the shearer post

Choosing the Right Electric Sheep Shearing Clipper

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When I first started shearing 31 years ago, I made the mistake of buying a shearing equipment like Shearing Handpiece that was inferior. I was only 16 years old, young and impressionable. I was at our local farm field days where there were a lot of demonstrations and saw a guy demonstrating using a new type of shearers handpiece. He said the handpiece would make shearing easier and I would be able to shear more sheep in a day because of the quality of this handpiece. So I went ahead and bought the handpiece.

The next week I went out and started my first job as a professional sheep shearer. I was excited to use my new handpiece and couldn’t wait to start shearing. 

Well, the first day was a nightmare. I had 9 blisters on my hand and I honestly couldn’t hold the handpiece in my hand by the end of the day. That night I soaked my hands in Condies Crystals hoping they would harden up for the next day. Needless to say, I was in a lot of pain the next day. Fortunately the farmer leant me a pair of leather gloves and one of the other shearers gave me his second handpiece to use. I got through that second day and my blisters started to heal.

I tried to fix my brand new shearing handpiece but was unable to. It still ran hot and shook terribly when I used it. In the end I ended up throwing it in the dam and buying myself a trusted brand name shearing handpiece which worked first time straight out of the box.

From that experience I can honestly say, that when looking to purchase a brand new electric sheep shearing clipper, you are far better off buying a brand name clipper then buying one that is cheap or a brand that you have not heard of before. The brand name clippers that are common are:


  • Heiniger – 240V
  • Lister – 240V
  • Beiyuan – 240V & Lithium Battery
  • Oster – 240V
  • Handypiece – Lithium Battery


All of these clippers have great warranties and the shearing shops that sell these brands have backup service departments and quick postage turn arounds.

If you buy cheap shearing clippers from ebay or amazon you might get a good one but you also might get a lemon. It is luck of the draw. I know that most clippers you buy on these platforms don’t even have a sharp set of blades on the clipper so they would need grinding (sharpening) before use. And most small sheep farmers have not got a shearing grinder to sharpen the blades.

When you go to buy a sheep clipper, don’t be afraid to go to your local shearing shop and turn on the clipper to get a feel for it. You will be able to

  • Feel how it vibrates in your hand, when turned on.
  • How long the barrel is.
  • The circumference of the barrel of the clipper.
  • What type of blades come with the clipper.
  • Compare other name brand clippers in the store.

If you cannot get to a shearing store please go to my youtube channel and take a look at my videos where I give all the clippers a realtime review and comparison and where I actually turn the clippers on and shear sheep with them.

In conclusion, you really do pay for what you get. Buy quality and look after the clipper with regular lubrication and blade changing and you will get many, many years out of your clipper, which in turn will give you great joy in shearing your own sheep and will no doubt save money in the long run.

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