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Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 15, 2012 08:59PM
It looks like I'm going to have about 7500 sf of additional greenspace to maintain, with a history of heavy weed growth.
Not a good plug-in electricity source, and from what I've been reading in Amazon reviews there's no such thing as a cordless electric model that would handle this much work with out being broken into stages to allow for overnight charging, even with a spare battery
As I recall there are a few here who know lawn equipment and are even in the biz so I thought I'd see what the forum's preference is.
Thinking this means I'll have to go gasoline-operated; I know very little about this . . . do they run on straight gasoline or is it still necessary to mix with oil like in the olden days?
Is there such a thing as a combustion engine trimmer that's reasonably light and/or balanced, and/or can somehow rest on your shoulder to take a bit of the stress off your arms? Or . . . I think I've seen professionals with trimmers attached to belts or harnesses?
Thanks for any info, clarifying questions, derision, cartoons, etc.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: iaJim
Date: April 15, 2012 09:02PM
Get one that has a straight shaft, not one that curves down at the head.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: April 15, 2012 09:04PM
How long will you be managing the terrain ?
Will it contain ALL weeds, or mostly grass ? Or shrubberies (and a path ! a Path ! ni ! ni ! ssshhh..)

I swear by my Ryobi click link gizmos.. the engines last about 5-7 years, 2 stroke (you mix gasoline and oil), and they have a variety of attachments above and beyond the basic string trimmer thingy. They're reasonably lightweight.

For industrial grade, Stihl. Always Stihl. But they're gonna be heavy and heavy duty.

Your area may not allow two stroke engines (some do not).

Good luck, and remember to wear vibration deadening gloves. Gel padded bicycling gloves work nicely. You think you have carpal tunnel.. you haven't lived until your hands are numb from running a heavy duty vibrating piece of machinery for a couple of hours.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: mattkime
Date: April 15, 2012 09:04PM
you intend to use this for edging after mowing, correct?



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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 15, 2012 09:08PM
Quote
cbelt3
How long will you be managing the terrain ?
Will it contain ALL weeds, or mostly grass ? Or shrubberies (and a path ! a Path ! ni ! ni ! ssshhh..)

I swear by my Ryobi click link gizmos.. the engines last about 5-7 years, 2 stroke (you mix gasoline and oil), and they have a variety of attachments above and beyond the basic string trimmer thingy. They're reasonably lightweight.

For industrial grade, Stihl. Always Stihl. But they're gonna be heavy and heavy duty.

Your area may not allow two stroke engines (some do not).

Good luck, and remember to wear vibration deadening gloves. Gel padded bicycling gloves work nicely. You think you have carpal tunnel.. you haven't lived until your hands are numb from running a heavy duty vibrating piece of machinery for a couple of hours.
Thanks. No time limit . . . years?
One lot is mostly weeds, the other mostly grass with some tall weeds around the edges. Neither has been maintained for several years.
I'm going to ask the city if they can dump a truckload of mulch on the weed lot, but I was unsuccessful getting that to happen once in a past attempt.
It's good to hear you're happy with your Ryobi, since I know that one is as close as the nearest Home Depot.
How do you mix the gasoline and oil and know that you've got the right mixture? Measuring cups? Do you keep it in a regular gas can once mixed?
Do they make some that only take regular gasoline?




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 15, 2012 09:10PM
Quote
mattkime
you intend to use this for edging after mowing, correct?
Sort of. I know from experience to date that trying to manage a fair amount of space with an edger is very tough, but on the weed lot the ground is fairly uneven so it's going to be used probably instead of mowing.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: mattkime
Date: April 15, 2012 09:12PM
>>One lot is mostly weeds, the other mostly grass with some tall weeds around the edges. Neither has been maintained for several years.

what would you like the lots to contain? grass?

from your description of the lot i'd recommend solarizing the lot. you cut down all the weeds and then cover with a thick-ish clear plastic for a month or two (verify). this kills all the weeds. now plant as you see fit.

hm, but you're a landlord. maybe the tenants need short weeds.



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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 15, 2012 09:17PM
Quote
mattkime
>>One lot is mostly weeds, the other mostly grass with some tall weeds around the edges. Neither has been maintained for several years.

what would you like the lots to contain? grass?

from your description of the lot i'd recommend solarizing the lot. you cut down all the weeds and then cover with a thick-ish clear plastic for a month or two (verify). this kills all the weeds. now plant as you see fit.

hm, but you're a landlord. maybe the tenants need short weeds.

