New Shredder/Chipper

chippa.pngOver the several years we have lived here in Arizona, we have found that the natural vegetation on and around the property requires some maintenance by us. Most notably, the mesquite trees and the creosote bushes. Either of those will overtake its environment given unchecked growth. There are several other vegetation varieties which might require some maintenance, but those are mostly out away from the house and garden.

Image: Assembled Unit

We acquired a light-duty unit since most of what we will shredding is on the order of ½ to ¾ inch branches and such. The unit is capable of chipping branches up to 1½ inches, but we will be saving the larger ones for the neighbor’s fireplace.

I assembled the unit today and did a test run with some of the scraps that are still up in the wash behind the retention wall, where I threw them after maintaining one of the mesquite trees up there a while back. There is a lot to clean up there and the test sample was a tiny bit of it. The rest will come later.

I took the manufacturer’s advise and used gloves, long sleeve shirt, eye and ear protection (courtesy of the shooting range bag) and commenced to feed some of the branches through the hopper. The material I was feeding conformed to our intended use being of small to medium sizes and the chips and sawdust-sized shreddings went into the unit’s built-in catch bin. No problems were encountered. The remains of the material fed through looked suitable to use as garden mulch, although we don’t exactly have that sort of garden here in the desert.

The unit requires 15 amps of 120VAC current. It is actually quieter than would require ear protection with the stuff I shredded today, but I will be using the earmuffs anyhow just in case something comes flying out of the unit backwards which can happen. Having more cover is better under those circumstances.

We’re pleased with it so far and intend to start some more serious cleanup of the wash area and some stuff still laying across the road where we trimmed up some of those mesquites over there.

UPDATE - FRIDAY 04/26/2019: Damsel and I took the shredder, the truck with the Honda generator and a bunch of tools across the road today to clean up an old mess of cut branches and to trim some of the spring growth off of the big mesquite over there. Happy to report the mess is cleaned up and many of the low-hanging branches on the tree are now redistributed at the base of the tree in the form of mulch. The chipper worked great. There is still more to do, but since it was hot (95°) today, we knocked off after we met our initial objectives.

Shredder at work


  1. drjim said,

    April 26, 2019 @ 22:15:07

    Pretty slick! I’m shopping for a powered post-hole auger. Harbor Freight has one on special sale right now for $165. I have to plant two new 4×4 posts, one for the wire antenna, and one for the 20 meter vertical I made from aluminum tubing. And since we have two or three posts on the back fence that need replacing, it works out to be cheaper to just buy one than rent it!

  2. CapnBob said,

    April 27, 2019 @ 12:42:44

    Yep - we’re satisfied with the new gadget. We’ll have it back over there on Monday (if it doesn’t rain) to finish those last piles of trimmings.

    We’ve been watching your progress on the antennas on EBOG.The new auger should make quick work of the antenna supports and the fence repair.

    I tried to leave a comment over there but for some reason it didn’t post. I’ll have to look into why that is. Meanwhile, we see your posts on our RSS feed reader every day.

  3. drjim said,

    April 28, 2019 @ 22:02:25

    I can’t put up the “Mark-II” version of the end-fed wire until I have a solid place to mount the mast on the fed end, and have a solid place to mount the SGC autocoupler. I made up a mounting board for the center mast, and I’ll mount that on the tree with some 6″ construction screws, and then I can mount 10′ of mast to the board. That will get the center up to 25′, and I expect I’ll see some improvement. Changing the length of the antenna didn’t do much. Doubling the length of two of my counterpoise radials from 50′ to 100′ had more of an effect, and moving the feed point up another 8′ also helped.

    After I get the two new posts sunk, I’ll be able to get a solid version of the wire antenna up, and use the second post for the 1/4-wave 20 Meter vertical I built.

  4. CapnBob said,

    April 29, 2019 @ 09:45:00

    Sounds like you may have everything together for the summer, DrJim. We will be watching your blog for photos as you progress.

  5. drjim said,

    April 29, 2019 @ 22:23:52

    Gonna try to!

    I have to go pick up a table for the basement tomorrow, so I *might* just run by Harbor Freight.

    And as soon as the 5″ of snow we got today is gone, I’ll get back on it.

    Hopefully the ground will be nice and wet and soft.

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