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View Full Version : Stihl Vac/Blower Almost Injured Me Today!


PetalsandPines
11-08-2002, 07:03 PM
I have always had positive experiences with Stihl Equipment, So I figured I would pick up a Bagger/Shredder Vac because my wonderful Echo is already wasting after the first year. 10 minutes into using my shiny new toy, I felt like i was shot in the leg. My leg was bleeding and I was standing there like "What the &%&??" Turns out that the vac picked up a stone and shot it through the plastic housing like a bullet. You must see this thing....Umm, do the engineers test this stuff in the field??? Anyone have this happen to you?

chariot
11-08-2002, 07:09 PM
Just wondering if you have showed the dealer. If so, what did they do about it? Hope you are fine! Let us know if they replace it or whatever they do.

wriken
11-08-2002, 07:39 PM
WOW, never know when somethings going to happen, guess thats why I always tell my wife I love her when I leave in the morning.

mdb landscaping
11-08-2002, 07:53 PM
wow. thank god you are alright. sounds to me like we may be hearing about a recal in a few months. if it happened to you, im sure its going to happen to others. unless maybe it was a weak plastic mold, and the rock hit the "sweet spot".

PetalsandPines
11-08-2002, 08:52 PM
Will be taking it back Monday, However I am expecting the dumb comment like? Are you sure you didn't drop it? -We'll see

mdb landscaping
11-08-2002, 09:11 PM
show them the cut on your arm if they think you dropped it. start rambling about suing lol. theyll smarten up.

bubble boy
11-08-2002, 09:26 PM
in my experience stihl will stand by their product...i would predict warrenty covers it

thats pretty crazy, that even after hitting the housing the rock had the speed to draw blood, did you have shorts on? in buffalo in november?

TJLC
11-08-2002, 10:21 PM
My God, now that's force! I have the Echo blower/vac. That will stick in my mind everytime I use it now. Hope your ok and your dealer takes care of you.

gogetter
11-08-2002, 10:33 PM
Damn! I guess be glad it was the leg and not above the shoulders! Scary.

Brickman
11-08-2002, 10:39 PM
Originally posted by mdb landscaping
show them the cut on your arm if they think you dropped it. start rambling about suing lol. theyll smarten up.


My thoughts exactly. Mention lawyer or law suit and they might be really nice to ya.

Greenstar Services
11-08-2002, 10:50 PM
I have the Echo shred/vac with the same problem you have.The unit was 2 days old. I had to pay a visit to the emergency room to stop the bleeding though. Good luck with Stihl. I've been in touch with the dealer and now I'm waiting a response.

LAWNGODFATHER
11-08-2002, 11:39 PM
Originally posted by Brickman

quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by mdb landscaping
show them the cut on your arm if they think you dropped it. start rambling about suing lol. theyll smarten up.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


My thoughts exactly. Mention lawyer or law suit and they might be really nice to ya.

So how much money you going to sue for?

Real frigging sad our world has come to this.

He hasn't even talked to them yet, and sueing has already been brought up.

LeoS818
11-08-2002, 11:46 PM
We have the same blower. It also did that. Luckly it didnt hit anyone.

LAWNGODFATHER
11-08-2002, 11:48 PM
Originally posted by LeoS818
We have the same blower. It also did that. Luckly it didnt hit anyone.

There ya go guys....Class action law suet.

Rhett
11-09-2002, 11:58 AM
Warranty would not be a concern. Give me my money back. Do not need a piece of equipment that is going to cause injury when used properly.

bommaritro
11-09-2002, 12:51 PM
Man I hope your ok. It will be tough having to finish the season with a bad limp. I would say take it back to your dealer and see what he offers you. If you went to the ER I would take a copy of the bill along to boot. He may be very responsive and take care of everything. My guess is that if anyone is at fault it is probably the vendor and not the dealer. So talking about lawsuits with the dealer may not get much of a response.

As far as testing goes at least from the engineering side of the house the probably tested the vac in ideal condition a clean pile of dry fluffy leaves that were rock free. It is sad to say but some engineers think the feild is a pretty easy environment to work in.


