For the Professional Groomer, Handler, and Veterinarian
If your a home groomer doing your own dog, and your not using your local groomer just to save money, or a "hobbyist" groomer doing a couple dogs a week for a little extra money not really needed, please find someplace else to get your couple blades sharpened.
We only sharpen Professional Groomers, Handlers, and Vets for their expertise, the very hard work they do, and the care and safety they give the animals.
There is alot of information on this page, and we hope you read it all the way to the bottom. This information was designed to help train you on your equipment and what the differences are. There is over 30 years of sharpening and grooming experience compiled to help you understand. Its set up for the first time customer and younger groomers, and will answer most of your questions about your equipment and shippingto us. You have to scroll down to the sections that interest you more if you like, those aren't links.
There Is Alot Here, At Least Scroll And Glance At These Sections:
- Mailing Information (print out "Inventory Sheet") -
- Sharpening Prices -
- Scissor Types - - The different edge types on thinners explained -
- Blades We Sharpen -
- Trimmer Blades We Sharpen -
- Wahl 5-N-1 Blade Refurbish Program -
- Clipper Repair (see tab on left) -
- Payment Methods -
( WE DO NOT TAKE AMEX CARDS )
>>>>>What To Use, And Not Use When Packing A Box <<<<<
- Terms Of Our Guarantee On Bottom Of Page -
Regular customers only read it once, then go get the "Inventory Sheet" after that.
Read my blog on Petgroomer.com, the tab is on the left.
<<<<< If you just want the Inventory Sheet, Click the navigation bar on left
The Mail-In Service Groomers are shipping from "All 50 States & The World"
One of the "Most Trusted" inexpensive sharpening services in the U.S.
Get your FREE CD-ROM containing all the files and video's on this website!
PLUS The New 3 Part Series On Blade Care (not on website)
It goes in your computer for instant viewing, no more waiting or downloading.
We are a discount sharpening service, NOT a low quality service. The prices are low by design, and will remain lower than other services. The prices we charge covers the cost of our expenses just fine. Our employee's are groomers, and have a combined experience of over 40 years at a grooming table. We know how your equipment is suppose to cut, and we use the same equipment everyday.
Because of our experience, we won't sharpen anything broken, worn out, or something thats dangerous to an animal. We'll call you if we have any questions, or if any of your equipment is questionable. Our website has information that will help keep your sharpening and repair money in your pocket. No one else does that for you. The information is all FREE!
In this economy, you need someone like us on your side who will exceed your expectations with sharpening, and not charge you a ridiculous price to do it.
During the months of November, December, January and February we are usually a few days behind. We get an enormous amount of orders in this time of year. Everyone wants to be sharp for the holidays, and resharpened afterwards. Sorry if its late.
We will be attending a family function in Arkansas from Sept 2nd to Sept 5th. Going to see the new grandbaby. Please plan accordingly
We will Tentatively be at Groom Expo in Hershey, PA Sept 22-25, 2016
I will be sharpening outside with the Mid Atlantic Sharpeners Group
Our sharpening center in Mobile AL will be closed from Sept 21st to Monday Sept 26th for travel time. We won’t be here to sharpen, so plan your shipments accordingly. It would be better to ship your box for delivery AFTER the 26th than before. If we don’t get it sharpened and mailed, it will sit until we get back from PA.
We will be set up near the front door outside in the parking lot as you walk in. We will be charging regular sharpening prices, not dog show prices.
We will be attending a 3 day seminar in North Carolina on October 27 - 29, 2016.
Our sharpening center in Mobile AL will be closed from Oct 26th to Monday Oct 29th for travel time. We won’t be here to sharpen, so plan your shipments accordingly. It would be better to ship your box for delivery AFTER the 29th than before. If we don’t get it sharpened and mailed, it will sit until we get back from NC.
Call for information or questions
251-232-5353 Hours: 8 to 5 cst - Closed Sunday and Monday like our grooming shop
* 48 Hour Turn Around * On "Average Size" Sharpening Orders - We have the box no longer than 48 hous or less,
and you should get it back 7 to 12 days after you mailed it.
**** Average size orders are: 14 blades, 3 shears, one clipper. Excessive amounts of blades, shears, or clippers may take a little more time.****
You get your box back 7 to 12 days after you mail it, depending on the Post Office,
unless you sent and excessive amount of equipment, this will take longer.
NOTE: On certain days: Pre-shavedown in March/April, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, (pre-holidays) October/November/January, we get double the boxes. Turnaround may be longer.
NOTE: If your desperate, and needing your equipment back like "yesterday", please dont mail to us. Find someone local to sharpen your equipment. We take up to 48 hours to work on your equipment and get it shipped back out, and the post office doesnt deliver mail on time anymore. We will not move your box ahead of anyone else to get it out quicker, thats not fair to the folks ahead of you.
Here is the address to ship when using the US Post Office, DHL, UPS or FedEx: The "Inventory Sheet" (below) will automatically print this address out for you on a separate sheet, then you just attach it to your box.
Northern Tails Sharpening, Inc Jeff Andrews 2319 Granada Avenue Mobile, AL 36693 251-232-5353
We are a mail-in service only, not a store front where you can drop stuff off.
Please print and fill out the "Inventory Sheet" Below.
( scroll down )
This sheet gives you the opportunity to itemize your box and see how much your going to spend on your sharpening order.
It gives us your return mailing address and "Anytime" phone number so we can reach you after hours or over the weekend if we need to contact you.
The Inventory sheet also prints out a label to put on your box, how cool is that!
Padded Bubble Bag (9.5 x 12.5)
Flat Rate Bubble Bag
This NEW bubble bag from the Post Office is perfect for sending blade boxes full of blades for the SAME PRICE AS A SMALL FLAT RATE BOX. Always use your blade box to ship blades, never wrap them and use a small flat rate box, they can get damaged. Even if the box isn't full, use the blade box and this bag. This new bag is durable and tear resistant and FREE AT THE POST OFFICE, grab several.
