* Prices may differ from that shown
I bought this Black & Decker strimmer as it was a mid range, mid price product. I dont tend to buy the most expensive products (you tend to pay for the name) nor the cheapest products (poor quality and cheap parts). I have always found Black & Decker very reasonably priced for a pretty good product. I fear with Black & Decker prodcts today though they are not what they used to be and corners are being cut.
This strimmer is pretty bog standard in that it just strims. The length is good for tall people at just over 1m long, you don't have to wreck your back using it.
I bought this from Homebase for less than £50 a few years ago in the sale. I thought this was a great price and it still does the job now. It comes with a 1 year warranty which I have never used.
Using this product is easy. Plug it in, attach to the safety switch on the top of the machine, hold in the handle and go.
You can use specialist wire either from Black and Decker or Flymo for strimming but the cheaper stuff from Wilko is perfectly fine - Im not sure, however, if this would make your warranty invalid so do check.
Some bad points of this product are the cheapness of the plastic - Black and Decker products used to be quite sturdy, this seems flimsy for the job it is suppose to do. I suspect it wont last more than around 5-7 years. The wire is also short for our garden, 6m. I always have to use the extension cable.
Overall a reasonable product.
I bought this Black and Decker Trimmer firstly because of it's affordable price, but secondly because it's manufactured by Black and Decker with whom I have many other products with that I cannot fault.
The trimmer itself is surprisingly lightweight and designed so it can be fit into all nooks and crannies if you have a small garden or no where to put it once you've used it.
The 350 watts is powerful enough for a trimmer of this size. I find it is ok for cutting the hard to reach places, but I wouldn't use it as a sole method of cutting grass. The 6 metre cable is just about right for small to medium sized gardens. I wouldn't recommend this trimmer to those that have large gardens because I don't think it would work as well. It's a trimmer for those that have small postage stamp gardens.
Downsides is that it is not very sturdy and feels like cheap plastic. When in use it sometimes feels like it's going to break in two which isn't a good thing, then again I can be quite heavy handed when it comes to gardening. I have to say there are better trimmers out there, but for the price you can't really go wrong.
I bought my Black & Decker Reflex Trim n Edge about two years ago and so far it has been a real asset to my gardening tools.
It will cost you anything from £49.00 from a garden store and from opnline at around £39 or less depending on where you buy it from, but buying online may be cheaper but you will have to pay for delivery.
It is a light weight garden tool that can easily be stored in a garden shed, I have mine hanging up in the shed on a hook in the wall where I can put it when I have finished with it, so that it doesn't get left outside.
I have actually left it outside and it rained but the strimmer still worked as well as it did before I left it outside, but I wouldn't recommend this and keep it in my shed.
The handle is easy to grip and the control is attached to the handle you just grab the handle that sticks out for your left hand and grip the handle with the starter in the other hand, press the leaver there and off you go. You get a good length of wire with it for it to reach down a small garden. As it is an electrical trimmer.
It is a noisy tool so don't expect to be using this early in the morning as the neighbours will complain.
I usually like to strim the garden in the evening when the sun has gone down and the grass is dry.
The wire at the bottom spins round fast to cut the grass and it will cut long grass if you have let it grow to much without mowing.
This is great for getting right up to the edges and borders of the garden beds and end of the lawns as it will get into the places where the grass stops and the garden beds begin, giving you a lovely finish to a mowed lawn, as you can go round the edges and strim and trim to get it looking good.
You can buy the plastic wire that goes round the bottom of the trimmer in most gardening centres, it is easy to replace by screwing the middle of the spinner at the bottom of the trimmer off and wrapping the plastic cutting wire round it, but you have to unplug it before you can replace this or it can be dangerous.
It has a guard at the front of the part that spins to protect you if you hit a stone, or go too near the soil edges with the trimmer.
Do be careful with this as it is not for children's use and must not be left around after use.
If your looking for a good finish to the lawn then this is a good option.
