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String Trimmer Question


JodyCanuck's Avatar
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05-14-02, 10:48 AM   #1  
JodyCanuck
Gas powered trimmer - Which to buy?

Old electric line trimmer packed it in after 10 years. Last 3 years have been tough on it as I now have more trim area than ever before. Can anyone give me recommendations on what gas trimmer to buy? Straight shaft? Curved shaft? Brand? Model?
Many have told me that the curved shafts are more prone to problems.
I'd like to stay under $200 Cdn if possible (approx. $6 US!)

I welcome any comments or suggestions.

 
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05-14-02, 07:29 PM   #2  
Hello Jody

CTC (Canadian Tire) does carry Weedeater and Poulan gas trimmers, as well as their own line (under the Yardworks name), both with two stroke and 4 stroke engines. The 4-stroke burn cleaner, but are heavier and can't be turned over (a bit of background for Cheese - There's a lot of talk in major communities in Canada about banning 2 cycle engines due to polution). Price range from $200CDN up.

I've only used commercial units that cost ~ $600. CDN, so can't speak for these. Except fo the Weedeater brand commercial units, the others usually have Kawasaki engines and are quite reliable (all 2-stroke and straight shaft)

Chuck should be along shortly to (hopefully) give you the advantages and disadvatages about straight vs curved shafts. He (or others) should be able to shed some light on what's available to the homeowner in the States and maybe some Canadian equivilents.

Maybe there's some fellow Canucks out there who can help. too

Over to you, Cheese...

Howie

 
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05-15-02, 12:19 AM   #3  
Hi Jody, and Howiek!

Gas powered trimmers all fall into 2 categories: disposable and cheap, or dependable and expensive. The weedeater, homelite, and other cheap brands are cheap in quality also. You may get anywhere from 1 to 7 years of use out of one, lol. It depends on how you use it and care for it, and your luck. The better quality trimmers are priced accordingly, and to name a few...Stihl, Shindawa, Echo, Robin. There are others too. Straight is generally preferred, better balanced, and costs more. The curved shaft has a flexible cable through it that turns, and wears in the bend of the shaft. Really, it's a matter of preference, as even the curved shafts don't usually cause much problem.

Howeik, I have been hearing about the states gradually phasing out 2-cycles also. Actually, they started years ago with boat motors, ATVs, and the like. I agree with the action....we only have one atmoshphere and it has already suffered tremendously in the past 50 years or so. I know of no 4-cycle string trimmers in the states yet, though. ______cheese


"Who is John Galt?" - Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)

God bless!

 
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05-15-02, 06:44 AM   #4  
Hi Cheese

I've tried the Echo 4 cycle and quite frankly will take a Bannerman or Shindaiwa over it anytime (I know we aren't supposed to slag product or manufacturers here, but the unit we tried was so heavy and cumbersome and had a lot of plastic shielding - it would have lasted about a half hour with the cowboys we have running equipment in the Parks Dept). As noted before also, it had an adjustment on the shaft to turn the head so the engine would remain upright during operation - once again a hassle for OUR guys...

Hopefully the R&D people will get more user friendly 4 stroke product to the marketplace before it becomes manditory to use it (I'm keeping my trusty bypass hand grass shears just in case, though... )

Regards

Howie

Postscript: I'm editing this because I just realized that I mistakenly slagged Echo - dispite the accolades by serialweedkillr (in a following post), it was a Ryobi 4 cycle trimmer that we tried - might be great for homeowner use, but in a commercial/P&R setting, not recommended...

Sorry for the confusion and to serialweedkillr, I respect your opinions - we just are using the product in different settings

Howie


Last edited by howiek; 05-19-02 at 02:24 AM.
 
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05-15-02, 06:51 AM   #5  
JodyCanuck
Thanks guys!

Maybe I'll save my cash (and the environment) and get a really good, long extension cord and a brand new electric trimmer. 10 years is not so bad afterall.

 
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05-18-02, 08:41 PM   #6  
serialweedkillr
I use a Ryobi 4-cycle, sure its not top of the line, but it's as light as most 2-cycles, and i love the speed spool line replacement, and the ability to use the various attachments. At 150 bucks, can't complain.