Make sure the cover to your box is secured with several thick rubber bands or tape it closed with packing tape. (scotch tape will not hold) Seal it up and your good to go. Postage is under $8.00 just like a small flat rate box, and this bag will hold20 pounds.
The US Post Office is automatically insuring all priority mail boxes for $50. If you want more then $50 you can purchase more.
Print Out The Inventory Sheet Below And Send With Your Order
NEW MAILING ADDRESS
We are changing our mailing address from the UPS Store to our Sharpening Center. This will save a day on shipping to us because it doesn't go to the UPS Store first, then its delivered from there. Im not on the road sharpening anymore so I don't need someone else to collect our mail.
Here is an "Inventory Sheet" with the new address on the label, go ahead and use it. The old address is still good so don't worry, we'll just get it a day later.
If you can't print out the "Inventory Sheet" just answer these questions on a regular sheet of paper.
How many blades your sending? How many shears your sending? Any broken teeth on any blades? Do you want blades returned safely in a blade box? What name and address you want everything sent back to? (Let us know if this is a different address than we shipped to before. Write "NEW ADDRESS") Payment information.
NOTE: If you use a credit card, we need the zipcode where the bill is sent, for security purposes. Phone numbers where we can reach you anytime, 7 days a week, daytime/evenings. If we talked on the phone about anything you want done, write it down to refresh our memory.
WHAT BRAND OF CLIPPER DO YOU USE?
Do You Do Cats?
If you do alot of cats with #10's or 7F's please designate these blades for me. Its best to set the tension of these blades at the high end of the tension spec, and set the cutter back a little more so it will dig. If not, they may have trouble cutting and just skim over the fur in some of these cats with dense fur. Make sure your clipper is 100% as well, a worn blade drive will not let the blade dig in cat fur. Have a new blade drive on when you do cats.
Sometimes as you know you just have to find a 10 that will work on a cat, but this helped me when I was shaving down cats all the time..
Terms for the guaranty are at bottom of page, you should read them before shipping to us.
MAIL-IN PRICES *** We DO NOT accept American Express cards ***We are one of the most inexpensive sharpening services you can use! NOTE: Multiple groomers sending blades in the same box. Please Identify your blades permanently somehow by engraving or nail polish on the sockets. We clean blades two times and air blow them once, and we may not keep the identity of the blades separate between groomers in your combined blade box. Just a heads up to help us out! If you don't know if your shears/thinners have a convex edge or not, there is an explanation with pictures down in the shears section. I would look at it so there are no surprises with cost.
A5 Steel Blades.....$5.00 always
A5 Ceramic Blades.....$6.00 always 4 Pt, Equine, or Farm Blades.....$7.00 alwaysLister Blades....$7.00 alwaysRestore Heavy Rusted Blades.....$6.50 Designate which blades, see informationWe can REFURBISH your Wahl 5-N-1 Blade for $10.00
This includes new parts. Extends Life, SAVES MONEY! NOTE: The program is the best deal, like getting a almost-new blade backPlease only send up to (14) 5-N-1 blades at a time SHARPENERS
We can re-furbish your used 5-N-1 cutters for $3.00 each (minimum 25 per order)The cutters must have rail, and not been previously sharpened on an A5 machine or diamond pad.We have the Wahl specifications on our refurbishing wheel so they will be trueWhy spend top dollar for new cutters when we can help you make extra money?
Any Regular Beveled Edge Shear....$5.00 alwaysThis includes those cheap blue or black handled disposable shears that cost $20-$25 new. Convex Grooming Shears, Thinners, All Chunkers ....$10.00 alwaysWe do not sharpen curved chunkers/thinners because of the problems they have when they are dropped and bent.
Andis has a flat rate clipper repair service for ALL detachable blade clippers. The cost is $50.00 plus shipping. Call Andis customer service at 800-558-9441(Note: Excel 5 speed cords are $40.00 + labor, The refurb program may be better)
Need Any Clipper Parts ??
If you need any blade drives, levers, hinges, power cords or whatever for Andis, just let us know how many in a note. We can add it to the invoice and ship it back in your box.
There is a place on the 2nd page of the Inventory Sheet to list the parts you need.
We don't fix dryers, please don't send any
Disclaimer: Northern Tails Sharpening, Inc is not responsible for equipment lost or damaged in transit from us, so the owner will not be compensated. The shipping company is responsible, so shipping insurance is the only way you can get compensated for lost or damaged equipment. We do not apply insurance to shipments automatically even if there was insurance applied when it was shipped to us. You have to request we apply insurance and how much to apply to the return shipment. You can do this by documenting your request on our "Inventory Sheet", a received email, or on a plain piece of paper inside the box. Verbal notification over the phone will not be adequate, it can be forgotten that way. Sharpening shipped to the wrong address, or a different address than previously shipped by Northern Tails Sharpening, we will not be responsible for. There is a place on the Inventory sheet to highlight the change of address. If a plain piece of paper is used, you must designate the new address by using the words "New Address". If either option isnt used. we may not identify a different address, and your box will go to the old address in our shipping software. At that point you will have to contact the post office of that zipcode with the tracking number to find your box. Or go to the old address and see if they have it. We are unable to help you find your box in this situation unless its shipped back to us. We will then contact you for the correct address and reship. This is our protocol for shipping insurance and address changes.
What Kind Of Edge Is On Your Shears?
The Beveled Edge
Considered the "Work Horse" of the grooming industry. This edge is the standard edge of 90% of all grooming shears. Why is this edge so good for grooming? Because it will cut almost every type of coat without going dull so quickly. The small 30 degree bevel on the edge gives this edge its support. It will cut out mats, dirty hair, wet hair, and general roughing in without dulling out or pushing the hair very quickly. It can be sharpened on standard sharpening equipment. We charge $4.50 to sharpen shears with this edge.
