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seabee24
05-08-2011, 01:17 PM
Has anyone tried it in real life. i was at a show, and they let me spin it, cut some string...pretty interesting

i am a heavy echo user myself, but overall i am noticing more and more problems with the small 2 cycle motors....mostly carb problems casued by fuel. running high octane is getting costly, and considering that some of this stuff needs a tune up after 6 months of use

just wondering if this is an option for anyone. I dont think its gods gift, and the gas powered trimmer will always be needed. But we trim every week, and most of the time, i use a 21 cc trimmer and i dont need full power either.

We have an electric 21 inch mower that is AMAZING. never did i though we would like it so much. just wondering if the stihl stuff is worth taking the chance.

Alan0354
05-08-2011, 04:14 PM
I only see the HSA65 hedge trimmer. Of cause it is strong enough. the are plenty of 18V hedge trimmer and home owner has been using it. I have three gas hedge trimmers, Like you said, I rarely pull over half throttle doing hedge trimming. Power has never been a problem with hedge trimmer. I even have a tiny 6V crapsman hedge trimmer for touch up and it works great!!! 36v is a lot of voltage, even the lawn mower only use 48v!!! In my opinion, they should come out with maybe a 18cc or even 15cc gas hedge trimmer, adjust the gear box to get more torque and it would be perfect for saving gas, lighter weight.

My issue is more on the 20" blades, it is too short, it would be much better if it is 24".:hammerhead:

really, your fuel cost is on the mower, not the little hedge trimmer. use some blue Stabil with 89 oct and you save money staying with the Echo hedge trimmer. My little Echo HC151 is the most reliable piece I have going on 6 years.

mowerbrad
05-08-2011, 04:20 PM
When I was at my dealer a week or so ago, they showed on to me. They had just recently got a couple in, so they didn't have any customers with one yet. I held it in the showroom and spun it around. It is definately light weight, incredibly balanced and really quiet.

As of right now, I think they would be great for homeowners. If you used this commercially, you could maybe get 2-4 neighborhood/in-town type lawns done on a single charge. You would need to have several of the larger batteries to get through a full day of commercial mowing but still need to be doing residential lawns as to have lesser amounts of trimming.

Alan0354
05-08-2011, 04:54 PM
I just remember some important points.

1) Like Mowerbrad said, you really need at least two batteries to do the job. Everytime I do trimming, it's going to be at least 1 1/2 hour, each battery is spec for 35 to 45 minutes. And very soon after you use it, the battery start to loose charge capacity slowly and last less and less time.

2) THis is even more important in the equation. from using a lot of cordless power tools. Those batteries DO NOT last. I double each last a year for often using. I can tell you this having so many dead batteries. I bet you the Stihl battery is going to be over $100 each. If you have to change 2 batteries a year, that would way exceed the cost of the carb if you change it yourself ( which is so so easy!!!).

I don't think you'll be ahead unless you are a tree hugger and "earth first". It is only good for home owner that use once and hang on the wall for months. Then you are talking about stale gas, maintenance on the gas trimmer. You are a pro and you use it often, and those are not your problems. Battery is not the way to go.

FLAhaulboy
05-08-2011, 08:56 PM
Stihl Hedger: $299.95

AP 80 Lithium-Ion Battery: $149.95

Lithium-Ion Battery Chargers: $49.95 to 89.95
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Going to be pricey buying this stuff. I started a thread on this very subject over in the Florida forum this week.

This might be suitable for a homeowner but definitely not for commercial use.

deere615
05-08-2011, 09:16 PM
my echos are running terrible with this fuel this year even 93 doesnt help

Alan0354
05-08-2011, 10:12 PM
my echos are running terrible with this fuel this year even 93 doesnt help

That could be cause by many reason. You are going to have to trouble shoot before making any conclusion.

Alan0354
05-08-2011, 10:15 PM
Stihl Hedger: $299.95

AP 80 Lithium-Ion Battery: $149.95

Lithium-Ion Battery Chargers: $49.95 to 89.95
--------------

Going to be pricey buying this stuff. I started a thread on this very subject over in the Florida forum this week.

This might be suitable for a homeowner but definitely not for commercial use.

That answer a lot of question. Echo 20" HC150 is $275. Carb is say $40 each, blue Stabil, a few dollars a bottle.

vs

$149 a battery and you need mim 2 to 3 to be a pro. One year life in my estimate. So automatically over $400 a year. If you don't use it as often, say average 1.5 battery a year, that is $300 a year. You really think a carb and some gas will cost that much a year?

