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How do you trim

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by themow, Jul 10, 2008.

  1. themow

    themow LawnSite Member
    Posts: 41

    Do you walk backwards?
    Is the trimmer on your right or left side
    How do you hold it, ive seen some hold them upside down
    Is it a straight or curved shaft
    Which side of the house do you start on
    If you have any tips that make your trimming easier lets hear em..
  2. whoopassonthebluegrass

    whoopassonthebluegrass LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,214

    Motor on left, head on right. Walk forwards, with trimmer aside/behind my right side. Counter-clockwise around the yard. Use an Edge-It or no guard. Done it so long I could do it in my sleep... Just pay attention to what you're doing and hold those arms bent and steady. Don't grip the trimmer tightly - let it hang on your fingers - reduces scalping. I also loosen the trigger and twist it around the shaft so my wrist isn't cocked all goofy.

    Straight shaft.

    Good luck. Quality trimming is what separates the men from the boys.
  3. brianhanson37

    brianhanson37 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 53

    Curved shaft, motor on side, head on left. Counter clockwise as well.
  4. dura to the max

    dura to the max LawnSite Silver Member
    from georgia
    Posts: 2,246

    straight shaft, motor on right, head to left, walk back wards, and go clockwise for the most part. those that use it upside down are not trimming, they're edging. i always remove the guards from my trimmers, makes it a ton easier. and i try to trim around surfaces that must be blown off first (this goes for cutting too) so that if im on the mower finishing up, my guys can have it trimmed, edged, and blown if i take longer than them. i would not get a curved shaft if you plan on using it on a regular basis, not as much power, and is hard on the back.

    looking at the replies you can see various answers, it all comes down to what works best for you. my aint the best way in the book, but it gets what we need done. find what works best for you in your situation.
  5. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,920

    I use a straight-shaft trimmer both ways, right-hand, or left-hand. For trimming beds, along a boundary, building, etc., the engine is on my left, and I'm walking forward -- clockwise around a house.

    I am naturally right-handed, and use it right-handed (right hand on throttle, engine under right arm, left hand holding loop handle) for odd trimming. That includes places where the clippings can be directed toward an object or edge without consequences. In general, I always pull the clippings away from the edge, into the uncut turf. I work solo, and always trim before I mow so the clippings pass through the mower.

    I keep switching hands many, many times over the course of trimming one property. Even though I am naturally right-handed, and am more precise with the right hand, I learned long ago that I needed to teach myself left-handed trimming. Perhaps I feel more comfortable trimming left-handed and walking forward, than walking backwards trimming right handed.
  6. dago52

    dago52 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 249

    Great thread. I just upgraded my trimmer with an echo srm230. My last trimmer that I had for 7 years spun the oppisite direction. After 7 years trimming with it, I tend to get covered in grass clippings when I am done. Now I am trying to train myself to use the trimmer on my left side to help reduce the cliipings on my legs.
  7. 02DURAMAX

    02DURAMAX LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,804

    Straight Shaft...Engine to teh right and head to the left...and I go forward or backwards
  8. LALawnboy

    LALawnboy LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 457

    Give it some time, you'll be comfortable with it like it was nothing. I use straight shafts, right hand on trigger, cutting on right side of head. If you used to use a curved shaft, which spins clockwise, it takes some time getting used to going the other way with the straight shaft. I've also taught myself to hold the trimmer left handed as well because I've had some early signs of Carpel Tunnel. Just a few minutes of switching hands helps out my right wrist.

    For edging, I've gotten more comfortable walking forwards, holding the unit upside down, right hand on trigger, left hand holding either the handle or the shaft. I know a lot of guys walk backwards because of the spin of the head, and I used to as well, but now it just seems easier to walk forwards (going to my right) and then come back and trim along the house/fence/obstacle to my left.
  9. ALC-GregH

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

    I trim clockwise around the house, throttle right hand, handle in left. With the trimmer head spinning counter clockwise, it will cut/blow the clippings into the lawn and I'll hit it with the mower.

    Left side or right side, it doesn't matter what you do, your going to get grass on your legs regardless.
  10. grassleg

    grassleg LawnSite Member
    Posts: 32

    engine to the right, head to the left..always keeping the left side of the string against edgine, house..whatever 'item there is'

    facing house, start on right most edge following to house, around house, to the next edge, them double back and hit all the items

    edging first means blowing can be done immediately.
    i walk backwards if the edging and trimming are really out of shape..seems like a cleaner cut to me and throws all clippings out of the way to be mulched or blown into yard to be mulched

    there are subtle differences but usually trim as close to mower height as possible..

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