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Sharpening Dog Clippers – How to Sharpen Dog Clipper Blades?

Written by Viena
Viena is passionate about all sorts of domesticated pets. They have written dozens of articles across the web.
Published on
Thursday 6 May 2021
Last updated on
Tuesday 9 May 2023
sharpening dog clippers
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Dog owners need to know how to sharpen dog clipper blades the right way. You might be one of those who wonder how to execute the task correctly. Essentially, you must also acknowledge that the sharpening process is a necessary skill to groom your dog. Dog clippers should always be sharpened every time you use them. Putting much emphasis on blades will ensure that the blade will cut the hair evenly.

Proper cleaning and maintenance shouldn’t also be compromised as it keeps your blades working smoothly. While there are services that could provide it for you, practicality would also arise in the equation. So, if you’re wondering how to smoothly cut your dog’s fur without worrying about pulling their hair, you’ll enjoy this article. And if you’re still hesitant to pull it off, you might as well take note of some of the crucial facts when dealing with dog clipper blades.

Luckily, you can finally check out the know-hows after reading this guide.

What You’ll Need To Sharpen Dog Clipper Blades

Sharpening dog clippers need a little bit of effort and the proper tools to ensure that the blades are in good working condition. Here are the things you will need to sharpen dog clipper blades appropriately.

  • Screwdriver/Toolbox – A screwdriver will be an essential tool for the dog clipper blade sharpening process as it will disassemble and reassemble the clipper. Since blades are typically held with head screws, it’s one of the first things to do in cleaning the edges. Moreover, a toolbox will also be needed to store the removed screw heads and other essential tools that you may need.
  • Cleaning agent – After you sharpen the dog clippers, the next thing you’ll need is a cleaning tool to de-rust the metals. With a trusted cleaning solution, you’ll quickly have it done with ease and comfort. You can either make your homemade cleaning agent or buy it in a store.
  • Clipper oil – Before you use the blades again, it’s necessary to put a clipper oil right after cleaning it. Clipper Oil is needed to lubricate the blades and prevent them from rusting.
  • Clean towel – In sharpening dog clipper blades, always keep a clean towel to easily wipe any steel particles that fall off as you sharpen. Having a clean towel will be very handy to remove little metal pieces that break off by sharpening stones. Besides, it’s also useful to dry off the blades and shine the clippers.
  • Sharpening tool of choice – When it comes to selecting dog clipper sharpening tools, you have three types to choose from. It includes the following:
  • Flat Stone: Being the most affordable among all sharpening tool types, the flat stone is a top-choice by many dog owners. Aside from its low price, it’s also a convenient tool for sharpening. All you have to do is rub the blades back and forth against the flat stone.
  • Grinding Wheel: With this sharpening wheel, you can either have a wet or dry solution in its ridges. By simply inserting the blade in the wheel with the applied solution on the edge, you’re all set to sharpen the clipper.
  • Lapping Wheel: Unlike the grinding wheel, the lapping wheel contains cast iron with its surface surrounded by grooves. Its wheel also rotates much slower than a grinding wheel, but it provides a smoother finish.

How to Sharpen Dog Clipper Blades

The purpose of trimming your furry friend’s hair isn’t only essential for aesthetics but also to ensure your pet’s health and safety. To execute your hair cutting correctly, you must first learn the fundamentals of blade sharps. With this, it’s also necessary that you know how to sharpen a dull dog clipper blade. In this segment, you’ll learn what you need to do to achieve it.

sharpen dog clipper blades
Trim your dog’s hair for safety.

Disassemble the Clipper Blades

The first step in sharpening dog clippers is through disassembling the blades. For safety purposes, always ensure that your clipper is unplugged or turned off before knocking it down into pieces. Moreover, you must gently remove the screws to avoid misplacement of parts that could fall off as you dismantle.

Remember that the blade assembly is found in the clipper head along with small screws. It also implies that you’ll need a screwdriver to remove it before detaching the blade from the clipper.

