View Full Version : How long do you run your trimmer line?

Acute Cut
06-26-2004, 07:03 PM
This ties into the other two polls i believe so i guess i better cover this as well.
How long do you run your trimmer line? Personally i like mine as long as my trimmer can handle, thus i have big trimmers.:D

Also, and you will have to write here as i dont have room to post all these options as well, do you think short or long line does a better cut? Do you feel you are at the peak of productivity with the line length you have chosen? Just curious as my dealer and i are at very different ends of the spectrum on this issue and i am going to write on it. I am just curious if i am unusual in how i run or if this is the norm. I think it is the latter but only voting will tell i guess. Thanks for ya'lls time.
Acute Cut (That guy from turf)

06-26-2004, 07:07 PM
i like to run my line long, i have the stihl 110 and i cant stand having the line short, longer line = better cut IMO

Acute Cut
06-26-2004, 07:10 PM
ill post this here too since it is so important. Dont forget to vote too guys. I want to use statistics in my article in TURF and i need actual numbers to work with if i can. Thanks guys for ALL your help. I REALLY appreciate the fact that yall would take the time to post here on these polls. It REALLY helps me alot. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!:drinkup: :help: I cant find the thumbs up smiley so imagine like 6 of them here!

06-26-2004, 07:35 PM
whats a trimmer? never heard of that.... well really i leave my guards on incase of insurance reasons...

06-26-2004, 08:29 PM
In my opinion anyone that uses a trimmer without the guard on is crazy! The liability and safety issues is tremendous. I prefer to leave my guard on.

06-26-2004, 08:35 PM
I must be crazy. And have been trimming for well over 20 years.....no guards. They are the first thing to come off of new trimmers.

Guards= Waste of time/money


Kelly's Landscaping
06-26-2004, 08:36 PM
I cut the guards back about 3-4 inchs and remove the silly blade they put there to keep the string to short. I do keep guards on but I like my string around 10-12 inchs per side.

06-26-2004, 09:04 PM
Why would anybody want to run their line constantly short?

06-26-2004, 09:07 PM
Originally posted by seymour_glass
Why would anybody want to run their line constantly short?

so it can go inside the spool and waste more time to get it out!

Acute Cut
06-27-2004, 12:27 AM
well, i am more in line with the posted thinking here, look at the other posts. Insurance and regulations i can understand. Fear of the unknown and slowness are sad excuses. Cutting guards pretty much eliminates all coverage you had with them on i think.
HERE HERE! Preach on!!!!

I said it in another post and i'll say it here, i challenge anyone with a guard on to keep up with me. Guantlets dropped and all that!!!!
Those that run LONG lines and BIG weedeaters can back me up here. There is NO comparisson. I have over 10 years experience on this and i dont personally know anyone faster or better than me. (I know they are out there, i just dont know them personally) Beer is wonderful isnt it?
Anyways, i have yet to meet anyone with a "Real" trimmer that could keep up. Usually these wanna be's run medium trimmers and guards on and then talk smack and wanna compete. I laugh and try and get them on their way but some are persistant.

Here is the contest, one side of ditch to the end. About 200 ft. Four feet high or so. I can do both sides total in about 10 minutes max. (Only done every other week so is kinda long.)

Usual outcome, i win, then start doing their side and meet them OVER half way back! I aint great, but guards on and line short is plain ol slow as heck.

I aint saying no guards is right, im just saying it is WAY faster and better IMO.

06-27-2004, 12:34 AM
it's got that certain sound, the hummmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

i could tell you if its right with my eyes closed. longer line so i don't have to give too much throttle. I like when i can go along a chain link fence and cut both sides at once:cool: :cool: hummmmmmmmmmmmm.

06-27-2004, 12:58 AM
In my opinion i get just as much dirt and debris in my face and legs with a guard on as without. So i go without a guard as long as i can and still keep the RPMs up.

06-27-2004, 01:22 AM
Accute how big is a big trimmer? How many cc's?

06-27-2004, 01:28 AM
Originally posted by Acute Cut
How long do you run your trimmer line?

this is another trick question, right?