I think for the near future the objective is just to keep things looking somewhat managed so that the city doesn't ding me. Tenants in this property is a far off pipe dream.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: mattkime
Date: April 15, 2012 09:19PM
i'd solarize then.

eliminate weeds instead of tending to them.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: rgG
Date: April 15, 2012 09:21PM
We have a straight shaft Echo that has been pretty bullet proof. We replace our original Echo with another Echo. We liked it that much. Do get a straight shaft model. I replaced the string with Gator blades that I got at HD and they work much better than the line. I haven't looked lately to see if they are stills available, but I would think they would be.

I also bought a DR wheeled trimmer because weed whacking as much property as we have was killing my hips and back. The DR works great, but there are still places that the hand held works best, plus the hand held is a lot less expensive.

As far as mixing the gas, they sell the oil in a little container that lets you squeeze up just the right amount for a gallon. Our Echo goes for a long time on one tank, so a gallon will last a long time. Just buy a little one or two gallon gas container and mix one gallon at a time.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: lafinfil
Date: April 15, 2012 09:32PM
In order of preference for 2-stroke equipment, I prefer would be Stihl, Echo, Husqvarna (excepting a few other hard to find brands in chain saws) All are good reliable names that will be serviceable for years to come, unlike the cheaper big box brands. Most modern 2-stroke engines run fairly clean if maintained and if proper oil mix ix used. Also use good oil (manufacturer or store will reccommend) I use Stihl's low ash oil and a bit of Seafoam as gas treatment. Burns clean and trouble free.

Stihl is probably easiest to find even in the city because it is used by pro crews. They also have the shoulder slings and other accessories (dual handles etc...) They are easy to get service and parts when needed.

Echo is a good brand but doesn't have the distribution like Stihl so parts may be harder. Husqvarna can be found in pro shops and some of their consumer stuff is in the big box stores (Lowes ?) It is not their pro line but better than Weedeater/Poulan/MTD etc ...



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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: April 15, 2012 09:53PM
If you want what the pros use around here you'll get a Shindaiwa. I had one for about 12 years, I bought it because
my BIL was a dealer and got it for cost, it was $300 wholesale but it was a beast. I got rid of it of the weight. It turned
so many RPM's it practically hovered over the ground. I used all those years and sold it on eBay for $200. Dealers
have become few and far between for Shindaiwa. Now we have a Dolmar MS-22, it was the lightest commercial
rated trimmer on the market at the time. I think it was somewhere around $220. Next to most trimmers it feels like
nothing in your hands, my wife and neighbor does most of trim work now that my back is all screwed up. Husqvarna,
Stihl and Echo are all good. I've got 2 Ryobi's because we have about 6 attachments for them and their split-boom
design, if it wasn't for the attachments I'd throw both of them away. One doesn't run at all and the one that's about 2
years old is a big PITA to start and keep running. They're basically junk that's why they show at Big Lots and Fred's
as refurb nearly every month. Our older Ryobi only lasted about 10 years but I can see they're even worse now.



Grateful11
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: M>B>
Date: April 15, 2012 09:56PM
There are propane powered weed trimmers...

[www.amazon.com]

And, there are cordless battery powered ones...

[www.worxtools.com]

Not an endorsement, but they are out there.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/15/2012 09:57PM by M>B>.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: billb
Date: April 15, 2012 09:56PM
If the weeds are briars/brambles , wild blackberries you might want a sickle / power scythe .

Stihl's Kombi with FH-KM 135° Adjustable Power Scythe is supposed to be nice



Course, you could forego the motor altogether.
[www.scythesupply.com]
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: btfc
Date: April 15, 2012 10:12PM
On a landscaper friend's recommendation I bought a straight shaft, 2 cycle Echo (SRM225es) and it is great. I work it hard, it runs great, and string changing is a snap.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: lafinfil
Date: April 15, 2012 10:17PM
"If you want what the pros use around here you'll get a Shindaiwa"

Shindaiwa makes very nice tools, but they do not have great distribution in the midwest for some reason.
It's odd since they are owned by a holding company that owns Echo, which has its HQ is in Illinois)



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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 16, 2012 02:43AM
Thanks, all. No Echo or Stihl dealers anywhere near me.
I'm in a Huskvarna desert as well as far as dealers go. I see Sears carries them but I won't shop at Sears.
It looks like at least a grand to get into any sort of power scythe?




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: April 16, 2012 07:33AM
Lord man do you live, not that it's any of my business, we have 3 Stihl dealers within 6 miles and we live out in
the country. Nearly all John Deere dealers now sell Stihl. Did you use Stihl's dealer locator on their website?



