wood chipper input sought

leava(z7OK)May 10, 2011

jeff is going to get one,we have tons of small branches falling all year round and we want to mulch lots of areas ,not in the garden beds but fencelines, around shrubs,paths etc....

any good bad or ugly experiences with specific chippers?

thank you

leava

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owiebrain(5 MO)

I'm linking below to last year's thread on this subject. I've nothing new to add other than I sure wish we had a big, expensive, industrial one with a magic-fixit genie living inside to take care of all maintenance. :-D

Diane

Here is a link that might be useful: chipper/shredder thread

    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 11:52AM
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Krysstyllanthrox

We are borrowing one currently from a friend. I was very excited to use it and get mulch and get rid of the small brushy bits I've been cutting back.

Honestly, I'm not that impressed. The chipper we have borrowed (a 20 year old, self-propelled Troy Built) isn't so great for the little stuff. It handles the big stuff fine, no problems there. But the little stuff can get caught up in the feeder tube and we end up sticking our arms down there further than I'm comfortable with and/or having to set aside a "push stick" to help feed the brushy bits further into the chopping head.

Another friend was helping us use it and mentioned that his dad has a different make/model/brand that has an open area up top for the small brushy stuff and a feeder tube for the larger stuff. And that style seemed to work better for the brushy stuff.

My advice, figure out what you would chop more of and get a chipper than handles that very well.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 11:54AM
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slowpoke_gardener

Leava, I would suggest you get something a little heavier than you may think you need, get a name brand that you can get serviced and buy parts for. A lot of that depends on where you live.

There are only a few companies, and they make many, many different brands. Some shops wont work on certain brands, claiming they cant get parts ( which I think is a bunch of bull).

I bought a Southland wheeled line trimmer last year because it looked better made and had an overhead valve engine. It was made in China and I wound up giving it away before half of the warranty was gone because of the frustration of trying to get the thing serviced.

In short, look for a local dealer that you can trust and will service what he sells.

Larry

    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 12:15PM
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okiehobo(7a)

I've had different kinds of chippers and shredders over the years and the main thing I've noticed is, they are never' as good as the manufacturer says, if they say it will cut 3" limbs don't believe it, 2" is probably more accurate because the larger limbs will bog the engine down unless you have a large industrial engine.

Always get one bigger then you think you'll need, don't believe their hype, and on the ones I've used, if you put vines in it, they will just wrap them around the shaft unless you cut them short beforehand, and you will have to take it apart to remove them.

In my opinion, a lawnmower or the lawnmower type shredder will do a better job on leaves and small twigs and such, then the bigger ones.

Really this is one piece of machinry you don't want to cheap out on, but the good ones are expensive, so if you don't have a lot of chipping and shredding that you have to do it might not be worth it.
The cost makes them prohibitive for most people to just have sitting around the house.
James.

    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 1:00PM
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telow(7a)

I had an 8 horse Troy Bilt and here are my thoughts. I was never so glad to get rid of anything in my life. If you watch a video of someone using one, watch the limbs he's poking down the chute. They are straight as a dowel rod. It generally doesn't occur at the time you buy one that limbs don't always grow like that. The hooks and crooks of some limbs wont go down the chute unless you cut them out. long saplings can be seized by the machine and slap you into next Tuesday. And the noise........it's deafening. I traded my at Smith Lawn and Garden for an Echo tree saw. Best thing I ever did!

    Bookmark   May 10, 2011 at 11:34PM
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OklaMoni

Just be certain not to shred and re use branches that came down because of the twig girdler. You will help him multiply if you use them.

The edges of the branches/twigs will look real smooth.

Those branches need to go in the trash.

Moni

    Bookmark   May 12, 2011 at 8:28AM
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scottokla(7)

I have an old one I would sell really discounted if you are determined to get one. They work well with two chutes, but it is not for larger branches. Garden debris and small prunings are good.

I actually think the twig girdlers would be killed by chipping the twigs because they need a significant part of that twig for food. They are large. I could be wrong, though. They hatch sometime around now and eat on the twig through the summer until about Labor Day. I have some that I didn't destroy that I should study through the summer.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2011 at 10:03AM
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leava(z7OK)

thanx for all the input,sent it to jeff to read.we live right downtown right off the main business district with just two backyards to work with.i am happiest surrounded by trees and we are.our house looks like it is in a mini forest.so we get several pickup loads a year of dropped branches due to the type of tree and our lovely storms.we can't really have brushpiles right by the house as we also are on the edge of town and critters love our property.so we thought the chipper would be so ideal to make mulch.
maybe we should rent a powerful one 3 or 4 times a year and just go to it.........

    Bookmark   May 13, 2011 at 9:39AM
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Stephs-garden

We have a large heavy duty chipper and it will chop up to 3" but I tell you it will work you to death. The limbs have to be trimmed to push through and it's power will vibrate your arms and hands. I would highly reccomend renting one before you buy. We cut down 3 large trees and cut up the firewood and chipped what was left and probably did not have a pickup load of chips. Awful lot of work for that. Steph

    Bookmark   May 17, 2011 at 10:37PM
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