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Smaller hydraulic stump grinders

Ty Korrigan

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 I realise that machines that use a hydraulic pump for the powerhead lose around 25% against a belt driven machine.

Machines like the two in the Toro STX range and newer FSI B31 26hp 

Yet how do those who run these machines find them in terms of productivity?

Also what breakdowns and issues have you had with them?

I've only ever used the Vermeer SC30TX twice but it was a neglected and abused hire machine with blunt teeth.

I'd say it had far less power than expected for such a large machine but was easy to operate.




Edited by Ty Korrigan
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This is common on belt v hydraulic anything. An outfront ride on flail or rotary deck will perform better being belt driven over hydraulic unless the hydraulic has a lot more hp behind it. The upside of hydraulic driven stuff is it's generally less maintenance with no belts, bearings or pulleys to tension or maintain.


From a build quality point of view FSI is in another league compared to the American or eastern European grinders. 

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I had approx 1000 hrs of experience on a 27hp belt and as it was time to upgrade, I demoed a 50hp hydraulic, that had maybe 70% of life left in it's teeth.

It took less than 10 minutes to realize, that it will be a minor upgrade, if at all. 

But this was 6 or 7 years ago. In theory I think it may make sense if you have 70hp+ on the pump. 

In addition what always puts me off was the thought of the mess you will have when something in the high flow hyd bursts, several gallons gone in seconds, horrible bill for you from the shop and from the customer for decontamination. 

Those low hp hydraulic machines focus the rental market, where no maintenance is king and nobody cares if the work is done in one day or a week, while week pays out better. 

Slow wins the race for rentals. 

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