The Convex Edge
Considered a finishing shear rather than one used to "rough in".The convex edge is identified as looking like a razor. When both blades are sharpened properly you can barely feel the shear go through the hair. This same edge is on most beauty shears. The convex edge gets its strength from the metal of the shear its on. Good shears with a convex edge are usually in the $150+ price range, and may have a ball bearing as a pivot rather than just a tension screw. The better the metal the longer the edge will last. Of course, what you cut with the shear influences the life of the edge as well. We charge $10.00 to sharpen shears with the convex edge because they need to be honed to get that razor edge.
If you purchased a convex shear in the $40 - $80 price range we consider that an inexpensive shear. This type of shear usually comes in grooming kits as sets for entry level groomers, but can be purchased separately in any catalogue. The metal on these shears isn't strong enough to support the honed razor edge that normally comes on convex shear blades. If you scissor alot with these shears they could dull out in a few weeks, and if dropped can bend very easy. I suggest putting a small beveled edge on the shear because it is stronger on any metal and should hold the edge for months. Since the blades are convex, the beveled edge will seem just as sharp and cut for alot longer. Some sharpeners charge $20 to hone the razor edge back on convex shears which is almost half the cost of the cheaper shears, if they dull out in weeks its not cost effective to put that edge back on. Expensive convex shears are made with very good metal and will hold the razor convex edge for months
Since we raised the price on thinning shears that have a convex cutting blade, here is a picture that helps you determine the difference.
Most thinners today have went to a convex edge on them to produce a smooth finish, unlike the beveled edge which leaves a choppy finish.
If your always having issues with your shears, it may be the way you take care of them. Here is an article that will help you maintaine your shears the proper way.
NOTE: Screws that keep loosening up are cause by you not lubing the pivot like your suppose to. Hair in the pivot retains moisture, which will rust the threads on your pivot screw. The screw loosens when you scissor because of this. We cannot fix this sometimes because it takes a new screw, and we dont have every screw to fit every shear out there. So if it doesn't get fixed, thats the reason.
We Do Not Have authority to sharpen these shears but groomers send them to us everyday because they trust our work. They also don't like the cost from these companies for sharpening, and the warranties they never honor. There is no special procedure for sharpening these shears, they sharpen like any others. We've been told we do a better job anyway.
We Sharpen Any Blade That Fits Your Clipper
All brands of A5 blades fit all brands of A5 clippers, no blades are specific to clippers brands.
We sharpen all brands of all steel blades, blades with ceramic cutters, barber blades that fit the vibrating clippers, and large animal blades. We sharpen ALL BRANDS and TYPES of clipper blades.
IF YOU HAVE BLADES WITH BROKEN TEETH, THEY CANNOT BE FIXED, DON'T SEND THEM
#30 BLADES WITH BROKEN TEETH WE WILL SHARPEN AUTOMATICALLY UNLESS YOU NOTE IT
THERE IS A PLACE ON THE INVENTORY SHEET FOR BLADES WITH BROKE TEETH Note: We don't test blades on comb attachments to see if they work. So if you put a #40, #30, #15, #10, or #9 on a comb and push it through the coat and it just snags, something is wrong. You need to take the blade off the comb, push the cutter to each side while cleaning the hair from under it and then oil with blade oil (no coolants). Try the blade on the belly someplace by skimming it to see if it cuts with out the comb on it. We test every blade we sharpen on our clipper that has new parts, if it dont cut at your shop something is wrong.
Any and All STEEL Blades
Any and All CERAMIC Blades
Any and All WIDE Blades
Barber/Home Groomer Blades
All T-84 and all Horse Blades
Power Pro Blades (Wide)
All Oster A-2 Blades
INDIVIDUAL CERAMIC CUTTERS
We stopped sharpening ceramic cutters that are not mounted on the entire blade. If you are sending a handfull of unmounted ceramic cutters, without the bottom blade they go on, we will send them back. REASON: Every blade that gets sharpened has material taken off of it. If your going to slip a ceramic cutter on a blade and push the old cutter off, the tension may not be good for the new ceramic cutter. Thus it will just snag or not cut. With a complete blade, we can make sure it cuts before it leaves here.
4 Inch Wide Animal Blades $7.00 set
4 Point Sheep Blades $7.00 set
Sullivan Blades $7.00 set
4 Inch Wide Animal Blades $7.00 set
Lister Blades $7.00 set
If you have a comb that looks like the picture with the plate loose, or the teeth bent, throw it away and buy a new one. Your blades will drag if you use it.
We don't fix combs, so please don't send them.
Blade plaque resides inbetween the teeth of your blades, its there because you don't clean your blades properly. This plaque is organic and holds bacteria, virus and molds, and your disenfectant will not kill anything in it.
Its your job to keep plaque to a minimum, you do it with a toothbrush and blade wash every day. If you let it go, it can be so thick the blade won't even go through coat. Please read the article it will shock you.
There is more to ceramic blades than you think. If your having trouble with them constantly you may not be using them correctly. Ceramic blades have to be handled differently than steel blades, read this article. Maybe ceramic isn't a good choice for you!
How do you know if your clipper blade is good or bad, or is worth being re-sharpened? Do you have blades with broken parts, or you feel they are old and worn out? Read this article and you'll know !--->
The pictures below show the only trimmer blades we refurbish at the present time because they can consistantly cut. We DO NOT sharpen Wahl Mini-Arco or Mini-Chromo, Wahl Tid-Bit or Peanut, Andis Power Trim, Oster Pro-Cord, Andis Easy Clip, Oster Freestyle or Juice, Geib Zoomer, Oster Finisher, Geib Orthello, Laube Speedfeed, or any other small trimmer blade. Some are just disposable and can't be re-sharpened.
