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View Full Version : Backpack Blower Advice... and TY


MajesticUSA
03-26-2009, 12:09 AM
Hey all..

I want to start off by thanking all of you who unknowingly have helped me with solving my landscaping problems and guided my decisions on many things from equipment to different landscaping issues. It seemed almost every question I had this site/forum had an answer for. Well now I joined the site because I went from a handful of accounts to many more and I know I'll need help from people with more experience.

I'm starting my spring cleanups and need to decide on a backpack blower. The two blowers I'm trying to decide between are the Echo PB755 and the Shindaiwa EB802. I know the battle of ALL the blowers has been covered on here but I've already narrowed it down to the two that seem the best to me and the dealers that are the best in my area. I know all the "specs" on both and the Shindaiwa is "rated" higher, but 90% of landscapers in my region use echo. Does Shin have bloated specs? I went and tried both and they seem exactly the same except the Shindaiwa is smaller and less comfortable (I'm tall). So what I'm asking for is someone who's used both in battle and why one is better over the other as far as durability, reliability, power and comfort. Cost isn’t an issue because they are both 479$ till April 1st. Thanks a lot in advance

mississippiturf
03-26-2009, 12:21 AM
I have the Shin and the Stihl BR600. Both are great. The Stihl is usually my first choice. Its a beast! I don't know that much about Echo, but if the Shin is not comfortable, then your choice is the Echo.

Why is Stihl not an option?

Happy Frog
03-26-2009, 12:38 AM
I have both the Echo PB-755T and the Shindaiwa EB-802RT which I just bought.
I will run the Shindaiwa tomorrow side by side the the Echo and let you know what I think about the power but I can already tell you that the Shindaiwa is much more confortable on the shoulders than the Echo.
The Shindaiwa also has a bigger and more powerful engine so I expect it to blow more than the Echo.

4.3mudder
03-26-2009, 12:52 AM
Stihl is the way to go for me on everything. Sorry it was not in your top 2, but hey, opinions, there good for something.

MajesticUSA
03-26-2009, 02:50 AM
Thanks for the quick feedback. I have the Stihl HT-131 extendable pole saw and it's extremely well built (bullet-proof) but all the rest of my saw equipment is husqvarna. I worked professionally for a tree service for many years and there's a big rivalry between stihl and husqvarna(sort of the chevy ford thing) between all the local tree companys but no matter what everyone had the stihl pole saws. When it comes to blowers though I used echo 755 blowers on wood chips and small sticks and they were the only one anyone used because of the power. But recently I heard alot of people are getting the Shindaiwa blower because of its "highest rated specs" thats why I asked about it. I will have to give the stihl br600 a shot though, is it a true 2 stroke or that 4mix engine like the pole saws?

Happy Frog
03-26-2009, 03:11 AM
The BR-600 is a 4 mix and many (many) users had engine troubles with them.
Most of these problems were linked to the valves and it seems that the type of oil used had a big impact on the severity of these troubles.
Stihl quickly changed its recommended oil to the Stihl Ultra (synthetic) after many users blew up their engines.
According to many, the new EB-802 has more power and is a 2 stroke engine.
Claim that the BR-600 is quieter is just pure B.S. it is rated at 75 dB and only the Redmax is louder than that (77 dB for the EZB8001).
The difference in noise perception comes from the lower frequency of the 4 stroke engine but the noise level is as high as any other big contender.
I would not buy a BR-600 but would have a look at the new EB-8520 if I was on the market for a C4 mix blower

THC
03-26-2009, 03:33 AM
I'm not familiar with the posters top two picks but I do have an echo and I hate it. Hard to start and I have use both hands for control and it's way too weak for clean ups.

I also have a STHIL br 600 and it's just GREAT. starts even when it's -20 celcius out (i use it for light snow sometime). I can control it with one hand, throttle and tube and is VERY powerful for clean ups. Because I can control it with one hand I'm thinking of buying a hand held sthil blower for the other hand and use two blowers for clean ups this spring.

The only issue I have is the shape of the gas tank. It allows for the gas to slosh back and forth so when it gets about half full, it will bog down a bit. Gotta keep it full. I would buy another in a heart beat.

THC
03-26-2009, 03:37 AM
Thanks for the quick feedback. I have the Stihl HT-131 extendable pole saw and it's extremely well built (bullet-proof) but all the rest of my saw equipment is husqvarna. I worked professionally for a tree service for many years and there's a big rivalry between stihl and husqvarna(sort of the chevy ford thing) between all the local tree companys but no matter what everyone had the stihl pole saws. When it comes to blowers though I used echo 755 blowers on wood chips and small sticks and they were the only one anyone used because of the power. But recently I heard alot of people are getting the Shindaiwa blower because of its "highest rated specs" thats why I asked about it. I will have to give the stihl br600 a shot though, is it a true 2 stroke or that 4mix engine like the pole saws?

