Never a Dull Moment: The Sharper Edge

July 24, 2023

Odd Jobs: Shear-sharpener, Mark Pate, travels the far reaches of the Four Corners with his heavy machinery, sharpening blades for beauticians, barbers, pet groomers, and veterinarians. Blades include shears, clippers, nippers and tweezers. He stumbled into this new line of work after being laid off in the oil field four years ago. By Donna K. Hewett. This story is sponsored by Boon’s Family Thai BBQ and Northern Edge Casino

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Mark Pate has an odd job. When his longtime oil field career ended four years ago, he stumbled into something different, shear sharpening, with a business called The Sharper Edge. You are watching "Odd Jobs" on the Local News Network, brought to you by Boon's Family Thai Barbecue and Northern Edge Casino. Pate sharpens shears, clipper blades, nippers and tweezers for beauticians, barbers, pet groomers, and veterinarians. There is never a dull moment. He services Farmington, Pagosa, Dolores, Durango, and Cortez, door to door.

I don't advertise on Facebook. I walk in to each customer, introduce myself and my services. I kind of feel like I'm a sales and a craftsman, because, I do everything on foot. I don't any major advertisement or anything like that.

Nippers, for those curious to know, trim cuticles.

This is my nipper machine. First, I need to round the edges, because a lot of times, they either flare out or come in. When they flare out, they're usually cutting acrylic nails with them. When they flare in, they're dropping their nipper into the barber site, and it's hitting and causing the tips to push in. After I round the tips, I'm going to mark it, put it in my vice, and then I'm going to run it across my hone here and get the gap or whatever defects in the nipper out.

Pate charges $25 a shear, $10 per clipper blade, and $10 per nipper. The pay may seem small, but it adds up, and most importantly, Pate makes his own schedule.

My full-time job, I pay all my bills this way. I love it. I answer to myself, I make my own hours. If I want to take the day off, I don't have to call in sick, I just take the day off.

To learn more about this and other stories, go to Thank you for watching this edition of "Odd Jobs" on the Local News Network. I'm Donna Hewett.


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