View Full Version : New Husqvarna 580BFS Blower
10-24-2011, 08:48 PM
I've been looking at new blowers lately. I have 2 Shindaiwa EB630s, one of which is 10 years old and getting a little tired. The 630s were near the top of the charts back when I bought them, but the new generation of blowers seems to have raised the bar a couple of notches. They're fine for the mowing route, but I wanted something with pure brute strength for fall cleanups and for blowing clear the roadway and trails on my back acreage.
I considered the Echo PB770, the Shindaiwa EB802 and the Shindaiwa 854. This is mostly due to dealer preference, the Echo/Shin dealer the next town over from me is excellent. The only one I had tried out was the Echo, which seemed nice, but I have had gotten excellent service from my Shindaiwas and was leaning toward them. They don't carry the 802, just the 854. I'm still not sure they've gotten all the kinks out of the C4 engines so was reluctant to get the 854. So that pretty much left me with the 802 which they don't carry, but of course could get for me.
I wasn't really considering the Husqvarna 580 until I walked into the rental yard/Husqvarna dealer this afternoon and they had one on the shelf. I seemed nice but I wanted to come on her and elsewhere online to research it a bit...I figured it was a Redmax but wasn't sure what model.
It turns out it's the EBZ8500, so I went back to take a better look at it. I tried it on and really fell in love with the fact that it has a waist belt. I don't know why more of these big backpack blowers don't. I walked around with it for a while and decided it was coming home with me. It felt light on my back despite it being a giant heavy machine. I'm used to a hip mounted throttle and this one has the tube mounted one but I figured I'd go for it. I just don't like having those exposed wires there but I guess I'll just have to be carefull not to snag them and rip them out...$529 plus tax = $563.60 out the door.
Of course I couldn't wait to try it out so I got home and took it out on my back acreage. I have about a mile of roadway and trails out back that I keep clear. I can use my walk behind blower on the roadways but I need to use a backpack on the trails. Being that they're through the woods, they get a lot of leaves and sticks on them. The 580 handled it easy. I was able to keep a pretty brisk pace while walking along and blowing everything clear and was able to blow back the accumulated twigs along the edges that the 630s couldn't move any further too. I was able to do what would have taken me 2 tank fulls with my 630s in one tank full of gas...granted the 580s tank it bigger. But it absolutely blows my 630s away as far as power and productivity goes. It makes them seem like toys.
After I got home I did a side-by-side test with the newer of my 630s with me on the Shin and my son on the Husky. There is just no comparison, a world of difference between the 2 of them. The Shin is perhaps 5 years old but it really hasn't seen much use. I mostly use my older one and use the newer one as a spare and as a second blower for when I have a helper with me.
I'll add some more about my likes and dislikes later...wifey is calling me for dinner.
Here are some pictures. You can see how much bigger it is than the Shin, which isn't exactly a small blower.
10-24-2011, 09:31 PM
Nice! That hip belt is a handy feature too. (Not a lot of guys seem to be aware that you can buy one for the BR600's as well. I didn't get the hip belt yet, but I did buy the chest strap attachment which really helps).
I have a dealer here that can get me the Husky 580 for $519 or just a tad less, and that's a big reason I am considering one even though I had better results from the Echo and Stihl when I demo'd them all side by side. I am more than willing to give one a chance to really get broken in and see what it can do then. I like the tube mount throttle myself, and can't see why anyone would ever want the hip mount type. I have never even come close to snagging any of my throttle cables on anything, and I blow in some tight areas with lots of brush sometimes. I doubt you'll ever have any trouble either. It's just a lot handier to be able to control the throttle with the right hand, and be able to bend down and pick up trash/sticks etc with the left hand IMO.
10-24-2011, 10:54 PM
Yeah, as far as the throttle. My hand tools go in the truck bed and that's where I'm afraid I'll snap the wiring. It comes with a semi-circular formed "clamp" to hold the wires in place but my guess is that will fall off at some point. I think I'll probably loosely zip-tie the wires to the tube. I think the theory with the hip mounted throttle is to reduce the work load and fatigue on your right hand, but I agree it's a bit of a pain to have it there and have that hand unavailable for anything else.