Well I would never buy a husbavarna chain saw again. What a piece of crap. I know I didn't buy the top of the line but it's still a half decent one but the chain kept popping off, would not stay on even though I had it tight. Finally the chain was stripped. It lasted about 5 hours.

CUTTINGEDGEPOCONOS
03-26-2009, 11:07 AM
With out a doubt you should buy anyone of the STIHL blowers. The whole BR Series is great. Start with a BR400 and work your way up to a 600. You will be pleased. Make sure you let you STIHL dealer know you are a "Contractor" because they will generally knock about 5% off your bill. Good luck.

Grits
03-26-2009, 11:50 AM
I have the 755, it's a beast. I compared it to the big Redmax and I liked the Echo better....after using both of them. I have no experience with Shindaiwa, but I have NEVER heard a bad thing about them.

CUTTINGEDGEPOCONOS
03-26-2009, 12:14 PM
A stihl BR755? Never heard of it. Ill have to check it out tho. Stihl is the ONLY way to go. Every thing I own is Stihl, even my German Shepard's name is STIHL. LOL. If you buy anything Stihl, as long as it is commercial, it will be the best piece of equipment you have ever owned, no doubt.

jtkplc
03-26-2009, 05:14 PM
I've run BR 600's for two seasons and haven't had one issue. In the future, I might look to the new EB8520 that Shindaiwa has just because of the greater air flow they produce.

jtkplc
03-26-2009, 05:15 PM
A stihl BR755? Never heard of it. Ill have to check it out tho. Stihl is the ONLY way to go. Every thing I own is Stihl, even my German Shepard's name is STIHL. LOL. If you buy anything Stihl, as long as it is commercial, it will be the best piece of equipment you have ever owned, no doubt.

The 755 is an Echo, not Stihl.

RonAyersMotorsports
03-26-2009, 05:40 PM
I'd say STIHL all they way. Jtk if your happy with the BR600 why consider anything else? There isn't a noticable difference in the Eb8520. Other than its louder and consumes more fuel. Its a good blower I hear, but if your satisfied with a brand stick with it.

MajesticUSA
03-26-2009, 07:33 PM
Yeah THC I agree in some part with your view on the saw you got, but you didn’t get an XP which is the professional series of Husqvarna. All the Husqvarna saws intended for "big box stores" have inferior parts and drive systems because they aren’t intended to be used daily. You will not find any XP series saws at any home centers because Husqvarna has made them a dealer exclusive. All the XP series saws have 3 piece crankshafts, 2 piston rings, magnesium crankcases, clean air injection system and most of all in your case have a true center drive sprocket not the "spur" sprocket found on most inferior models. The spur type sprocket are for lower rpm and less extreme home owner circumstances. I have a 346xp and 372xp (center drive sprocket) with thousands of hours on both and honest to god I have never once had the chain even slip slightly let alone strip the chain. The 346xp is the highest revving stock chainsaw in history @ 15,000 rpm. But hey its like diving a Chevy cobalt and it sucks so you say Chevy sucks but you never drove the ZR1 corvette that would tear apart a 300,000$ Ferrari f430. Every company has a wide range of equipment. To each his own I guess...everyones got their own opinion

ed2hess
03-26-2009, 07:34 PM
Just get the Echo ....it is a tried and proven engine probably the most reliable on the market. Many don't care about that but when I am shelling out the big bucks I don't want this to fail EVER.

MajesticUSA
03-26-2009, 07:44 PM
Tomorrow I'm going to try them all and make a final decision, the echo 5 year warantee is tough to beat though. Wait till I have to decide on a new 36" mower lol... :rolleyes:

joshco84
03-27-2009, 01:03 AM
either the echo or the shinny would be a good choice.

I wont touch stihl stuff but thats just an opinion.

I have a 755t echo and it is a bad blower. Works great for leaves and blows up paintball bunkers really fast.

THC
03-27-2009, 01:14 AM
Yeah THC I agree in some part with your view on the saw you got, but you didn’t get an XP which is the professional series of Husqvarna. All the Husqvarna saws intended for "big box stores" have inferior parts and drive systems because they aren’t intended to be used daily. You will not find any XP series saws at any home centers because Husqvarna has made them a dealer exclusive. All the XP series saws have 3 piece crankshafts, 2 piston rings, magnesium crankcases, clean air injection system and most of all in your case have a true center drive sprocket not the "spur" sprocket found on most inferior models. The spur type sprocket are for lower rpm and less extreme home owner circumstances. I have a 346xp and 372xp (center drive sprocket) with thousands of hours on both and honest to god I have never once had the chain even slip slightly let alone strip the chain. The 346xp is the highest revving stock chainsaw in history @ 15,000 rpm. But hey its like diving a Chevy cobalt and it sucks so you say Chevy sucks but you never drove the ZR1 corvette that would tear apart a 300,000$ Ferrari f430. Every company has a wide range of equipment. To each his own I guess...everyones got their own opinion
The SPROKET?? Yeah thats what stripped the chain. I wish the salesman would have told me what you just did in your post:hammerhead: I was in a dealer, they sell mowers and snow blowers etc. Not my regular dealer though. I would have paid a little extra for a pro version, funny thing is that after I finished cutting my own small tree I got a $300 job cutting branches for a mowing customer. I would never had that oportuinity if I didn't have that damn saw. Now that spring is here I better buy a new chain for it, lol.