Ron

Matt'slawncare
11-09-2002, 01:37 PM
I just purchased the same machine this year too. But that has never happend to me (yet). But i dont think that mine could suck up rocks cuz i have sucked up many leaves on rocks and it never once sucked up one. I also think mine doesn't suck leaves up the best either maybe its lacking power. How well did yours work for you? Thank god your alright!

thanks matt

bubble boy
11-09-2002, 02:50 PM
Originally posted by Rhett
Warranty would not be a concern. Give me my money back. Do not need a piece of equipment that is going to cause injury when used properly.

good point rhett

PetalsandPines
11-09-2002, 07:23 PM
Believe iut or not I feel that the Echo has more power, However no matter what I buy from Echo, the engine wastes away after one year. As for power( stihl ), I was surprised that it was able to pick up a rock about 3 Inches in diameter, but it would never make it up the tube.

lawnkid
11-09-2002, 07:31 PM
Hey mdb, I'm not arguing but why should he sue the dealer, they didn't know that it was gonna happen, if anyone should be sued, it should be Stihl for the hospital bill and a new blower and that's all. JMHO :rolleyes:

mdb landscaping
11-09-2002, 07:32 PM
jeez lgf, i was just kidding. it pisses me off too everybody is sue happy, but if they wont beleive him, you could try it.

Lawn Sharks
11-10-2002, 12:24 AM
Originally posted by Rhett
Warranty would not be a concern. Give me my money back. Do not need a piece of equipment that is going to cause injury when used properly.


I would doubt, if you read the manual, that they say this machine is intended for picking up rocks. The lawyers for companies this big tend to think of almost everything and put it in the "Safety Precautions" part of the Manual. We all know that these units are gonna grab a small rock now and again but I would be interested to know if the manual has a disclaimer on it.

Best of luck on the refund. Am sure they will come through for you if they are a standup dealer. These things cost very little to make and I doubt that Stihl would fight it.

Keth

Darryl G
11-10-2002, 02:14 AM
Wow - I have the Echo and it never occurred to me that something like that could happen. The dealer did tell me that they don't like rocks, but then he said that it wouldn't pick them up anyway.

greenman
11-10-2002, 02:21 AM
Dont those vacs have an impeller to mulch? How can a rock get through that?

The Mowerdude
11-10-2002, 03:05 AM
Originally posted by Keth
I would doubt, if you read the manual, that they say this machine is intended for picking up rocks....We all know that these units are gonna grab a small rock now and again but I would be interested to know if the manual has a disclaimer on it.
Keth

Keth, I'm with you on this one. Sure it isn't intended for rocks, but how in the world could you ever avoid it for the life of the machine. And the fact that this has happened right at the very beginning of the tool's service life definately indicates to me that this is more than a weakness in the plastic. It's a design flaw.

Surely Stihl would come through for you on this one. They really have a sterling reputation among the LCO community.

Rhett
11-10-2002, 01:35 PM
Hey Keth, You are right. I believe my wording was wrong.(gets lost between my head and my fingers) I would expect some kind of damage to the impellor or other mechanical workings but would never expect it to throw a foriegn object through the plenum. Just glad no one got hurt seriously:D

IBGreen
11-10-2002, 07:07 PM
Post a pic of the leg! Well never-mind its probably healed up by now. I hope so anyway. I hope it wasn't too bad, I never thought that could happen, once again I've learned something new at lawnsite!

LAWNGODFATHER
11-10-2002, 07:31 PM
If you don't get at least a new blower call "ANSI" they will take care of that.

That blower should be able to hande some small rocks in it.

cantoo
11-10-2002, 07:54 PM
I'm sure one of the selling points of this machine is it'e light weight. We all demand light weight equipment so they make it out of "plastic" then it either wears out or breaks then we complain. Of course we still want it strong enough so we don't get hurt, maybe it's too fine of a line. We used to have a maintenance guy at work who always overbuilt everything he made. The good part was it very seldom broke down the bad part was it would always be a pain to use because of the size or weight. The last few weeks I have been considering getting the Sthil now I'm not sure. Does anyone make one with a steel or aluminum housing?

Jimbo
11-10-2002, 11:41 PM
Glad to hear you are ok. This could have been a freak thing, and I am sure that there is a disclaimer which states "what you can pick up" even though we all know that with the power of a Stihl tool it might suck a rock here or there. If you do get a rock it must be round ones and not pointed ones with sharp edges.

Seriously, I would talk with the dealer and at the same time contact Stihl on my own. Go to stihlusa.com and send them a photo explaining what happened.

Tony Harrell
11-11-2002, 06:51 AM
Is this a new product for them? I can't believe it's the first time it's happened if it's not. Stihl is a large company and will probably redesign it if it's a new product. Aluminum sounds good to me or, an aluminum guard on the impeller shroud. If it had happened to me, it would have taken out "big jim and the twins" because that's where I hold it when vacuuming.