One major consideration in my purchase was that not only do I do a fair amount of business with this rental yard, but they have really come through for me when I've been in a bind. They will work on any of my equipment for me if needed, whereas the equipment dealers will only work on what they sell (not saying I blame them). The mechanic and general manager have both been there 20 plus years and they run a tight ship. Besides that, I know the owner personally, he's my next door neighbor's best friend who I am also good friends with. The owner and I aren't exactly buddies, but we're friends. He also owns the heating oil company that supplies both me and my neighbor.
Back to the blower...yeah it has some serious power. It puts out a much broader field of air than I'm used to.
I've only run one tank of fuel through it so far, so I certainly can't give it a comprehensive review, but my first impressions are:
1) Starts really easily, and I don't just mean rapidly, which it does. The pull is surprisingly light. It's almost effortless. Does this thing have auto compression release or something?
2) Hip belt and sterum strap keep the machine close to your body and makes it feel much lighter than it is....able to distrubute weight according to your preferences
3) Plenty of power. I actually found myself throttling it down at times rather than WOT. Considering that I was blowing trails in the woods, that says something.
4) Large fuel tank/long run time. I didn't time it but well over an hour, guessing 1.5 hours, whereas I get 50 minutes to an hour run time out of my Shins.
5) For a blower with this power, I was surprised that it wasn't a strain on my arm to hold the tube with the standard bottom tube on...in fact you can let go of it and it doesn't go flying.
6) Runs smooth, not a single hiccup.
7) Covers a large area yet is still able to scour the stuck leaves, maybe not quite as well as my Shins do.
8) Doesn't readily rip up moss
9) Really nice air filtration system...hopefull will increase engine life
Now for the dislikes:
1) It's loud! Even with my Peltor Work Tunes on it was almost unfortably loud. I'm used to loud blowers but this seemed LOUD.
2) Throttle response is a little sluggish...adequate but it's not instant by any means...perhaps break-in will improve that.
3) I wish the detent for the engine cut off was a little more pronouned like is on the Echo 770...I shut it off by accident 3 times while taking the cruise control down. Granted I'm used to a hip mounted throttle with a kill button so hopefully it's just beginner error. But once you hit the kill, even if you realize it and put it back on, it still kills it...why is that?
4) I found the fluted flat nozzle or whatever you call it for the tubes to be unuseable. It's too far off the ground to really serve it's purpose of getting the air right down at ground level and it really pushes your arm outward hard. I swear if you didn't resist it you'd just spin around in circles.
5) Speaking of the tubes, it was a 2 person job to switch the tubes and even that was a struggle, they're really really snug. I sprayed them with silicone...hopefully I won't regret that. The plastic is also kind of thin, but given their diameter I think they'd be too heavy if they were any thicker...remind self not to crush them.
6) Wires to the throttle seem to be begging to get caught and ripped out and are only held on my a single semi-circular "clamp" thats kind of like a spring steel pre-formed wire that I expect will fall off and get lost. I think I'll zip tie them on loosely. This is probably my biggest concern but I guess it's a common thing with tube mounted throttles.
7) The padding on the shoulder seems thin, but I didn't find them to be uncomfortable...they are curved nicely. I had most of the weight on my hips anyway thanks to the well padded hip belt.
The bottom line. I really like it. Easy starting, comfortable and light feeling, plenty of power and moves things without excavating the things you're not intending to. I'll secure the throttle wires better for my own piece of mind and try not to shut it off by accident and I think I'll skip the fluted nozzle.
I still need to try it more on turf and in some thick leaf accumulations.
Oh yeah, I forgot...I only ran the Echo 770 for a limited time in light leaf conditions, but they seem pretty similar in power...too close for me to call having run them a week or 2 apart and in totally different conditions. The Echo throttle response seemed quicker though.
10-24-2011, 11:01 PM
Hey, nice purchase... I too bought one in the begining of summer, I work at a rental store that is a husqvarna dealer aswell.. I love it.. all my handhelds are husqvarna due to me paying out of my paycheck weekly instead of all up front. the first time my dad (56 years old) tried it on he nearly fell over because he wasnt expecting the wind force to be that great, which i fount to be quite funny to me...
