Author Topic: Husqvarna Leaf Blower  (Read 11449 times)

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Offline Peter Parfitt

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Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« on: November 08, 2015, 04:11 AM »
Hi Everyone

I know this seems like a totally non woodworking topic but ....

I needed to get a leaf blower and did some internet research over a few evenings and came up with what appeared to be the best solution that I could afford. I was so impressed by the company that I dealt with over the web that I made a video which will give them a little surprise when they come into work on Monday morning. Here is the link:



All the other videos that I have seen about leaf blowers have been made with lovely crispy dry leaves. Mine were really wet as it had only just stopped raining so I hope this gives a more realistic impression of the subject.

I was reminded last night about the mess that I had created on somebody's lawn and driveway when I had been planing some doors to fit and thought that maybe this is not so far from woodworking after all. Besides, leaves come from trees !

Many thanks for watching.

Peter
« Last Edit: November 08, 2015, 04:13 AM by Peter Parfitt »

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Offline Kev

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2015, 05:00 AM »
I recently "cross-graded" from a very similar petrol blower to the 36V STIHL blower. Couldn't be happier.

I've kept my petrol unit as I can't bring myself to part with it for $50~100 as a second hand sale and I may still see value it for it's vac function in the future.

If you do on-site woodworking - the style of unit Peter reviews, with a vac feature, is a really good option IMO.


Offline Peter Parfitt

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2015, 05:11 AM »
Hi Kev

Yes, I quite like Stihl as a brand. My old chainsaw is a Stihl but it was ruined by the service guy who over tightened the chain tensioner/blade fix screw and stripped the thread. He did not own up to it and it was 4 months later (the new season) when I realised. I have not been back to him since.

I could not quite justify the extra £50 for the Stihl leaf blower as I don't expect to use this machine more than 20 hours a year.

Peter

Offline jmac80

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #3 on: November 08, 2015, 05:16 AM »
Another great video Peter.

I use the Stihl kombi: http://www.stihl.co.uk/STIHL-Products/KombiSystem-and-MultiSystem/KombiEngines/21199-1512/KM-130-R.aspx
with the leaf blower attachment: http://www.stihlusa.com/products/multi-task-tools/accessories/kombisystem-attachments/kmbg/

It's a total beast :)
i use it as part of my landscaping business, Get's used about 80 hours a year.

Cheers
James

Offline joiner1970

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #4 on: November 08, 2015, 05:44 AM »
The bag doesn't look too good , think it needs a redesign. I might be wrong but it seems to pinch right at the opening. Caused by the shoulder strap , maybe it could do with some sort of support tube to keep the mouth of the bag fully open ?.

Offline Holmz

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #5 on: November 08, 2015, 06:39 AM »
I have a still 86, and the bag seems to work.
I use it blowing smetimes, and in suction mode a lot.

Offline rizzoa13

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2015, 07:12 AM »
I just got a Redmax 8500 (there's an equivalent husqvarna 75cc 900 cfm blower) and it's outrageous. A troublesome neighborhood cat ran past and it almost lifted him off his feet. Didn't faze him and he was back in my woodpile looking for chipmunks the next day...

Offline Wuffles

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #7 on: November 08, 2015, 07:16 AM »
I just got a Redmax 8500 (there's an equivalent husqvarna 75cc 900 cfm blower) and it's outrageous. A troublesome neighborhood cat ran past and it almost lifted him off his feet. Didn't faze him and he was back in my woodpile looking for chipmunks the next day...

I use my Stihl to push my little girl on her rope swing, gather cider apples in the orchard and sometimes use it for its intended purpose on the patio and drive way.

Warning, the above contains lies.
Tool list updated to reflect knowledge :: hammer, screwdriver, one pozi bit, and another bigger hammer.

Offline JD2720

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #8 on: November 08, 2015, 08:26 AM »

After fighting all of the problems the new gas blends cause, I decided to go cordless for outdoor tools at the start of spring this year. I did a lot of research. I decided to go with the 58 volt Echo tools. I started out with a string trimmer & a blower. The trimmer runs longer on one battery charge  than my old Stihl gas trimmer would run on one tank of gas & cut just as well. The blower blows as well as my old Echo gas blower.  The trimmer came with a 4 ah battery, the blower came with a 2 ah battery. The batteries are interchangeable. 

