May 1, 2009

Shearing Update

This week I sheared both ‘TitBijou and RhumRaisin.
I tried both the mohair comb and the "chattle".
I really didn’t like the mohair comb : didn’t seem to work well at all.
Maybe I’ll have to try again later?

On the other hand I LOVE the “chattle” comb. It is definitely slower, but no nicks or cuts. And the sheep come out looking like velvet! Very, very pleased. It does take me roughly 20-30 minutes to shear a sheep, so I’m not winning any contest there! But that’s okay!

There is another problem that I hadn’t really considered : the comb and blades really do get dirty and clogged with “sheep grime.”


I didn’t have any problems shearing one sheep .... but I had to stop and clean the comb and blades before shearing the next sheep.

Fortunately, they do clean up very quickly and easily.

Nothing like a sparkling clean comb and cutting blade!

I unscrew the comb and blades, then soak them for a few minutes in “White Spirit” ; I use a small brush to wipe off any lingering grime ; a little soap and water to get everything squeaky clean ; then dry with towel before remounting the comb and blades!

Actually much faster and easier than it sounds!

So all in all, I'm very pleased with the "shattle" comb. It does a lovely job and it has made shearing less stressful for both me and the sheep. And even though they are a bit slower than the standard comb, I think that for me it takes less time using the chattle. I know that doesn't sound logical but last year I was so terrified of cutting the sheep that it took me a long time to shear each one. So this is progress!

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