Grateful11




Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/16/2012 07:40AM by Grateful11.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: billb
Date: April 16, 2012 08:48AM
No way to clean it up enough so that you can get in there later with a regular mower ?

75 x 100 is a bit of work for a weed wacker, especially if you are going to have to hit it at least once a month.

How about a small generator and use your electric one ?


( I don;t like weed wackers much. ) :-)
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: threeprong
Date: April 16, 2012 10:12AM
Get an Echo or a Husqvarna. Drive to where it is.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: rgG
Date: April 16, 2012 10:26AM
You can buy Echo online from Echo.

[shop.echo-usa.com]





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 16, 2012 12:04PM
Quote
Grateful11
Lord man do you live, not that it's any of my business, we have 3 Stihl dealers within 6 miles and we live out in
the country. Nearly all John Deere dealers now sell Stihl. Did you use Stihl's dealer locator on their website?

I used the dealer locators on all the sites. Why would it be surprising that there are more lawn and farm equipment dealers out in the country than in the inner city?




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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/16/2012 12:04PM by Black.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 16, 2012 12:07PM
Quote
billb
No way to clean it up enough so that you can get in there later with a regular mower ?

75 x 100 is a bit of work for a weed wacker, especially if you are going to have to hit it at least once a month.

How about a small generator and use your electric one ?


( I don;t like weed wackers much. ) :-)

The weed lot is 25x70, as is the mostly grass lot. The weed lot is pretty uneven and has lots of rubble embedded in the dirt. Could probably get it done with a larger mower but that creates other problems (transport and storage,) There's no roll-in garage storage available.
Generator is an interesting idea, thanks. There is electricity but the building currently has 60 amp service and an old fusebox so I don't know if it can handle the draw.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 16, 2012 12:09PM
Quote
rgG
You can buy Echo online from Echo.

[shop.echo-usa.com]

I see, thanks.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: John B.
Date: April 16, 2012 01:51PM
I bought a refurb Echo straight-shaft from Home Depot about 6-7 years ago. Zero maintenance since then, other than changing the reel of cutting line.Contrast that with the homeowner-grade that I used to have that had to go to the shop every other year to get the carb fixed, or carbon cleaned out of the exhaust, or whatever. I use the Echo on a commercial property weekly.

I think rgG mentioned the DR wheeled trimmer. Might be an option to rent for the initial clearing of the lot, then you could better decide what equipment you need to maintain it.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: April 16, 2012 03:56PM
Quote
Black
Quote
Grateful11
Lord man do you live, not that it's any of my business, we have 3 Stihl dealers within 6 miles and we live out in
the country. Nearly all John Deere dealers now sell Stihl. Did you use Stihl's dealer locator on their website?

I used the dealer locators on all the sites. Why would it be surprising that there are more lawn and farm equipment dealers out in the country than in the inner city?

I can't see where it's much different. I just searched Charlotte, NC, which south of us, and there's more in
the Charlotte area than in my area. I would consider Charlotte a major city. If it were NYC I could see it,
even there theirs 10 Stihl dealers in the NYC area. There's probably more lawncare companies in the
cities than in the country.

BTW: You can't buy Stihl OPE online.



Grateful11
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 16, 2012 06:41PM
Quote
Grateful11
Quote
Black
Quote
Grateful11
Lord man do you live, not that it's any of my business, we have 3 Stihl dealers within 6 miles and we live out in
the country. Nearly all John Deere dealers now sell Stihl. Did you use Stihl's dealer locator on their website?

I used the dealer locators on all the sites. Why would it be surprising that there are more lawn and farm equipment dealers out in the country than in the inner city?

I can't see where it's much different. I just searched Charlotte, NC, which south of us, and there's more in
the Charlotte area than in my area. I would consider Charlotte a major city. If it were NYC I could see it,
even there theirs 10 Stihl dealers in the NYC area. There's probably more lawncare companies in the
cities than in the country.

BTW: You can't buy Stihl OPE online.

OK, what do I have to do to prove to you that I'm not lying? Should I PM you my address so you can search yourself? I need you to believe me! Please, give me a chance to prove myself!




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Grateful11
Date: April 16, 2012 08:58PM
Quote
Black
Quote
Grateful11
Quote
Black
Quote
Grateful11
Lord man do you live, not that it's any of my business, we have 3 Stihl dealers within 6 miles and we live out in
the country. Nearly all John Deere dealers now sell Stihl. Did you use Stihl's dealer locator on their website?