To me, the biggest advantage of cordless trimmer is low maintenance for home owner where you only need one battery and the battery will last 3+ year. No stale gas or carb to worry. BUT for a pro LCO that use it all the time, that defeat the best feature of a cordless battery trimmer and get the worst of the battery operational life.

Alan0354
05-08-2011, 10:34 PM
Don't get me wrong, I am very pro cordless battery tools. I have all cordless drills, circular saw and all, I did earthquake retrofit with all cordless tool. For those, there is a big advantage vs the corded tool because of the stupid cord that snack on everything. but in lawn tool, you don't have a cord to start with, the big advantage is gone. There is no weight advantage because the echo 150 is only about 10 lbs also, so that advantage is gone.

If you look into other brands of battery hedge trimmer that has dual reciplicated blades and real knife edge blades, you'll find you can get them for less than half the price of Stihl, now you are talking. Every accessory is half the price of Stihl, then you have to do a calculation to see which way is cheaper. The Stihl cordless is just way tooooooooo much.

seabee24
05-08-2011, 10:49 PM
Sorry guys I guess I wasn't clear. I was talking about the string trimmers. Yes more than 1 battery would be needed. But let's also remember that is 35-45 of trigger time, not idle time. With running high octane fuel plus the cost of oil, i bet the average crew uses at least $4.00 or more of mixed gas per week. 30 weeks of that is $120 bucks, easy the cost of a batty saved....but hue bigger deal is not having to tune and replace carbs after every season, plus pull starters every 2 years.....and if your already an electric user, you know how nice it is to just pull the trigger and go


I like the still because for the line trimmer it is the most similar to the weight , balance, and length as a standard gas powered unit
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seabee24
05-08-2011, 10:53 PM
Btw....if there are any "big boy" landscapers on here.....I personally have bid projects that required "going green". Things like propane mowers were a bid requirement, this could be one of those deals too.

I was told the still batteries will have a good warrantee. A large landscaper in my area here purchased 30 of them to try.
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ecurbthims
05-08-2011, 11:06 PM
you can re-charge your batteries with your truck while your driving,working etc ,depending on your route its possible you can have fresh batteries all the time .Somebody would be smart to make a trimmer rack that recharged a battery trimmer when the trimmer is sitting in it .

seabee24
05-09-2011, 11:13 AM
thats not a half bad idea actually. I dont know why so many landscapers dont like change, plow guys are even wrost off.

last year i picked up a busy commercial account, that had 16 parking islands on it. Well because the curbs were so high, and the parking lot was filled with doctors really nice cars. i told the crew to shut the 21 inch mower off, before they took it off the parking island, to avoid a rock getting picked up and doign some damage. IT became very clear very fast that pull starting an old 21 inch mower 16 times in less than 30 mins, just wasnt effective.

I had a customer that is part owner in the company "WORKs" - he let us try a 19 inch 24 v push mower....its the $hit. we charge the battery 1 time per week, and cut at least 20,000 total sq feet with it. Good power, bags, mulches, discharges, push down on the key, and pull the lever and it starts right up. We have a retention pond that has 5 feet of retaining wall all the way around with no service ramp....this machine weighs like 50 lbs...we hand it down. i have a power inverter in my truck, so if we need to we can charge it on the fly..i also considered buying a second battery since this machine is one of only a few, that have removal batteries....btu i never needed it

now he is going to let us try the new 36 volt model... im hoping that it to is just as good

So why not try an electric weed wip? If i told you that you burn on average $120-$150 per year in fuel..... plus now the carbs are crap so they need replacment yearly..... why not try this?

Patriot Services
05-09-2011, 11:39 AM
This will be the future. Battery tech will improve. Rigs of the future will have solar panels on the roof. Running to rapid charging racks for the handhelds. The Hustler electric ZTR will be super once they can get the run time up. Watch for more CNG powered equipment.
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rlitman
05-09-2011, 01:11 PM
2) THis is even more important in the equation. from using a lot of cordless power tools. Those batteries DO NOT last. I double each last a year for often using. I can tell you this having so many dead batteries. I bet you the Stihl battery is going to be over $100 each. If you have to change 2 batteries a year, that would way exceed the cost of the carb if you change it yourself ( which is so so easy!!!).