When having a garden I find that it can always do with a good trim now and again. Sometimes using a Lawn Mower gets rid of the majority however it won't get rid of the little edges which are the hardest things to remove. I needed to make sure that I purchased one which was accurate and didn't leave any unwanted grass.
This specific model was £59.99 but you can get ones which are cheaper and more expensive depending on what your specific needs are. I think for the price of this one I don't really think you need any other one because this does do everything which is needed.
Description and Feel
When looking at the trimmer you will see that the handle you use is very stylish looking and is also very comfortable on your hands when you are using it. You can tell that this trimmer is pretty powerful because you really feel it in the palms of your hand when you switch it on to use. It isn't a big ugly thing so it could definatley fit in a garden shed to store and then just bring it out when you want to use it.
The trimmer does a good job in doing everything that you would need it to do. It won't get rid of absoloutly everything you need it to do but it will get rid of the majority only leaving little strands in places which don't make a big deal. I think it is very good and when you use it you can hear it cutting away at the grass. It is also not difficult to move either and is pretty light so anyone could use this.
If you have a garden which you often maintain I would recommend one of these trimmers because they really do make the gardening a whole lot easier. You can go over the garden with the Lawn Mower but then this trimmer can finish off the little bits which have been left by it on the edges.
Our Black and Decker Trim and Edge Reflex Trimmer or Strimmer as we called it, had been going strong for more summers than I care or dare to remember until recently. It proved time and time again that it could hack its way through most plant life and still come back for more.
Sadly its now gone to strimmer heaven, but it did a reasonably good job for many years and was easily worth what we spent to purchase it. I think that at the time of purchase we must have paid around £19.99 to £24.99, but its been so long since we bought it that I cannot recall the precise figure.
The trimmer came boxed in a long and sturdy cardboard box that bore the Black and Decker logo. We bought it in Homebase as we had seen a number of lawn care items on display and thought that this little strimmer suited our needs.
The strimmer was easy to unpack and was set up ready to go, except for the plastic protector half moon shell, which needed attaching. Once that was done all we had to do was read the instruction manual, attach the power cable and plug it in.
The Black and Decker Strimmer was something we used a lot when we first had it. We found it very handy for hacking back the long unkempt grass of our new garden, which in the end did have to be re turfed. In the meantime we managed to get the levels of weeds and couch grass down to acceptable heights, so that the nice turf man could come and dig it all up and lay a smart new lawn.
The strimmer was powerful enough to cope with strong and sturdy weeds and longer grass, but was sometimes a pain to use. The line feed on the spool of strimmer wire often jammed and meant we had to manually lift it. This meant that often, too much strimmer wire was released and then the route of the wire became twisted up and needed de tangling, which was very annoying.
Another part of the strimmer we had some issues with was the plastic cover plate, which was meant to shield you and your legs from harm or fly back from cuttings. Very often this really only provided the minimum of protection when using the strimmer on longer vegetation.
The feeling you get when a long piece of plant material you have cut back whips your legs can be rather painful, so I would always advice you wear long and thick trousers when strimming with this item. I would never want to use any strimmer if not wearing suitable clothing, as bits of plant material can fly up at you, at some very odd angles at times when you least expect it.
The cable that came with our strimmer, is something that is long enough to cope with a small family sized garden. Anything larger than that will need a longer cable. As with any such item, its wise to use an RCD protected electrical point, when using this and always, always, keep an eye on where you are in relation to the live power cable. Its better to be safe than sorry.
As I recall the cutting width of the strimmer was around 25cm. This was more then adequate for our needs. The strimmer could be used for general hacking off of plant life as well as edging the lawn. This function did prove useful once our nice new lawn had settled in, as it was edged with a nice array of pavers, so once trimmed with the strimmer the edged looked neat and tidy.
Down points for this item were that plant material could and did fly up at you when you least expected it, which could cause harm. The protective fan shaped piece sometimes worked loose as it was only attached by one simple screw.
