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Cutting grass/weeds next to fence?

16
Found 24th Jun 2013
Morning everyone.
I love having a nice neat garden but I absolutely hate gardening and am also admit to being a complete noob when it comes to garden tools and the like.
We have a very small garden which we currently just use a lawnmower on but are not able to do the edges next to the fences so the edges are looking rather overgrown now.
We did have a pair of garden shears but they were rubbish cheapy ones and it was too much like hard work to cut it all that way,
Especially as some of the edges have weeds so they are thicker to cut.
What I would like to ask is whether a grass trimmer would be suitable for this job? I have been looking at them but practically all of them have reviews about the lines breaking constantly which has put me off!
Didn't want to spend loads of money on an expensive one, was considering a 500w Tesco own brand one which has decent reviews for the price - or am I better off just investing in a decent garden shears?

Thanks in advance x

16 Comments

need one of these


http://images.toolstop.co.uk/product/790cd7572780150e344db02026027d71.jpg

I needed a new strimmer recently and looked at all the reviews too. None of them are brilliant so I opted for the Tesco 500w one on the basis that it has the best reviews and it has a bit more beef than the others in the same price range. On the whole,it's OK, i wouldn't want to change it. The edger is a bit flimsy so I take it off until I need to do vertical edges. If you're just doing up to fences you won't need it. It's a little heavy but not unduly so - i'm pretty small and can cope with it fine. Reviews didn't like the short power cord but it's not a problem for me as I have to use an extension for the mower anyway. The cord does disappear inside the spool occasionally and it's a bit fiddly but again not hugely so. I think there's a knack to doing the bump feed to keep the cord going and once you master that, you probably won't lose the line. I've read that putting a better quality line in will help too so when the existing line is used up, I intend trying that. It's definitely good value for money, even at the full price and I think it might still be on offer at the moment.

ETA - and safety glasses essential. The speed that stones/twigs get whipped up is scary!
Edited by: "ceres" 24th Jun 2013

yes u need a strimmer goes to the edge no problems

Who is voting down comments from people trying to be helpful? This place...

My advice? Do what I did (as I had the same niggling problem) and dig a shallow channel approx 12" wide and 6-8" deep alongside your fence/border. Remove the soil, buy some membrane (weed control fabric) and place in the bottom and up the sides of the channel. Then, fill the channel with pea shingle or 14mm shingle and kiss your problem goodbye. Keeps the grass edge nice and tight and you can spray (carefully!) weedkiller into the shingle channel if you get any little blighters popping up through it.

I dug the channel completely around my lawn and it looks quite decorative and very neat. As long as you keep the shingle flush with the top of the lawn, you can mow straight over the top and it won't do any damage. If you wanna be really clever, you could use coloured shingle or the more cost-effective bark chippings but - a warning - CATS LOVE BARK CHIPPNGS! I'm sure you know what I'm on about!

It also helps to keep moisture away from the fence as it drains through the membrane and away into the ground. It prevents it from seeping up through the wood/panels etc. so it's a win-win situation, really. By the way, you're absolutely right about the line constantly breaking. If you do get a strimmer, invest in some decent 'heavy duty' line for it. There's plenty available on E-bay at some good prices. Beware of the "Homebase/B&Q" style cord(s). I've never been particularly impressed by them - but that's just my opinion! Hehe.

Good luck with your garden - and whatever you do, enjoy it. Of course; if money's no object; you could always invest in artificial grass. No more cutting - forever. ;-)

Best regards, Phsy.

Good advice from Phsycronix, but if you don't want to do that, look for a strimmer which uses 'extra strong line' which is just pieces of cord which you replace, they last for ages and I think Bosch does them.

