A clipper manufacturer is warning readers not to buy clippers from Ebay and other similar internet sites because of safety fears.

Alun Williams, managing director of Lister Shearing Equipment Ltd, contacted H&H in concern after a consignment of stolen clippers produced for America have started to find their way onto internet auction sites.

The clippers are manufactured with American plugs and motors designed to run on a lower voltage (110-120V) than the UK (240V), and are dangerous if used in Britain. Three individuals have recently approached the company reporting problems.

“In January, we had a consignment of nearly 300 clippers that were destined for the States stolen. They were going to our parent company, Wahl, so bear the name Wahl and Lister,” said Mr Williams. “Because they are for the US, they have a different motor that runs on a lower voltage and were fitted with US plugs.”

A member of Lister Shearing Equipment staff spotted the clippers — worth £287 new — selling on Ebay at a starting bid of £150. A distributor for the firm also contacted head office, saying he had a customer asking if they could change the plug on the clippers.

“Some are being sold with simply a travel adaptor, others have been fitted with UK plugs,” said Mr Williams. “But while these let you plug into a UK socket it doesn’t do anything about the voltage. I have not tried it but I would expect the motor will go bang because it cannot take the high voltage.

“It could be a loud bang, it could be an explosion or it could simply overheat and melt, depending on the amount of charge. All could scare the horse, the person and be extremely dangerous.”

Mr Williams advises readers not to be tempted to buy clippers at a reduced price from the internet, and if they have done so already, not to use them.

“All our clippers have moulded on plugs so you can’t unscrew them and replace a US plug with a UK one,” said Mr Williams. “So if your ‘new’ clippers have a replaced plug it is likely to be one of these.”

The clippers are beige, and come in a presentation case, bearing the name of Wahl, Star and Lister.

If you have any concerns, e-mail info@lister-shearing.com or (tel: 01453 544832).