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View Full Version : Convenience of Backpack or power in handheld?


grassrootsinab
03-19-2004, 11:57 AM
Howdy,

I don't have alot of $ (like $400 canadian) to spend on a blower for residential clean up (mostly just blowing clippings from driveways/sidewalks etc...the VERY odd fall cleanup and blowing small am'ts of snow off my driveway).

I know I'm going to catch grief for this but I've looked at Home Depot and see an Echo BP 260 blower for $400 Canadian. It only has 160 mph and (I think) 340 cfm volume. A homelite hand held has the same volume but 195 mph speed. ( I know...they're both homeowner grade but remember I'm only part time and this is all the money I have to spend right now). The hand held is only $220.

My question is do I go for the convenience and extra expense of the backpack (better manufacturer) or buy the cheaper more powerful handheld. I'd appreciate you guy's opinions on this.

Thanks.

Jeff

apluslawn
03-19-2004, 12:13 PM
The backpack your looking at is just like ahandheld mounted on a backpack frame. If I had to chose between the two id go with echo. the best thing to do is save your pennies and get areal blower. later

GrassBlaster
03-19-2004, 12:17 PM
I don't know how much you're gonna use the blower, but here's my experience. I started using a handhelp WeedEater Featherlite blower. Not sure the CFM, but it was a 150 MPH blower. Paid $69.00 USD for it. This year, I moved up to a Stihl BR340 Backpack blower. It was $299.00 USD. It is still small if you base your purchase on the reecomendations you'll get here, but it was what I could afford. I almost bought a Shindaiwa EB500, but the Stihl was cheaper and I preferred the tube mounted controls over haing to use the left hand for throttle. Anyway, There was a huge difference.

If you are only gonna be blowing clippings off of sidewalks and driveways, etc and other geereal or light blowing...go with the handheld and save some money for now. The backpack is good for extended periods to keep your arm from getting so tired. Otherwise the only difference I seem to see is the price.

dishboy
03-19-2004, 12:21 PM
You might try a used backpack. Pull the muffler and check the cylinder for scratches, if it starts easy and you can run it full throttle [create resistance to get hot] for at least 10 minutes you should not get burned. Echo , Shindaiwa Red Max, Stihl are all serviceable.

qwikv6
03-19-2004, 12:31 PM
Look at the Stihl handheld blowers. I have a BG65 and it does well for the work that you are describing.

Good Luck.

Lawn Dog2001
03-19-2004, 12:34 PM
For what you are using it for I would go with a hand held blower. But dont waste your money on a Homelite. Get an Echo handheld. It will be much cheaper than the 260 backpack, and just about as powerful. Really a handheld is a bit more convenient in a lot of circumstances anyway.

bobbygedd
03-19-2004, 01:21 PM
my wife bought me that same back pack blower years ago for xmas. junk, brought it back 3 days later. if the funds are that limited, and all u need is to blow off drives and walks, get a cheap hand held. save some money during the season, and get a redmax backpack for fall cleanup.

Flipperneck
03-19-2004, 01:38 PM
The echo handheld at home depot is the best bang for the buck, I like em personnally and i hate handhelds.

rookiemower
03-19-2004, 02:56 PM
i like the echo pb200 at depot worked great for me for one season until i got the redmax. it always started great to its a great backup when you get your pro stuff

grassrootsinab
03-19-2004, 05:16 PM
Thanks for all the ideas guys....I was at my regular dealer and he recommended Redmax but at almost $800 it isn't possible right now (buying a truck and new 21" mower too this spring). I thought I'd be better off with the handheld after reading some descriptions on the Echo 260. Thanks again!!