Is your experience with Lithium, Ni-Cd, or Ni-MH batteries.
Ni-Cd doesn't last in my experience either. Ni-MH isn't much better, except for the fact that each one holds more charge.
Lithium ion batteries can typically outlast a Ni-Cd in charge cycles 20 fold. Stihl claims that after 100 charges, the battery still has 80% of the original energy storage capacity. Still, $150 per battery for the small one, or $260 for about double the capacity in the same size, it's pretty tough to swallow.

I saw the hedge trimmer at my dealer last year. It looks like they're rolling out a whole bunch of new stuff in the US, including a blower, two string trimmers and even a chainsaw. Looks like there's even a mower available in Europe that uses these batteries. The belt pack to hold the battery to take the weight off your hands is a neat idea. Still, not my cup of tea quite yet, but if you're the early adopter type, it may be for you.

Patriot Services
05-09-2011, 01:33 PM
Hmmmm and guess which country is sitting on the largest supply of lithium. Hint, it sound and smells like "crap in a can".
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rlitman
05-09-2011, 04:04 PM
Hmmmm and guess which country is sitting on the largest supply of lithium. Hint, it sound and smells like "crap in a can".
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I recall reading about that last year. I took a look at wikipedia, and they say that the worlds largest deposits of Lithium are in Bolivia, and that while old Russian studies indicate that Afghanistan may have reserves as large as Bolivia, there have been no discoveries there to date. Makes for some neat conspiracy theories, but who really knows.

Jake4551
05-13-2011, 10:08 AM
my echos are running terrible with this fuel this year even 93 doesnt help

Had similar problem with some Stihl blowers, dealer kept telling me it was the gas. Went a long time with the problem, then it dawned on me it might be the oil I was using, despite the fact I thought I was using the best, Stihl. Turns out it was the oil. Changed to opti synthetic never had a problem since.

http://www.amazon.com/Interlube-International-20096-Opti-2-Pouch/dp/B001952CR4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=home-garden&qid=1305295592&sr=1-1

There are things that I never had a problem with, such as using the Stihl oil in my chainsaws, BUT with the EPA requiring different designs on carbs, possibly that oil didn't go well with the design of the Stihl Blower carb. Just a thought.

rlitman
05-13-2011, 01:30 PM
Stihl has three grades of 2 cycle oil. Which one were you using (you can tell which is which, by the color of the bottles).

Jake4551
05-13-2011, 02:18 PM
I always try to buy the so called best oil available at the time. At that time I was using the white and silver full synthetic, however prior to that being released I had always used their standard orange bottle. I am not 100% sure that I would have had a problem if I would have just stuck with the orange bottle. The synthetic says it degrades after 20 days or so, not sure if that is a great idea.
Not trying to give the idea that the oil degrades after 20 days in a tank, but light must effect it to some degree?

rwar
05-13-2011, 03:15 PM
my echos are running terrible with this fuel this year even 93 doesnt help

My echo 210 was really running bad and its only a little over a year old,took the muffler off and looked and it was getting build up in the exaust port.Ive only used echo and opti2 mix.Cleaned it out and its like a new one now,even starts easier

Patriot Services
05-13-2011, 03:52 PM
The problem continues to be the ever increasing ethanol levels. Ethanol is a solvent and seperates the fuel/oil mix. No oil can hold up against this. I started this season using additives and have had no ethanol related problems. You can feel the difference between mix with and without the additive on your fingers. Sure it adds to the already high cost of fuel but will be better for our engines in the long run.
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wall
03-17-2012, 08:35 PM
I got a Stihl FSA-85 trimmer, two 80amp/hr batteries and a standard charger yesterday. I trimmed our entire residential yard for the first time this year with one battery with power to spare. The 85 has a variable trigger and only runs when depressed. It was a little awkward at first because the guard seems to be design for your left side going forward. Anyway I liked it,,, easy, plenty of power, no fuel, no ear plugs, best of all wife and kids can use it. For what it's designed to do it does well..

goodgreen
07-23-2012, 10:45 AM
I bought a MasterForce lithium battery hedge trimmer at Menard's last year. It has worked fine for what I do, but like some others have said, now the battery won't hold a charge. And the blades move but won't even cut. (and they've been properly maintained) New batteries are around $100. They gave me a string trimmer also that came with the battery, but it's been totally useless. Cuts lowsy and strings wraps itself around the unit. Currently looking for gas powered commercial hedge trimmer. Junk stuff never works for commercial use.

Patriot Services
07-23-2012, 11:00 AM
Now they are making "commercial" grade stuff. Check out the new sponsor. Interested to hear real world reviews, but so far no postings.
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