spares etc.

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Thanks @meltam. That makes sense. The only thing I would caution @Fred123 about is the use of ceramic blades. From my very limited research, the ceramic blades are used because they do not heat up as much a stainless steel blades. Makes sense if you a cutting a lot of hair daily but the general comment was they were also more expensive & broke more easily than SS. I also know that this goes against the manufacturers recommendations but after my little bottle of Wahl oil was used, I just used sewing machine oil instead. Haven’t had any issues with the blades seizing or pulling at the hair.

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We have the Andis clippers bought maybe 7 years ago to clip our miniature Schnauzer. Schnauzers have a double coat, and she does need a bath before clipping to get out the oils from her coat. The blades need swapping out every 10 minutes or so because they do heat up. The oil is also critical to ensure the blades don’t get clogged up.
We watched a few videos to work out how to do it, but we were also lucky because the breeder trained her from an early age to stand still whilst being clipped.
I also used the clippers to cut my hubby’s hair recently with success.
It takes practice, but it is convenient as long as your dog is well-trained and you are careful.

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We like the Andis Clippers for our dog over Wahl. Our two are now over 5 years old (we have a Heavy Duty one for when the coat is really thick after Winter) and the less powerful Trimmer one for detail work and clipping when his coat is shorter (Summer). We have both the oil bath and change the blades regularly during the clipping. We find the rotary mechanism better than the “vibration” motors in some cheaper other brand units.

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