Original Poster

Thanks everyone, very helpful advice
I might go for the Tesco one then as some of the reviews mention about using thicker cord in it, also I can then use some Tesco vouchers to buy it if the exchange is still running.
I have never used a trimmer, does the cord get blunt or something or is it only if it breaks that's why you need to replace the cord?
Phsy, I was looking on Google images earlier today and was looking where people had just left the edges as soil, no grass and it does seen a good solution. Unfortunately, our garden is already tiny and can't really do shingle, etc, as our bubba has just turned 1 and is wanting to eat everything lol!

No, the cord just wears down from hitting things - grass, stones, earth etc. and bits get chopped off. It's just a thin plastic line. The way the Tesco one works is that on the underside, there's a spool under a cap with two separate lines that come out on opposite sides of the cap. When you're using the strimmer and the line is getting shorter, you feed out more by gently bumping the cap on the underside on the ground and it lets more line out automatically. There's a blade on the underside that cuts the line to the correct length if too much line is let out. It sounds complicated but it's not! I think a heavier line is a good idea too. I was having a look at them in B&Q a couple of weeks ago - thee have a huge selection.

the cords a line like a washing line as it spins and cuts its a matter of time before it will deteriorate and break. but its on a big spool on the bottom and u just pull it out for some more. a tip for u is before it breaks is to bump the head on the floor while its running it will the release some more and the excess will break off. just try to bump it before it breaks as once its broken u have to dissemble it to pull it through.
once i thought i be clever and put metal cable in it. it still broke just as fast.

Original Poster

kash2013

the cords a line like a washing line as it spins and cuts its a matter of … the cords a line like a washing line as it spins and cuts its a matter of time before it will deteriorate and break. but its on a big spool on the bottom and u just pull it out for some more. a tip for u is before it breaks is to bump the head on the floor while its running it will the release some more and the excess will break off. just try to bump it before it breaks as once its broken u have to dissemble it to pull it through. once i thought i be clever and put metal cable in it. it still broke just as fast.


Oh ok thanks - so it spins like a lawnmower cutting blade then?
Sounds a lot of hassle, we have had our mower for 9 years and never need to chane the blade.
The Tesco one above has two wires!

It depends what kind of lawnmower you're comparing it with. If your lanwmower has a metal blade, it's not the same. On the strimmer, there's a central hub with two lines at 180 degrees to each other. They spin round very fast in a horizontal plane and as they hit grass stems they whip them off. They wear down because they're thin and they hit stuff that's tougher than they are - sticks, stones, the ground, path edges etc. etc. There are two lines on the Tesco machine but they are on a single removeable spool.

Original Poster

ceres

It depends what kind of lawnmower you're comparing it with. If your … It depends what kind of lawnmower you're comparing it with. If your lanwmower has a metal blade, it's not the same. On the strimmer, there's a central hub with two lines at 180 degrees to each other. They spin round very fast in a horizontal plane and as they hit grass stems they whip them off. They wear down because they're thin and they hit stuff that's tougher than they are - sticks, stones, the ground, path edges etc. etc. There are two lines on the Tesco machine but they are on a single removeable spool.


Yeah I'm not surprised they break!
Our lawnmower thingy is just plastic, I'm surprised its lasted so long actually.
Now I know that it is a trimmer I need, I may as well try one and see how I get on

If you get the Tesco one, a small tip - when you take the cover off the spool underneath, do it slowly and carefully so that the spring inside doesn't boing it's way across the garden and get lost!

moob

Who is voting down comments from people trying to be helpful? This … Who is voting down comments from people trying to be helpful? This place...



I could have a pretty good stab at the names of the two or three that follow my posts around like a bad smell. But I won't because I'd probably get an infraction and they ain't worth it. The irony is lost on them that they whinge for England about people voting their deals cold. I've found the best way to deal with them is to put them on ignore then I don't have to read their inane witterings. Besides, up/down, hot cold - who actually cares? Needy people?

Original Poster

I have orderd the Tesco one as I have spare vouchers so did the exchange thing - only paid £2.50 out my own pocket and they are usually ok for returns if I don't get on well with it...

Thanks everyone, will update how I get on
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