Makita GSP5500

The GSP5500 is the latest machine from Makita. It looks like an average garden shredder, but it rattles through the work, devouring prunings and trimmings quickly and easily. We reckon a lot of thought has gone into the design of the GSP5500: it's well built, has some very nice features and is user-friendly.

The shredder is powered by a 5.5hp four-stroke Honda engine and runs on unleaded fuel. It is easy to start and running at 2,800rpm it munches its way through any brash material we can feed down the funnel.
The spec says this shredder, with its cast steel body, can take branches up to 50mm in diameter. Our tester, keen to push the machine to its limits, finds that it will take branches up to 60mm.
“The power output of this machine is really good. The revs fall under undue loads but recover immediately and allow you to feed branches in bit by bit,” says the tester. He has probably broken the terms of the warranty but at least we know this is a tough machine. We are also impressed with the shreddings, which are fine and consistent.
The mechanism is a nine-bladed cutting system with cutting edges presented at the bottom, in the middle and at the sides. This gives the machine a chance of getting a bite on any shape of material and so draw it in. The cutters look as though they are easy enough to remove for replacement. Other maintenance is tool-free.
Transport should not be a problem with the GSP5500. It’s on wheels for manoeuvrability and weighs 54kg. The funnel is bolted on top of the shredding mechanism so it can be easily lowered for transport in the back of a van.
As with all Makita products, a great deal of attention has been paid to safety. The shredder cannot be operated without the funnel being fully secured in position. In the event of the funnel coming adrift during operation, the motor switches off electronically and a mechanical shaft brake instantly stops the cutter rotation.

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