I needed the chain saw that day because I borrowed my brother in laws Poulan chain saw and broke it (it got caught in a tarp and I broke the plastic piece inside where you pull the cord) and my tree was half on the ground and I needed to finish the job.

The sproket stripped the chain but the chain itself was coming off the top and I had it tight. It happened most frequently when I was sawing a whole bunch of little branches in my trailer to reduce the volume so I could get more branches in. I would not have thought that all those little branches would have the ability to lift up the top chain so it would come off.

genesis215
03-27-2009, 09:33 AM
DONT get the Echo 755. Big waste of money. It's a good blower, BUT it's got 1/3 less power than the Shindaiwa 802. The Shindaiwa 802 is the very best blower on the market. And the most powerful. The Stihl BR 600 is next, and I have one and it's great, but if I was buying new I would take the 802 first.

The specs on the 802 are not pumped up. It really is a massive difference between them. Plus, the Echo is several pounds heavier, and is not comfortable like the Shindaiwa. It's uses more gas too.

The Shindaiwa 802 is a breakthrough in the blower world. The RedMax 8001 was super heavy, and the 2-stroke blowers that were in the 20-23 lb. range didn't have near it's power. Some people were afraid of the 4-MIX engines from Stihl, and so they had to compromise between either a heavy blower or a non-powerful blower.

The Shindaiwa EB802 has FINALLY solved this dillema by having just as much power as the 8001, but weighs alot less, and is still a straight 2-stroke.

Go for it. You will not be disappointed, and it will last you probably 10 years or more.

tamadrummer
03-27-2009, 10:05 AM
The SPROKET?? Yeah thats what stripped the chain. I wish the salesman would have told me what you just did in your post:hammerhead: I was in a dealer, they sell mowers and snow blowers etc. Not my regular dealer though. I would have paid a little extra for a pro version, funny thing is that after I finished cutting my own small tree I got a $300 job cutting branches for a mowing customer. I would never had that oportuinity if I didn't have that damn saw. Now that spring is here I better buy a new chain for it, lol.

I needed the chain saw that day because I borrowed my brother in laws Poulan chain saw and broke it (it got caught in a tarp and I broke the plastic piece inside where you pull the cord) and my tree was half on the ground and I needed to finish the job.

The sproket stripped the chain but the chain itself was coming off the top and I had it tight. It happened most frequently when I was sawing a whole bunch of little branches in my trailer to reduce the volume so I could get more branches in. I would not have thought that all those little branches would have the ability to lift up the top chain so it would come off.

You simply need to leave chainsaws alone. Read your post and say I am wrong. That is some scary stuff.

As far as which blower to buy, the Shindaiwa! 100% you did not ask about Stihl. Shin is an awesome brand and this piece of equipment is Shin engineering not Echo!

mikec_j
03-27-2009, 10:19 AM
Parts Parts Parts can you get them all along your routes? for either blower in my area Echo dealers are everywhere, keeps them plentiful and cheaper....

Sherry Lawn and Landscape
03-27-2009, 02:36 PM
Stihl BR-600 is the best!

Happy Frog
03-27-2009, 06:14 PM
Stihl BR-600 is the best!

Quick correction here... May have been the best... :rolleyes:

MajesticUSA
03-30-2009, 07:56 PM
Ok today I demoed the shindi EB802, echo PB755, and stihl BR600 for comfort and blowing power...They are all 500$

The shindi EB802 fit the best, was by far the most comfortable, it has the highest specs (cfm tube and housing) plus the biggest engine and they are the best dealer as far as reputation. Its flaws were the stick throttle is a metal tube that when it has been bent back and fourth (to move to the best hand position)to many times it can break. The dealer and a few friends in the business told me about this, plus it only has a 2 year warranty.

The echo PB755 was not comfortable and very heavy especially since I only wore it for 5 minutes and I was wearing street clothes in a shop so using it for work wasn't very encouraging. It does have the best design as far as looks and is known to be the most durable engine. It has the best stick throttle seeing that it’s fixed to the machine on a pivot not a flexible tube. Also it has the amazing 5 year warranty.

