Apart from the more usual nylon cutting line we also have the option to use strimmer blades to keep our lawn edges and the overgrown areas of the garden looking neat and tidy. Blades are available made from plastic as well as metal. Each one has been designed for one specific purpose in mind. The plastic version is used much the same as the domestic strimmer fitted with nylon line. Whereas the metal types are meant for tackling heavily overgrown areas of grass, nettles and brambles.
As you might imagine, it would need to be a more powerful type of strimmer to drive a metal blade and at a speed fast enough to cut through the type of growth mentioned above. That power could only be supplied by a petrol powered strimmer. These machines will work away for hours day after day no problem.
The plastic blades will work best when fitted to electric models both mains or battery. We will look at both these types of trimming blades below and the intended use they were designed for.
Using Plastic Blade Strimmers
A few manufacturers of garden strimmer’s have provided users an alternative to the nylon line we were more accustomed to using. These come in the form of blades which can be snapped into position quickly and easily. A lot of gardeners simply hated having to load the nylon line onto the strimmer head each time the line ran out.
You will need to choose blades that will be suitable for your particular machine as there are differences. Stihl replacement blades are very different from those used on Bosch trimmers. Even Bosch have different blades for their ART 23-18 LI grass strimmer’s from their ART26LI and ART26 Accutrim models. For an example take a look at the Art 23 versions here.
The ART 23-18 LI blades are a strengthened version which are meant to be more durable blades. They have a different attachment setting and are much thicker than the normal versions. Even so they will still wear quicker if the user instructions are not being followed.
Just as nylon line and the more common type of Bosch blades will wear away more rapidly if you stim up close against a brick wall, so too will the newer type. No plastic will stand a chance in this situation. Thing is, there is a wire guard on these trimmers which is meant to keep the tool away from hard surfaces such as rocks and walls. Apart from protecting the strimmer blades from wearing away it also protects young trees when trimming up close to them.
Plastic blades come in packs of anything from 5, 12, 20 and 24 depending on which trimmer you use.
Metal Blade Strimmer Use
Metal blades come in a variety of shapes. The most common are the 3 arm versions and the multi-teeth type which resemble a circular saw. See a popular example here which is the Silverline 675319 strimmer blade.
Blades are designed to do specific tasks. Unlike the nylon line you may be more familiar with using, these solid blades should never be used for the more normal grass trimming tasks. And certainly never used up against walls or trees.
Personally I prefer to use my heavy gauge nylon line on as many of these tough jobs as much as possible before moving up to the metal blades. Even then, this will be done in stages if I had some difficult cutting to do.
Firstly I would load up my 3 arm blade which will cut through tougher grass and lighter brush that the nylon line wouldn’t be able to tackle. That is, without continually breaking and getting caught up in long growth.
If the area being strimmed should become more difficult with the presence of heavy brush such as woody growth consisting of shrubs and young saplings then I would fit the saw toothed type blade. The sawing action will eat its way through this material providing of course the blade is sharp.
Selection of Strimmer Blades
Now that you have a good idea what blades to use in the various situations now is a good time to check out what’s available.
Probably when stimming down heavy growth you would be using a petrol strimmer. If so you should really consider buying yourself a harness which would help to save you back and shoulders while working.
I will add a post with some suggestion about harnesses at a later date. In the meantime visit this link for a selection of strimmer blades.
Filed under: Accessories