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Edger-cate Me! Explain Edgers to a Noob

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  • Edger-cate Me! Explain Edgers to a Noob

    As you may know, I'm a beginner in the lawn care business. The only experience I have with edgers is the one time I used one of those old, manual, "thought I would die" stick edgers, and the "twist 'n turn" type electric/cordless string trimmers that convert to an "edger". I've used one of those on my own property for many years, as I had no need for anything "more".

    Now I need the proper equipment to use on other people's property and I know essentially NOTHING about gas edgers, so I could really use your help.

    • I don't know if there are different "types" of edgers for different tasks, or if they all do the same thing.

    • Are they only used along sidewalks and driveways, or do you use them for cutting fresh edges along flowerbeds too?

    • Straight shaft? Curved shaft?

    • Engine power - is it a huge concern?





    I do have a Stihl FS90 straight shaft trimmer that accepts gearbox accessories.
    The edger attachment is $180. That's a LOT of money for a small chunk of metal, but it's half to a third of the cost of some of the dedicated edgers I've seen, so I'm going to have to wait to learn a bit more before I decide whether I get that attachment or just buy an edger.



    Any info you care to share will be helpful!
    Thanks in advance!

  • #2
    I run all redmax stick edges. I do not use those split shaft combo units those are fine if it is just u but if u are running multiple crews get a dedicated unit

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    • #3
      It's just me. No crew.

      I'm like the Lone Ranger - without Tonto even.





      Also, price is going to be a factor. I'm coming off a "no income" winter with no money to waste. There are probably other items I should purchase that would make me more money (like a pole/extension hedge trimmer), but I'm guessing I'll need at least a "basic" edger.

      I'm working with a push mower, so keep that in mind. This isn't a large operation that services huge homes - I don't even know how much I'll need an edger at this point.
      Last edited by Hedgemaster; 03-07-2011, 10:23 PM.

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      • #4
        Anyone?????

        Comment


        • #5
          A few years ago I bought one of those 3hp units from H*** D****. It was about $225ish. It's worked well, but showing signs of age now. I, too, am now a solo act. Used to have a Little Wonder double belt unit (about $450 years ago) it was like the Cadillac of edgers. Nice, precise edges. If you can find a decent used one, I would grab it. Don't know your operation vehicle, but if I was working with a push mower (like I did 31 yrs ago), I would have one of those hitch platforms on the back of my car or truck so I could easily load & unload my mower & edger.

          If you go with the changeable edger, you will waste time at every job changing between the powerheads. What a Pain!

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          • #6
            Edging.

            I am a one man band myself. I have one of those 3 hp edgers. It is a push behind. I use it at the start of the season to make the first edge cuts. Other then that it's overkill the stick edgers work great for week to week. After the first cut of the season I have a Echo 225vp I think is the model. It has interchangable heads. I LOVE it. It works great in one neighborhood I have 6 lawns I do on one street. I do all the edging. Switch the head do all the waching. Switch the head and do the hedges (normally bi weekly) then. I use the mower with a bagger. Do all the front lawn. The bagger sucks up the hedge clippings and left overs from the edging/waching and the dirt I use the blower for. Go to the next house and do the same process. I use a 52 in Sentar Sport. for the fronts. When thats done I grab my 36 in Sentar Sport with my back pack blower and do all the back yards. Then blow everything down. It saves me a lot of time not running back and forth for tools and I have 3 tools in one. I normally bang out the 6 houses in an hour that way sometimes more if its hot and I get lazy. I include edging in my fee because it takes like 3 min to edge all the sidewalks after the first one of the season. Do you guys charge seperate for it?
            Liberty Landscaping LLC
            www.libertylndscpng.com
            Woodbridge, NJ

            Comment


            • #7
              I run all redmax stick edges. I do not use those split shaft combo units those are fine if it is just u but if u are running multiple crews get a dedicated unit
              Not that it matters but they arent split shaft. They are gear box attachments witch of coarse go on the gear box not in the middle of the shaft where its weaker.

              Hedgemaster I think it really come down to how often you are going to use it. I don't know how time involved switching the gear box attachments are but it must be more than just plug and play like the split shaft kinds are(I have same model as you). If you are doing once a month or more I think the time savings alone would pay for the dedicated unit.

              Our situation is a little different: We don't do much of it out here so when the time comes I would like to get another FS 90 and buy the edger, hedge trimmer and weed eater heads that way I have a back up and only use the head needed for the current use for it.
              Colton
              Mountain View Greenskeeper proudly offering yard care in the East Valley of Arizona.

              Comment


              • #8
                Awww... maaaaannn... nobody wants to answer any of my questions?

                Are you guys really going to make me resort to going to Home Depot to get "answers"?

                Comment


                • #9
                  I run all redmax stick edges. I do not use those split shaft combo units those are fine if it is just u but if u are running multiple crews get a dedicated unit
                  Same here. I have two of them. To bad thing is the blades do not last long at all!