Clean the Blade and Your Clipper

One of the essential processes that you shouldn’t overlook is the importance of cleaning your blade and clippers. Before and after you sharpen, make sure to clean the edges to avoid malfunction. Take note that even the tiniest dirt or debris molecules can harm your clipper’s sharpness and overall function.

It will be best if you soak the blade using a cleaning agent and let it hang for less than an hour. In some cases, the soaking duration may vary according to the type of solution you are using. Additionally, use protective gloves if you are scrubbing some dirt off to prevent cuts from the blade. Preferably, it would help if you only used running water after the disinfection process.

Get Your Sharpening Tool Ready

In sharpening your tool, there are a few aspects to check first before doing it. It includes securing your whetstone in place and ensuring that it won’t shake in the sharpening process. There shouldn’t be worry on your part, considering that you’ll work on the towel on the ground serving as a workspace.

When using a whetstone, make sure that it is sufficiently wide to hold your clipper blade. On the other hand, if you intend to use a grinding wheel or lapping wheel, observe a stricter caution. The use of these sharpening wheels is not advisable, mainly if you aren’t used to it beforehand.

Sharpen the Blade

After undergoing a thorough process before the proper sharpening, you’ll be pleased to know that this is the fastest part. Once you hit the ground running, expect a smooth execution of the sharpening stage for your dog clipper blades.

At this point, you have to sharpen the flat sides of the blades and run them from side to side. First, it should go through the coarse whetstone and then over the more delicate stone. Conducting two sets will be enough for each blade. A manual sharpening usually lasts for about three to four minutes.

Clean Up and Reassemble the Clipper

After finishing all essential steps in sharpening dog clippers, it’s time for you to refurbish the clipper into its normal state. You might want to immediately re-clean them after reassembling them to prevent residual dirt from coming back quickly.

Rewashing the blades and storing them in a small cleaner bowl, and soak for about 30 seconds will ensure dirt-free edges. After finishing to soak, quickly remove the cleaning agent, rinse it with ample water, and dry it gently using a clean sheet. After that, return the blades to its usual place and reassemble the pieces.

Different Types of Dog Clipper Blades

It’s always essential to consider what type of blade you’ll need in choosing your dog clipper blade. Note that the same manufacturer can make a blade, but it will vary in length. Every blade length contains a different set of coat lengths and style numbers. It’s also worthwhile confirming if the blade that you wanted will be compatible with your dog clipper.

Many dog clipper blade types are out there, so it’s essential to choose the one that would suit your comfort. And while the cleaning process will be entirely the same, recognize that the blade type you choose will impact your dog clippers’ sharpening tool.

Skip Tooth vs. Fine Tooth

Dog owners often find themselves torn in choosing between skip tooth and fine tooth. And if you’re one of them, luckily, you’ll now have a clearer understanding of what to pick according to preference. A fine-tooth works well for furry companions with regularly clipped coats. If your dog is matted or has a firm close to the skin, a skip tooth blade would be more suitable to use.

By only looking at their appearance and features, you can already determine its differences from one another. But its functionality undoubtedly raises a new concern. If you prefer to accomplish a rough and layered cut style, you should pick a skip tooth. On the other hand, a fine-tooth will provide your dog with a toned and refined outcome.

Clipper Edges

It’s not only about the blade’s entire scheme, as dog clipper blades’ edgings also matter in choosing the right one for you. If you want to get the best dog clippers, you might as well consider its blade edgings before buying.

Ultra-Edge Blades This dog clipper blade type consists of carbon-infused steel with a hard cutting surface for durable use. Meanwhile, ceramic Edge Blades- usually consist of high-grade ceramic, this edge blade is built to resist heat to keep your furry pal cool and comfortable as you trim.

Show-Edge Blades If you aim for a smooth finish of your pet’s coat, a show-edge blade is indeed a worthy pick. This edge type is perfect for dogs who are often competing in the show ring.

Blade Numbering

In picking the blade sizes for your dog clipper, there is a wide array of options to choose from. Attesting the diversity of blade sizes, the most common sizes are 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10, 15, 30, 40, and 50. An essential thing to note is that the larger the number is, the more precise the cut will be. Those who have fine tooth and skip tooth blades, sizes 3, 4, 5, and 7, are the essential cop.

