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Discussion Starter #1
I'll be grooming my mini poodle myself. I am going to place an order for grooming tools from PetEdge but before I do I was hoping to get some comments on what to buy. I have never done any of this before! (But I am really excited to get started!)

Clipper: Andis, Wahl or Oster. Any big differences to these brands?

Blades: Which blades do I need for FFT? Sanitary clip? Body?

Combs: I saw some others mention the Wahl stainless steel attachment combs and I want to get some of those. I wasn't sure what sizes, though. I see PetEdge sells the whole set for $38. Do I need them all?

Blade rinse/clipper cool: Do I need both the rinse and the spray?

Shears: I know these are pricey. As a pet owner grooming my own dog, what should I get?

Am I forgetting anything? (I already have pin brush, slicker, steel comb and dremel for nails.)

Any help would be MUCH appreciated!
 

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Clippers - I use an Andis Ultra Edge, love love love my clipper. I also have an Whal cordless clipper for face/feet/tail and sanitary area. This has a five in one blade so I can change it as needed. It is also light weight and quiet compared to full sized clippers.

Scissors - Gieb makes some nice shears as does Roseline. Economical but still hold up well.

Comb Attachments - I love the whal steel combs. I use almost all of mine on my poodles. They reduce scissor time and save hand/arm fatigue.

I use a blade sanitatizer as well as a cooling spray. If you take care of your tools they will last longer and work better.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Clippers - I use an Andis Ultra Edge, love love love my clipper. I also have an Whal cordless clipper for face/feet/tail and sanitary area. This has a five in one blade so I can change it as needed. It is also light weight and quiet compared to full sized clippers.

Scissors - Gieb makes some nice shears as does Roseline. Economical but still hold up well.

Comb Attachments - I love the whal steel combs. I use almost all of mine on my poodles. They reduce scissor time and save hand/arm fatigue.

I use a blade sanitatizer as well as a cooling spray. If you take care of your tools they will last longer and work better.
Is the Wahl cordless clipper the Arco SE Cordless? It says it has a five position adjustable blade, is that what you mean when you say five in one? Sorry I am new with the grooming lingo!

For the shears, do I need both straight and curved? Wow, there are so many different styles to chose from, I don't know where to begin!

Thanks so much for responding!
 

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I have the Andis Ultra Edge and their newer cordless. I love them both. I use monk shears, and have had them for 10 years. You could also check out www.petagree.net for price checking. Sometimes they are cheaper.

Good luck.
 

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For face/feet/tail, I use the wahl bravura, the wahl arco and the speedfeed. Love them all but can't live without my bravura. If I could have only one trimmer, it would be the bravura. It just feels better in my hand than the other two. But, a lot of groomers swear by their speed feed. You "can" do the FFT with a #15 or #30 blade and a #40 blade on the underpads, but it's far easier with a smaller clipper. They are all the "5 in 1" blades - meaning with a flip of a switch, the blade can be "the same" as a #9, 10, 15, 30 and 40 blade. The blades are NOT the same as what you put on yoru clipper. They are fragile blades with a plastic housing and will break fairly easily - so get a couple of blades - they come fine and coarse - I use the fine blade. Being able to manueuver the trimmer around the face and feet with a small blade is so much easier than using a big corded clipper. Well worth the money.

For the main clipper, I use the Andis Super 2 as my workhorse clipper. My personal opinion is that Oster are too heavy and get hot very quickly.

The Wahl stainless clipper combs are great - the whole set is not expensive, and unless you absolutely KNOW what length you want, then why not get the whole set? Use a #10, 15 or 30 under them. NOT a 40 blade - or the teeth on the blade will break.

You need a blade cleaner and oil but do NOT use the cooling sprays - they are a known carcinogen. Just alternate the blades (have 2 of each one) when one blade gets hot, put it on a tile to cool. The tile will absorb the heat from the blade quickly and it'll be ready to use in no time again.

Maybe get some ear powder if you want to pluck the ears. And don't forget the quikstop in case you accidentally quick the nails.

You may want to get some sort of mat breaker or mat splitter - I use something like this:
http://tinyurl.com/ydnr3ga

You don't "need" curved shears but they are definitely helpful in shaping topknots and beveling edges of ankles/tails. You can get a decent pair of straight shears for less than $100.

Don't forget shampoo/conditioner.
 

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Is the Wahl cordless clipper the Arco SE Cordless? It says it has a five position adjustable blade, is that what you mean when you say five in one? Sorry I am new with the grooming lingo!

For the shears, do I need both straight and curved? Wow, there are so many different styles to chose from, I don't know where to begin!

Thanks so much for responding!
Grooming is fun and exciting. Whal makes a couple of different cordless clippers, I started out with the Arco SE and upgraded to the Cromando which is also cordless but has an internal battery, you plug in to recharge and can use while it is charging. It's only a few dollars more, but better in the long run.