This meant that on occasion if came off when the strimmer was in use and this could have been very dangerous. Although we often checked and tightened the screw to avoid this, eventually the fitting piece snapped off and made the strimmer virtually unusable without its protective cover.
The wire spool which fed the strimmer line or wire, often jammed and needed releasing, sometimes releasing much more wire than was needed, which resulted in a twisted line feed and too much wire being fed down to the cutting point.
This would then mean that the wire would be too wide at the bottom of the strimmer and would catch on the cover plate, being roughly hacked off within a short time and then sending the wire spinning off towards your legs. This could be a real danger if you hadn't had chance to move away and as such is a flaw in the strimmer design.
After all a cutting wire that is moving at high speed, can fly up from any angle when you least suspect it, once it has been almost instantly cut free from the main line.
Having listed a few of the benefits and pitfalls that we encountered with this model of strimmer, I feel that in terms of a rating a 3 star rate would be fair. The strimmer does strim well and did last for some time. However the protective cover was never very well attached and needed regular re fixing till it snapped off.
The line feed from the wire spool, was a nightmare to re thread if the wire became misplaced and you could spend ages on trying to get it to feed through to the bottom cutting area of the strimmer. This was even worse when having to replace the line feed spool with a fresh one once the cutting wire had run out.
Summer is finally here and I can finally start to work in the back garden again.
Don't misunderstand me, I'm not a landscaper, but I do like keeping the grass under control, trimming the sides, just basically giving the garden a hair cut...well I cant cut my hair anymore can I.
My black and Decker reflex trim and edge has lasted me for absolutely years and she isn't showing any signs of going out anytime soon (fingers crossed).
The lawn mower is the main equipment that cuts down those over grown grass hairs and weeds that start to also come through, but it can only do so much. Then here it comes, the saver of the garden, the one that ads that finishing touch, that perfect trim that turns mess to masterpiece.
If you let your hair get long it looks fine, the next time you go in and let then shave your hair and not do the sides it doesn't look so good now does it, but when you clean it up with the trimmers that's the finishing touch.
It's the same with your garden.
Shopping at Homebase was completely baffling, trying to pick out the perfect trimmer (aka Weed Whacker) was so daunting because there was so many to choose from, why does there have to be so much choice.
When I searched on Google for a good trimmer and one that is reliable I saw a lot of people rating the Black and Decker very highly and decided to go with that brand, and have not looked back since.
The Black and Decker trimmer is a forest green with a soft grip handle giving both your hands good placement on this trimmer, to have complete control over its movement providing a useful and handy "line feed system reflex plus" for when that cutting line gets too short it extends it back out to it's programmed specifications providing you with a thick strong line, the power is a whopping 350W (when you pull the trigger to start the motor you feel a slight vibrations in your hands from the power that it generates), the amount of line you get supplied within the box is 2 x 6 meters, so when you work out exactly how to use your trimmer and just get comfortable with it and how best to trim your garden, the amount of line that is provided lasts a long while. And the last and final thing is you are provided with a integral edging guide that is attached at the base of the trimmer by the cutting line.
While using this I would say this best cuts the edge of the grass and the weeds really well, but for the thicker stuff I would say to use your shears or something of that kind just because even though the trimmer can handle the thicker stuff you may find you are going through the cutting line like money at a casino.
This gets the main job done using the guide as you twist and turn it to get that perfect cut. With there being two firm handles to hold on too there really is no reason for it to slip or turn without your knowing, moving the trimmer around your garden has never been more simpler.
You can get this Black And Decker Reflex Trim n Edge GI540GGB for around £80 but it always depends on where you shop from, I did get this a little while back so it could be cheaper anyway.
I don't think I would go anywhere else for a trimmer, Black and Decker have impressed me, when I eventually have to replace this one I will be reaching for the new and improved Black and Decker Trimmer, but at the minute my one is like Hercules....no not a demi-god but it's not far off.
As any regular readers who have been kind enough to read some of my recent review will know that I am in the midst of many household chores at the moment, both inside the house and around the garden.
