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A guide to the Masterclip A5 clipper blades for dog clipping

A guide to the Masterclip A5 clipper blades for dog clipping

Loz Dorey |

A5 clipping blades are the preferred blade of choice by dog grooming professionals. They come in a wide variety of cut lengths, sizes and finishes to suit all the different dog breeds and their coat types.  The Masterclip range of premium A5 clipper blades are made from high grade, premium toughened steel to give your dog a smooth and comfortable clip with a professional finish. Whether you are a dog groomer or novice home groomer, the clipper blades offered by Masterclip are the best investment you can make if you’re looking to trim your dog regularly.

A5 blades are very easy to use and simply snap on and off the clipper handset. Conveniently pre-tensioned, they require no manual adjustment for use other than the regular application of clipper oil and simply attach to the clipper handset in seconds. They are compatible with all A5 clippers that use the A5 blade system, such as our mains powered Pedigree Pro and cordless MD Roamer A5 dog clippers and our mains powered Royale A5 horse clipper. They are also compatible with all other makes of A5 clippers including Andis, Wahl, Liveryman, Laube, Oster, Lister and Liveryman.

Above - Parts of pre-tentioned snap on/off A5 clipper blades.


Standard A5 blades are the most popular clipper blades with a ‘standard’ blade width of 5cm. They offer a range of clip lengths from very close surgical blades (for veterinary use), close cut (for trimming and detailed clip work) and body clipping blades. The blades are numbered from a No. 50F to a No. 2F where the higher the number, the shorter the clip length the blade provides. So for example, a No. 50 clips shorter than a No. 30 blade and a No. 7 clips longer than a No 9 blade. Take a look at our blade chart below for the blades available and their cutting depths in millimetres. The Masterclip A5 clipper blades are engraved with the number of the blade and its cutting depth in millimetres on the front so you know exactly the cutting depth of each individual blade.

There are also other blade widths available such as the extra narrow 5/8 toe blade with a width of just 2cm wide, specially designed to clip the hair in the small space between the dogs pads. There are also a range of wide A5 blades available too with a cutting width of 7.5cm, the same width as a standard heavy duty horse clipping blade or A2 blade. The wide blades start at a close cutting No. 30FW cutting to 0.5mm and longer cutting blades up to a No. 5FW (6.4mm) blade. The longer cutting wide blades (7FW, 6FW and 5FW) are great for efficient clipping of larger dogs to reduce clipping time. Wide blades are also a great choice for clipping horses. 


Above - Clockwise from top left - A 30F blade, 7 Skip tooth blade, specialist narrow 5/8 toe blade and 7FW wide blade, 


The very close clipping blades the No. 50 (0.2mm), No. 40 (0.25mm) and No. 30 (0.5mm) and are primarily for veterinary use. The very short finish of these blades are ideal for surgical preparation of the skin, clearing hair to treat wounds and to allow the skin to be visible to fit IV lines and spinal blocks etc.

Close cutting blades consist of the No. 15F (1.2mm), No. 10F (1.6mm) and No. 9F clipper blades. The 10F blade is a very popular blade choice. The smooth, close cut of this blade is ideal for trimming in and around the feet and pads, trimming around the face, head and ears of the dog, clipping the tummy and sanitary areas. The 10F can also be used with comb attachments to achieve longer clips with a single clipper blade. Due to the versatility of this blade, it is usually offered as the standard blade with most clipper handsets and is included with all of our Grooming by Breed dog clipper sets.

From the No. 7 (3mm) clipper blade and upwards to the longest cutting No. 2 (16mm) blade, are the best choices for body clipping your dog. Avoid using a shorter cutting blade than the No. 7 as it may cause skin irritation. Clipping to 3mm or above ensures that your dog has enough covering of hair to protect the skin from the elements and keep warm. Deciding which body clipping blade to choose for clipping your own dog may come down to lot of different factors including ease of managing their coat, the look you want for your dog and the current climate. There are general guides for certain breeds, such as No. 4 (9mm) blades are great for giving a short trim that is still on the fluffy side, whereas the No. 7 (3mm) and No. 5 (6mm) blades leave a smoother cut and are more suited to spaniels and terriers. Body blades are also available in a smooth, neat finish or softer skip tooth.



