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  • Electric Chainsaw or Hedge Trimmer?
  • Premier Icon FunkyDunc
    Free Member

    Powertools!! As above really which would you recommend ? I've just got a new house which has a mixture of privet/evergreen hedges and trees etc. It's all over grown as it was an old couple who used to own the house.

    I think a chainsaw would be good initially for cutting right back, but I'm not sure if in the long term they would be as good as a hedge trimmer ie as quick and safe to use.

    What are your thoughts, has anyone used/got both?

    Ta

    Premier Icon boblo
    Free Member

    Errm, chainsaws for cutting wood, trimmer for foliage and twiggy branches <15mm.

    Depending what you've got to do, you might need both. If it's a big job, and you're buying for it, try and go for decent petrol. The work is much easier with decent kit.

    Watch the chainsaw, they can be lethal. Mind, a decent petrol hedge trimmer will happily cut your fingers off…

    Premier Icon TijuanaTaxi
    Free Member

    My house was also owned by an old dear and the garden was in an awful state
    Heavy duty hedge trimmer coped with most of the work along with some decent loppers and a tree saw

    Chainsaws are fine tools, but potentially a bit dangerous in the wrong hands (mine)

    If you go down the hedge trimmer route, make sure you get a protected plug thing just in case you inadvertently cut the lead

    Premier Icon RaveyDavey
    Free Member

    I'd either borrow a chain saw or even better a bloke with a chain saw because boblo is right, they take no prisoners. Failing that buy a decent size bow saw and have a workout.

    The only drawback with petrol trimmers is the maintenance. You need to keep on top of it or over the winter it will just stop working.

    Premier Icon spooky_b329
    Full Member

    If you've got any serious amount of chainsawing to do, I'd hire in an odd job man. Friend of ours got a couple of guys in to cut back some hedges and undergrowth, didn't finish the job as one of them ended up slicing his leg or something with the chainsaw. Rather them than you!

    Premier Icon Grimy
    Free Member

    FunkyDoc, I faced the same dilema with my girlfreinds garden. Bloody laylandii all the way round the house. Must have been over 200ft of the stuff and at least 15ft tall.

    I had a good set of hedge trimmeres which are fine for taking the sides back, but obviously no good for toping them. The Branches ranged from very thin to around 3 inches thick or more. I started out with a saw, but after a few days I was getting nowhere and my arms and shoulders were done. So I bought an electric chainsaw. Far better than the petrol one I had borrowed in the past, It felt much safer, easyer to use, lighter, didnt have to **** about with fuel etc, BUT it was usless on anything less than about 2" thick as the branches would just bounce off the chain. Chainsaws arnt much good on thin stuff that isnt held firmly in place.

    Leylandii typically being a cluster of thinner branches ment that the chainsaw just wasn't any good for trimming the tops down so I went back to the drawing board and picked up one of those Black and Decker Aligators. Its bloody fantastic! The jaws will grab a whole bunch of branches of any size together holding them firmly whislt the chain slices through with ease. Its far far safer than a chainsaw as the chains pretty much always gaurded by the jaws. Ive lent it a few mates in the past and they've all gone out and bought their own afterwards.

    If you live anywhere near manchester, or more specifically salford keys, there is a Black and Decker outlet shop in the Lowery center that are selling them for £35 with a two year warranty. Bargin!

    Premier Icon swamp_boy
    Full Member

    Sounds like its a case of an initial cutting back followed by regular trimming. A bow saw with a good blade will cut stuff up to 70 – 80mm like a razor with no real difficulty – much cheaper than a chainsaw which you might never use again after the first time. Put the money you save into a better hedge trimmer for the long term maintenance.

    Or get someone with a chainsaw to do the first bit. If they are a professional they will do it way quicker and safer than you could.

    Premier Icon Kuco
    Full Member

    Complete waste of time trying to cut privet or similar with a chainsaw. As mentioned above a decent hedge trimmer and something like a silky saw and decent pair of Secateurs/loppers.