 
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05-21-02, 10:38 AM   #7  
JodyCanuck
Originally posted by serialweedkillr
I use a Ryobi 4-cycle, sure its not top of the line, but it's as light as most 2-cycles, and i love the speed spool line replacement, and the ability to use the various attachments. At 150 bucks, can't complain.
Can you provide me the model number and I'll see if I can get it here North of the border?

 
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05-22-02, 07:11 PM   #8  
serialweedkillr
model no. 825r

 
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05-26-02, 06:57 AM   #9  
I have a Ryobi 2-cycle - 725r I think - I would NOT buy it again. Too hard to start, and the line frequently (as in 2-3 times a use!) needs to removed and re-wound, as it somehow "sticks" together in the spool. It is extremely irritating and a major pain in the ___. I also have a Ryobi blower, that I have had for two years, and used exactly three times, because that's how many times I've been able to start it. Not trying to slam Ryobi, but I have not had a good experience either.

 
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09-15-02, 09:35 AM   #10  
I bought a Featherlite Weed Eater from Canadian Tire for $99. ($62 US). It's only had about 4 months of use so far and it's been "acceptable" for the price, but my neighbours get quite a kick out of watching me try to start the thing. My ancient gas mower starts with one pull of the cord, but starting my "easy start" Weed Eater is a real workout ...

 
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09-22-02, 06:16 PM   #11  
Ryobi 4 cycle weed eater

I made a large mistake buying the Ryobi 4 cycle & tilling attachment.

Should have left Ryobi alone, when they had the first 4 cycles locking up due to oil starvation.

I have the second design with plastic oil pan, much reduced in size so as not to lock up while trimming tree limbs.

Oil leaks out of engine oil pan & also the tiller attachment. First time we used the tiller the place they chose to put the oil level plug broke off with a small rock.

But hey we are supposed to take our new lawn machines apart & silicone seal the warped oil pan. Also take the two halves apart on the tiller attachment and silicone it's warped halves. Big mess.


I must have gotten the do it again model, because I have been fixing it & the attachments since I bought it.

Pay more money and use up to 100 to 1 Mobil sinthetic 2 cycle oil in a good 2 cycle. I have used the 100 to 1 mix since both Makita & Mobil agreed to buy me a new chain saw.

Long story but Mobil stands behind the 100 to 1 & Makita would like to let you do what they told you could inside their front cover of the Chainsaw manuals. ( Run 100 to 1 ) So we did an experiment with my saw. 2 years now and still running clean & 0 smoke

The problem was Makita could not get the oil made overseas here. So even if you are concerned with the enviroment a 50 to 1 mix will burn really clean. 100 to 1 is clean as a whistle but use the Mobil sinthetic 2 cycle oil for 2 cycle engines.

Marturo

 
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09-22-02, 08:11 PM   #12  
mikejmerritt
Just some scattered thoughts on this thread.....For a look at Ryobi 4 cycle go to www.ebay.com and search for "ryobi 4 cycle" without the qoutes. Quite a few and some for as little as 100.00 US nice used Buy it Now and 150.00 US Buy it Now new. I have never seen one around here but given Ryobis history (awful) I can wait. Not first hand sure about this yet but a reliable mechanic told me that the lower line Stihl line and blade trimmers are sporting Ryobi/IDC/Ryan (all of the same ilk) engines under all of that plastic. Never thought I'd live to see the day if its true. Stay away from Troy bilt trimmers in the 150.00 US price range....Again Ryobi/IDC/Ryan under the plastic. I have a FeatherLight (Weedeater/Poulan) blower that only starts by removing the air filter and giving it a shot of starting fluid and that started at the age of two months. This same Poulan engine appears in many brands of smaller machines Sears Craftsman being one, small blowers and trimmers. Of the lower line trimmers Homelite and Weedeater/Poulan are decent machines with the exception of the Weedeater/Poulan FeatherLight line. I believe the 100:1 synthetic line of thought in the 2 cycle to be valid because when needing that last bit of HP/speed in our 4 cycle Briggs karts, running synthetic, we drain 2/3's of the oil so that the dipper is barely hitting the oil and have never had a failure given the absurd abuse......Mike

 
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