We DO sharpen all versions of the Wahl 5-N-1, If they don't look like any of the ones in the photos, please don't send them. We will just be returning them.
Wahl Pro Blade
Wahl 5-in-1 Black. REFURBISH ONLY, NOT RESHARPENED
Wahl 5-in-1 Silver. REFURBISH ONLY, NOT RESHARPENED
Wahl Diamond Pro
Break The Tab On Your Wahl 5-N-1 Blade???
We have NEW spring decks to install on your Wahl 5-N-1 blades so don't throw them away. THEY CAN BE FIXED and REFURBISHED for $10.00
Spring Decks alone cost $3.00 each, New cutters are $6.00 each.
Why not take advantage of our "5-N-1 Refurbish Program"? Cost is $10.00 per blade.
Wahl 5-N-1 Blade Re-furbish Program
We can REFURBISH your Wahl 5-N-1 Blade for $10.00
This includes new factory parts if they are broken. Refurbishing extends usable blade life and SAVES MONEY!!
Here is the refurbishing process:
- We take the bottom blade and polish the cutting edge on a factory wheel for 5-N-1's only.
- The spring deck (black part) is replaced if any of the tabs are broken, or we leave the old one on.
- We take the old cutter and refurb it or replace it with a factory cutter valued at $6.00
- The re-furbished blade looks and cuts like an almost new blade without buying a new blade.
-We will give you a "Tip Sheet" on the functionality of the 5-N-1 blade, and cleaning tips.
** We suggest to never use the wide open setting, it can snag as the blade ages **
** The more times a blade is refurbished, it can seem louder because its made of plastic**
You get an "almost new" blade for $10.00
We can re-furbish your used 5-N-1 cutters for $3.00 each (lots of 25 per order)The cutters must have rail, and not been previously sharpened on an A5 machine or diamond pad.We have the Wahl specifications on our refurbishing wheel so they will be trueWhy spend top dollar for new cutters when we can help you make extra money?
NOTE: The enclosed spring decks for the 5-N-1 "Pro's" are not available yet, it can be replaced with the standard spring deck if its broken.
NOTE: The plastic piece on the cutter blade (cutter notch) is not replaced or replaceable. This part is not available for purchase from Wahl.
*** We are a Wahl Distributor and Repair Center ***
Important: We cannot guarantee a "Like New" blade after refurbishing if the blade was first sharpened by a sharpener using the same blade machine they sharpen regular A5 blades on. The reason is that blade machine for regular clipper blades has a different angle to the plate and will grind the #9 position, or wide open position, off the blade. We cannot restore it fully, but very close because we will try and put the correct angle back on the blade with our specification plate with the correct angle. The blade will work beautifully in all other positions.
5-N-1's cannot be successfully sharpened on the same machine regular clipper blades are sharpened on, but they do it anyway. The reason is the plate angle of that machine is steeper, and you loose the wide open setting after a few times. Also, so much metal is take off that the blade can only be sharpened a few times. Our refurbishing machine is at the specification angle. It polishes the edge to sharpness taking little or no metal off. We have refurbished blades up to 10 times.
Refurbish Program Parts
Differences in Coarse and Fine 5-N-1 Blades
The two most popular styles of the 5-N-1 blades are the "COARSE" and the "FINE". The coarse blade is on the left in the picture and has 18 teeth, the fine blade has 24 teeth. Depending on the coat your using it on, the fine blade may not go through it very well, example: cat fur. The fine blade may be hard to push, snag, or skim over the top with some cats. The coarse blade has alot more room between the teeth letting dense coat enter the blade better to be cut cleaner without problems.
I've used both these blades in my shop and found the coarse blade to be a general all around blade for grooming. It seems to go through most coats without problems. As always, use what your used to or prefer, they are both great blades. We refurbish both coarse and fine blades.
Here are instructions on cleaning and lubrication of the 5-N-1 Blade
Gritty blades are the result of the sharpener not taking the time to thoroughly clean the blade after its sharpened. Grit sticks to a blade after its taken off the sharpening wheel because its "maganetized" from the metal to metal contact on the spinning wheel. The majority of sharpeners just use a paint brush to clean away the grit from both sides of the blade and call it good. But thats not good enough!!!!
Grit hangs up in the spaces between the teeth, and along the inside of the cutter blade and the rails. Just using a paint brush to quickly brush it away will not get it all, especially if the blade hasn't been "Demagnetized". Everything will seem OK until something liquid is applied to the blade like oil, blade wash, dissenfectant, or coolant. Then the grit breaks away from its hiding places and gets on your cutting surfaces and contact points to make this black mess you see in the picture above. It can be cleaned off if you see it but the real problem is this:
"The same grit that sharpened your blades, could dull them in seconds"
We use a completely different process to clean blades after sharpening.
Brush first >>> Demagnetize >>> Air Blow >>> Finally Blade Wash
Used grit from the sharpening wheel has metal in it and will stick to blades that aren't demagnetized no matter how well you brush the blade with a paint brush. We will first brush the obvious grit from the blade, then run the unassembled blade over a demagnetizer, then finally take an air-gun and blow away what grit may be left on the blade. We pay special attention between the teeth, along the rails, and the underside of the cutter. When we are done, there is no black grit left on the blade to make a mess later, or worse yet, quickly dull your blade or cause a black streak on the dog.
It takes a little more time, but as groomers, we want clean blades like you!
We Accept These Credit Cards Only No American Express Cards
No International Checks No "Debit Only" Cards
A payment method is appreciated along with your order. We don't sharpen unless we have a payment method in hand or on file. We do not invoice for later payment.
We will keep your credit card info in our PCI Certified database for future sharpening
Best Payment Method
Send your credit card information so I can keep it on file.
