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Cordless hedge cutter advice

Well, thought I'd never see the day when I would consider buying battery kit but serious back problems after 50 years of hard graft are forcing my hand.

Having looked at Ego, Ryobi, Stihl etc have come to the conclusion that once you put a decent battery on that say gives 2 hour run time the weight of the machine is equivalent or more than a petrol machine ? The only way to reduce weight, which is the only reason we are looking at battery, seems to be putting a 20 minute battery on which when most of our sites take 4-6 hours to cut is not going to be practical or financially viable or am I missing something? The absence of fumes, vibration and noise is not of interest

For a battery machine am looking at max of 4kg with battery , so any thoughts ? 

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  • Hi Peter personally I just use more of the lower capacity batteries to save weight. It takes only a few seconds to change over, less time than re-fueling a petrol machine. Which presumably needs re-filling more than once anyhow during a 4 to 6 hour stint. (Not had a petrol machine for so long I can't recall how often it needs doing). I managed to get a few Stihl AP100 batteries a while ago, brand new for £60 each but that was a one off deal. And I heard they are discontinued maybe. They are so light it feels like the battery pack casing is practically empty. I seem to change them over after about 40 minutes, but that might not be actual run time. The AP100 are not much use in any of the tools except the hedge trimmers due to their low capacity. But power output is identical in something like a HSA86. If looking at Ego bear in mind even the smallest battery pack is quite bulky. I didn't like their hedge trimmers as the work rate of the Stihls was noticeably faster. And they felt comparatively heavy or less balanced somehow. I have an old shoulder dislocation injury so the lighter the better, providing the power is decent

  • PRO

    My sthil hla65 weight its 4.58kg with ap200 battery 2.5hr trigger time. My favourite hedge cutter which i throw around like a toy. Have you thought about getting on of those elephant harness? Then you can carry on with the petrol. 

  • Hi Peter,
    Why wouldn’t you consider a back pack battery, 8 hrs charged-ok you gotta charge it at home at night but so what?Iv also suffered over the long term with back problems, and was more than a little worried . My local dealer gave me both Sthil and Pellenc to try out for a week. Took half a day to make up my mind… costly I know but so are physios and osteopaths….try them out, total game changer for me..

    Best of luck

    Paul

  • Makita DUH754SZ LXT-single-sided 30" model.Lovely machine,weight about 4 kg with 5/6ah 18v onboard.I would guesstimate this will do approx 50 mins of sweeping conifer trimming with a 6ah battery.If like me you have a few batteries/charger anyway,its a no-brainer I would say.

  • PRO

    Makita DUH 601z - 18v - nice and light. 5ah batteries last a good hour or so. Will cut through some thick stuff, just over 20mm. Buy a few batteries and a double charger. Back pack means sweaty back and and annoying cable

     Just take a few batteries and swap them over. We use Aspen fuel in our petrol stuff which at £20 put the price of batteries in perspective. Plustno air/fuel filters to clean, no mixing fuel, no noise, no pollutants etc etc When you have the batteries you can get the DUX60 with various attachments

    The only thing that does not offer reasonable time of performance are the battery powered blowers which are out of power after 15mins but they are ok on very small domestic jobs.

    • Thanks , have narrowed it down to Makita DUN 461 W.

      But it weighs less than half with battery than the premium brands and wonder if this is because of build quality? Chinese made. There are several negative reviews on the multi angle head locking pin failing regularly, one user on his fourth within 12 months seems serious design flaw along with the blade quality being poor becoming blunt with rolled cutting edges after a few uses.

      Bearing in mind we are working on sites with only one cut per year specified and are cutting lime, hazel, beech, laurel and holly and can be taking off well over 12 inches of growth up to 20 mm in diameter wonder if it is going to be up to it? If we were doing 2 cuts yr on domestics cutting wispy growth of privet etc would not be so hesitant.

      The elephant harness, backpack or waist mounted battery ootions are not practical for our working conditions.

      • PRO

        Not sure about that model bet I have the 2x18v DUX 60 power unit and use it all the time with no issues for hedge cutting, edging, strimming, and will chompse its way through 20mm.

        The DUH 601z only issue Ive had with that is the lower bearing wore destroyed itself after about 2 years but it was easily replaced at minimal cost.

        We use all Makita battery tools (drills, impacts, saws, grinders etc), and chose them for the long standing proven battery and motor technology (i.e. Stihl etc are all late to the game which may or may not have given them an advantage but I dont see it) 

        Makita now do the 40v stuff and in the long run we may upgrade but the 18v power does the job so why incur the expense. 2 x 18v kit is same power as the so called 40v is really 36v as I understand it.

        The quality is there for me, some makes in certain tools can be better but overall it is more than good enough especially if you do not want to run more than one battery platform.

  • PRO

    Hi Peter.

    I switched to battery hedge trimmers 2 years ago. I bit the bullet and went for the Stihl Backpack AR3000 and the padded harness. Expensive admittedly but I can work all day and the stress on the arms back etc is considerably less in my experience. I use the HSA94T and HLA135 as my two trimmers. The AR300 easliy lasts the day and most weeks i only recharge it once. At 55 I'm hoping that my switch to battery allows me to continue for a few more years yet. 

    Stuart 

    • Stuart, you have got a few more years in you ! I'm 66, they say hard work never killed anyone but it has injured many!

  • Buy one of these, Had mine over ten years. It will change your life. It gives you a weightless hedge cutter.

    henchman_harness_002.jpg

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