I later decided I wanted to get a spare 4 ah battery & charger to keep in another location on the property.  After pricing the spare battery & charger, I found the cost to be 3/4 of the price of a complete tool set. I decided to get a Echo 58 volt chainsaw. I am also very impressed with it. It cuts just as well as my Stihl gas powered saw.

Next spring I will be adding a Echo 58 volt lawn mower to do trimming in areas I cannot get the tractor into.

Echo Cordless

Offline Sparktrician

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #9 on: November 08, 2015, 09:05 AM »
I've been using a Husqvarna backpack leaf blower for several years.  The one advantage I see of gas-powered blowers is that the blower speed is variable, unlike the electric ones I used to use that were on/off only.  Where that makes a difference is in wrangling the leaves into a pile on the pavement so the local folks can pick them up with the SCHLUUUURRRPP truck.  The electric blower would always over-blow the leaves, but the gas powered one can be throttled back to just move the leaves gently into the final pile.  Most of the time, it's running full tilt, though. 
- Willy -

  "Show us a man who never makes a mistake and we will show a man who never makes anything. 
  The capacity for occasional blundering is inseparable from the capacity to bring things to pass."

 - Herman Lincoln Wayland (1830-1898)

Offline Peter_C

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2015, 02:16 PM »
With a beautiful lawn like that I would just mow it to pick up the leaves, and empty the catch bag often. I have a Snapper lawn mower I found on the side of the road with a FREE sign on it that with a few minutes of tinkering runs great, and the blade got sharpened. The Snapper sucks everything right up and chops it into small pieces to take up very little space. 

Living in a forest a gas power leaf blower is the only way. I have a powerful Stihl backpack blower, which DOES get used for woodworking clean up, since I work in the front yard. The mass of wood dust gets thrown away, but the rest I just blow into the dirt.

Recently I picked up the small Makita 18v blower. It actually works awesome for its size. I wanted it for blowing off my tools and inflating my Zodiac to a mid pressure, faster. For a regular suburban home, the 36v blowers should be more than enough.

Husky's are nice and there is something to be said for a handheld leaf blower. Ironically opposite of Peter I have a Husky chainsaw. Nice real world demonstration  [smile]

Offline Peter Parfitt

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2015, 02:31 PM »
Hi Peter

I too have a Husqvarna chain saw.

We have had a fair bit of rain lately and I can't get my tractor on the grass and it is unlikely to get any better this side of spring. We are on clay and it can get quite soggy. But I agree that using a mower is a neat way to pick up leaves - set the cutter height fairly high and just hoover them up (maybe we Brits should say Dyson them up). The advantage is that they do get chopped a bit and can be easily transported and tipped onto the compost heap.

With the blower my leaves are destined to go directly under the hedge - not really into next door's garden (he is far too big and fit for me to risk that ! ).

Peter


Offline Wuffles

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2015, 02:58 PM »
Hi Peter

I too have a Husqvarna chain saw.

We have had a fair bit of rain lately and I can't get my tractor on the grass and it is unlikely to get any better this side of spring. We are on clay and it can get quite soggy. But I agree that using a mower is a neat way to pick up leaves - set the cutter height fairly high and just hoover them up (maybe we Brits should say Dyson them up). The advantage is that they do get chopped a bit and can be easily transported and tipped onto the compost heap.

With the blower my leaves are destined to go directly under the hedge - not really into next door's garden (he is far too big and fit for me to risk that ! ).

Peter

Veering OT a little, but I have a mulcher on my tractor. Leaves tend to vanish along with the grass (and apples) into nothingness. Not everyone's cup of tea though, some people just don't like them.
Tool list updated to reflect knowledge :: hammer, screwdriver, one pozi bit, and another bigger hammer.