Card Number, Expiration Date, Last 3 #'s on back
We need the zipcode where the CC bill is sent to.
** You can write it on the "Inventry Sheet" or paper. ** We prefer you call uswith the card numbers before or after your box is shipped. You may call us 24/7 . We like to have a payment method to start work. Contact us when you need to give us different #'s.
Most send it right along with the equipment. This makes things easy for future shipments, just enclose a note saying"Do you want me to use the card thats on file" Please CALL US if you don't include your card information with your order, call anytime if you don't feel good about sending it in the mail. If we must call you and have to leave a message, we'll put your order back on the shelf and continue with the next order until we hear from you. If you filled out the inventory sheet, added up the items and the cost per item, it will give you the total sharpening cost less shipping and insurance if requested.
"Charge Cards" or "Check Cards" Only No "Debit Only" Cards
NO AMERICAN EXPRESS CARDS
Credit Card Data Retention
We follow this policy to ensure any credit card information isn't compromised. You can feel safe if we have your credit card on file for future use. Our security is audited, and our database is NOT connected to the internet or a phone line.
Make it out to "Northern Tails Sharpening". Please leave the amount blank. No one can cash a check made out this way because it has to be deposited in the same business account, so it is secure this way. I've never lost a check.
An example of the way your check should be filled out for security reasons if you want to send one along that way is below. Is this safe to send a blank check this way?? YES! If you make the check out to "Northern Tails Sharpening" it can only be deposited in our business account. It can't be cashed, and it can't be deposited in any other account but mine.
We are not going to call you and tell you what the check was made out for, your total will be on the invoice. If you filled out nthe inventory sheet, that will give you what you'll be spending.
We DO NOT take PayPal to pay for sharpening or repair invoices
If you have any questions about payment please call before shipping
We Service All 50 States
AK, AR, AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, WI, WV, WY
The US Postal Service offers a service called "Click and Ship", which lets you get postage right from your computer. Take your box to work and let the mailperson pick it up there.
Click on the box below and go to the "Click and Ship" page of this website for information.
The Post Office is the biggest deciding factor of when you will get your box back. The time when you could mail a box off on Monday or Tuesday, and get it back on Friday are gone! There is a short note about the new Post Office hours on the "Click and Ship" page. UPS and FedEx are not any faster, in fact they are actually SLOWER unless you pay big bucks for "2nd Day" or Overnight"
Flat Rate or Regional Boxes
These are free from the Post Office. You would want to use the big one as it will hold more things. The cost for postage is "One Rate" to anywhere in the US regardless of how much it weighs. If you have alot of stuff, or your shipping a long way, this is the best deal. If you have a small amout of stuff just use a regular box. Get the box that measures 8 X 11 X 6, its free at the post office. A picture of one is at the left. There is also a "Large Flate Rate Box" that holds 50% more than this box, the flate rate for this box is a few dollars more.
Regional boxes just came out from the post office. Postage is very cheap using these boxes, and there are three sizes that fit every size shipment. Save the box and use it over and over
The Blade Box
Insert blades with "TEETH DOWN" for the safety of the blades. Putting two in a slot will increase shipping volume.
Replace the cover and "SECURE IT DOWN" with rubberbands or tape. If not, the cover will raise up and blades will come out of the slots and break the teeth.
No need to wrap blades inside the blade box, it won't help. We will not rewrap blades going back unless you point it out. We will charge 50 cents a blade to wrap them.
The Blade Box - (Please Read)
The box will hold up to 25 blades when you put more than one in a slot. They will save your blades from having broken teeth during shipment, and organizes them while its in the grooming shop. If you want to ship scissors as well, get a bigger box that will hold the blade box with some extra room. Wrap your shears real good with bubble wrap and put them in the bigger box along with the blade box. Make sure you put a rubber band around the blade box to hold it shut because it will come open.
We charge $5.00 for the box and they are the best on the market and it will hold together for quite a long time. Wrapping blades in paper or bubble wrap is not good, blades bang into each other during shipment and teeth break off. The price of the box is better than replacing a blade, and its re-usable for each shipment. We can return your blades in the box, just tell us you need one. Getting insurance is always good.
If you feel you don't need a blade box and wrapping blades in bubblewrap or newspaper is better for you, I can do that for you. I charge a little extra per blade. If your sending only 2 or 3 blades I'll wrap them for free. If you make use of containers not designed for securing blades during shipment (ie plastic parts box), we will put your blades back in them but are not responsible for any damage occuring during shipment. These boxes are made of hard plastic and not designed for shipping clipper blades, and can break the teeth on a blade when the box is dropped. Request insurance.
Arrangement that fits 25 blades securely in Blade Box
If you don't have a blade box, wrap your blades individually
This person, for what ever reason, figured the blades would be OK just throwing them in a bag and wrapping the bag in bubble wrap..WRONG!! If you don't want to use a blade box, you need to wrap each blade INDIVIDUALLY in either bubble wrap or newspaper. Pack them tightly in the box and make sure you don't hear anything moving when you shake the box.
If you have a blade box, use it. Don't try to save money by cutting corners to save on postage, its not worth it. The picture shows a bag with twelve 5-N-1 blades in it at $30 each, 10 arrived with most of the teeth broken making them unusable. This mistake cost this groomer $300. An extra $3 in shipping costs would have saved all this money.
If you don't have a blade box, wrap them for the trip to us and we can send them back in a blade box. The cost of the box is $5, very cheap insurance against loosing blades you have to replace. We charge 50 cents to wrap blades and most times a blade box is the cheaper way to go and you can use it every time you ship. I'll wrap a few blades for free on very small orders that I can send in a Small Flat Rate box
Purchase and use a blade box.