GEO :confused:

Acute Cut
06-27-2004, 03:10 AM
My trimmer is like 42cc i think. I am not mechinechially inclined. (sp error on porpose) The biggest tanaka trimmer i could get with a regular handle and not bull horns on it. Some day they will have bigger, ill be the first on my block to have one i think. :D

T Edwards
06-27-2004, 08:48 AM
There are times that call for long AND short line.

Cleaning out beds is a lot easier with a 2-3" line because you have so much greater control. I also like running at a low throttle speed.

06-27-2004, 09:01 AM
Originally posted by geogunn
this is another trick question, right?

GEO :confused:

Another trick answer?;)

06-27-2004, 06:44 PM
I run mine at different lengths for different conditions. For normal mowing and scathing of real light thin stuff, I run it longer. Just long enough that I still get a good peak of actual CUTTING power out at the end. In certain conditions, the trimmer will actually have more cutting power with longer line than with a shortherer line. However, if I get into thick stuff like ditches and such, the string is shortened a bit so I have more engine power. After awhile, you dial it in and can just tell what lengths give your trimmer more cuting efficiency for different types and degrees of conditions.

Expert Lawns
06-27-2004, 07:09 PM
my trimmer line is always long, and i don't use my gaurds. when i'm in the the thick stuff, my line always ends up getting too long and wrapping itself around the head. i think the button gets tapped and the momentum of the longer, heavier string enables the line to come out easier

06-27-2004, 08:38 PM
i don't understand the guard protects u not everything else in the 130degree open area that the guard isn't covering . And is it an issue with insurance?

I don't remember seeing that in my policy?:eek:

J Hageman
06-27-2004, 11:17 PM
I have added to my guard. I trim on a cemtery. I cut a piece of plastic about1/4 inch smaller than the length of the trim line. I pull the trimer in back of me and run the plastic on the stone. I get a very clean cut ,it is fast and use very little line.

06-27-2004, 11:23 PM
Originally posted by clyde
i don't understand the guard protects u not everything else in the 130degree open area that the guard isn't covering . And is it an issue with insurance?

I don't remember seeing that in my policy?:eek:

Not sure you need to worry much abour the insurance =) One thing you guys may want to consider is factory warranty. Most companies that i know of wont warranty a whip thats missing the guard. I personally think guards are total junk and always come off. However its always best to use it with the guard for at least 2 days so there is grass on it. You also want to hang onto the guard in case you have a warranty issue. Its always in your best interest to have your equipment looking as stock as possible when you come to a warranty repair. Some dealers will look for any reason not to warranty your equipment.

06-28-2004, 12:09 AM
Not my dealer, he takes the guards off for me, and takes out the spark arrestor screens, before I even pick them up. 8)

06-28-2004, 12:24 AM
Im kinda jealous =) I would love to have that kind of a dealer. Unfortunately mines pretty anal about guards on my trimmer =(

06-28-2004, 12:27 AM
Acute Cut:

You ought to talk to engine mfgs. about how much premature wear is caused by running line longer than the shield will allow. It's actually pretty amazing how much RPMs drop for every 1" of line longer than spec.

And for all the trimmer cowboys out there.....the shield is not only for operator safety, but for those who may be nearby, as well. For a business owner to knowingly allow employees to disregard and remove safety features from a trimmer is downright irresponsible. For a dealer to remove federally mandated equipment and safety features from items when he sells them is about the most idiotic thing I have ever heard of....direct violation of the law. The penalties can be severe enough that many dealers couldn't bear them and would be forced to close their doors. I wouldn't do business with a dealer who had so little regard for safety and the law.

06-28-2004, 12:28 AM
Acute Cut, if i wasn't on the otherside of the country, i'd challenge you to a duel, I think I sould be around your speed. I've been weed whacking ponds and creeks at a golf course for years so i really learned to crank. now i have this guy that has a lake that needs weed whacked around, a long creak and 2 big hill that I do ever 3 weeks. I really crank those out. I do it buy myself because watching my guys go so slow just pisses me off. I Have the owner of the property paying me 220 to weed whack all of that, he got upset last year when he though I was ripping him off when I get it done in less then 2 hours, so he had his son in law do it for him one week and when it took him 5 hours and didn't finish it he called me and apoligize and told me "I didn't realize your such a had worker."
but anyway guards off is the way to go!!