While there are many more sizes in the charts, we’ll provide you with some of the most significant size features. Blade number 3 will give your dog 13 millimeter-long hair. The number 30 blade, on the other hand, will leave your pet’s fur at only 0.5 millimeters in length. Blade sizes 40 and 50 come in the closest shave, which is only practiced by veterinarians for surgical purposes.

To wrap this blade size talk, the higher your blade size is, the shorter your canine’s fur will be.

Useful Tips

After purchasing your first dog clipper blade, it’s about time to try them on. But before you begin, make sure that you’ve filled yourself with sufficient knowledge and tips on how to utilize it. If you have doubts as a first-timer, you’ll indeed find delight reading this part.

Taking your tail-wagging friend to groomers for a trim from time-to-time can be a hassle. So here, we’ve gathered some of the convenient tips in sharpening dog clippers.

Have Your Clipper’s Manual with You

At some point, when you assemble, reassemble, and disassemble your dog clipper, you might get lost. And while confusion and distraction can arise at any time, one thing you must not forget is to bring your clipper manual. Having it with you can save you from any possible misstep you make along the way.

Put the Small Parts in a Safe Place

When putting screws, it is important to observe safety measures and precautions. As much as possible, avoid losing a piece of the screw. Please beware that your pet may find it and put it in their mouth, resulting in choking or digestive problems.

Test it First, If You Can

Before you land the clipper into your dog’s fur and skin, make sure to see if it won’t cause discomfort. A blade that’s too sharp and blunt may result in irritation and, worse, wound your furry pal’s skin. The best recommendation is to test your clipper on a fur-like surface before using it.

Watch a Live Demonstration or a Video Beforehand

If you’re still skeptical despite reading all important stuff related to dog clipper blades, watching visual instructions might help. A video demonstration can be beneficial in providing you a more detailed guide to utilizing dog clipper blades.

Sharpening Dog Clippers – FAQ

Sharpening your dog clippers is necessary to maintain their best condition. As a pet owner, you may have some questions on how to properly do it, especially for first-time fur parents. Here are some answers to the things you might be asking about dog clippers.

What is the best way to clean your clippers?

All you have to do is soak the edges in the cleaner and wash it with running water. Before putting a cleaning tool on your blade, you have to remember that every cleaning product may require specific treatment. It’s vital to be sure of your cleaning agent’s specifications so that further issues won’t arise. Use a cleaning brush if there are demanding spaces that your hands couldn’t get into.

When should I replace my dog clippers?

In terms of the period to get a dog clipper replacement, it often varies on how frequently you use it. If you have a compressed schedule where you can’t sharpen the dog clippers, you can replace them every four months. On the other hand, if you often use them, it’s better to immediately replace your blades when you deem it’s too distorted to function.

How often should I sharpen the clippers?

Determining how often to sharpen dog clipper blades will depend on several factors, which includes:
– How hard the steel blade is.
– How you groom your pet’s fur.
– The kind of dog you groom.

How do I select the best dog clippers for me and my dog?

To achieve the best dog clippers’ convenient buying, you should evaluate how frequently you’re going to need it. Do you want your tail-wagger to have that sleek-refined look now and then? Or want to have it cut so it won’t grow shaggy? Remember that the dog cut you prefer will indicate what kind of dog clipper you’re going to need.

How much oil should I put after reassembling the clippers?

You must often only put around two to three drops of oil to get your clippers into full-function. While on the table, place a drop of oil or two at the blade’s center position on the cutting surface. The drop should be minimal as it’s already enough to spread across the blade. Putting an oil will help your clipper maintain its temperature and save your cutting edges for a long-haul.

Mastering the art of cutting your tail-wagging pal’s fur is a learned skill, but what makes it essential is what you do after the cutting part. Cleaning your dog clipper blades is one of the most important things to execute after finishing grooming your dog. You should always wash them after every use. By doing so, your clipper blade will last longer and function efficiently. Recognizing that learning the grooming skill is just as important as cleaning it will help lead the way. While improving the craft to groom your dog likely takes up a significant amount of time, cleaning won’t.

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