10-24-2011, 11:25 PM
I don't know why they still shut down once you hit the off switch and immediately turn it back on, but my BR600 does the same thing. I can reach back with my left arm and restart it right on my back though, so that's a plus. Every big BP I have tried that was of recent manufacture has been exceptionally east to start, and I think that's a good thing.
As for loud, while I didn't mention it in my review that I can recall, but I did notice that the RM 8500 was louder than the 770, and especially the BR600 which is really quiet for what it is/does. I run that at the half throttle setting for 90% of my leaf removal work, and it blows everything away- sticks, leaves, small stones, whatever. These big BP's are simply amazing to watch work.
My BR's tubes were a real SOB to get apart too. I had to have my wife hold the upper tube in place while I wrenched the lower tube off. Now that I have done it a couple times, they do come of easier, yet are still nice a snug when in place.
I bought the curved nozzle for my 600 after reading and chatting here with another member about them, but I took it right back off. I have one on my BR 320, and love it for leaf removal/clean-up, but the 600 moves so much air that it literally blows the tune and your arm straight back, which you have to constantly fight, and eventually your arm gets fatigued. It works great at lifting and shoving the leaves forward, but the strain against the arm just isn't worth the gain IMO.
10-25-2011, 12:35 AM
I found a youtube video of the blower in action. Must see! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFR4e-Fm45Q
10-25-2011, 01:13 AM
The model number sticker on my unit clearly says 580BFS but that's the designation for the frame mounted throttle. The tube mounted throttle model is the BTS. It appears they put the wrong sticker on mine.
10-25-2011, 01:22 AM
Is that not also a Redmax now?!?!
10-25-2011, 01:41 AM
It's the Redmax EBZ8500RH in orange.
10-25-2011, 12:29 PM
one thing I like about the Husky you have over the RM version, is the fact that the Husky utilizes quick release snaps on the air box cover, while RM uses the twist knobs. Much simpler and easier to use.
10-25-2011, 01:44 PM
Yeah I noticed that about the air cover.
Does the RM have the waist belt? I didn't see any mention of it in their specs and it didn't look like there was one in the pictures either. Not sure why but the specs are a little different between the 2 units. Different weights and different fuel capacities.
I just ran it some more this morning and the throttle response if better already...still not quick but much better. I will confirm that the thing is loud at WOT though. I think I'm going to have to double up on hearing protection for extended run times. It's 100 decibels at the operator's ears...that's pretty freakin loud. I tried the fluted nozzle again too...don't like it. They actually sell a handlebar-like accessory for the tube for holding it with your left hand. I think I may pick up a spare intermediate tube and try the fluted nozzle with that. I'm a pretty tall guy and the pipe seems a little short for me, the same as the Echo did.
Running this thing I really get the feeling that it's holding back due to the electronic rev limiter. How do it get this baby up to 10k RPMs? LOL. Reminds me of my 2500HD Chevy...300HP and can't even light up the tires, lol. Well, gotta get back out on my route.
Oh yeah....this thing is chained into my pickup bed...not taking any chances with it growing legs. I can just picture somebody watching me use it and saying to themself "I gotta have that thing."
10-25-2011, 01:59 PM
The 8500 I demo'd didn't have the waste belt either, or any type of cross chest harness, but maybe they simply didn't have them out on the units where someone could walk of with them, I can't really say.
The one thing that I have seen on this site, and noticed myself was that the tubes are quite flexible compared to other blowers. I have been wondering why that would be.
The differences between Husky and RM are minor, and probably just something to help differentiate one from the other from a sellers standpoint.
I personally like a lot of Husky's equipment, so would lean that way even if the prices here were the same.
Give your blower at least 10 full tanks of gas through it to see it start coming into its own.
Can you post a pic of the fluted tip you mentioned? I haven't seen that yet, but would like to.
10-26-2011, 01:58 AM
Can your blower do this? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_iVTCQIhvl4&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL
Video on the 570 and 580 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7hx-ESY4RTA
10-26-2011, 07:52 PM
Here's that "fluted" nozzle...not sure that's the right word for it. Like I said, I find it pretty much unuseable. It pushes too hard against your arm and at least for me it's too far off the ground to blow down at ground level (I'm 6'2"). Maybe with a tube extension and running the machine throttled down a bit it would work. I plan to get another tube anyway so I'll give it a try at some point.
