I use a mulching mower - that's it for fertilizer. From April through June,
the lawn reaches 4-5" in height at LEAST once a week. Summer is obviously
different - sometimes no mowing at all. Come September, it's back to the
Spring ritual until late October.
<< Buying a house, putting up a fence shortly thereafter, >>
<< Time to buy a gas powered string trimmer. >>
And you will soon find out that the string trimmer will beat on the plastic or
wood fence posts to the point where they look really crummy. Of course, a chain
link will not suffer that much and may be best for pet confinement.
Some folks set their fence posts in top sloped concrete and avoid the trimming
IMO a string trimmer is an appliance from hell. My collection includes 2 cycle,
4 cycle, curved and straight shaft. All are too heavy, awkward, hard starting
(except the 4 cycle), hard to control with any precision, only fit for
desperation cases. YMMV.
string trimmers are GREAT!! BUT!!! follow ALL directions regarding the
proper mix, and particularly end of year prep so it doesnt rust in the
winter or get clogged with bad gas. if you take care of it it will start
first time, every time, for years to come. if you dont it will be dead in a
year or two. and dont 'tap' it on cement or while you got the thing reved
up. let it go back to idle, then gently tap it on the grass or some dirt.
also, keep an eye on the temp. check it every few minutes just by feeling
it with your hand, and if you notice a big heat increase, stop using it for
a while. they dont have the most efficient cooling system. ive seen them
last 10-15 years by professionals in the lawn business that know how to take
care of them.
so if you want my opinion, i suggest you get a lightweight 25 cc model (for
about 60-70 bucks) and take care of it.
ps, i know you promised them, but i dont think you have any legal obligation
to keep up their side of it.
Yeah...I know. But, both neighbors are in their 60s, and have gotten used to
being able to just mow up to my property line and blend with my lawn. Real
easy. I figure that if I'm going to throw a stick in the gears, I should
compensate somehow. I have this system: I show neighbors a bunch of love.
If, after receiving that love, their dogs crap on my property, I do this
Tony Soprano thing with the dogs. :-) Remember what happened to Richie
Aprile, a few hours before the butcher shop opened?
You may want to take a serious look at the Troy-bilt 31cc trimmer plus line.
MTD has acquired the rights from Ryobi and is building the same unit as far
as I can tell. They are marketing it under the Troy-bilt name. I used mine
for 10 years of hard duty and passed the engine and string trimmer on to my
son when I bought the new one this spring. I only upgraded because I wanted
a straight shaft and for it to be here instead of at my son's house when I
wanted to use it. I kept all the the attachments (cultivator and edger) and
they work just fine with the new unit. In 10 years of use I had the carb
rebuilt once (before I learned about ethanol and sta-bil) and replaced the
Others have mentioned hard starting problems. Avoid that by not buying
ethanol added gasoline, always using Sta-bil in the mix, running the unit
out of gas in the fall and starting with fresh gas in the spring.
Whether you want a straight shaft or the cheaper curved one only you can
decide. Play with the display models and see which puts less strain on your
back. I am short and the straight one works better for me and seems to edge
with less back strain.
Happy shopping. Enjoy your new home.
I have a rechargable string trimmer that I love. It runs for about 20-30
minutes per charge, and recharges in a couple of hours. Sure, it might take
an hour or more to trim your entire fence line, but the ease of use and
reliability of the battery powered job makes it a real time saver. Look at
it this way - Trim for 30 minutes, throw it on the charger, mow for a couple
of hours, trim for 30 more minutes, etc. Saves your back - it kills my back
to run a trimmer for a lengthy period, and a bunch of time and monkey motion
in buying pre-mix, mixing gas, refueling, cleaning up the fuel spil, fooling
with a trimmer that won't start, etc.
Bought a Ryobi some years back, and have regretted it more than once. We've
had more trouble with it than I think is reasonable, and it appears to be
designed so as to make repairs of all sorts as difficult as possible. Avoid,
My Ryobi had only one problem over the 5 years I have had. Ignition
module quit. I got one for 5.00 from local repair shop junk box.
Even today I used it. If I buy another one, I'd go for straight clutch
driven shaft one.
Just bought a Black & Decker battery powered. Two 18v batteries, charger,
lightweight, has plenty of oomph and don't have to bother with a gas engine.
All the engine powered ones were too heavy or clumsy to handle.
I bought a Shindaiwa years back when I lived in Louisiana. $250, which was
steep even then. A friend of mine explained it had all bearings, and would
last a lot longer if the proper gas mix was always used. I used it for a
few years, until the wife got the house and the gas trimmer. It worked
Now I have an old WeedWhacker I bought at a yard sale. It is thoroughly
used, but it still works. It has the electric line, and that is okay
because of the size of my present yard. Were I to be buying a gas trimmer
today, I would visit a repair shop and ask them which brand they suggest.
Other than that, get an electric weed whacker and pocket the difference.
Unless you want to buy a new one every year, buy an electric one.
Those 2 cycle gas ones last one year at most. After that, all you do
is pull the string for hours and hours. Its the same as chainsaws.
If they are 2 cycle engines, I wont own one. In the time it takes to
get those god damn things started, you may as well cut the weeds by
hand, or saw down the tree with a hand saw.
Electric ones always run, but be sure to get one with enough power. I
have burned up the motors on several cheap ones. There's just a puff
of smoke and they are toasted.
unfortunately this is a completely typical experience. because most people
cant be bothered to take the 5-10 minutes it takes at the end of the year to
prep it for storage as described in the manual. there is no inherent flaw
that prevents 2 cycle engines from running for many years. just do what the
manual says and change the plug every year or so.
if you dont have a manual, heres a good link i have bookmarked:
There's a lot to be said about the original quality of the unit as well.
I had a homelite, and it only lasted a few years, was always extremely hard
starting, even tho I did do the "end of year" maintenance.
Got sick of the damn thing (finally wrapped it around a tree) and bought
a Stihl FS85R: http://www.stihlusa.com/trimmers/FS85R.html
It starts first pull every time. And that _includes_ starting it first time in
the spring after leaving it in the garage over the winter with a full tank of gas.
Pricey - more than four times the cost of a homelite. But in our case, VERY
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
ya im certainly not suggesting there arent cheap and good
chansaws/trimmers/whatever, but the guy said 'a year at most'. even the
cheap stuff should last a typical home user longer than a year... but
unless its just ultra crap, if you arent getting a year out of it, you're
doing somethign wrong.
One year? Are you using it every day for making a living?
Take care of them. My El Cheapo Ryobi lasted 5 years and
still running fine. It start with 2 pulls. Same with my Chain saw,
(Stihl), mower(John Deere).
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