Offline Peter_C

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #13 on: November 08, 2015, 03:31 PM »
Veering OT a little, but I have a mulcher on my tractor. Leaves tend to vanish along with the grass (and apples) into nothingness. Not everyone's cup of tea though, some people just don't like them.
Mulching is better for the lawn when mowing often.

We get too many leaves at times to mulch them. Plus the oak leaves have too much tannin in them and they kill the lawns. Well except I live in California and haven't watered my lawn in 5 years, so I cover it in the summer by blowing the leaves on it. Looks better than the brown dead grass. Then after a good rain I mow and remove the leaves.

I sold my tractor that I got for free, since it was always getting stuck, along with the high possibility of rolling in some places. Of course most of my yard is just dirt that grasses like to grow on. Not much grows under a thick forest canopy, and a string trimmer does a better job for fire prevention.

Offline Corwin

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #14 on: November 08, 2015, 06:57 PM »
I ended up getting the EGO 56V blower after getting their cordless lawn mower. Got the hedge trimmer too. These are simply the best yard tools I've owned.

Their mower is nothing short of fantastic. Same with the other tools, but the mower takes mowing to the next level. Once finished, you can tip it back and clean with a coupe of swipes with a wet oblong sponge. Then wheel off to the garage for storage, or lift into the back of your car to be on the go. No waiting for it to cool. No fire hazard. Not as much need for hearing protection either. This description doesn't do it justice whatsoever -- you have to see for yourself.

The blower and hedge trimmer are also wonderful tools. They do their job in style, they do it well, and the job is so much quicker not dealing with cords, or dealing with gas equipment and their issues. I cannot recommend this equipment enough.  [smile]

Offline otis04

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2015, 09:00 PM »
What is the run time on the mower?


Offline Corwin

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2015, 10:51 PM »
What is the run time on the mower?

http://egopowerplus.com.au/products/mower?gclid=CjwKEAiAgvyxBRDmuviAj67g-XQSJABTLMcHxiBUoJIgXGZHI7aV554X5musE4vTcWx2thDBirPWhxoCY8Lw_wcB

45 minutes on the 4.0Ah battery

And they say it takes 30 minutes to recharge -- well, 'they' probably started with a dead battery. I've never had the battery take that long.

It is very difficult to find fault with the mower. You may find it just a little long, as the very useful front handle does stick out a little and thus may not get as close in front as others. But, that's being very, very picky. The handle is a little long also, compared to other mowers I've owned. Similar issue with the deck being double walled -- it just keeps you another inch further from any obstacles along side. Yet, while it requires just a little more room in tight spaces, the lightness of the mower makes it so easy to handle. Without the weight and drag of a power feed, this mower is a breeze to operate. Even for an old disabled person like myself. I have one small area of grass that is very tight, and have found that I can turn the mower around (180) by standing alongside during the turn holding the handle both on the end (as normal) plus the other hand up further on the handle as I swing it around. Much, much easier to handle than a gas mower. Oops, I was trying to find fault...  [embarassed] 

Okay, then some may not like the cut quality at higher settings, but I'm not sure on that point. It seems to me that it does better on the #2 setting, which is fairly low, than even the next higher setting. The mower may not have as much vacuum effect to lift the grass blades up to be cut at the higher settings, but, I haven't had the best conditions to test this aspect this year due to our lack of rain until just recently.

As I mentioned earlier, cleanup is the coolest feature. And one that I don't see advertised. In all my years of owning a lawn mower, I hate to admit that this is the first mower that I have cleaned on a regular basis until it became a necessity. It is just too simple. And the whole job of mowing has become a lot quicker and easier for me.

My EGO blower and hedge trimmer are also of top quality and performance. I purchased those without the smaller battery, and just have the larger 4 Ah battery that came with the mower. Works great for me. And they all save a bunch of time in the process.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2015, 10:57 PM by Corwin »

Offline Kev

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #18 on: November 09, 2015, 12:14 AM »
While we're talking cordless mowers ...

Anyone tried the Kobalt 80V stuff ?

I like all my 36V Stihl gear - but I feel their mower offering is a bit underwhelming and that's the one item I haven't touched.


