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My Father offered me a bit of straight-talkin’ advice when it comes to chain saws: “Son,” he said, “when you use a chain saw, don’t think about anything else from the time you pick it up until the time you put it down. It can kill you at any moment, either through your own stupidity or a simple accident.” And he’s right. Be it neglegence or kickback, if a chainsaw comes in contact with your body, the saw will win every time.

But last year Black & Decker introduced the Alligator Lopper — a cross between a chainsaw and a pruner that looks about perfect for medium-sized pruning jobs and features a fully-guarded “blade.” Surprisingly, though, I haven’t heard much about it from the “tool guy” crowd.

So what do you Toolmongers think: good stuff or junk? Let us know in comments.

The Alligator Lopper [Black & Decker]
Street Pricing [Froogle]
Via Amazon [What’s this?]

 

17 Responses to Hot or Not? Black & Decker’s Alligator Lopper

  1. l_bilyk says:

    A safety chainsaw? no thanks

  2. JK says:

    It’s definitely not (nor is it intended) to be a chainsaw replacement, or a “safety chainsaw”, it fits a screwball niche where pruners are nowhere near enough grunt, and a regular chainsaw is severe overkill. I picked one up after the last ice storm here in Southern Illinois dumped limbs all over the yard. It’ll easily handle the advertised 4″ stump, and is just straight up fun to run around and chop up stuff with. I definitely say hot, especially if you have a friend who has a gas chainsaw already. I borrow his saw for the big stuff, he borrows my Lopper for the smaller stuff. The fact that you’d have to be completely plowstered off PBR to hurt yourself using it is just a bonus. If one hand loses grip of the handle, it powers down.

  3. GTJ says:

    I haven’t used one yet but the alligator graphics and design are a bit silly for me.

  4. Bowen says:

    Is it just me, or is this aimed at the ‘lazy loan shark’ segement of the market?

  5. Not. Any cut this could make could be accomplished by a pruning saw in the time it would take to run the extension cord.

  6. Roscoe says:

    Corded lawn tools are inherently “not hot.” This might be interesting in a battery pack or gas model though.

  7. Michael says:

    Chainsaws are dangerous. Useful definitely. Dangerous for sure. I think this would be good for the tween market, between lopers and a chainsaw. And a heck of a lot safer. Maybe someone will make one of these for bigger chainsaws.

  8. eschoendorff says:

    This is definitely NOT. Quit being lazy and get a hand pruning saw. Sheesh.

  9. Abe says:

    The only way this thing could be more gay is if it came in designer colors.

    In other words NOT!

  10. Buck says:

    I too got one of these for cleanup of a whole tree worth of fallen branches, figuring I could return it if it didn’t work as advertised. It’s now one of my favorite tools.

    It’s not really a saw, it’s a lopper that uses a chainsaw as the cutting mechanism. The jaws both move to firmly grip whatever you’re cutting through. You really have to use it, not just look at a picture of it, to see how it works and understand what it does. The real beauty of it is taking the branch you just cut down and cutting it into kindling with a quick chomp chomp chomp. No standing on the branch with one foot to try and keep it from moving while using a handsaw, no stitches in your thumb when you finally give up and hold the branch with your hand.

    Though I would like a cordless version.

    Definitely hot.

  11. James says:

    So from the looks of the comments everyone who’s actually used it likes it and it does the job its advertised to do, everyone who just judged by the pic or has a tad bit too much testosterone hates it, looks to me like it does the job its meant to

  12. Slade says:

    I think NOT. It has no reach to it. I used the a small electirc unit on a pole and could reach more than 10 feet up or in front of me. THAT was useful.

  13. Rachel says:

    James,
    I have to agree with your testosterone comment. My dad came to me the other day with an article in Workbench magazine on the Alligator. Probably due to the fact that some of your readers find it difficult to fathom that this product might come in handy for a single female homeowner, who is neither lazy, stupid, tall, or driven by using dangerous equipment like a chainsaw, I can unserstand the nature of some of your responses. (You mean women can actually buy houses on their own? Yes!) I am a single female homeowner, with a 70 year-old father who cares about my safety, wellbeing, and pocketbook. And I am determined to clear out my own backyard if the weather ever clears up. I will be buying an Alligator, because it is the best thing out there for someone in my situation, and much less expensive than hiring someone to do the work. Does it sound like I’m lazy to you?

    Rachel

  14. William says:

    This is my favorite tool. I was a big fan of my axe and limb saw until the ice storm mentioned by JK. The Alligator quickly and safely cut all my brush. What makes this really nice it all the little 1 inch limbs you normally wack with an hand axe, or snap in your hands are shredded in seconds without a second thought. Ditching the cord would make this tool even better but I am guessing the weight might get too much. This doesn’t replace a full sized chain saw, but most people don’t need a chain saw to just clean up yard waste. Anyone who uses one or see it used will know how hot this is.

  15. Diane says:

    I purchased this tool two days ago to clear out a small tree. The tool is great and works as advertised. I don’t have to wait anymore for my husband to get to those small jobs – that he never gets around to anymore.

  16. treechopper says:

    i do tree prunning on a regulare basis . we were on a job that one of our tools broke so i purchased the alligator to finish up the job . mainly just cutting up smaller branches. i now have used it for about 6 months for atleast a hour a day on smaller jobs. i love it . it is also good for apple tree prunning and topping.and verry easy to manuver when your in a tree. i also have a echo pole pruner that is a great piece of equipment but its not a agile as climbing the tree and squezzing the handle like the alligator is. all i can say is if it works then give it a try.what ever makes the job easier is what im intrested in. also i have droped the alligator over 15 feet from a tree many times no damage yet

  17. Gator Morgan says:

    Thanks for all the positive reviews. I really belive i will go out and buy one now. I go to my grandmothers all the time and i have to use the old loppers but now i can use the alligator loppers and do in a whole lot less of time. thanks,
    Gator

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