I am looking to buy a decent string trimmer for a small home. I want
something that won't keep breaking the string constantly. Please offer
any suggestions on good models as well as any advice you can share.
The string is going to break on all string trimmers, which is why
they come with a spool to hold extra string.
That said, obviously the heavier material holds up better, so don't
get one that uses .065 dia, go with something with .090 or .095.
I might add that brand is important. Getting a cheap one with a
curved shaft near the head is a very poor choice. You should also
not that the starter rope is in front (below) the engine. This
makes more difficult to replace or repair the starter mechanism,
something many homeowners won't or can't do themselves. So it means
taking it to a shop where you end up with a $30 or more bill for
labor, plus parts.
My recommendation is Echo (and no I don't sell them or any other
brand). You usually find them for around $200, which is double the
cost of a cheapy. But when you buy quality, it only hurts the one
time when you pay for it, but buy cheap and it hurts every time you
The engines on the cheapies have only one crankshaft bearing
(bushing actually) and the engines are rated at 150 to 200 hours.
An Echo has bearings on both ends of the crankshaft and are rated at
1000 hours. Not bad for twice as much.
Also, take a look at the starter rope. These frequently break.
Take a look at the cheapy and think about replacing the rope. Then
look at the Echo and see that you can do it in a few minutes with
only a screw driver.
Hope this helps.
I have a Homelite, from Home Depot. It's easy to maintain and I have no
complaints. I also agree with Bob about the String thickness. I purchased
.90 String when the original spool ran out, after a few weeks I misplaced it
so not knowing what size I needed, I got a spool of .80. Using the .80 I had
more breaks, constantly replacing the string time and time again. I probably
restrung it every other time I cut the grass. I eventually found the .90
and used that this spring, probable early April. I have yet to have to re
string the spool.. So Size does matter.
Your advice on string is good, but I assume from op that small home
might have small lot and cheap electrical unit would be adequate. I
have a Troy-bilt for bulk of lot but bought an el-cheapo Weed Eater
for front where wife likes these solar lanterns and Troy-bilt will
tear out of ground. My advice for small home is small, electric unit.
Thanks to everyone who commented.
I went to our local Home Depot and they carry a few Echo models.
They had a GT-200R, a SRM-210 and a SRM-230. The two SRM models seemed
rather heavy. I have alot of neck trouble, so I'm a little worried the
weight will aggravate it.
What is the advantages of the straight shaft models compared to the
GT-200R which had a curved shaft and seemed much smaller?
I also went to a smaller local store which repairs equipment as well
as selling new models. It looked like most of their models were by
Stihl. I was looking at the FS 45 C-E and FS 46 C-E models. The shop
was very busy at the time, so I couldn't get time to speak with a
salesperson. How does the Stihl and Echo models compare as far as
quality and reliability go? I like to support the smaller places that
provide repairs if things are fairly equal.
Thanks again for the help.
Stihl is excellent - perhaps a bit superior to Echo - based on
working on them. However, they are more expensive than Echo, and I
personally don't see they are worth the difference.
Curved shafs are much more difficult to maintain - I thought I
Also, from a use standpoint, most curved shafts don't have a clutch
so even when at idle speed, the trimmer head still turns. On a
Stihl or Echo, there is a clutch so when at idle speed, the trimmer
head does not turn.
I have a Stehil with a 2 string head that is automatic feed. You put 24
ft of stirng on it and it just keeps putting out string till empty. I
also have a small tiller head for it that works great. Been using it
for 12 years and I mean a lot and it still working great.
From Mel & Donnie in Bluebird Valley
Except for a few that use exclusive string methods, makes no sense. The
remainder all use the same string technology.
Homes seldom require trimming, yards may.
String breaks often on a trimmer because it hits a hard and/or sharp
surface. Has nothing to do with the size of the home. Not striking the
nylon cutting string against such a surface is most effective in using the
line to its useful lifetime. Many people develop a technique for minimizing
For a smallish place..................why not go electric ?
I have an inexpensive Brush Hog that is in it's fourth year of heavy use.
.065 string - never breaks because the motor isn't that aggressive.
Auto feed. No bumping.
Under fifty bucks.
Hard to beat that.
replace the string with a quality brandname string with sharp edges. Round
trim line will not cut grass as well, and may add to breakage. Just discard
the orig line, or keep till you run out. I just got a Homelite with .080",
and the line lasts a long time. I haven't got the head on it, and need to
visually see both lines are the same length. Miraculously this ain't a prob
yet. Nobody uses a curved shaft trimmer. My Homelite stalls after
running a while, gonna need to find out why. I let it sit five minutes
before puling on it, cause its a big pita to try to re-start immediately. ps
for a single yard, a cordless ain't a bad idea, the main mobility problem is
solved, and it is easier to carry than a gas. Even the lightest gas trimmer
(mine) is a pain in reality. If my trimmer maintains its attitude, its a
bummer I could do without - cordless. A mower you pull once. A gas trimmer
may be an extra $100 worth of aggravation. And to be honest it ain't a cute
as it could be. Check your options on where the trigger are. Mine's got
the throttle on my baby (RH) finger, and I'm right handed - what a dumb
idea - it affects the whole routine.
Bullshit. Says, who? I have a curved shaft trimmer. It starts right up, it
cuts everything I put it near. It works fine.
If it won't hot-start and it's new, take it back. If it's not new, and you
don't know how to correct it yourself, get it serviced.
Again, bullshit. How is dragging around a cord "easier"? It would depend
100% on the yard. If there's a lot of beds/trees/obstructions, then a gas
trimmer is the way to go. If it's a lot, empty save for the house, then an
electric would suffice. Mobility with an electric *is* the problem.
Mobility with a gas trimmer is the *advantage*. Get a cloo.
You should try curling some weights. New gas trimmers are balanced fairly
well, and their weight distributed evenly. If you can't handle it, pay the
Then, go drag a cord around. Might as well get an electric mower, while
you're at it.
If you don't take the time to maintain and learn about gas engines, you may
Who gives a fuck what the trimmer looks like, if it works?
Most right-handed people, that I know, prefer to have the controls at their
right hand. If the 'trigger' is awkward for you, then you either aren't
holding your right hand in the proper position, or you didn't check out the
trimmer to your satisfaction before you left the store.
Could you please put the advertisement behind the sig-delimiter, where it
I have one of those and I like it basically although it seams louder than a
2 cycle. I can do most weed trimming while the thing is running at idle.
But, it came with a most annoying fixed line head. I plan to drop that and
buy a spool type. Otherwise it's been fine.
I just purchase a string trimmer as a replacement to a Ryobi that had given
me about 10 years of service. The purchase decision was between the
Husqvarna 123L and the Echo SRM-210, both was around $200. The local store
had a no tax sale on the 123L which saved me $40 over the Echo, so it was a
no brainer. The thing I like about the 123L is that its so easy to restring
and doesn't require any tools - you're back in business within 2 minutes.
The bad thing about the 123L is the spool is small so doesn't hold a lot of
string. The spool has two compartments, one for each end of the strings so
it doesn't crossed and get tangled, most of the time anyway. Its almost
trouble free so far, two or three pulls to start, had to remove a spool
couple of times to untangle the string but a lot less frequent and less down
time than the old Ryobi.
I think the Echo would be just as good but it wasn't on sale.
While we are on the subject, which trimmer is best for grass cutting ? I
have large areas that are much too steep for a mower, and have to use a
weedeater. The string type trimmer that I use doesn't cut grass very
Aren't there some models that also allow plastic blades to be attached for
heavy brush and/or grass ??
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