    Premier Icon CaptainMainwaring
    Full Member

    Chainsaw and hedge trimmer are as different as drill and router. Chainsaw is only for cutting large solid branches/trees. Hedge trimmer is only for trimming foliage. Electric chainsaws are totally rubbish – better off buying a bowsaw. Electric hedge trimmers are better than petrol for normal domestic use. As others said, get a bloke in with a chainsaw to do any big stuff then get a trimmer to keep on top of it.

    Premier Icon mastiles_fanylion
    Free Member

    I would say a chainsaw and hedgetrimmers are tools for totally different jobs and it sounds to me like you need hedgetrimmers and a saw 🙂

    Premier Icon timber
    Full Member

    In the long run, a trimmer is of more use.
    Depending how much cutting back there is to be done, would either hire a chainsaw if you're happy with using one or get a silky pruning saw, absolutely effortless to use, same thing tree surgeons use for smaller branches up trees and that we use on a pole for high pruning.

    Premier Icon Jenga
    Free Member

    I have three chainsaws, and a hedge trimmer. All petrol. Wouldn't touch electric. Far too much messing around with the cable, which always gets tangled up. Don't believe all you hear about guys slicing their legs off with chainsaws, it simply doesn't happen. You let go of the thing as soon as it gets touching your leg, but in XXXXXX years of using one I've never heard of anyone losing digits to them. You'll have more trouble if you don't wear a helmet and eye protection.

    Different machines for doing completely different jobs. You might need both, but unless you intend to cut big stuff regularly a trimmer will be your best buy, but get a good one – they pay for themselves. Chainsaws are best hired for one off jobs, with or without a man on the end. Don't ask if you can borrow a chainsaw from anywhere other than a tool hire shop. I wouldn't lend mine to anyone, and wouldn't trust a machine that had been lent out "to a mate".

    Depends where you're based, I could be available!!!

    Premier Icon Grimy
    Free Member

    Depends just how much cutting back you need to do. Yea a nice silky saw and a pair of loppers is great for a couple of small trees, but it youve got a jungle to contend with, youll soon wish for something powered.

    Not quite this bad but look at the picture below, see how the center of a leylandii is just a mass of branches. Now imagine that all the way round your corner plot house, which is 30 fence panels long, something like 180 feet in total length and 15ft high. You can keep your silky saws and your shears, Ill stick to the aligator and ill be done far far quicker than you! lol. Obviously it depends what your perticular garden and circumstances are..

    Premier Icon ChatsworthMusters
    Free Member

    There's only one way to deal with those two trees. Chainsaw and a stump grinder.

    Premier Icon timber
    Full Member

    If it's leylandii we're talking about, I only need to trim leylandii once. About 1" off the floor, or 1' if digging out with a machine, for the leverage. For this, chainsaw is the preferred method.

    Premier Icon CaptainMainwaring
    Full Member

    You can't hire chainsaws. They are so potentially dangerous that the liability is just too high to justify it. Get a bloke in for a day – he will also have liability insurance in case the trees take down fences, lines etc.

    Jenga, you are obviously a professional and I agree for you only a petrol trimmer makes sense. For normal domestic use, electric is much cheaper and perfectly adequate.

    About 15 years ago a friend of ours had an accident with his chain saw and took 3 fingers off one hand and two off the other in one careless moment. He was a top dentist. Couldn't work any more, became an alcoholic, ended up getting divorced and is in therapy.

    I have a chainsaw but always respect the fact that they are very dangerous.

    Premier Icon Jenga
    Free Member

    Sorry Capn, but you can hire chainsaws. I know of two hire shops that will hire them out, and one is a national operation. You do get quite a lecture on their use beforehand. They are freely available to buy, even B&Q will sell you one, no questions asked. Mind you their saws are pretty ****(IMHO)!

    Premier Icon RaveyDavey
    Free Member

    I don't think you can hire a chainsaw unless you are a tradesman and then you have to take the safety box with the stormtrooper gear inside.

    Premier Icon timber
    Full Member

    With Jenga on the hire, know a big blue and yellow national hire firm hires out chainsaws

    back to the garden in question, one of dads friends was renovating a farmhouse and a neighbour in a barn conversion complained about the overgrown garden. Being a farmer, I thought he would knock a hole in the hedge and flail it, but no, the house was a shell anyway, so with a gallon of tractor juice, he set light to the garden, 1 hour later and the garden was an inch of dust

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