ProMo
11-11-2002, 08:36 AM
the case on my echo cracked two days after i got it and the dealer said it was my fault for sucking up a stick I showed him the literature that said it can be used to suck up small sticks and was told warranty wont cover it. I also had 2 debri bags rip in the first week i finnally took it to the distributor used a few bad words and got the parts to repair 1/2 of the case i was very pissed at the way they handled this product nothing like sucking a pile of leaves by a pool and have the debri bag rip sending a pile of shredded leaves into the pool a worthless purchase to me because im not buying another bag so it can rip in a week

Gravely_Man
11-11-2002, 02:08 PM
That is scary to say the least! Please let us know what the dealer has to say and what is done. Just goes to show you can't ever be too careful. Wish you a very speedy recovery if you are still in any pain.


Gravely_Man

SAWDOC
11-11-2002, 04:48 PM
I have sold hundreds if not thousands of these machines and not once have I seen a rock go through a blower housing.
Your dealer should warranty the machine with Stihl Inc.'s approval.
I would like to put to rest that it is not a design flaw. If it were there would have been more cases of this happening. I use a Sh 85 around my house with a gravel driveway and have sucked up many rocks and not so much as a stress fracture. This seems to be an isolated case in which I would expect your dealer and Stihl Inc. to take care of you. If you run into any resistance let me know and I will do what I can to solve your problem.
George Jr.

BigDave
03-07-2003, 11:46 AM
PetalsAndPines - could we get a status report? Did your dealer / Stihl replace your unit for you?

I am in the market for a vac/blower right now, and am leaning towards the Stihl SH 85 over the Echo ES 2400 only because my dealer sells it for $50 less.

Is the general consensus here that both units are comparable, and both are equally susceptible to an isolated catastrophic failure?

Thanks
Dave

Darryl G
03-07-2003, 04:26 PM
BigDave - I can't say anything about the Stihl, but I have the Echo 2400 and regret not looking around more. The Stihl looks like a better design to me.

The Echo is awkward for me in vac mode because the throttle is on the left hand side, the vac tube does not lock on an falls off too often (attached w/ stainless steel band clamp and requires a screwdriver), and the blower intake faces the operator (right leg).

The bag ripped out (actually the stiches were bad - they did not penetrate) after burning only two tanks, but the dealer replaced it no problem. It's also loud, sounds like a chain saw. On the plus side it starts easily, runs smooth and warm-up time is next to zero...two pulls and ready to go. Mines' pretty new, so no report on durability yet.

Look around, there's got to be something better than the Echo out there.

cantoo
03-08-2003, 12:01 AM
My quote
I'm sure one of the selling points of this machine is it'e light weight. We all demand light weight equipment so they make it out of "plastic" then it either wears out or breaks then we complain. Of course we still want it strong enough so we don't get hurt, maybe it's too fine of a line. We used to have a maintenance guy at work who always overbuilt everything he made. The good part was it very seldom broke down the bad part was it would always be a pain to use because of the size or weight. The last few weeks I have been considering getting the Sthil now I'm not sure. Does anyone make one with a steel or aluminum housing?

I bought this unit last Fall but haven't even taken it out of the box yet. I'm hoping it will work out well for Spring bed cleanups.

HOMER
03-08-2003, 09:10 AM
I got one hanging in the trailer that I can't use for the very same reason. It will pick up rocks, stones, cans, and a whole lot more. Now when I try to use it for the trash that I need to pick up I get peppered with sand and pea gravel. I would like to see some kind of warranty to replace the housing. I haven't bled yet but as I said.......now it's useless and I need it.

Gr grass n Hi tides
03-08-2003, 10:45 AM
It doesn't always have to be about filing law suits. Some knuckle head woman rear ended me two days ago doing 40 mph. Her vehicle is totaled but my big ole' Bronco took it well. I've got maybe $500 in damge. She's got 5K. Luckily, I'm not hurt & won't be pursuing a claim although I've seen many in my shoes start treating with a Dr. just to milk a claim.

If the guy is injured and can't work & provide for his family because of some mechanical fault then do what you must. That's justified. If he's just hurt a little and can jump right back in the saddle then get the company to cover your expenses only (replace the unit and pay for the ER bill). You can get that done with a couple of phone calls, it's reasonable, and you can accomplish it pretty quickly I would think. They'll see something bogus a mile away anyway.