06-28-2004, 12:31 AM
I was just wondering if you have you workers work with no guards eather, I usally leave them on untill I really trust them, I't kinda a liability for me expecally if some dipstick kids comes and works for me, start crankin' a trimmer without a guard and whinds up weed whacking his or someone elce's shins or takes out someone's flowers or what not or get smacked in the face with a rock and starts bit*hin that it was because there was no guard on the trimmer.

06-28-2004, 12:57 AM
I think thats a good point KING ....

if there is an untrained Mate just starting the chances of them staying out of the dirt or rocks are slim and the guard is a must

But i pretty much work alone or have help on those big yards that are over 2acres and theres nothing out there to hurt anyway.

so i should have thought that a bit more b4 i said it ..... (my ealier post)

06-28-2004, 01:37 AM
We run 2 Shindaiwa T270's and a T2500. Guards off, and line at about 10" or so on each side. I use .105 line in the 270's and have .155 line in the T2500. We'll run the 270's a little shorter around fences and such, but for some of the steep banks we do, only the width of a 21" per pass is acceptable, and do-able with the Shins. Can't say anything about "premature wear" on them from the line running so long, because my oldest 270 is 8 years old, and still cutting strong...same engine, same shaft.

06-28-2004, 03:40 AM
dang, i remember the other week i went to my moms to trim around her fence, and she said i could use her trimmer, well it was a husq 323c??? curved shaft, anyways it had .80 line (husq titanium force) and i was impressed what it did, but once i got in to the thick stuff it was hell. thats when i wished i had a T270 that would have been great. i couldn't run long line so i had to trim on both sides of the fence because of sagging and crossed barbed wire, it took me about 2 1/2 hours, oh, it was a fence around 5 acres, and there was more johnson grass than you could shake a piece of johnson grass at... oh well, she's my mom, i would have done it for free except it took away from my work time and i spent 20 bucks in gas, i guess 50 bucks wasn't too bad for the old lady.

anyways, back to the question, i leave the gaurd on but run it long as i can, but in the case listed above, it was probably about 4in-6in on each side max. and it was a good thing my mom knows a thing or two about decent equipment, it would have been hell with a homelite or craftsman:eek:

Acute Cut
07-14-2004, 02:50 AM
just gonna bump it up as i am writing the article tomorrow and wanna let everyone get a chance at getting in on this. I guess it is technically called a "bump"

TLC Darrin
07-14-2004, 09:32 AM
I've got a pile of brand spankin new guards on a shelf..they're off as soon as I get a new trimmer. I find the shorter u run your line..the more rpms u need..thus more fuel is wasted! Plus it is faster with a longer line for sure. With gas at $.80-.90\L up here u need to be efficient!!!

07-14-2004, 10:14 AM
I'm actually surprised...70% of people here, according to poll, run with their guards on?

Who are these people? I been doing this for 20 yrs...I see everyone out there...it is a rare day I see someone running with a guard on. I know absolutely no one, who's been in this business for over 2 or 3 yrs, that uses a guard. 70%??...Wow!

And as far as comparing huevos...I am simply the bestest, fastest line trimmer operator known.

I can sculpt bushes and ground covers into works of art with my trimmer...I can flat top a residential yard with a trimmer faster than most people can mow on a 36". Edger?...I don't need no stinkin' edger. My edges look like they were cut with a lazer.

I am a line trimmer God.

It'll be on my tombstone..."He was a line trimming God"

Geesh...I really wanted to be President.

07-14-2004, 10:20 AM
Update... I run my line long for trimming resi' yards, and much shorter for nasty fence lines..Tha' Gaurd went in the bin a few weeks ago.. I decided that flying with my trimmer was more important than worrying about OSHA... For now. Employee's may change that.