I used the dealer locators on all the sites. Why would it be surprising that there are more lawn and farm equipment dealers out in the country than in the inner city?

I can't see where it's much different. I just searched Charlotte, NC, which south of us, and there's more in
the Charlotte area than in my area. I would consider Charlotte a major city. If it were NYC I could see it,
even there theirs 10 Stihl dealers in the NYC area. There's probably more lawncare companies in the
cities than in the country.

BTW: You can't buy Stihl OPE online.

OK, what do I have to do to prove to you that I'm not lying? Should I PM you my address so you can search yourself? I need you to believe me! Please, give me a chance to prove myself!

Geez I didn't say you were lying. You made the statement that I shouldn't be surprised that there's more
L&G equipment dealers in the country than in the city and I gave two examples of the opposite.
Next time I'll just keep my mouth shut.

Now you have 7500sqft. that's about 3 times the sq. footage of our home any weedwhacker should do.
Crappy ethanol fuel will ruin it before it's worn out anyway, don't believe that go ask a mechanic at an
outdoor power equipment co. We pay extra non-ethanol gas and run 93 octane in all the 2 stroke equipment.



Grateful11
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: lafinfil
Date: April 16, 2012 09:40PM
Jacks Power Tool Center at 6638 W. 26th St. in Berwyn has both Stihl & Echo (and Toro too) They are also a rental house so you might be able to rent one first to make sure it fits your needs. Also rental houses frequently sell off used items which are usually well maintained and not too ugly.


[www.jacksrental.com]



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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: btfc
Date: April 17, 2012 12:15AM
I bought my Echo at one of the two huge home improvement chain stores, I don't recall which.
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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 17, 2012 11:59PM
Quote
Grateful11
Quote
Black
Quote
Grateful11
Quote
Black
Quote
Grateful11
Lord man do you live, not that it's any of my business, we have 3 Stihl dealers within 6 miles and we live out in
the country. Nearly all John Deere dealers now sell Stihl. Did you use Stihl's dealer locator on their website?

I used the dealer locators on all the sites. Why would it be surprising that there are more lawn and farm equipment dealers out in the country than in the inner city?

I can't see where it's much different. I just searched Charlotte, NC, which south of us, and there's more in
the Charlotte area than in my area. I would consider Charlotte a major city. If it were NYC I could see it,
even there theirs 10 Stihl dealers in the NYC area. There's probably more lawncare companies in the
cities than in the country.

BTW: You can't buy Stihl OPE online.

OK, what do I have to do to prove to you that I'm not lying? Should I PM you my address so you can search yourself? I need you to believe me! Please, give me a chance to prove myself!

Geez I didn't say you were lying. You made the statement that I shouldn't be surprised that there's more
L&G equipment dealers in the country than in the city and I gave two examples of the opposite.
Next time I'll just keep my mouth shut.

Now you have 7500sqft. that's about 3 times the sq. footage of our home any weedwhacker should do.
Crappy ethanol fuel will ruin it before it's worn out anyway, don't believe that go ask a mechanic at an
outdoor power equipment co. We pay extra non-ethanol gas and run 93 octane in all the 2 stroke equipment.

I'm not sure where folks keep getting the 7500 sf from-- I get 1750 per lot.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 18, 2012 12:04AM
Quote
lafinfil
Jacks Power Tool Center at 6638 W. 26th St. in Berwyn has both Stihl & Echo (and Toro too) They are also a rental house so you might be able to rent one first to make sure it fits your needs. Also rental houses frequently sell off used items which are usually well maintained and not too ugly.


[www.jacksrental.com]

Yeah, I did see that-- actually didn't have any trouble with the search feature on the dealer sites, contrary to widespread belief; that's my most likely destination but I my only probability of getting over there is if I combine it with a visit to a friend who lives about a mile from there and see if I can somehow make it during open hours, which don't work for those who work Monday-Saturday. Not happening during the week, not happening this Saturday or next, closed Sundays. If they had one late weeknight it would be different.




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Re: Need a recommendation for heavy duty weed trimmer
Posted by: Black
Date: April 20, 2012 12:56AM
I had access to a car today and actually made it out to Jack's.
Cool place although I don't understand how there can be so many salespeople in such a small place and none of them can answer any questions without looking something up or asking someone else.
Anyways, I should have called first-- they had =NO= gas powered trimmers in stock.huh smiley




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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/20/2012 12:56AM by Black.
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