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View Full Version : Back pack blower killing my shoulder


CL&T
11-18-2012, 08:01 PM
Am I the only one that their back pack kills their shoulder during fall cleanups? I use a EBZ8500 and after about 45 minutes my left arm gets so numb that I can't move it. (Why the left I have no idea.) I tried extra strap padding made by somebody last year but it was more trouble because it didn't stay on the straps and didn't work. I wonder, does anybody make a waist belt that would take some of the weight off the straps?

Darryl G
11-18-2012, 08:14 PM
Should have gotten the Husky version (580) which has a padded waist belt and chest strap....distributes the weight nicesly. The Husky harness may fit your machine...not sure if the frame is different though.

newguy123
11-18-2012, 08:17 PM
Sorry to hear about that, seeing your left arm hurts more than the other maybe you have a pinched nerve. I would go to a chiropractor and get an adjustment. With our industry our backs take a beating, even if we're not landscaping. Anyways...my shoulders hurt at times, but usually after a couple hours of blowing. I think you're on the right track, somehow you need to support the weight in spots other than a shoulder.

Let us know if you figure something out.

cpllawncare
11-18-2012, 08:20 PM
Am I the only one that their back pack kills their shoulder during fall cleanups? I use a EBZ8500 and after about 45 minutes my left arm gets so numb that I can't move it. (Why the left I have no idea.) I tried extra strap padding made by somebody last year but it was more trouble because it didn't stay on the straps and didn't work. I wonder, does anybody make a waist belt that would take some of the weight off the straps?

Huskies blowers have waist belts at least the big ones do. I might recommend making sure the blower isn't sitting too low on your back thus pulling on your shoulders I have my 600 set up so it sets up high on my back so as not to pull on my shoulders.

4 seasons lawn&land
11-18-2012, 08:49 PM
Similar. I have an 8000 it kills my shoulder blade area. Definately not numb though. It gets painful like a pinched nerve. I dont use it as long anymore. Got the billy goat and bagger. hopefully a hurricane next yr.

DiyDave
11-18-2012, 09:39 PM
I bought the stihl kombi system blower, for the weedeater. More power and less weight (and less space, and less $) than a backpack blower! Try it, you'll like it!:waving:

Darryl G
11-18-2012, 09:53 PM
I bought the stihl kombi system blower, for the weedeater. More power and less weight (and less space, and less $) than a backpack blower! Try it, you'll like it!:waving:

More power than a backpack blower...yeah, right.

Bowhog1
11-19-2012, 12:14 AM
CL&T ..don't ignore pain..that's your radial nerve. See the Doc.

CL&T
11-19-2012, 12:21 AM
Should have gotten the Husky version (580) which has a padded waist belt and chest strap....distributes the weight nicesly. The Husky harness may fit your machine...not sure if the frame is different though.

Redmax and Husqvarna are now the same company I believe. Machines look very much the same but I'm not seeing the waist belt on the 580, at least on their website. Looks like they are making the 580 the same as the RM 8500 now. I could check replacement parts I suppose. How old is yours?

Darryl G
11-19-2012, 12:41 AM
There is definitely a waist belt on the 580 as well as some of their other blowers. Mine is a year old. It's listed in the features for the unit as well.

And yes, Husqvarna owns Redmax but not all their products are the same. Husqvarna has "borrowed" some of the Redmax units and modified them a bit. I don't know if Redmax has rebadged any Husky stuff though...don't think so.

herler
11-19-2012, 08:22 AM
Well stop trying to "push" the leaves with your throttle arm, it's a psychological malady that bp users develop when using the blower, people think they have to "push" the leaves with it and that causes the muscles to tense up which then results in the discomfort you speak of, try and let the blower do the work as that should help ease tension.

yardguy28
11-19-2012, 08:25 AM
I bought the stihl kombi system blower, for the weedeater. More power and less weight (and less space, and less $) than a backpack blower! Try it, you'll like it!:waving:

More power than a backpack blower...yeah, right.

you beat me to it darryl......

no way the blower on a kombi system has more power than a backpack blower.

maybe he can come to my house and demonstrate its power by starting at the far back of my yard and moving all those leaves to the front with just the blower.

on subject though. it sucks the OP is having problems. I for one don't have any but I'm not using the same blower.

Richard Martin
11-19-2012, 08:35 AM
I bought the stihl kombi system blower, for the weedeater. More power and less weight (and less space, and less $) than a backpack blower! Try it, you'll like it!:waving:

You're a great guy Dave but you've got to be kidding. :laugh:

CL&T
11-19-2012, 10:34 AM
Well stop trying to "push" the leaves with your throttle arm, it's a psychological malady that bp users develop when using the blower, people think they have to "push" the leaves with it and that causes the muscles to tense up which then results in the discomfort you speak of, try and let the blower do the work as that should help ease tension.

