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Old 11-06-2013, 07:29 PM
echo echo is online now
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Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: somewhere out there
Posts: 1,685
Started out with a 500 and liked it a lot. The bigger blowers will do the work in at least 1/2 the time. If you dont do much in the way of leaves and time is not an issue the 500 is sufficient. My 500's are long sold.
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Old 11-07-2013, 01:07 AM
zachj265 zachj265 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Kansas City
Posts: 79
I will put my PB770 against any backpack blower on the market. It has been run over by a lawn mower and also a truck. $20 on parts and I fixed it. Used two seasons before I even tuned it up. It's the most reliable machine I own. Also the best money spent dollar for dollar.
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Old 11-07-2013, 11:41 AM
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Valk Valk is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Eastern KS
Posts: 2,718
How many years does one want to get out of a blower?
Is spending a couple hundred more bucks to save some time worth it?
- Depends on the individual and their desired expectations.
- Divide the extra cost by the answer to the first question...
Would one be more satisfied with a more powerful blower than a weaker one?
- Probably. But don't 'trust' me on this.
~ cut it high ~ let it fly ~
Some folks are so contrary that if they fell into a river,
they'd insist on floating upstream.
~ Josh Billings
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Old 11-11-2013, 03:49 PM
lelandgray80 lelandgray80 is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Tulsa, Ok
Posts: 2
After a lot of thinking, I went with a Stihl BR430. I got it out the door for $415 after tax. I used it for about 4 hours over the weekend, and it worked great. I had no complaints whatsoever. It was easy to start, easy to use, and had tons of power (compared to my old Echo handheld).

But, I stumbled across $100 (my parents gave it to me), and the dealer told me I could trade in for a different model within 7 days if I wanted.. so, I brought it back today and traded it in for a BR600 Magnum. I haven't used it yet, but if it's anything like the BR430 (just better!), I'm sure I'll be happy. All in all, I'm out $505 for the BR600 and it should last me for a loooooong time.
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Old 11-11-2013, 05:32 PM
ColliCut Land Mgmt ColliCut Land Mgmt is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: O'Fallon, MO
Posts: 139
Good choice. I picked up a BR600 Magnum a few weeks ago and just used it for the first time this weekend, on some heavy-duty leaf clean-up work. It was night and day difference from the handheld I was using before this. I'm super happy with the value so far. A couple things I noticed while breaking it in:

1) I've seen a lot of posts on here about the gas cap design. Mine is a simple screw-on type, like anything else. Did my dealer sell me an old model that's been sitting for a while, or is this a new design? I'm not sure...

2) It smokes during the first few hours of use. A lot. A whole lot. I'm not sure what my dealer had fueled it with, but after running it dry, then running a can of the pre-mix ethanol-free stuff through it until dry, then finally filling it with a 50:1 89-octane + Stihl Ultra oil mix, it is no longer smoking.

3) It doesn't always start on the first try, like I had expected it to after the way it's been talked about. It took several pulls, during several attempts throughout the day, to get it started. I'm thinking that may get better now that it's breaking in, though.

4) It'll move almost anything you point it at, so be careful, and use the throttle wisely; you can easily knock the petals off a nice flower (especially this time of year) if you get too close.
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