Pick up the wrong set of shears and you’ve got a tool that leads to frustration for the next ten years. With this in mind, we’ve compiled a simple guide to help you prevent this mistake. As well as offering some popular garden hedge shears, we’ll also take you through some considerations to make before purchasing a set. Let’s take a look!
Spear & Jackson Geared Garden Hedge Shears
Firstly, there are certain things we look for in garden hedge shears and this Spear & Jackson model seems to offer it all. With hardened carbon steel blades, you won’t have a problem cutting the toughest of hedges and they will also stay in shape long into the future. Despite the robust nature, the shears are surprisingly lightweight.
Thanks to the aluminium handles, every job is simple. What’s more, they even offer a non-slip grip which makes it easier to get the right purchase when working with hedges that don’t seem to be playing ball.
Elsewhere, users don’t have to walk away with aching hands because of the clever geared mechanism. The upper blade is also PTFE coated which aids the cutting process (and reduces rust). As well as proving popular with customers, this Spear & Jackson model is also impressing industry experts and came away from the British Growing Awards with a prize in 2018.
For Spear & Jackson themselves, they have over 250 years of experience and are a popular name in the industry. If something goes wrong, you can take advantage of the 10-year guarantee too.
- Geared mechanism for easier cutting less user effort required
- Hardened carbon steel blades for durability
- Lightweight aluminium handles finished with non-slip comfortable grips
Davaon Pro Garden Hedge Shears
For us, every good set of shears start with a robust blade and this is present with the Davaon Pro model. With a hardened SK5 carbon steel wave blade, you shouldn’t have any problems getting through bushes, hedges, plants, and shrubs. With the wavy design of the blade, this is actually more than for aesthetics because it helps to grip the plant and prevent sliding (we’ve all been frustrated by this!). Suddenly, cutting is easier and it also offers a smooth finish with no clumping.
What about those with reduced strength in the hands? Well, this product would be a great option because they have what’s called ‘compound cutting action’. Essentially, the force that you impart is amplified by around 40%. Rather than your hands and forearms doing all the work, the shears are helping, and you shouldn’t feel as tired when finished.
Furthermore, the clever weight ratio keeps the process easy and the materials lend themselves to a long life. Not quite the warranty of Spear & Jackson, but Davaon still offers five years. According to the manufacturers, they’re also available 24/7 and these hedge shears are part of a much wider set of garden tools.
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Fiskars SmartFit Hedge Shears
Whether you want to remove a hedge completely or expertly shape or prune the bushes and shrubs in your garden, these Fiskars shears would be a perfect partner. Suitable for both left and right-handed users, the model is fairly light and offers non-slip grip ends for a more secure hold. With telescopic handles, you also won’t have a problem reaching further into the hedge (without having to eat the leaves and twigs at the front!).
With a non-stick coating, the shears should allow for a clean cut at all times and Fiskars also say that it’s easy to sharpen the blades. In fact, they even offer a Diamond File in their catalogue of garden products.
If you’ve got lots of deep or tall hedges, these would be a great option because of the telescopic handle. Rather than using a smaller product and having to wade into the hedge (or awkwardly use ladders), you can stand comfortably and cut the hedge however you wish. Depending on the task at hand, the telescopic handle can extend from 68cm to 93cm. Having the option to cut with the blade tip is another nice bonus.
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Wilkinson Sword Telescopic Hedge Shears
Of course, we all know the Wilkinson Sword brand from razors for shaving. Did you know they also sell garden hedge shears? Well, this is true, and their effort actually has fantastic reviews online. Although slightly smaller than the Fiskars telescopic shears, they can still be useful for jobs around the garden. For example, the grips range from 38cm to 56cm and the non-stick coated blades help create a clean cut.
As for the blades themselves, they come in at just over 20cm and the whole unit measures 87.5cm when extended and 68cm when not extended. If you’re worried about the shears collapsing while reaching a particularly tricky part of the hedge, the extension follows a three-step process and offers a lever and locking mechanism; this keeps it secure at all times.
Finally, the soft grips allow for a pleasant experience while cutting. As we know, Wilkinson Sword is a huge brand these days, so this is one of the benefits of choosing these shears. If something happens to go wrong, you’ll have a ten-year guarantee. As long as the problem is due to the workmanship or a faulty material, you can have them replaced.