The stihl BR600 as so many people recommended really surprised me it was extremely light and the engine was on a spring loaded frame so the vibration was almost non existent. It wasn’t as powerful as the shindi and about the same as the eco. It is way more comfortable than the echo but less than the Shindaiwa. Its biggest flaw to me it the tube mounted throttle, I’ve seen the wire torn off from hedges and tree limbs to many times and stihl doesn’t offer a stick throttle. Plus it's the 4mix that is so controversial as far as long term durability.

So as usual it’s a tough decision but I'm heavily leaning toward the Shindaiwa because of its power, durability, comfort and dealer support. Do any of you guys who have the Shindi 802 have any problems with the stick throttle metal tube breaking?? I'm doing my first cleanup on thursday so I have to decide soon...

Happy Frog
03-30-2009, 11:24 PM
One thing I really dislike about the Shindaiwa Eb-802 is the fuel tank is a ***** to fill up.
The air filter housing is right above the fuel tank opening and it is not easy to position the fuel can to pour without making a mess.
I would love to meet whoever designed this and face slap this dumb ass...
Otherwise a good but thirsty blower. Arguably the best today.

SILVERSTREAK INC
03-30-2009, 11:43 PM
husky blowers are cumbersome and seem to have "too many parts" that could break, i keep having problems with throttle and shutoff sticking or not working

ive always had echo 650s and get a long long time out of them, plus i have so many spare parts it makes me worthwhile to keep running 650s or 755s, i just picked up 2 new 755s in fall, im back to the stick throttle, which i find doesnt kill your hand as quick or have wires to disconnect or break like the trigger throttles do, im happy with it, it works well esp. for blowing lawns

as far as power, my guys are always first to grab the redmax when doing leaf cleanups, mind you ive ALWAYS been an echo guy, but the 8000 really kicks butt when it comes to leaves, i also have a 7000, which stacks up to the 755

the redmax is a heavy proton pack, which come summer sweat, isnt a fav choice, the pads get nasty whereas the echo ones will get wet but not feel nasty

as far as all my equipment, ive never had to really run to dealers for blower parts other than plugs and fuel lines or replacement tubes which you cna easily get off jthomas or something, if youre dealer didnt have it....if it were a bigger purchase like a machine, then id worry 20 times more about dealer availablity

MajesticUSA
03-30-2009, 11:47 PM
HappyFrog since you have both and to help me decide... If you were able to have a shindaiwa 802 or echo 755 free which one would you pick? Also is the 802 very noticeably more powerfull or just a little more powerful?

THC
03-31-2009, 02:12 AM
I like the throttle being mounted on the tube. It keeps your other hand free for perhaps a hand held blower for clean ups.

MajesticUSA
03-31-2009, 08:33 PM
Bump.. asked MrFrog a question in here cause I can't PM yet

MajesticUSA
03-31-2009, 08:34 PM
HappyFrog since you have both and to help me decide... If you were able to have a shindaiwa 802 or echo 755 free which one would you pick? Also is the 802 very noticeably more powerfull or just a little more powerful? Frog it won't let me PM so I had to ask you in here...

Happy Frog
03-31-2009, 10:15 PM
HappyFrog since you have both and to help me decide... If you were able to have a shindaiwa 802 or echo 755 free which one would you pick? Also is the 802 very noticeably more powerfull or just a little more powerful?

Yesterday, my wife and I ran the Shindi EB-802RT side by side with the Echo PB-755T to clean up sand and grass clippings on about half a mile of road.
The difference was most noticeable with the small nozzle on the 802, it was blowing the sand off quicker and from farther away than the 755. With the longer/larger nozzle the difference was there but not as noticeable.
However, the 755 has one season and an E3 spark plug while the 802 is brand new with original spark plug so it is not yet giving its full potential.

On jobs clean up (using the smaller nozzle) the 802 is clearly more effective as well. I have not yet used it on leaves but I have no doubt it will prove itself more powerful than the 755.

At full power, the 802 engine feels like it has plenty of power in reserve while the 755 engine sounds like it is "working" pretty hard to push the air through the tube.

What I dislike about the 802 is location of the fuel tank opening. I cannot fill it up without making a mess (no way to position the gas can spout properly). I will have to get a funnel handy to do that.

If one was given to me, I would take the Shindaiwa for its comfort and power.
Of course, I cannot speak for its reliability but it started easily the few times I used it. E3 spark plugs are the way to go to eliminate any warm up time so I will put one in it very soon...

MajesticUSA
03-31-2009, 10:27 PM
Thanks so much for all the responses and help with this.. I'm going to get the Shindiawa Eb-802 tomorrow and hopefully a T-242 if they give me a good deal for both combined.