Brush Grubber with Fiberglass Ironclad Handle - Model# BG-03
Not what I was hoping for
I usually read reviews of products before I buy and sometimes they can be very helpful and sometimes not. In this case, there were two reviews, one not so positive, but I gave the product a try anyway. I've got acres of privet that I am trying to remove on a property I just bought. I thought I'd found the perfect tool. When I received it, it was almost completely assembled and didn't take much time to put the rest of it together. It is definitely a heavy duty well built tool. With that said, I was really looking forward to using it. I had spent the prior weekend pulling up by hand all the small bushes and had cut the larger ones (usually a half inch diameter stem or larger) off about a foot off the ground so I could use this tool to take the rest out of the ground. The tool was successful about half of the time (though the people that know me would of course say it was me that unsuccessful half the time and I shouldn't blame the tool). What happened was one of three things for me... 1. The tool grabbed the stem and pulled the root base out efficiently. Basically, the tool worked as advertised. 2. The teeth wouldn't bite sufficiently into the stem and would slide up the stem stripping the bark off. In this case, when I tried again to grab the stem, I very rarely was able to gain purchase enough to be able to get it out of the ground. It seemed to me that there were two reasons it wouldn't "bite" enough to pull it out... the smaller diameter stems meant the gripping pads were at an angle to the stem, not gripping from each side at a parallel to each other, which meant less teeth were trying to initially grab the stem. Then the spring wasn't quite strong enough to "bite" into the stem so it would slide instead of grab. The pinching mechanism requires enough bite to put some pressure on the tool so that the harder you pull, the more it bites...but if it doesn't bite enough right at the beginning, it just slides. 3. Privet grows in moist soil and is shallow rooted. About a quarter of the time the tool would bite enough to pull out the roots, but because the plant was tough, the round tube that lays flat on the ground would be pushed into the ground instead of the plant coming out of the ground. The tool had plenty of leverage and power, but the diameter of the tube was too small and would just get pushed into the ground. I had to get a board to put under the tool so it wouldn't sink into the ground.
All this said, the tool is well designed and when it "bites" and has solid enough ground under it, it works well. In my humble opinion, for what I was using it for, the tool would have been perfect if the pads bit easier at the beginning and always latched on, and the base of the tool on the ground had a larger surface area so it wouldn't sink.
Northern Tool refunded my money with no hassle when I called on this. Hope this helps.
April 24, 2014
I live at 9,000 feet and have 5 acres of aspen, pine and spruce trees plus 35 acres of sagebrush. I am removing the sage brush up to 100 feet from our home for fire protection. The Brush Grubber #BG-03 is well designed and constructed. It was almost completely assembled upon arrival, only requiring the fastening of three bolts and nuts. I had removed thousands of sage brush with the Brush Grubber HD and my tractor but it was a lot of work. The BG-03 can handle almost 3" diameter sage brush stems and I removed hundreds more in just three hours, much faster than with the tractor. It works so well, I plan to use nothing else for this job in the future. It works as described, I have not had difficulty with the grip pads slipping, and am delighted with this product. I am 78 years old and had no trouble using the Brush Grubber.
September 22, 2012
To begin with - I enjoy assemblying newly received products such as this - but NOT when there are missing parts. Once I found my own hardware to make up for those missing - I was able to figure out how everything went together. [I suppose if I had the time - I could have returned the item or requested the missing parts - but I needed the tool to do the work - NOW]
The "trigger" mechanism is OK but since in the released position it will fall to the bottom of the handle away from the operator, I had to make a stop so that one person could effectiely use the tool. All of that done - I went to pull sumac trees. Not very deep rooted - I used to use a pick and shovel - but now thought that I had the right tool for this job. Well NOT so! The "GRUBBER" jaws would not bite into the wood so the bark that was held slipped right off the tree. Three tries and I finally hooked into a root / joint and pulled out the tree. Second tree - same problems only now the cable for the "trigger" pulled out - or broke off at the handle end where it was crimped. So now the "GUBBER" is back in my shop - look like I will need to find more parts since there is no adjustment in the cable I will need to completely replace it.
I should have just built the whole tool myself! I would NOT recommend purchasing this item - unless you want it as a starter for building your own adaption of the tool - one that works!!
June 25, 2009