EGO has made several major leaps forward in cord trimmer technology with its ST1520 model. The EGO 56V Powerload String Trimmer features a lightweight carbon fiber shaft and a wire loading system that is a total game changer.
- Lightweight and strong carbon fiber shaft
- Powerload button line loading
- low vibration
- excellent balance
- excellent cutting force
- The front handle is a little on the small side and a bit more curved than we'd like
The first time I saw the EGO Powerload Cord Trimmer Head, I knew it would be the innovation everyone from business professionals to homeowners wanted. Now that it's available, it's time to see what happens!
The concept is great and the application is simple. You thread the thread through the eyelet in the head until it reaches the center (total length depends on the thread gauge you are using). Then press the Powerload button above the motor and it will start itself. Fast enough for quick maneuvers, but slow enough to avoid getting lines in your face.
You'll hear the mechanism chime loud enough to help you know how fast you're winding and stop before it's fully wound. Make it a little longer? Press the button again. make it shorter? Crash it to get some back.
EGO carbon fiber shaft
EGO also switched from traditional shafts to carbon fiber, starting a trend others followed. We don't always use names when it comes to project managers, but this time I will. Kyle Selph is the driving force behind both of these major innovations, but especially in carbon fiber shafts. A skilled cyclist in his free time, Kyle understands how the strength-to-weight advantage of a carbon fiber frame on a road bike extends to the chordal axle.
Before you ask, he's much faster than me on the road. If I can convince him to hook up the EGO motor and 56V battery to my bike then maybe I have a chance. But I digress…
The carbon fiber shaft provides plenty of strength – you'll be hard-pressed to break it, even in near-bad conditions. It's the weight savings that are really worth the upgrade. Because of the way the cord cutter's weight is distributed, users often find themselves reaching for some Advil and spending an afternoon on the couch, waiting for the back pain to subside. The less weight you have overall, especially as it extends from your body, the more comfortable your back will be.
- 56V brushless motor
- Padded D-handle
- Side mounted trigger safety
- Available as straight shaft (ST1520) or hinged shaft (ST1520S)
EGO 56V Powerload Harness Trimmer Performance
Powerload and carbon fiber shaft function very well. However, since its launch, the performance of this cord cutter has remained at the top of our rating list.
First, it's really quiet. It came in at just 80 decibels, as measured by our tester's ears.
One thing that helps reduce noise levels is how well the EGO controls tool vibration. This is not unique to this model. EGO does a great job in every way, and their cord cutters tend to run smoother than most.
You can cut up to 15 inches – perfect for residential trimming needs. You can also load 0.080 or 0.095 inch lines. Use 0.095" if you have a lot of hard edges or fencing. However, if you don't need the extra thickness, you'll get more runtime out of the 0.080".
You need to press the trigger lightly to change the speed. With a top speed of 4000 RPM, we like to get the job done quicker at its 5800 RPM wide-open throttle. At that speed, there's enough power to tackle almost any grassy stem, including thicker areas that the mower misses.
EGO 56V Powerload String Trimmer Runtime
Your run time will vary depending on the battery you are using, your cutting speed and the diameter of your wire. We tested using the 2.5Ah battery that came with the kit and the 0.095" wire.
On high speed we were able to trim continuously for less than 25 minutes. This should be enough to cover most lawns up to 1/4 or 1/3 of an acre without difficulty. Even a 1/2 acre lawn may be suitable for planting. If you need longer runtimes, upgrading to a 5.0Ah battery won't bulk up this cord cutter, and it's easier than stopping and going back to the garage to replace a battery.
EGO Powerload String Trimmer Pricing
You can buy this model bare-bones for $169 (ST1520S) or with a 2.5Ah battery and standard charger for $229 (ST1521S) at your favorite EGO retailer.
However, there are other options for Powerload headers. If you're willing to go that route, the ST1511T has a retractable aluminum shaft instead of carbon fiber.
the bottom line
Currently, the EGO 56V Powerload Cord Trimmer is one of the best trimmers we've tested for any homeowner. It combines a lightweight carbon shaft, low vibration, easy line loading and great performance to make it a complete kit.
EGO 56V Powerload Harness Trimmer Specifications
- Model: EGO ST1520S
- Power source: EGO 56V battery
- Cutting Tape: 15 inches
- Wire Diameter: 0.095" or 0.080"
- Weight: 11.97 lbs
- Warranty: 5-year limited warranty on trimmer, lifetime warranty on shaft
- Price: $169 bare metal, $229 with 2.5 Ah battery and standard charger
Check out EGO's website or visit your local Home Depot to discover more and pick one up for yourself!