Offline sae

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #19 on: November 09, 2015, 12:40 AM »
@Kev  You guys have Kobalt in Aus?

The Kobalt 80v stuff is made by Greenworks, iirc. They're okay, homeowner grade stuff. The EGO stuff is built much sturdier, but pricier too.


Offline Kev

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #20 on: November 09, 2015, 12:46 AM »
@Kev  You guys have Kobalt in Aus?

The Kobalt 80v stuff is made by Greenworks, iirc. They're okay, homeowner grade stuff. The EGO stuff is built much sturdier, but pricier too.

@sae

Yep - they're down under.

The two are similarly priced here, but the Kobalt doesn't look particularly amazing from the little I've seen in pictures.


Offline cliffp

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2015, 03:35 AM »
Kev, did you know Stihl have brought out a new blower, the BGA100? Its slightly more powerful but can't directly take the plug in batteries. You either need a backpack battery or the AP300 with a battery holder/adapter cable to plug into the blower. I held off from buying the BGA85 because I already had the Viking mains powered blower/vac (now marketed under the Stihl brand) which I quite liked for sucking up leaves. In light of what Peter said about it being more expedient to blow into a pile and scoop up manually I may go for a more powerful (and cordless) blower after all. I have also noticed council workers dealing with leaves the way Peter recommends (lets face it, it isn't often Peter doesn't find the best way of doing things!).

I was also a bit tempted with the Stihl Br600 backpack petrol blower!
T15+3 set, CXS set, Centrotec set (2011), TS55REBQ, TS75EQ, 1400 rail, 1900 rail, 1400 LR32 rail, LR32 set, MFT/3, OF1400, OF1010, Guide rail adapter, edging plate, angle arm, chip catcher, small bore base, MFS400, MFS1000 profiles, RO90DX, RO150, ETS150/3, Domino DF500, Domino assortment systainer, CTL Midi, compact cleaning set, CMS GE, TS75 Module, OF Module, VL and VB extensions, LA Stopper, Sliding table, Carvex 420 Li 18 GG, core maker set, EHL65EQ, Syslite.

Offline Kev

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #22 on: November 09, 2015, 06:02 AM »
Kev, did you know Stihl have brought out a new blower, the BGA100? Its slightly more powerful but can't directly take the plug in batteries. You either need a backpack battery or the AP300 with a battery holder/adapter cable to plug into the blower. I held off from buying the BGA85 because I already had the Viking mains powered blower/vac (now marketed under the Stihl brand) which I quite liked for sucking up leaves. In light of what Peter said about it being more expedient to blow into a pile and scoop up manually I may go for a more powerful (and cordless) blower after all. I have also noticed council workers dealing with leaves the way Peter recommends (lets face it, it isn't often Peter doesn't find the best way of doing things!).

I was also a bit tempted with the Stihl Br600 backpack petrol blower!

@cliffp

I haven't found the 85 wanting as a blower .. I've still got the petrol one in the "B" shed, but haven't felt the need to drag it out.

Still seems to be very slow to get new stuff into Australia [sad]


Offline cliffp

  • Posts: 517
Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #23 on: November 20, 2015, 11:29 AM »
I bought the BGA100 and AP battery holder and cable. In case anyone in the UK is interested it was cheapest from mad4mowers - £255 inc vat and delivery (excellent customer service as well).

It is an amazing product! It is very light (2.5 Kgs), incredibly powerful and the variable speed trigger makes it easy to gather leaves into a neat pile for scooping up. The only negative is that it doesn't come with a shoulder strap so if you want to switch from blowing to scooping you have to either take the belt off or unplug the cable (it is very heavy duty so it requires a fair bit of effort and I wouldn't want to be wearing out the connections). I plan to buy a shoulder strap or improvise one.
T15+3 set, CXS set, Centrotec set (2011), TS55REBQ, TS75EQ, 1400 rail, 1900 rail, 1400 LR32 rail, LR32 set, MFT/3, OF1400, OF1010, Guide rail adapter, edging plate, angle arm, chip catcher, small bore base, MFS400, MFS1000 profiles, RO90DX, RO150, ETS150/3, Domino DF500, Domino assortment systainer, CTL Midi, compact cleaning set, CMS GE, TS75 Module, OF Module, VL and VB extensions, LA Stopper, Sliding table, Carvex 420 Li 18 GG, core maker set, EHL65EQ, Syslite.