Throwing in a pic of the 10 year old EB630. Yes it still runs fine it just doesn't have the power I need for cleanups anymore. It's what I use on my mowing route and it works fine for that.
I tried floating a soccer ball over the regular nozzle with the machine at WOT today. It definitely works...floats it about 2 feet above it. I also tried setting it down at WOT and it spins around in circles until it eventually falls over, lol.
I don't know if this machine is the most powerfull of the big blowers, but it definitely is powerfull and fills the niche I wanted it to. I haven't taken the 10HP Billy Goat wheel blower off the trailer this week.
10-26-2011, 08:27 PM
My local dealers call that "the flat" nozzle, and said that's what Husky calls it. I have one for my SH85 Stihl handheld. It's supposed to be used for "sweeping" driveways, and is supposed to be easier/faster than the round nozzle. I tried it a couple times early on and found it was pretty much a waste of plastic, at least IMO. I can clear the drive just as fast with the round tube that works for everything else.
As far as the numbers go, that's the biggest kid on the block, What's interesting to me though is that the air flow in the housing for the Husky/RM and the Stihl 600 is almost the same CFM, but the Husky/RM shows higher CFM in the tube. Maybe they have a wider tube overall than the 600 and 770. I am always impressed with what my BR600M does, but I would like to add either the Echo 770, or the Husky that you have. You just can't have too many good tools, and all those BP's are IMO.
Regardless, I like the Husky version's snap cover for the airbox, and the fact that it comes with the straps while the RM doesn't.
Duct tape on the BP. Is there anything that can't be fixed with it?:laugh::laugh:
10-26-2011, 08:42 PM
The tubes are very large diameter but so are the ones on the Echo 770. Look at how big the opening is on the "flat" nozzle.
The duct tape is because the air filter cover on that blower just snaps on...there is no screw like on the newer models. So it opens up and drops the filter on the ground and I don't always notice right away. That blower doesn't owe me a dine though.
I checked the air filter on the Husky today. Hardly anything on the foam prefilter at all after 3 or 4 tanks of gas. The intakes are above the fan...nice design...should keep it pretty clean.
11-03-2011, 09:35 AM
Is there anything that can't be fixed with it?:laugh::laugh:
I am now convinced that there isn't anything!
11-03-2011, 02:35 PM
I am now convinced that there isn't anything!
I wonder just how much tape it took to fix that "crack"?:dizzy::eek:
11-28-2011, 08:10 PM
Update on this blower now that I've been running it for a month or so on cleanups. Bottom line...it kicks a$$. The only problem I was having was that it wasn't scouring stuck leaves as well as I'd like considering how big and powerfull it is. I guess the high velocity nozzle is supposed to be used for that kind of thing, but I find it unuseable...I really can't hold the tube at any significant throttle unless I tuck it under my elbow. So I got an extra intermediate tube for $9 and it solves the problem without ripping my arm off. It does get a little heavy after extended use with it on but I don't have it on all the time...just for times when I have sparse lawn areas with stuck maples leaves or something where I need a more concentrated air flow.
I can now conclusively report that it definitely blows a good bit harder than the Echo 770 and 755. I was on a job Friday working next to a friend of mine and his crew running those blowers and there's really no comparison. I let his son try mine after I blasted leaves into the woods that 2 of them were trying with little success to get a bit deeper into the brush...kinda the "is this what you guys are trying to do" thing. His son asked if he could use mine for the next job they had up the road because they were running short on daylight.
Anyway, so far so good with the Husky...it blows like crazy and has saved me a ton of time. The wheel blower hardly leaves the trailer and sometimes I don't even take it with me now. Throttle response is now good, the air filter stays clean, fuel consumption isn't bad (I get about 1.5 hours on a tank). It does take 3 or 4 pulls to start it for the first time each day but after that if fires right up in 1 or 2 pulls...I wouldn't call it hard starting but it's not like my old Shindaiwa units that start on 1 or 2 pulls every time. Oh, and I like that the replacement air filter is only 10 bucks...they were more like $30 for my Shindaiwas.
Oh, the bad news is that my older Shindaiwa is fine...I didn't realize it but the carb had loosened up a bit...glad it did though or I wouldn't have bought my new Husky, lol.
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