Help selecting new trimmer

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by trumpetporvida, Apr 14, 2010.

  1. trumpetporvida

    trumpetporvida LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    Ive been looking at Kawasaki's lineup and have been impressed. I like the power and weight, but I'm not sure about the reliability. I have used echos in the past and been reasonably happy with them. If I do go with the Kawasaki it will be either the KTF27A or the KBL27B. I like that the KBL27B can use attachments. Are they universal? Will a echo attachment go on a Kawasaki trimmer?

    What are your thoughts? I know Kawasaki had some problems when they first hit the scene, are they better now? The echo I was looking at for an alternative would be the SRM-230 or 260.
     
  2. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 7,053

    I have the Echo PAS-265. Seems to work great. Can't speak for Kawi as I've never owned one.
    Without literally trying them, I'm not sure if the pole is the same diameter and that the holes will line up for the lock pin to work.
     
  3. GlynnC

    GlynnC LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 780

    I have both the Echo SRM 230 and Kawasaki KGT27A (the best but no longer available). After I finish my income tax (let's see--today is April 14), I'll go out and compare the shafts on both units. I'm fairly sure they are the same, but will let you know more later today.
     
  4. trumpetporvida

    trumpetporvida LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    How does the kawasaki durability and reliability stack up. I know they claim commercial quality, but having never used one or known anyone who has, I have no way to know.
     
  5. GlynnC

    GlynnC LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 780

    As posted several other times on this forum, I'm a part time commercial mower, part time repair guy. I maintain handhelds/backpacks for several commercial guys in this area--one of them uses Kawasaki KGT27A's--has several of them. He sends out two crews (4 guys each), 5 days a week--almost year round. Most of the time, 2 guys on each crew run trimmers all day long. I'm on my 4th year with this guy and his trimmers weren't new then. He has several thousand hours on some of his units. I've replaced clutches, internal drive shafts, cleaned exhaust ports many times, and replaced one outer shaft after it was run over by a mower. Have not been into a single carb., and have not turned a single one into a "parts" trimmer. He's tough on his equip--buys whatever oil happens to be available, and runs 87 octane, ethanol blend gasoline. Most of them will start on the 1st or 2nd pull every time.

    I have been so impressed with the KGT27A, that I bought one of the last remaining new ones--at least in this area for my own trimmer. Ask him the other day what he was buying next--KGT27B. Because of EPA, they are not the easy starter that the A's were, but he's sold on Kawasaki trimmers. He use to run Redmax--loved them, bought newer models, didn't like them, took them back to dealer and started with the Kaw.

    Hope this answers your question.
     
  6. genesis215

    genesis215 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 795

    I have a KGT27A, and it has fantastic power, lots of low-end torque, and is super light weight. The throttle control is unbelievable, you can go from idle to full throttle, and everything in between in micro adjustments. The only trimmer I've liked better was the Stihl 4-MIX, but they are a lot heavier. I'd say the Kawasaki is a great buy.

    Whatever you do, don't buy the KBL27B or KGT27B. They have warmup problems due to being 1st Gen Kawasaki Air/Fuel technology engines. Also, it will not fit attachments from an Echo due to the splined shaft end.

    The KTF27A has different muffler and carb, and doesn't require so much warmup. Go with it. It also has the square end driveshaft just like the Echo, so it should fit the Echo attachments. Not completely sure, but it should.
     
  7. trumpetporvida

    trumpetporvida LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

  8. genesis215

    genesis215 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 795

    When you click on the "order" button it says that it has been replaced by the KGT27B, so it is the bad one, and is a misprint. J-Thomas does have the KTF27A, which is a good one. The new for 2010 KGT27C is also a good model, that has the problems of the KGT27B fixed.
     
  9. trumpetporvida

    trumpetporvida LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    Does it matter that the KTF27A has a diaphragm carb and the KGT27C has a rotary valve (KGT27B says it has one too)?

    I am leaning more towards the KGT27C since it has a hollow steel shaft and is attachment capable and the KTF27A uses a wire and says it does not take attachments.
     
  10. GlynnC

    GlynnC LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 780

    Okay, I measured the outside shaft of my Echo SRM 230--exactly 1 inch. My Kaw KGT27A is 15/16 inches. Based on this, I would say the Echo attachments will not work on the Kawasaki. You would obviously also have to worry about solid shaft vs flex shaft.
     

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