Really very good!
I don't often write reviews, but can't help myself with this one... We live on a large acreage and our Ryobi 2 Stroke MultiTool has finally given up. We also had a TroyBilt machine, but the trimming head caused us problems, and finding spare parts for it in Aus is difficult. We have been wanting a Bicycle handled, heavy duty machine for a while, as our others were tiring to use given the amount of time we spend on them.
I went to Stihl to get a commercial grade petrol replacement but was enticed by their electric range. I was allowed to Demo an FSA 130 for the day, and it performed very well! I particularly liked that the battery hung on your belt, and not your back! It was lighter, quieter and vibrates much less than our Petrol machines.
But that thing is very pricey - almost twice the price of this product. So we decided to give this a go, and have been very happy. Just as powerful as the Stihl. The battery attaches to the back of the machine, rather than in a case on your belt like the Stihl. There are pros and cons to this. Pro: No need for a special holster and cable (that Stihl sell for $200 for that part alone). Also, no risk of tangling up in that cable. Cons: You have to carry the weight of the battery through your shoulders. The machine feels well balanced, despite that, though.
In both cases, the trimmer head is designed to minimize long grass wrapping around the shaft between the head and the rod.
It is so much quieter, that we now allow ourselves to use it early in the morning, when the sun is still low, and the heat is low, and so far no complaints from the neighbours.
My wife has taken to using it too, and loves it.
I was concerned that the battery wouldn't last long, but the 5.0 Ah battery lasts about 40 minutes at full tilt, and then I'm ready for a break! The battery is supposed to charge in 30 minutes, but I find it does it quicker than that. Or else I am so busy doing other things, that the time just flies by. In any case, I never feel as if I am waiting for it to charge.
It comes with a brush cutting blade as well as a trimmer head. The trimmer head is rather easy to fill and use. Seems robust. The manual says that the brushcutter blade can handle saplings 2cm in diameter.... and I can attest to that... I wasn't careful and - zip! - one of our ornamentals was gone... Lesson learned!
It is easy enough to change from trimmer head to brush cutting blade, though perhaps not as easy as the Stihl (it was suggested you didn't even need a spanner for the Stihl).
The battery charger is sophisticated, including its own fan to keep the battery cool while charging.
By the way, it comes with a 5 year warranty on the machine, and a 3 year warranty on the battery.
It's telling that this machine never gets put away - it pretty much lives on the veranda, because it is no hassle to just pick up to do a little spot trimming, anytime. To me, that speaks volumes.
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