Thing is the problem is with my left arm and shoulder, the handle and blower pipe are on the right. If anything, supporting the blower pipe with my right hand lessens the weight on that side and my right shoulder. But yeah, I do think I have a problem with my left shoulder somehow. Been that way for years with a blower, doesn't seem to bother me though with a BP sprayer.

Thanks Darryl for that information. The 580 does have a lot more padding as well as the waist belt. Unfortunately it doesn't look like the frame would be interchangeable with the RM.

Darryl G
11-19-2012, 12:02 PM
You may be able to retrofit a waist strap on your unit with the straps off an old backpack or buy a replacement one from a backpack manufacturer like Kelty. I actually have one in the garage that I used for attaching a sled to myself for cross country skiing with my kids in tow. It just attaches with clevis pins through the grommets in the strap. Or you could just go to a fabric store and get some 2 inch webbing and some fastex clips and do some sewing. I'm sure there's a solution to the problem. Even just adding a chest (sternum) strap may help to keep the straps in position and transfer some of the weight to your chest and the middle of your back.

What would probably work the best is actually a tumpline. You'd feel ridiculous wearing it but they are very effective and actually pretty comfortable. For those of you not familiar, a tumpline is basically a head strap that you attack to your pack, or in this case blower, that effectively transfers the weight from your shoulders to your back. Admittedly you'd have to be a certain type of individual to allow yourself to be seen wearing one on a customer's property.

Bowhog1
11-19-2012, 12:03 PM
CL&T..Years ya say. I don't know your situation but this is mine. Pain and numbness RT & Lt shoulders/arms & hands for years...ignored it. Went to unload my truck and thought that my Rt arm broke above my bicep. MRI revealed a bone tumor in rt humorous,broken collar bone,torn bicep and rotator cuff. A bone graft / screws 2yr lost and I kept complaining about the same pains in the lt shoulder. Dr reluctantly ordered another MRI and surprise.. same injuries minus the tumor. Lost 70 % of rt arm function. Found this forum and am trying to get my lawn business started. Don't ignore pain...it will catch you .

CL&T
11-19-2012, 01:54 PM
Yeah, I'll definitely mention it to the doc next time I'm there. Other than with the back pack the arm and shoulder is perfectly normal. Doc will probably say stop using the back pack. I have to say though that I have always had "boney" or something shoulders and I'm no light weight. I've never been able to throw a load of 2x4s for instance on either shoulder to carry them like everybody else.

Kelly's Landscaping
11-19-2012, 06:52 PM
Use to be worse for me when I did 6-7 hours a backpack work a day. But since no one seems to know how do deal with bulk removal I jump into that and let my guys try to do the finish product with the back packs. Are they as good as I am on them hehehehe not even close but using a leaf plow and a self propelled fradan 18 hp blower is a lot more fun then a br 600 all day.

But iv managed to injure both shoulders at one time or another from backpacking and that's like game over for that season. I tripped once on a pool cover cable and landed on my back with a backpack on and it popped my left shoulder out and every so often it acts up from clean ups now so I do my best to do a variety of tasks to keep the repetition down.

herler
11-19-2012, 07:18 PM
Thing is the problem is with my left arm and shoulder, the handle and blower pipe are on the right. If anything, supporting the blower pipe with my right hand lessens the weight on that side and my right shoulder. But yeah, I do think I have a problem with my left shoulder somehow. Been that way for years with a blower, doesn't seem to bother me though with a BP sprayer.

I would believe the discomfort that comes from "pushing" the leaves with the throttle hand would manifest itself in the same side shoulder as the throttle hand, I still find it strange... You know, I'm the kind I fit myself a hand held blower in my left hand just to get the job done quicker, now I'm all about that and I just work it hard so I don't even think about the pain, not sure if that's a great solution either but I got tired of it, always the stiffness, I figured heck with it lets just get it over with lol

Just trying to help, good luck with that.

Darryl G
11-19-2012, 07:32 PM
I would believe the discomfort that comes from "pushing" the leaves with the throttle hand would manifest itself in the same side shoulder as the throttle hand, I still find it strange... You know, I'm the kind I fit myself a hand held blower in my left hand just to get the job done quicker, now I'm all about that and I just work it hard so I don't even think about the pain, not sure if that's a great solution either but I got tired of it, always the stiffness, I figured heck with it lets just get it over with lol

Just trying to help, good luck with that.

