Hedge clipper sharpening

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Roger, Dec 20, 2004.

  1. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,940

    I have an Stihl HS-80 hedge clipper, 24" double sided bar. I don't use it very much through the season (maybe 25 service hours per season), but always sharpen it during the Winter.

    How do you sharpen your hedge clippers?

    I take the bar off from the transmission and completely disassemble it. In this way, I have the bars with the teeth free and can mount them in a vice. I use a hand file to sharpen the edges, reassemble the bar, then remount to the transmission. While I have it apart, I clean out the transmission and replenish with fresh grease.

    Is there a better way? I've learned the bolts that hold the bar together (the one penetrating the multi-part bar) tend to loosen if they have been taken off/put back on a time or two. The nuts have serrated surfaces to keep them tight. They cannot be too tightly torqued because the double reciprocating blades are too tight. If they move at all, they will run too hot when put into service. When taken off and retightened, apparently the serrations wear off slightly, enough to make them likely to come loose.

    Anybody have similar experiences?
  2. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    For all the trouble it usually doesn't cost much to take them in for sharpening. If you only have one trimmer though that may not be possible. We had 3 so it wasn't a problem. Just had one in the shop most of the time for on ething or another which saved our butt when equipment got stolen. We still had something to work with in a reasonable amount of time. Also used to take the chains in from the saws and put on the extra chains we had while those were in the shop as well. We had a dremel like tool but never had much time for stuff like that.
  3. DennisF

    DennisF LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 1,381

    I have the same HS-80 hedge trimmer. Your method for sharpening is the same as I use and it works very well. A good Mill File and a little time is all that is needed to keep them sharp.

    As for the bolts...they do come loose on occasion and you have to check them periodically. Over time, vibration can cause them to loosen a little. I use a small dab of red Locktite on the threads and that helps. You could order new nuts and bolts for the blades each time time you take them apart, but I don't think it's necessary. Don't over-tighten them or the blades will heat up and warp. Hope this helps.
  4. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,570

    we do it the same way.
    when we are cutting pampas (next month) we have to sharpen daily.
    we just run it enough to get the blades apart and hit them with a file then run it a little to get the other side apart and do the same.

    you can do it with a dremel and a gringing wheel if you're in a big hurry, but you'll probably want to restraighten the blade with a file later.
  5. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 566

    Yard pro, are u saying u Dont take it apart then? Except periodically to balance?

    Also, dont tell anyone, but I use a chainsaw to cut large Pampas down to the ground.
  6. YardPro

    YardPro LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,570

    chainsaw EEEE GATS MAN
    try a hedge trimmer. we only see first year guys using chain saw's. Cutting pampas is a good way to ruin a good chainsaw.
    a hedge trimmer is about 10 times faster, and will not clog, etc. we can cut a few hundred a day if we are not hualing them far. (most of our commercial sites provide a 40 yard construction dumpster on site for the debris.

    we cut about 3000 per year and we have several sets of blades for our hedge trimmers. Never heard of balancing a hedge trimmer blade before???

    after lunch he touch up the blades in the field. we only use the dremel/grinder if we get slack and go through all our pre shaprened blades.
    and we do take it apart at the end of each day and put on a fresh set.
  7. specialtylc

    specialtylc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,656

    I dont disassemble the bars anymore. I use a 3 inch cutoff wheel on air powered die grinder to sharpen the blades. I just slide the blades alittle ahead of each other and I can do one side of each tooth on either side of the bar. Then slide the bar back the other direction and do the opposite teeth. I can sharpen a double sided 30 inch bar in about 20 minutes.
  8. Green Care

    Green Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 530

    Same here I use a 4" grinder I don't take them apart I put it in a vise and go to work .
  9. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,361

    What brand of hedge trimmers do you use? And ....you can cut the wet dead stuff with these trimmers? Huskavara(sp?) chain saws cuts them nicely but I worry about safety.

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