Chainsaw Alternative: Black and Decker Alligator Lopper

alligator lopperWe’ve been having a crazy winter in upstate New York. One day last week it was nearly 60 degrees Fahrenheit, and the next we got hit with a storm that brought us about 6 inches of snow. We got through it alright (it’s nothing that we’re not used to) but our old apple tree didn’t make it. It fell right down to the ground.

Since my boyfriend was away on business and would be for some time, I went into the garage to check out the chainsaw. I was determined to do this by myself–but I had never touched a chainsaw before and had no idea how to use it. I picked it up but it was heavy and I decided it probably wasn’t a good idea to fool around with something I could barely lift when it was turned off, nevermind running.

I started to do some research to find a lightweight chainsaw and came across the Black and Decker Alligator Lopper. Thank goodness I did, because it probably saved my life–literally.

What is an Alligator Lopper?

An alligator lopper is a cross between handheld loppers and a chainsaw. It is shaped like a pair of loppers, except one “blade” is a stabilizing arm and on the other is a chainsaw blade. To operate you open the alligator lopper and cut through like you would with scissors.

Alligator Lopper Benefits and Drawbacks

Like any piece of machinery alligator loppers have both pros and cons.

Some of my favorite things about the alligator lopper are:

  • It is lightweight at only 6.5 lbs. Part of my problem with the chainsaw was that it was just too heavy.
  • The jaws (rather than the single blade) provide a much safer cutting experience, protecting against kickback with the stabilizing arm.
  • There is a protective covering over the blade so you can’t cut any other branches by accident.
  • To turn the loppers on you need to be holding the on-switch on both handles. Knowing me if there was only one switch I would probably end up accidentally turning it on and cutting stuff I didn’t mean to (yeah, klutz).
  • It has an adorable picture of an alligator on the saw. :-)

The only real drawback I found was that sometimes the cord got in the way underfoot. There is also a battery powered version of this, but it is not as powerful and I figured I could do with the cord with a little maneuvering. It didn’t hinder me too much.

Alligator Lopper Best Price & More Information

This machine can cut through branches about 4 inches in diameter. It was perfect for my apple tree–which I cut up in a jiffy with these things–but I can see how it wouldn’t work for the oak tree in my front yard, for example. This is a great solution if you want something safe for smaller projects.

In doing research to find my best option, the Black and Decker LP1000 Alligator Lopper rose to the top. And of all the places I looked online Amazon by far had the best price for the alligator lopper.

This tool was truly a lifesaver for me and probably one of the best purchases I’ve ever made. Hopefully I can be more helpful with yard work now.

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