As with the winter months heading our way I have been more busier in the garden than normal, adding those final touches to the freshly nurtured lawn, one of those things being the 'strimming' of the lawn edges and the rough patches which my lawn mower struggles with.
So, with the mower failing to handle certain parts of the garden, and the chainsaw being a little over the top for the job needed, it was time to pull out the 'trimmer', or I as I call it, the 'strimmer' out of the shed.
This particular strimmer has been in my possession for a while now and, although it did have one annoying fault to start with, it has been of good service throughout our time together.
* 700 watts
* 330 mm cutting width.
* 'Reflex plus' line feeding system.
* Middle mounted motor for better balance.
* Soft grip handle
* Edging function
* 10400rpm cutting speed
* Telescopic shaft
* 1.65 line diameter
* 3.2kg in weight
** IN CONCLUSION...
When I first bought this it was a little infuriating, no, I tell a lie, it was as annoying as an itch on your back that you just can't reach. The reason for the utter annoyance was that the cutting line seemed to run out quicker than a cheetah on roller blades, the so called 'line feeding system' working a little too well if you ask me.
Anyway, I decided not to give up on this strimmer, mainly because of how much I had just spent on it, and instead tried different techniques in using it, and also different ways in winding the line around the spool.
So, after a few test runs, and quite a bit of 'cutting line' I finally figured out the way to run the machine without it spitting out miles and miles of line all over my garden.
Once I had worked this out I found this machine to be a cracking way to trim those edges around my garden, the way you simply twist the main shaft to get at those edges, leaving a perfect straight side all around.
It does look like it may be a handful to control, what with its trigger hiding gently beneath the funky looking and very curvy handle. The solid front grip handle giving your none trigger hand the ability to manoeuvre the strimmer around with such ease.
The actual shaft is of good quality, curving ever so gently downwards towards the rather basic looking cutting spool area, which in turn is a little protected by a very generous black semi circle of plastic, which does help protect you from any flying debris that you may hit, such as stones, sticks or even wild life.
It has a good size cutting range to help you tackle those difficult stubborn areas where your mower wont reach, making your lawn look like the pitch at Wembley stadium, only without the hordes of angry fans throwing things at you.
It may not be the tallest of strimmers but once you get the hang of it this simply helps in how easy you can manoeuvre it round the garden, and with it weighing just over 3kg you'll be able to cart it around for hours on end, although unless you've got a garden the size of Buckingham Palaces then you wont need to cart it round for hours.
In fact, for me, the hardest part of using this machine is when the line does run out and you have to add more onto the 'spool, which I initially found that winding the line around it was a little tricky but, as with most things, after a few attempts it soon became as easy as threading a needle, and I did find that the tighter the line was around the spool the less likely it was to run out with in minutes.
In all, a great addition to anyone's shed which is brimming with gardening equipment. It is so easy to use and, in the average size garden, will take a matter of minutes to trim around those edges, giving a perfect finish to you lawn.
So, if you want one of these little beauties then you can have one for around £70, but, as I always say, do shop around as there's always a bargain to be had.
Having spent a good while in Homebase assessing the alternatives, I decided on this model because it was the cheapest that met my criteria (I have a flat with a small garden): Cable length The cheaper B&Ws have pathetically short cables which would make them useless without an extension reel. If you want to pay less than £30, go for a Flymo - they all have 12 metres of flex. Trims and edges. I thought it would be useful to be able to edge the lawn (cutting vertically) as well as trimming it. As it turns out, my edges looked fine after trimming, but it might come in handy some day. Size Flymo's equivalent is a great design - slightly cheaper as well - but the handle is a large arc shape which would take up a lot of space. The B&W is a lot more compact, so that sealed the decision. Automatic cutter feed On any strimmer, the plastic cutting line constantly breaks and needs replaced. This model has a spool of line which is automatically fed through whenever it breaks. And it comes with two extra refills. Saves a lot of time and hassle.