This is how your properly sized box should look after you pack it up. The blades are secure in some sort of blade box, blade boxes are better than wrapping them because it keeps them from floating around in the shipping box. The clipper is wrapped in bubble wrap and tucked to the side with the cord wrapped up and placed next to the blade box. Shears are wrapped in bubble wrap and secured with rubber bands, they are placed on top of everything else. Lastly, fill in all the empty spaces with peanuts or newspaper so nothing moves around during the shipment. Shake your box after closing it up to make sure you dont hear anything moving around.
The Twin Shear
The Twin Shear has a thinning shear and a regular grooming shear bolted together with nuts and bolts. Several companies make Twin Shears, but they are not a common item in the grooming industry.
I would rather not sharpen this type of shear for two reasons. (1) Ive seen and sharpened two pair of these shears in the last 7 years. They have to be completely dismantled from each other by taking 4 to 6 very tiny nuts and bolts apart. If you loose either a nut or a bolt there are not parts available to a sharpener. (2) When I have sharpened them and returned them to the groomer, they have said they didnt like the way they cut, they cut different.
So, I suggest sending them to the manufacturer who should sharpen them better than anyone else, and if they loose any parts they can replace one.
Nail Clippers (1 or 2 pair only please)
Plier Type, We sharpen these.
These are the only nail clipper we like to resharpen. Any size or colored handle, any brand. These have no problems, and the tension can be adjusted as well as the spring replaced if we have one in stock to fit it. We can also take that little flat guard off that will let you get the nail through further. Let us know. We will sharpen these for FREE.
Squeeze Type, We don't sharpen these.
We prefer not to sharpen this type because of the problems they have. They are loose, handles are bent most times, and they are not adjustable. Years ago they made these from good material and they were the best, today they are not.
There is a blade kit you can buy to replace the blade that cuts yourself. Its very easy and anybody can do it, instruction are right on the package.
What to pack equipment in, and what NOT TO USE
PLEASE DON'T SHIP SHEARS IN THIS CASE
Please Don't Ship Shears In This Glass Top Case
This particular shear case is very bad to ship your shears to the sharpener in. WHY? It isn't contoured or padded, and the only thing that holds your shears securley is two tiny elastic bands that allow movement and sometimes break. This case looks like it will keep your shears safe but it doesnt. I have received these cheap cases with shears that have come loose inside and have busted the elastic bands and beat its self so much along the sides of the case the shears were bent very bad. I've also had them come out through the glass top. Ever receive shears in this case and they don't work? Now you know why.
When you buy really expensive shears they come in a case similiar to the case in the bottom picture. This case its contoured, padded, and the shears fit down inside a recessed area that prevents them from banging around. When you close the top there is no space to let the shear move up and down. This type of shear case is perfect for shipping shears and keeping them secure during the trip.
Instead of using the cheap case, wrap the shears in bubble wrap instead and use as much as you want. It may not look like much, but your shears are protected from getting beat up if you pack them tight in the box. You do what you want, this is just a suggestion.
One of the BEST shear cases to ship in.
DO NOT PACK SHEARS LIKE THIS IN A BOX
Another Box For Shears?? Bad Idea!
When you pack shears they have to be wrapped very good. Packing them in a box like this will bend or nick them up. It will cause considerable harm to them and maybe they can't be bent back into shape. You see they are banging against each other which causes them to bend. Don't use a box like this, wrap your shears individually in bubble wrap for the trip. It can also cost more to ship sharpening when trying to find a box big enough to put this scissor box in.
DO NOT PACK SHEARS LIKE THIS IN A BOX. THEY HAVE COLORS OF BLUE AND BROWN. SHEARS WILL BEND.
This is another version of the scissor box sold by retailers. They tell you that this box will keep your shear safe during shipment. THEY BEND IN THIS BOX, DON'T USE IT.
Wrap your shears in bubble wrap, best protection there is and its cheap.
You may also have to find a large shipping box to ship this in if you dont use bubble wrap.
ROSELINE PLASTIC SHEAR CASE BREAKS!
Rose Line Plastic Case
The Rose Line box was nice when you bought your shears, but it just doesnt stand up to being bounced around in a shipping box thrown by postal workers.
It was made to display shears, not ship shears. Because of its wide shape, you may have to use a larger shipping box just to fit them. Its best to take the shears out of the box and wrap them in bubble wrap or news paper. This saves space and higher postage costs. Note the broken box in picture.
Use Common Sense When Packing Shears
This box of shears was actually shipped to us packed this way. The groomer was very upset and didn't understand when I called and said all the shears were bent up. Said they were packed very well when they were shipped and it must be something I did.......Right!
Shears are actually fragile and the shipping company is not going to handle the boxes like they were filled with eggs. Wrap shears in bubble wrap or news paper, you can combine 2 shears in the same wrapping. Bunching up shears and wrapping the whole bunch is not good as you can see.
Glass top blade storage box
Please Don't Ship Blades In Any Of These Containers
The "Glass Top Blade Storage" box priced about $10.00 is the worst container to ship blades in. The blades are not secure, and they come loose on the inside and bang around the whole trip and bust teeth on the blades. We have recieved this box with broken glass and the blades all over the inside of the bigger box with broken teeth. This box was made to store blades and organize them at the shop, it was not designed to ship blades in. A blade box as shown above is the best way to ship.
The "Plastic Parts Container" is the next worst container to ship blades in. These cost about $2.00 at Walmart and seem like the perfect box to ship blades in because of the many compartments. This plastic is hard and brittle, and no matter how well you think you packed the blades in it, blades get damaged. When this container is bounced around or dropped with blades inside, the teeth hit against the plastic walls and break off. We have received this plastic box broken with blades all over the inside of the shipping box with broken teeth, and the groomer can't understand why. These plastic boxes are shaped so it will be hard to find a flat rate box to ship them in, thus your shipping costs will go up. A blade box as shown above is the best way to ship. As always, this is just our suggestion, you do what you want.