You should get curves and straights. I tell my groomers they need to work smarter not harder, so let the tools help you do a better job.

Good Luck!!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Wow, thanks for the tip about avoiding the cooling sprays! When I worked in a vet hospital years ago we used that stuff constantly.


Since I just used a calculater and my order is steadily climbing upward, maybe I will just start with straight shears, then treat myself to curved shears on my birthday or something...
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I started out with the Arco SE and upgraded to the Cromando which is also cordless but has an internal battery, you plug in to recharge and can use while it is charging. It's only a few dollars more, but better in the long run.
At PetEdge the Chromado is only $10 more than the Arco...I like the idea of a rechargeable battery.
 

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My grooming teacher refused to let me use curved shears until we had mastered straight shears. Her opinion was that if you can do beautiful curved topknots with straight shears, then you can certainly do them with curved. LOL It IS nice to work with curved, but if the budget is tight, then they can wait.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
So, looking at the Geib, they have Crocodile Shears (says for finishing and light work) 7 1/2 inch straight for 99.99. They also have Gator Shears that are only $46.99 for the same size straight shear. What is the difference?

Also, what length should I be getting for a mini poo?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If the Andis UltraEdge clipper comes with a #10 blade, what other blade sizes do I need to order?

I am also going to get the Wahl Arco or Chromado for FFT.
 

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If you are going to be using comb attachments, you need (in the ideal world) a #30 blade to go under them. It's a finer/closer cut than a #10 blade would give you - although a 10 would work in a pinch. It doesn't matter if the blade under the comb gets hot, because it never touches the dogs' skin - so only one of those would be enough. For any blades that touch the skin, you need a couple.

So, if you get a trimmer for the f/f/t, then you don't need much else except the comb attachments and one 30 blade. What style were you thinking of doing on the dog?
 

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The trimmer comes with a small set of comb attachments that will leave the hair "about" 1/2" long with the longest comb attached. I have done MANY poodles backs with the trimmer comb and then scissored the legs/topknot. Never brought out the big clipper.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
If you are going to be using comb attachments, you need (in the ideal world) a #30 blade to go under them. It's a finer/closer cut than a #10 blade would give you - although a 10 would work in a pinch. It doesn't matter if the blade under the comb gets hot, because it never touches the dogs' skin - so only one of those would be enough. For any blades that touch the skin, you need a couple.

So, if you get a trimmer for the f/f/t, then you don't need much else except the comb attachments and one 30 blade. What style were you thinking of doing on the dog?
For now, while he stil has his puppy coat, I was going to keep him in a puppy trim. Later, I would like to try out different styles, leaning on the shorter side (for the body at least).
 

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Discussion Starter #16
7 1/2" should be fine. Check out the double duck mercedes shears - approximately $85 and are great. Should last you a LONG time as a pet owner.
I see this in the PetEdge catalogue:

Dubl Duck 8 1/4 88 Mercedes w/ large finger holes ($58.99).

Are these the ones you are thinking of? What a great deal!
 

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YEAH - that IS a good deal. You can get rubber finger inserts for them if the holes are too big for your fingers. Good idea to order a couple with your shears, just in case . . . . .

Now, remember to use your grooming shears ONLY for clean, dry fur and nothing else. Not to cut fabric, not for your husband to use in his workshop . . . . nothing but clean dry poodle hair. If you keep them for only what they were designed for, you will not need to have them resharpened very often.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
LOL! Hubby won't even be able to hold them.

Thanks for the reminder about clean hair only. Now that you mention it, I do remember from my time working at the vet, we had a groomer on the premises and she told me that using shears on dirty fur would wear them out.

Thanks so much for your help, I really don't know what I would do without this forum!
 

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This topic comes up a lot, perhaps a mod should make a sticky for general information like this. I bet it would help new comers out quite a bit.

Anyway, I always like to mention groomers.net..they have a swap and shop board and I found a lot of my blades/shears used through the website. I had to pay to have them sharpened but I saved a small fortune buying used and you can always get better stuff next time.

It's great for starting out and I use mine on a daily basis. I got a set of kenchii curves, straights and thinning shears for $70
 

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Also the blade sharpening guys have great videos to watch - ton of information about clipping maintenance and use.

http://www.northerntails.com/instructionalvideos.html

and

http://www.lovessharpening.com/instructionvideos.html

Anybody who uses clippers should watch the relevant videos to their clippers on these sites.

There are also great grooming videos out there. One is by muddycreek and it's aimed at pet owners - everything from bathing/drying to clipping/scissoring in a few really cute styles.

Other videos aimed more at professionals, but still really useable by pet owners are by Jodi Murphy. She is the "main" player in the grooming video scene. Google either of these videos.

Great to mention the groomersnet used equipment forum - there is also this forum to purchase gently used equipment -

http://www.petgroomerads.com/used_products.htm

Lots of great stuff listed on these sites every day. You have to respond quickly to postings, otherwise the stuff gets snapped up.
 
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