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All About the Parts and Features of Weed Eaters

Weed eaters are comprised of different parts that have to function together for the machine to serve its purpose. If you have a weed eater or you are planning on buying one, it is advisable that you know a little bit about how it works. Knowing the pieces of this machine will help you to understand the user manual and know what to do if your weed eater develops a fault. It will also help you to understand how to maintain it.

Here are some of the main parts and features of weed eaters: 

  • Shaft

The shaft is the part of a weed eater through which power generated in the engine is transferred to lines for trimming to take effect. A traditional weed eater does not come with any sharp blade for trimming. Instead, it trims with the string which spins at a very high speed. If the power is not transferred to the line, the weed eater will remain still. 

The weed eater shaft is normally available in several designs. There are straight, curved, and split shafts.

  • If you are tall and you want a product that will give you a longer reach, then you should consider buying a trimmer with a straight shaft. However, weed eaters with straight shafts are generally heavier than other types.
  • If you want a lighter weed eater that will be easy for you to use, you should consider buying a curved shaft weed eater. It is also good for shorter people as it does not come too high off the ground. 
  • Split shafts are designed to accept other attachments for additional functionality. With a split shaft, you can attach an edging blade, leaf blower, or any other available attachments to your weed eater instead of the trimming head. 
  • Cutting Line
weed eater head

As mentioned above, weed eaters cut with thick string lines rather than blades. These lines are available in different types and sizes. The manufacturers of weed eaters normally specify the type and size of cutting line to be used on their products. Some cutting lines are too thin while some are thicker.

There are some string trimmers that cut with single line and some that cut with double line. Those that cut with two lines deliver quicker and better cutting results than those that trim with one line. Thus, they are more suitable for the trimming of stubborn grasses.

  • Fixed Line Heads

This is the part of the device to which the cutting string is attached. Not all weed eaters that have fixed line heads. In some products, especially consumer trimmers, the stool holding the line functions as the fixed line head. The advantage of this part is that it accepts only a short length of line. It also forestalls the tangling and jamming of line when it is being loaded. This part can also be purchased as an aftermarket product in case the one in your weed eater is damaged.

  • Bump-feed Line Advance

The part functions by releasing the string from the spool when the trimmer head is bumped on the ground. As you are trimming around the yard you will naturally lose some of the length of your trimming string. With a bump-feed line you just have to tap the trimming head on the ground to release a small amount of extra line as you're working. 

  • Carrying Aid

This is mostly available in heavy-duty string trimmers. The part helps to make handling and carrying of the machine easier. It usually exists in the form of a shoulder harness.

  • Motor

This is the engine, the part that generates power. It can be mounted on the top or close to the cutting line. The location depends on the type of weed eater you are using. In the gasoline powered weed eaters, it is top-mounted. However, there are some corded weed eaters that come with their motor mounted close to the cutting line. 

The products with top-mounted motors are easy to handle and are more balanced than those with motors mounted close to the cutting line. A gas weed eater's engine is available in two designs: the four-stroke engine and two stroke engine. The former has different tanks for oil and fuel while in the latter the oil and fuel are mixed together and pour in one fuel tank. The main difference you'll see is in the power exhibited from the two engines. 

  • Stop Switch

A part like this is used for stopping the engine. The engine or the motor of the weed eater stops working when this is switched off.

  • Centrifugal Clutch

This part is available only in gasoline powered weed eaters. It makes it possible for the engine to idle without the string spinning.

  • Fuel Tank and Oil Tank

The fuel tank is available only in gasoline weed eaters while the oil tank is available only in a four-stroke gasoline engine.

  • Starter Cord

Used for starting gasoline powered weed eaters.

Other parts are:

  • Exhaust deflector
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