Plastic hobby parts organizer
NEVER USE A BLADE TRAY
The "Blade Tray", or any other hard plastic container, is not good to ship blades in. The hard "un-cushioned" plastic has broken many blade teeth when the box is dropped and the blades smack the inside of the tray. The covers never fit snug, and there is always too much space around the blades on the inside making impossible to secure them properly. The "Tray" is made to store blades at the shop, not ship them in the mail.
Your better off wrapping your blades individually in bubble wrap and purchasing a cardboard blade box for the return trip. The blade box is re-usable and you can even store blades in it.
"Rack Paks" or "Individual Blade Boxes"
Don't use either of these individual containers for blades. You think because your blades came in them they are safe to ship in, quite the opposite. If you throw a bunch of blades in a box inside either of these packages chances are some will be broken because there is no padding around them, they bang into each other and break teeth off. They are not safe!
If you have to ship in them, only ship a small quantity like 6 or 8 and wrap them in bubble wrap. It would be best to get a blade box for the return trip so you have it to ship blades in again. It takes time to take blades out of these containers and put them back in when we are done sharpening blades. We charge extra for the time it takes to do that. Get a blade box and throw these individual containers away, they fall apart over time anyway. Please don't ship us a box full of blades in these containers without calling us first.
Best way to pack clippers so they don't get damaged
DON'T USE THE CLIPPER BOX UNLESS YOU ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO
Why? Two reasons. First, the cipper box has no padding inside. When the box gets slammed, the clipper body can break. We have unpacked many clippers from these boxes with the bodies broken. Second, If you send us a clipper, box it wont fit in any flat rate, or regional rate shipping box for the trip back to you. So, we will find a box it does fit in, and you will pay alot of money shipping it both ways.
WITHOUT THE CLIPPER BOX, THERE ARE MORE OPTIONS FOR SAFETY AND INEXPENSIVE SHIPPING
Wrap the clipper a couple times with good bubble wrap. Bubble wrap will protect the clipper if it gets slammed against the back wall of a truck, and could protect it when another box is dropped on it. This box is a Regional A box, it will bold a box of blades, your clipper wrapped in bubble wrap, and a few pair of shears wrapped in bubble wrap. The shipping cost on this box is $10.00 or less depending on weight and how far its shipped. I've never paid over $10 to ship this box anywhere. This way is alot cheaper to ship than getting a "Large Flat Rate box" to ship this clipper box in that could be shipped cheaper.
Testing Residue on Blade
We receive a call from a new customer who had a complaint about the cleanliness of the blades she just got back. This is what she said to us:
" When I opened the box of blades I just got back from you, I inspected every blade and found two that did not comply with your quality standards. They have all kinds of dirt in the teeth and I don't believe they were sharpened at all. When I get a blade back from a sharpener I should be able to stick that blade in my mouth without any worries. I'm sending these two disgusting blades back to you for cleaning."
WOW! This made me think something got past me. I assured her I'd take care of the problem and to throw in a couple other blades for sharpening to compensate for the postage of sending these blades back to me. She sent 10 blades along, how nice!! The picture below is one of those blades we got back.
We really don't have a "quality" standard to speak of, what I do have is a system of cleaning and de-rusting what we can get off the blades as they are broke down for sharpening. Groomers send us blades that have red buildup from coolants, rust, and most are packed with several colors of pet hair. We go far beyond what other sharpeners will do for cleaning blades, we actually wash them before and after the sharpening in blade wash containing a rust inhibitor and disinfectant. We received compliments from groomers that said blades coming back from us look better than new, and surpassed their expectations. WHY? Because we are groomers ourselves, we try to send blades back to you in the same condition we want to receive them.
Here is the testing procedure we use to test each blade before its packed up and shipped out. The blade is actually put on a clipper and run to check to see if it cuts. All 8 1/2's, 3's, 5/8's, 3/4's, and all ceramic blades are tested on fur. These are the blades that some other sharpeners have trouble getting sharp enough to cut fur, so we test these blades on fur. After the test, we blow the hair out of the blade with air. If we miss a few specks of hair we are sorry, but the blade is still clean and sharp and you know it was tested. We test all other size blades using Oster Test String, which is a mesh of several strands of cotton string combined to form one filament. If that blade isn't sharp it will flutter through the string and not cut a clean cut. After the test we take a toothbrush and brush this residue out of the blade teeth. If we miss cleaning it out it may look like the blade in the picture below, a tiny speck of cotton fiber. We are sorry and the blade is still clean and sharp, and you know it was tested to be sharp.
As an "Old School" groomer for many years, when I shipped blades off to get sharpened years ago I prayed they came back in a condition that I could actually groom with them. I wasn't worried if they would be clean enough to stick in my mouth, I just wanted them to cut the coat on any dog I put on the table. I think we do a fantastic job here at Northern Tails cleaning some of these nasty blades we get in here, other sharpening companies barely get all the black grit off the blade so it doesn't streak a dog.
So, if you want to be able to check blades for cleanliness by sticking them in your mouth, you definitely have too much time on your hands. Please don't be concerned if by chance you find a tiny piece of test media in the teeth of a blade, we're sorry its there. That tiny piece of test media confirms that blade was sharpened, cleaned and tested for sharpness before it was shipped back to you. Most groomers want a blade that will cut, and that is exactly what we try to provide to our customers in a timely manner. Sharp Blades!
Tiny Speck Of Test String Residue
Receiving Blades Back That Look Rusty
If you open your box and some of your blades have rust on them it not the fault of the sharpener, it happens while the blades are in transit. We'll explain.
This happens at certain times of the year with specific conditions. The rust your seeing isn't impregnated in the metal of the blade, its oxidized condensation that formed on the blade and turned to what we call "surface rust". Its a very harmless type of rust and develops when condensation forms on the blade and reacts with the metal. The rust is topical and can be wiped off with a rag dipped in blade wash or any kind of spray cleaner. Sometimes the condensation gets between the teeth of the blade and forms the surface rust. This can be cleaned up by using your tooth brush and lightly scrubbing between the teeth, or just grooming with the blade and let the hair your cutting clean it off. Any way you do it this rust wipes off very easy.
Here are the scenarios that form this surface rust on blades in transit, you'll be able to understand why your sharpeners procedures aren't responsible for its presence. When blades are processed at the sharpener its done in normal ambient temperatures (70 - 80F). When the blades are taken to the shipping company (Post Office or UPS), these blades are subjected to extreme temperature changes. When blades are taken from an air-conditioned post office storeroom to the truck, the temperature goes from cold to warm very quickly, this is when condensation forms on the cold blades. Depending on how much forms on the blades with determine if any surface rust will develop. The same philosophy works in colder weather . When blades are transported in a cold truck, then brought into a very warm building, condensation may develop on the blades from the temperature change. Surface rust can develop this way as well.
Now that you know how (or if) that little bit of rust got on your blades, you won't feel like something was done wrong by the sharpener. Please don't call the sharpener and complain, or worse yet, change sharpeners because of this. Your sharpener really did everything right and has no knowledge this has happened. We get blades from you as well that have surface rust all over them from shipping, it comes off in our sharpening process. We wash our blades in blade wash with a rust inhibitor, but Im sure its not 100% all the time. Just clean the surface rust off and enjoy how well your blades cut.
Terms of the "Satisfaction Guarantee"
SHEAR SHARPENING - We don't really warranty shear sharpening for a couple reasons. Some shears come in and are old and sharpened for years. If your expectation of sharpening such a shear to come back cutting like new, that wonr happen. We do the best we can to ge that shear cutting very good with what we have to work with in that shear. Thin blades and pointy tips we have no control of so your paying for our time working with such shear. Shears thatare damaged or damaged by another sharperner we can't warraty either. We do the best we can to get that shear cutting as close to perfect as we can with what we have to work with in that shear.. If your expectations of said shear is it would cut like when it was new, that may not happen. Your paying for the time we spent working on that shear.
A. Not following instructions on the accompanying "Tip Sheet" for blades and shears.
B. Not following the instructions on the accompanying "Suggestion Sheet For 5-N-1 Blades"
1. The instructions on the invoice pertaining to steel blades must be followed. 2. The instructions on the invoice pertaining to ceramic blades must be followed. 3. The instructions on the invoice pertaining to trimmer blades must be followed 4. The instructions on the invoice pertaining to shears and adjusting must be followed. 5. Your clipper maintenance must be up to date. Blades wont cut on clippers that are not maintained even if the blades cut on it before they were sent. Freshly sharpened blades bring out worn parts on clippers. Just don't think your clipper is OK, watch the video on this website pertaining to your brand of clipper titled "What to check on your clipper when blades don't cut". When in doubt, send your clipper along and we'll check it out for problems and make sure your blades work properly on it.. 6. All equipment must be tested upon receipt then stored away for later use if that's what you intend. If there are any problems we need to address them within 5 days of receipt of equipment. 7. Any problems with receiving equipment from Northern Tails Sharpening Inc that is broken, bent, or lost, is the responsibility of the shipping company. Get insurance for the trip to us and the return trip. We pack boxes the best we can but what is actually enough packing when they throw boxes. Call us on the phone. 8. Any problems, call us on the phone within 5 days of receipt of equipment. NO EMAILS or TEXTS. You may have problems we are not responsible for and can help you with. We have training videos and articles that will help you manage your equipment. We have proven that its not always the sharpening when there is a problem, but we have to investigate to find out the problem. 9. There are no refunds. We will work with you to investigate any problems you may have except for broken or missing equipment received in the mail. The post office is responsible for any damaged or missing equipment. We dont break equipment and mail it back to you. Call us on the phone. 10. You must not use spray coolant, WD-40, or REM Oil as lubricants. Only the use of blade oil put on a blade before, during, and after the groom (per manufacturers instructions) will we recognize and proper blade lubrication. These other products dry the blade of proper lubrication and can shorten the life of the cutting edge . Our tests have shown that using solvent only as lubrication could wear the cutting edges out in 4 weeks +/-. The use of these spray solvents without using the proper safety gear can be dangerous to your health. Read the can pertaining to proper ventilation and safety gear required. The MSDS for these products will contain safety information and those can be found on our website..
11. Does not include shipping company used, turnaround time, or damage caused by the shipping company. You file all insurance claimes if you asked for insurance, we don't automatically insure packages.
12. Return shipping is not part of returned clippers for warranty work. Unless the responsibility is that of Northern Tails and not a manufactured part.
13. Return shipping is not part of warranty work done on blades or shears. If you insist on sending any of these items back by themselves, and not with your next order, we will inspect and repair for free if its a problem caused by us for free, but you will pay the return shipping. It was already tested for sharpness before it shipped the first time.
14. Expecting or assuming certain services that are not explained or described on the website, or agreed upon in a phone call or written documentaion. Any questions call before shipping.
*** We work on your equipment for a price. If we try our best to get your equipment working to OUR satisfaction, then we will get paid for that. If the customer doesnt think the equipment was repaired their satisfaction, they can show why they think so. If we dissagree on the reason our decision stands. We dont refund money, we dont do warranty work on equipment if our customer service policy wasn't followed. We will however review the said equipment for a price, never for free, your paying for our time.
15. If by chance we have to replace equipment lost due to our negligence, there will be a three month waiting period from the ship date to make sure the box is really lost and unretrievable. We require an inventory of what equipment you sent that you can produce a receipt for. If a receipt can not be produced, we will replace said equipment with comperable equipment of our choosing, or pay $10 per blade and shears because the items were not new when you sent them to us. You wont get new equipment.