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Hand Held Equipment

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by BESSY12, Jan 12, 2012.

  1. BESSY12

    BESSY12 LawnSite Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 12

    I am currently looking to add to my business for the upcoming season. I am not looking for brand wars or stories of your favorite equipment. I am simply wanting some advice on what i should look for on a more generic scale.

    If I were to go out and buy a straight-shaft trimmer, I can easily spend anywhere from $200.00 to $400.00 give or take before taxes. I am mostly dealing with residential grass, but having some sites on or near rivers and creeks, I do have to deal with heavier brush and weeds. my question is this, If I am out to buy a new machine, do i just buy the reasonably priced trimmer that I can convert the head to a blade if necessary for an additional 40 or 50 bucks and 10 minutes of my time, or do I splurge on the split shaft and allow myself some variability for down the road.

    I guess what my real question is this, is a trimmer an investment enough that I should look further along the lines than just what i am doing now? or do I save the money on a simpler machine until I have the need for anything else?

    As I said, I am not looking for brand wars as I have already decided on a brand.

  2. MrOPEguy

    MrOPEguy LawnSite Member
    Posts: 32

    There are two ways to look at the split boom trimmer vs a dedicated tool. There are pros and cons to both. First, it doesn't make financial since to purchase a split boom if all you are wanting to do is switch from a nylon head to a metal blade. You will be adding over $100 to the start up cost and all you gain is 10 minutes of time every time you switch. Now if you are switching quite often time is money. On the other hand if you are looking to purchase multiple attachments you will save roughly a $100 for every attachment you add. You wont be buying a motor every time. These units are versatile and make changing tasks quick and easy. Now there are draw backs. If all you have is a split boom and you have a helper and one of you are using the tool the other person can't jump on another tool and stay productive. If the motor bugs out on you, you don't only loose one tool you loose them all. Anyone that has been in the industry long enough will tell you how important it is to have a back up tool. Unless you have another piece of equipment you will be setting yourself up for complete and utter failure if your one tool decides to go on vacation. I typically don't recommend split booms to landscapers unless you are running them in a fleet of several units. I do have guys that use them as their primary unit, but they have several of them. Other guys use them as back ups for a dedicated trimmer that gives them the versatility that comes along with them. Like I said before the dedicated tools give you the ability of one tool operating independently and simultaneously of the other units. The dedicated trimmer will also be lighter as well. What I am saying is to examine what your overall plan is with tool. If it is your primary tool for daily operations, I would recommend going with a dedicated trimmer. I really like the Stihl and Echo trimmers. Both are solid units and will give you the service you can count on. My two cents worth.

    Posts: 1,343

    Well said. MrOPEguy.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  4. lawnkingforever

    lawnkingforever LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,280

    Very good info and reply mropeguy.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. BESSY12

    BESSY12 LawnSite Member
    from Ontario
    Posts: 12

    Thank you mrOPEguy, I was curious as to see what the reply would be to this, I wasn't sure whether or not you would confirm my suspicion or not, and you did. I was planning on a regular trimmer for the most part and only really looked into split booms today when I was talking to the dealer over the phone. I had originally looked at Stihl machines but they are significantly more expensive than the Echos are, and the Echos have a 5 year warranty vs 2 years through Stihl.
  6. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Charlestown, RI
    Posts: 1,041

    Agreed. I bought a redmax for $249.00 and a couple of blades for $30.00 each.

    When you buy blades, make sure you get the right ones for the right job, there are blade for soft growth stuff, ones for heavy grass and ones for samplings.

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