Offline Tinker

  • Posts: 3782
Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #24 on: November 20, 2015, 02:25 PM »
Some suggestions for using small equipment  (hand blowers/small mowers/mulching blades):

1 you don't necessarily need to blow or vac all the leaves.  If you cross mow where leaves are less dense in quantity, you can make your leaves practically disappear. 
2 If you do mulch your leaves, let your grass grow a little higher than you normally mow.  The leaves will settle at whatever height you let your grass grow.  When ready to "mow" your leaves, they will suck up muck quicker and more efficient cleanup.
3 when blowing large areas with small blower capacity, start blowing the area closest to where you want your leaves to go.  get your pile started.  when that area is cleared and piled, move to the closest areas your did not boo and start blowing to the pile.  Then repeat a little further away ad repeat.  Your leaves will move much further and much faster and you will have more time to relax with a cold one.  I use this method with my large commercial sized equipment.
4 there are other neat little tricks that can make the job easy and quick.  Yesterday (actually day before yesterday.  we got rain yesterday and i spent the day playing with my wood working toys)  I was doing a large lawn working alone.  (I like that sized crew.  when i yell, nobody goes into a tizzy.  When my wife yells, the entire crew jumps)  Next door there was a crew of 3 moving leaves from a lawn about same size as mine.  They were already working when i started.  They were still working when i was all done and headed for home.   [big grin]
Tinker
Wayne H. Tinker

Offline cliffp

  • Posts: 517
Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #25 on: November 20, 2015, 06:55 PM »
Tinker, Thanks for the tips. I'll try them out next time I clear up the leaves!
T15+3 set, CXS set, Centrotec set (2011), TS55REBQ, TS75EQ, 1400 rail, 1900 rail, 1400 LR32 rail, LR32 set, MFT/3, OF1400, OF1010, Guide rail adapter, edging plate, angle arm, chip catcher, small bore base, MFS400, MFS1000 profiles, RO90DX, RO150, ETS150/3, Domino DF500, Domino assortment systainer, CTL Midi, compact cleaning set, CMS GE, TS75 Module, OF Module, VL and VB extensions, LA Stopper, Sliding table, Carvex 420 Li 18 GG, core maker set, EHL65EQ, Syslite.

Offline Kev

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Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #26 on: November 21, 2015, 12:25 AM »
My tip is to engage a dedicated "scooper" ;) [big grin]

Offline cliffp

  • Posts: 517
Re: Husqvarna Leaf Blower
« Reply #27 on: November 21, 2015, 07:47 AM »
Quote
My tip is to engage a dedicated "scooper" ;) [big grin]

Unfortunately my wife isn't interested in collecting leaves. She already does most of the gardening, particularly the tedious jobs like weeding which I claim I can't do because of my bad back :)

I bought something a bit like this for scooping leaves (I couldn't find a link for the actual product):

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Spear-Jackson-Plastic-Leaf-Grabber/dp/B005RYE6SQ/ref=pd_rhf_se_p_img_3?ie=UTF8&refRID=1JW6KJ8RZSNYB07M11Q1


I find it works really well.
T15+3 set, CXS set, Centrotec set (2011), TS55REBQ, TS75EQ, 1400 rail, 1900 rail, 1400 LR32 rail, LR32 set, MFT/3, OF1400, OF1010, Guide rail adapter, edging plate, angle arm, chip catcher, small bore base, MFS400, MFS1000 profiles, RO90DX, RO150, ETS150/3, Domino DF500, Domino assortment systainer, CTL Midi, compact cleaning set, CMS GE, TS75 Module, OF Module, VL and VB extensions, LA Stopper, Sliding table, Carvex 420 Li 18 GG, core maker set, EHL65EQ, Syslite.