If you really want to get done faster wear 2 backpack blowers, one on your chest and one on your back or use a wheel blower at the same time as a backpack blower. I've even been known to use 2 backpack blowers and the wheel blower at the same time. Of course none of that is going to help a sore shoulder, lol. Now I'm trying to figure out a way to attach a handheld blower to my leg at the same time...I'm thinking that velcro is probably the answer...bungie cord didn't work so well.

yardguy28
11-19-2012, 08:42 PM
I just borrow a jet dryer from NASCAR and I'm done in no time.

DiyDave
11-19-2012, 09:33 PM
More power than a backpack blower...yeah, right.

Somewhere out there, is a video floating of the power of blowers, measured by a ball floating in a tube, which shows that of which I speak. I don't want to spend the time to prove a pyrrhic point, so believe what you want. I retired my backpack blower, after not using it for 2 years after I first bought the stihl Kombi. Doesn't make a whit of difference what anybody else uses, I' ll stick with the non-sore shoulders, and the Stihl!:laugh:

Darryl G
11-19-2012, 09:44 PM
Yeah, and somewhere there's a Leprechaun sitting on his pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. ;)

yardguy28
11-20-2012, 08:37 PM
Somewhere out there, is a video floating of the power of blowers, measured by a ball floating in a tube, which shows that of which I speak. I don't want to spend the time to prove a pyrrhic point, so believe what you want. I retired my backpack blower, after not using it for 2 years after I first bought the stihl Kombi. Doesn't make a whit of difference what anybody else uses, I' ll stick with the non-sore shoulders, and the Stihl!:laugh:

ok you stick with your non sore shoulders and underpowered stihl kombi blower and I'll stick with my powerful non sore shoulders br600 magnum stihl blower.

also I'll be here when your ready to take this oh so awesome blower and start at the edge of my backyard and blow all the leaves to the curb just past my front yard with out using anything but the kombi blower.

BaxtersEssentialLawnCare
11-21-2012, 09:35 AM
I think that the husky harness would kit the RM. Just replaced the straps on my rm top attachement points look the same. It looks as though on the husky the back padding and straps are all in one. My back padding came off there are some extra holes in it I think the husky padding would line up if not holes are easy to make. I would have to see the bottom attachment point but I would guess if its not a direct replacement with a few bits and pieces it should work.

BaxtersEssentialLawnCare
11-21-2012, 09:44 AM
I will go a step further after looking at a pic on the huskys bottom attachement point I think the harness should fit easy looks like the clip it different but in the same spoy/hole should be a direct swap. Now I wish I looked before I replaced my straps I would have gotten the husky straps.

Darryl G
11-21-2012, 09:57 AM
The straps bolt onto a little "tab" on the Husky blower. It looks like they use a hole below the one they do for the Redmax clip. Yes, it is a one piece assembly with the back pad attached to it. Taking a better look at it, I think it very well may work.

Richard Martin
11-21-2012, 03:41 PM
The straps bolt onto a little "tab" on the Husky blower. It looks like they use a hole below the one they do for the Redmax clip. Yes, it is a one piece assembly with the back pad attached to it. Taking a better look at it, I think it very well may work.

I wonder if they (the husky straps) could be put onto a Stihl BR600? My old BR600 needs new straps.

Richard Martin
11-21-2012, 03:55 PM
Wrong place for this post...

Darryl G
11-21-2012, 05:39 PM
I'll go grab a couple pics of the attachment and put them up later. You, Richard I'm sure could figure out a way to attach them. The top attachment is pretty standard...just need a good way to attach the bottom.

Darryl G
11-21-2012, 06:06 PM
Actually the top attachment isn't so standard. I thought the webbing was just wrapped around slots in the top and then attached with a buckle. The webbing is sewn closed and a little ummmm...key for lack of a better term...sits in a slot. It was getting dark and I couldn't really see what I was taking pictures of but here they are. Bit out of focus to. I pulled the top one out of the slot so you can see it better...of course focus is worst on that one.....

CowboysLawnCareDelaware
11-21-2012, 06:28 PM
Definitely go see the doctor, it wouldn't hurt to have the blower in your truck incase he wants to see how the straps sit across your shoulders. I am only 20 and I have the lighter 130BT and I have used it for 3 hours on leaves before with no problems, except for the lack of power. Only 150mph, great on blowing off streets and sidewalk and mowing, but with any heavy leaf cover you have to constantly move in a pattern to move the leaves.

-Michael :weightlifter: