At Clippersharp, our engineers use a lapping machine to sharpen most blades (cattle and horse blades). We have chosen to sharpen blades this way for a number of reasons. Firstly, leading clipper and blade manufactuer Lister uses this technique on their blades before they are supplied to the shops.
Lapping is the method they use when making new blades, and because we use the same lapping machinery to sharpen your old blades as they do to make the new ones, you are left with a cutting edge which is as good as new. Lapped blades provide a smoother, finer and long-lasting cutting edge. They also give a better finish by cutting more consistently and are more comfortable for the animal because they run slightly cooler.
The Clippersharp lapping machine is calibrated once a day so that all blades are sharpened to the same standard, and as there is no human contact involved in this process, it is a highly accurate method of sharpening.
Grinding blades is another technique that some sharpeners use, this is a hand-held process and can give extremely variable results meaning the sharpening of blades is less accurate. With this method of sharpening much more of the blade is ground down than with lapping which results in a much shorter blade life. Lapping on the other hand takes off the minimal amount of blade which significantly increases the longevity and performance of the blade.
It is really worth checking how your blades are sharpened especially if you use a differenet company. Having your blades lapped properly could save you a huge amount of time and money in the long run!