Turf Tech: New handheld equipment for 2009: blowers, vacs & saws

“Commercial power equipment is evolving – it looks great and will hold up longer as well,” says Mark Woodling, marketing communications manager for Tanaka. The look he is referring to can be seen in Tanaka’s new blower, the THB-260PF commercial grade hand-held blower. This is the first product to feature Hitachi’s “inspire” design, and follows Hitachi’s acquisition of Tanaka in May 2007. The design differs from other products in its honeycomb outer housing, which according to Woodling has inherent characteristics that make it stronger. Other features of the blower include a two-stroke engine, cruise control, soft rubber grip and vacuum capability with a shredder blade.

“Cutting edge innovation and true four-stroke technology” are what set Dolmar’s new blowers apart, according to Trey Brown, general manager for Dolmar Power Products. The two new backpack blowers, the PB-7600.4 and the PB-7601.4, have a four-stroke 75.6cc engine that offers a lot of power while remaining fuel efficient and maintaining clean exhaust – so it is better for the environment and aesthetically pleasing. Other features of the backpack blowers include a comfy frame that evenly distributes the weight of the machine, vibration-dampers, low operation sound and padded straps.

Little Wonder is releasing a new Optimax Blower with a 9-horsepower Subaru engine. Current models have Briggs Intek or Honda engines. “One of the most important factors in our decision to offer a Subaru engine model is the growing service and warranty network Subaru offers,” says Linda Beattie, commercial public relations/marketing and sales support for Schiller-Pfeiffer. Little Wonder dealers can send technicians for certification with Subaru, giving customers one place to go for shopping and service. The new blower also features a side discharge system that changes air direction without the use of tools and a split-opening deflector to provide equal lower and upper airflow in a wide band, preventing blowback.

Designed and developed with customer input, Shindaiwa’s new EB802 backpack blower features an ergonomic lightweight frame with comfortable shoulder harness system to reduce pressure points felt by operators. “The important selling feature of the EB802 is the comfortable, quick-adjust double padded harness and ergonomic frame,” says Jay Larsen, North American marketing manager for Shindaiwa. “It is truly a comfortable backpack blower to wear.” The blower has two models, the EB802 with standard hip throttle and an RT version with remote throttle. Other specifics of the blower include 79.2cc displacement, 4.3-horsepower engine and a new intake leaf guard designed to minimize the risk of overheating due to leaf blockage. The design includes downward sloping fins, which allow debris to fall when the throttle is off.

Efco is introducing two new chainsaws to its line, the MT7200 with a 5.4-horsepower engine and the MT8200 with a 6.0-horsepower engine. The 8200 will replace the 181 chainsaw Efco currently offers. The 7200 was added to the lineup to fill an engine gap between 65cc and 80cc. “We didn’t have a 70cc chainsaw and felt this size was needed by our professional users,” says Annie Faught, marketing manager for Emak USA. Features of the saws include new cylinder and piston assembly, isolated carburetor, digital coil with rpm limiter and an anti-vibration system. In addition, the saws have an “ice device” that allows them to be operated in colder temperatures (below 32 degrees Fahrenheit) by preventing ice from forming on the air filter.

Shredder vacuums
“Compared with previous models, the Stihl SH 86 C-E shredder vacuum offers several enhancements that can improve efficiency for landscape contractors,” says Adam Hanks, product manager, industrial products, for Stihl. One of those enhancements is a 20-percent reduction in fuel consumption. This drop helps landscapers by lowering operating costs as well as decreasing exhaust emissions. Other improvements to the new model include 39-percent more vacuum power than earlier models and an anti-vibration system that reduces user vibration by 80 percent. The shredder vac features 27.2cc displacement, Stihl’s Easy2Start system and weighs 12.3 pounds.

The Attachments Idea Book
Landscapers use a variety of attachments for doing everything from snow removal to jobsite cleanup, and regardless of how often they are used, every landscaper has a favorite attachment.
Attachments Idea Book Cover