 Standard body blades from the No. 7 (3mm) and longer offer a choice of finish with either a smooth cut or textured look to the clip with a skip tooth blade. All clipper blades denoted with an F after the number (meaning fine cut or finish cut) means that the finish of the clip will be crisp, smooth and even. On the other hand, skip tooth blades do not have any letters after the number embossed on the clipper blade or they may instead have a # symbol. Skip tooth blades can be easily identified as they have every other tooth ground back on the comb of the blade. This allows dogs with hair that is long, very thick, curly or mildy tangled to feed into the cutter more easily. The finish with a skip tooth blade is a soft, more natural looking clip, similar to using thinning scissors. Skip tooth blades are ideal for clipping poodles and poodle cross breeds, shih tzus, lhasa apsos and fluffy terriers such as the Airedale terrier where a softer finish is preferred. Skip tooth blades are also used for blending smooth clipped areas into the skirts and feathering the legs for breeds such as spaniels, and also removing some of the bulk out of heavier coats for breeds such as huskies or Newfoundlands to facilitate grooming.



A5 clipper blades do have sharp edges to the teeth of the blade and it is possible to catch the skin of your dog when clipping. For this reason it is essential to bath and groom your dog thoroughly before clipping to remove as many matts and tangles as possible to give the best result and most comfortable clip experience for your dog. Always rest the blades flat against the dog’s body to avoid digging the teeth of the blade into your dog . Areas where the skin is loose such as the armpits must be stretched taught by lifting the legs to avoid accidently digging the blades into the folds of the skin. Some dogs can be very wriggly to clip, so it’s essential to take your time and if necessary, seek expert guidance.

Matts in the coat should be removed before clipping the body and as a general rule, never use a skip tooth blade on a matted coat. Instead, matts can be removed prior to body clipping with a close cutting blade such as the 10F to get underneath the matt, close to the skin. The small spaces between the teeth are safer to use closer to the skin. If your dog is very matted, it’s best to contact your vet or a professional groomer for advice as you don’t want to end up with a bald dog!



Comb guides (sometimes called comb guards) are another method of achieving clips of different lengths using a single clipper blade. The Masterclip A5 comb guides are made with robust metal teeth for strength and longevity. The combs are very easy to use and being sprung loaded they simply clip over the top of a close cutting No. 10F or No. 30F clipper blade. Combs are an inexpensive way to offer a varied choice of clip if you like to change up your clip length often and they work especially well for poodles and poodle cross breeds. They are best for owners who prefer a longer, fluffy finish to the clip whilst retaining a manageable coat. Combs also offer longer clip option than direct blades up to 32mm (1 ¼ inches). They are also a great tool for novice home groomers who may be worried about using their clippers with direct clipper blades alone. Clipping with comb guide attachments leaves a smooth finish but those wanting a superb crisp, clean finish, or a more natural, textured look, it’s better to opt for standard A5 clipper blades in the depth of choice instead. Comb guides are a useful tool to have in your grooming kit, but clipper blades or comb choice is essentially down to your preference based on the look and finish you want for your dog.



Care of your A5 clipper blades is relatively simple. Clipper oil to lubricate your clipper blades is essential for the smooth operation of the blades and offers a degree of cooling too. Apply clipper oil to the sides of the blades, cutting surfaces and teeth before and after clipping and every 5 minutes during the clip. If your blades do not have enough oil applied, they will generate too much friction and heat. At routine intervals, stop the clipper and test the temperature of the blade is comfortable for your dog by placing them on the back of your hand. Extra blades of the same type are always useful to have at hand, should you need to swap to a cooler blade or should a blade go dull mid clip. For extra cooling action, the Andis 5-in-1 cool care spray is an excellent product to spray directly onto your blades to provide lubrication and instant cooling.

After clipping, it’s important to clean off any clipped hair from your blades using the cleaning brush supplied with your clippers or an old toothbrush works just as well. The Andis spray can also be used to clean your blades providing additional cleaning and disinfectant properties and prevents your blades from rusting. Store clean, well-oiled blades in an oily cloth or airtight plastic box to avoid moisture and rust spots. Your Masterclip A5 clipper blades are readily re-sharpenable. As they are premium blades, made from high grade toughened steel they require less frequent sharpening and will last for many years with good care.


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