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                  • #10
                    For the initial cut in the spring I use a McLean walk behind edger, from Ace hardware. After that, I use a ECHO stick edger to maintain the edge the rest of the season.
                    http://www.lunchesruslawncare.com

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      As you may know, I'm a beginner in the lawn care business. The only experience I have with edgers is the one time I used one of those old, manual, "thought I would die" stick edgers, and the "twist 'n turn" type electric/cordless string trimmers that convert to an "edger". I've used one of those on my own property for many years, as I had no need for anything "more".

                      Now I need the proper equipment to use on other people's property and I know essentially NOTHING about gas edgers, so I could really use your help.

                      • I don't know if there are different "types" of edgers for different tasks, or if they all do the same thing.

                      • Are they only used along sidewalks and driveways, or do you use them for cutting fresh edges along flowerbeds too?

                      • Straight shaft? Curved shaft?

                      • Engine power - is it a huge concern?





                      I do have a Stihl FS90 straight shaft trimmer that accepts gearbox accessories.
                      The edger attachment is $180. That's a LOT of money for a small chunk of metal, but it's half to a third of the cost of some of the dedicated edgers I've seen, so I'm going to have to wait to learn a bit more before I decide whether I get that attachment or just buy an edger.



                      Any info you care to share will be helpful!
                      Thanks in advance!
                      For flower beds, we use a spade shovel to make the edge, dig down about 3-4 inches and flip it up.

                      Most edgers are curved shaft? Not to sure, but ours has a slight curve to it.

                      If you get the attachment for the unit you already have, I am guessing the power is more than adequate to do edging with. The more power the better. But stick edgers are not made to do initial cuts, very hard on the blade.
                      http://www.lunchesruslawncare.com

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        For the initial cut in the spring I use a McLean walk behind edger, from Ace hardware. After that, I use a ECHO stick edger to maintain the edge the rest of the season.
                        Never thought about that. Maybe I would use less blades with a walk behind to start up my spring yards.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Never used an actual edger! Seems like a waste of money to me. I don't know about your area, but around here most people edge with the trimmer. It can take a while the first time if the lawn was never edged, but after that you can fly. Learn to edge with the trimmer and I think it will save you time after the first mowing. As far as straight vs. curve, I would always buy straight if it were an option.

                          BTW, I have used a shovel in extreme cases to get the edge when an account is new, really does not seem like much more work or time since if it’s that bad I need to scoop up the dirt anyway.

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                          • #14
                            I'm having a hard enough time using my trimmer as a trimmer, let alone use it as an edger. One little movement the wrong way and it's butcher city.
                            (If you recall, I'm used to using a cordless trimmer)

                            I did use my Stihl to do edging once along a sidewalk at a customer's home last fall. It was bad - the grass was overgrown onto the sidewalk by several inches. It seemed to eat up a heck of a lot of line doing it that way and the results were not that great - just "better than it was".



                            Also, I know that you can use a shovel to edge beds - I did that last year too. About 200 feet of it. That took a while.
                            That's why I asked if "edgers" were also used for beds. I always assumed they were only used for along concrete edges - I dunno... that's why I'm asking.

                            I see that there are "wheeled" edgers as well as the "trimmer" type. (I assume that's what a "stick edger" is?)
                            I don't know what the purpose of the wheeled one is.

                            As I said in the OP, I've never needed an edger on my own property, so I don't know anything about them.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              As far as using a string trimmer it is hard until you get used to it. Also its seems most accounts I have that had a previous gardener that used just a line trimmer the line of the grass or where they edged with the line seems to cause an erosion effect along the edge line and it takes a while for that to grow back

                              In my personal opinion I think a blade is cleaner especially if its the first time to be edged after you establish the line to me it looks more clean and consistent with a blade than with a line. I have used a blade edger to create a line along a flower bed however it is a little tough because there is no guide line like a cement curb or bender board but it can be done. I live in California and everyone here has side walks so we edge allot.

                              I have a Echo pas 225 combie unit that I bought about a year ago it comes with the line trimmer and the edger attachment for about $400. You can also get other attachment for it. After about a year it is getting a little flimsy where you hook them together there is a little play more so in the edger attachment the little nut doesn't really tighten up the shaft that much and it puts a lot of pressure on the little pin so it sort of makes the hole the pin goes into a little bigger than it should be. If this is all you use keep in mind that that is a lot of use on a single unit if you have a good number of accounts have a back up trimmer

                              The walk behind edgers are good for straight lines and I would think be better on your back over a long distance the county uses them around the sidewalks at the parks in town.

                              If you are on a short budget go with the two in one I would say if you can afford it go with the stihl combi deal at least where it connects you have to bolt it together no pins and a wing nut that don't really tighten. The Echo is a little less expensive and still a good unit but when you transport it I would say always break it down and you will save that hole where the pin goes in allot of unwanted stress.

                              Hope this helps answer you questions
                              Mac. Leonard's lawn Maint.

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