ARS-KR-1000 Ultra-Light Professional Multi-Purpose Shears
As our final recommendation in the shears market, we have the 65.3cm offering from ARS. The blades are the most important feature for many, so you’ll be happy with the high carbon steel. In addition to this, they boast a hard chrome plate finish which makes any job instantly easier.
With an 18cm blade, it’s just under 4cm thick and offers a pivot bolt for simple adjustments. As the name suggests, this ARS model has been designed with weight in mind. For those who don’t want to be lugging heavy shears around, you can keep going for hours with this lightweight model and you shouldn’t go to bed aching the same night.
Additionally, the pipes have been ergonomically designed for improved handling. Even after extended use, your hands and arms shouldn’t be too tired – this is also helped by the brilliant shock absorber feature.
It is slightly more expensive than other options we’ve provided in this guide, but the lightweight nature and durability will hopefully make the investment worthwhile.
Garden Hedge Shears Buying Considerations
Now we’ve seen some examples of products, what should you be looking for in your new shears? Here are some important features and considerations!
Blade Quality and Length
Firstly, many have spent lots of money only to find that the blade is almost useless. As we’ve seen in the products above, you should be looking for a strong material that has the ability to make tough cuts now and in the future. We recommend ground steel blades; for example, carbon steel has the advantage of being lightweight as well as strong and durable.
In terms of length, this depends on your garden and the tasks you need the shears to complete. If all your bushes, hedges, and shrubs are all quite small, there’s no need to go for an extended telescopic handle and other bells and whistles. Instead, you can go for a smaller set of shears that allow for comfort and easy movement.
With longer blades, the shears will be heavier, but they will allow you to cover larger areas in a shorter space of time (i.e. you won’t have to spend all weekend working away while getting no rest!).
To extend the life of your shears, we highly recommend sharpening the blades every so often. Also, you can avoid damage and poor cuts by tightening the joint (the section holding the two blades together).
In case you’re unaware, there are actually three different types of shears;
- Bypass Shears – For the cleanest finish, bypass shears will quickly become your friend, and this is due to their curved blades. Perfect for casual gardeners and experts alike, the shears will create a clean cut and you won’t have to worry about damaged edges.
- Anvil Shears – Anvil shears are heavier, but they’re also able to cut thick vegetation without too much effort from the user. Compared to bypass shears, they don’t offer the same clean cut, but this isn’t their speciality. Instead, they work through thick plants and branches effortlessly.
- Ratchet Pruners – Finally, ratchet pruners provide users with an option to lock the blades into a specific position. If you want to make partial cuts or you struggle with a wrist injury, for example, this is extremely helpful. Otherwise, the pruners are similar to anvil shears.
Next, we shouldn’t ever forget that shears can be dangerous. Especially for those with children or pets roaming the garden, the last thing you want is exposed, sharp steel blades. If this is the case, we recommend looking for shears that have a locking mechanism. With the shears locked, children won’t be able to apply enough pressure to unlock the blades and they stay safe.
Ease of Use
These days, there’s simply no need to work with shears that are uncomfortable and make you feel tired after an hour’s use. For those who have a lower muscle ability or conditions preventing them from applying lots of pressure, there are now shears that will assist you.
Even without any health problems, we still recommend choosing shears that are equally weighted and offer an ergonomic design. Furthermore, shears can also offer a shock absorber and soft grips. With the five products we listed above, you can be sure of an experience free from pain and strains. If you need something more powerful read our guide on the best garden multi tool which can be used for many gardening tasks.
If you aren’t sure of a certain set of shears, read the reviews and questions from previous customers and you’ll learn exactly how comfortable the shears are when in use.
Maintenance (and Repair)
The very best materials and designs will allow you to feel confident in the durability of shears. While going cheap will save money in the short-term, it won’t be long before you’re buying a replacement or repairing them.
In terms of maintenance, research sharpening methods and spend some time learning how your shears work. For example, some models will dismantle to make maintenance easier. Over time, your shears will probably lose life, but this can be fixed with a new spring.
Spring and Power
Finally, be aware that there are some petrol and electric hedge trimmers that take the manual effort away from the process. Also, metal coils are typically more effective at the tougher tasks than springs. This being said, both will work perfectly if you’re just looking to do some light gardening.
There it is, everything you need to know about hedge shears. As well as key considerations, you also have some suggestions to go out there and find some shears that will help maintain your garden for many years!
Last update on 2021-09-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API