I'll Be Broken-Down before They're Broken-In18 November 2009
Quite a few years ago, at the suggestion of a barber, I switched to getting buzz-cut hair-cuts. Some years after that, I spotted an Oster Teq clipper at Target, for something less than the price of three hair-cuts. I've been cutting my own hair ever since.
Results have usually been satisfactory, with one exception where a guide-comb fell-off the clipper as I was using it, and I was compelled to buzz down to stubble to achieve uniformity.
In early August, that clipper started making a dreadful noise. I've looked at the mechanism (one of a basic magnetic motor), but don't see anything plainly amiss. I might be able to have the clipper professionally repaired, but I'd expect the cost, including shipping, to be about that of just buying new clippers of the same sort. So I planned to go back to Target and buy another pair. Before I did so, the Woman of Interest suggested that I price clippers on-line.
In the Amazon Marketplace, I found an offer for the Oster Turbo 111 clipper, one of a sort that would be used by a professional barber, at a really great price. However, the seller instead sent just a single blade, not the clipper. Subsequently, that seller claimed that Amazon had screwed-up what was supposed to be a listing for just that blade (at what would not have been even a good price), and Amazon simply refused to claim much at all. No one took responsibility, though my money was eventually refunded and the seller had provided a pre-paid return-shipment label for the blade.
In any case, I now had it in my head to get a clipper of higher quality than that which I'd been using. (Meanwhile, Target no longer carried Oster clippers of any sort.) I decided to get an Oster Classic 76 clipper which is a work-horse clipper popular amongst barbers.
There were a couple of vendors on eBay who offered what seemed to be good prices, but when I looked at some of the negative feedback for each, I decided that I was not sufficiently confident to buy from either. The next best price that I found was at Brighton Beauty Supply (especially as Brighton Beauty Supply offered free shipping on orders over $49.95). Brighton Beauty Supply was not particularly quick to get my order shipped (and neglected to send the promised
free gift of ½ fl. oz. of shampoo with an order over $100), but the clipper arrived yester-day.
Probably mostly because of a superior blade, the clipper cut through my hair far more smoothly than had the previous clipper. It's a little more difficult to fit the
Universal guide-comb on it than onto the previous clipper, but it's not really a problem.
The instructions for the Oster Classic 76 clipper say that it will work best after it has been broken-in, which they say should take about four-to-six weeks. The problem here is that those would be four-to-six weeks of regular barbering. That would be something like four hundred hair-cuts.