Lightweight, powerful, long battery life
This trimmer is lightweight for this over 50 woman and it has two lines of trimming power that really take care of the weeds. The battery lasts a long time but I have two batteries since I also use it for my Stihl lawnmower. It was difficult to get the battery released but since I pulled out the prongs at the back a little and used vaseline on the sides it has been much easier. I also had difficulty refilling the spool with trimmer line but now I clean out the spool and make sure that I insert the twine until it is engaged in the spool. This is much better than dragging a heavy cord around my yard or carrying a heavy gas powered trimmer.
How to do complicated when you can do simple
How to do complicated when you can do simple... The system for putting cutting line is RIDICULOUSLY STUPID AND COMPLICATED! GOOD LUCK! I am a landscape pro of 20 plus years and have never seen such a complicated spooling system to replace the cutting line. I PROMISE YOU WILL WANT TO RIP YOUR HAIR OUT!
Waste of money. Stihl offer poor customer service
Five weeks old, Used it twice to have a piece of long grass get caught between the motor and spool head. Ruined motor. Stihl refusing to fix under warranty or refund money. Will cost more than buying a new one to fix. Don't wate your time with stihl, Will have to take the to small claims (vcat) to get my money back.
My best ever investment.
I thought this would solve my problem of finding petrol whipper snipper too difficult to start and the price seemed reasonable. However I soon found that I had to pay nearly as much for the battery and quite a bit for the battery charger. Quite a large outlay in total. But it didn’t take me long to discover it was well worth the investment. I’ve had it 2 years now and it easily cuts any grass or weeds. The lithium-ion battery (I bought the more expensive one) lasts for about 35 minutes of hard work, and takes only 10 minutes to recharge! During first year of use it lasted 45 minutes. Since I have used it for pretty rough work, I have replaced the line head once, but other than that and cleaning, no maintenance is required. I bought the powerful blower that uses the same battery. Highly recommended for elderly folk who want to remain independant or for anyone who doesn’t care for the noise and smell of small petrol engines.
Cuts even heavy duty weeds but not designed for little old ladies with small hands! I find the battery next to impossible to get out at times and the head I can't get off without using multigrips and sheer grit and determination. It also doesn't come with a strap but fortunately my son improvised one for me. Update 5/11/17 I have overcome the battery problem by pulling the spring things at the back of the battery compartment further out. I also put some vaseline on the rails to help it come out more easily. Happy now.
In a league of its own
I have a 1000sqm block and it's all Kikuyu grass with very thick and broad roots / runners. I listen to the neighbours budget petrol trimmers cough and splutter but not the FSA65.
The Brushless motor and 36V AP180 Lithium Battery are a very powerful combination and it has no troubles getting through the grass on my property. Battery life is around 35 to 40mins on thick kikuyu grass but on lawns like buffalo it would probably run for around an hour as it won't have to work as hard.
The tried and true bump feed works like a dream and the unit is very easy to re-spool with a line capacity of 2.5metres each side.
I do all the trimming around the yard / trees and also use the FSA 65 to do the edging around the boundaries and the drive way.. The Handle is adjustable so it can be tailored to suit the users preferences
The Unit is lightweight even with an AP180 battery on board and is ergonomically sound as well.
The unit is easy to maintain as the brushless motor is sealed and looks after itself. Just a quick wipe down after use and it's all good to go for the next time.
After more than 75 hours use mine runs as good as it did when I bought it. In that time I have had to re-spool the line around five times which is pretty good. Although if you work along fences and concrete paths expect to use more line.
Overall for the average yard the lack of noise, fumes, or having to deal with the maintenance rituals of fuel trimmers make this a worthwhile purchase. For larger properties or for professionals it's probably a little short on runtime using an AP180 battery - but with the AP300 battery you should get at least an hour under most conditions.
For the contractors they could invest in the AP900 and get around five hours worth of silent trimming pleasure.
Highly recommended for any 1000sqm block or smaller.
Expensive but good
Lovely silent trimmer with heaps of power and very good battery life. I chose the smaller and cheaper AP-115 battery which has 50% charge left after I'm done trimming the back and front yards of our townhouse. I don't see myself going back to the stinky noisy petrol trimmers ever.
I live on a small acreage and use it to cut back the small patches of weeds that pop up around the place, stick it in ATV in morning and can knock them back during the day. Quick and easy and no herbicides. It's just works, and is not too loud. It holds it's charge well over 6 months in the winter.
Pick of the bunch in Stihls 36v range.
I pinched a nerve in my elbow trying to pull start a petrol trimmer, temporarily paralysing part of my hand. I need my hands for work, this would not do. I never wanted to pull start a tool again. So I coughed up the hefty price tag for the mower and an FSA 85 line trimmer.
When I first picked it up in the store, I worried I'd done my dough. Both the trimmer and the mower are so light they feel like toys. Any concerns were quickly dispelled when I put it to work. the FSA 85 is light and powerful. Variable speed control is nice and occasionally useful but mostly I just pull the trigger to the stop and go.
I rarely use a full charge of an AP180 battery.
I did once. If I remember rightly, I was dropping some 2ft tall grass and some weeds. Got through about 300m2 in around 20min.
The bump feed head supplied with this trimmer is excellent. No need to disassemble to wind on new cord. Just line up the triangles and push the cord in and wind it into the head with the bump stop. Great stuff. http://www.stihl.com.au/p/media/download/au-en/AUTOCUT_5-2_101000.pdf
I use only 2mm Sthil SuperCore line. A little more expensive but lasts very well.
The tree guard is useful, but has removed my excuse for ring barking the wife's roses. :)
The convenience of never needing to get a jerry can of fuel and stinking up the car should not be underestimated.
If you have used a old corded electric trimmer with a brushed motor, been disappointed with the performance and sworn off electric, think again. This is an excellent tool, equal to all but the biggest petrol brush cutters.
18 months on, I'm still impressed
If you are considering an FSA 85, Buy one, you won't be disappointed.
Stihl FSA85 Line trimmer
Cordless convenience. As powerful as a petrol trimmer. The turbo charger recharges in around 20 minutes. Usual 'bump and feed' line delivery system is easy to use, and uses any two millimeter line. Chews through heavy grass and weeds. My lawn is less than 200 square meters, but has plenty of edges. Battery still has plenty of charge to run the blower after use.
High quality, well balanced, shares battery with 36volt family of products.
Expensive, but high quality. May be too heavy for some users.
This thing is powerful
I had this a for couple of weeks now and I'm still I impressed. It is the larger FSA85 model. You can't really test these are the dealer so you take their word which I always take with a grain of salt. Anyway I'm glad I grabbed this because honestly it is very good - excluding the high initial price. Other than the obvious convenience differences - when using it and you're bogging down, this thing keeps pushing through. On a normal petrol unit, when the going gets tough they normal bog down. The cordless unit just keeps going it is hard to stall. I also have a Stihl FS45 and the cordless unit seems to be more powerful - notably when you are getting it to some tougher stuff. I really only use the tool as an edger around my front and back grassed area so for where you would use a small petrol model you can use this with confidence. It is perfect for this as well as the other conveniences. If is use this for about 20 minutes I only use around half the battery. The cost to charge a battery from dead flat is around 5 cents - yep it is cheap to run too. A two stroke petrol model is over 10 times that - easily.
This is my third variety of Stihl cordless tool. The others being a blower and the small chainsaw. I also bought the larger 160w/Hr battery and the simple charger. Charge time is around 3 hours when totally flat. The trimmer is the most impressive tool of the three.
The obvious convenience. Excellent power. Pretty quiet compared to a petrol model. Bump feed head works well.
High initial cost.
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