This unit enjoys the same powerful engine as the road tow version, the same 120x84cm infeed chute and 190x280mm throat, is as simple to operate and rapidly disposes of material in the same fluid manner.
It differs by having tracks instead of tyres. The downside is that it has to be transported by trailer, but there are excellent lashing points. The upside is that it goes to hard-to-reach locations instead of you having to bring the timber to the machine.
A platform at the rear of the chipper gives the operator a commanding view of the ground ahead, while stick-steer levers allow forward/reverse travel and turning. Two handles provide something to hang onto while moving, but this only leaves your thumbs free to control movement.
Because the levers need to return to the "stop" position immediately they are released, they have powerful springs behind them. That makes them incredibly stiff. "It's a good machine to steer but it makes your thumbs ache after a while," says Ford.
As for the towed version above, except:
Fuel capacity 31 litres
Transport length 3.23m
Additional features Tracks instead of tyres
List price £29,990 + VAT
Tel GreenMech - 01789 400044.
Tested This Issue
GreenMech Arborist 190
GreenMech ArbTrak 190
The Review Panel
Matthew Ford, arboricuture trainer and assessor, Broomfield Hall Campus, Derby College
Douglas Porter, former Derby College student
As a professional arborist you want to get the job done quickly and cleanly. So why spend time loading branches onto a lorry, lashing them down and making three or four trips back to the depot when you can chip the timber and reduce the volume for single-trip transportation or, better still, leave the chippings on site, blown back into woodland? The woodchipper has become indispensable for anyone involved in tree maintenance.
In this test we take three of the latest models - the Timberwolf TW230DHB sub-750kg and the GreenMech Arborist 190 as a road tow model and also self-propelled on tracks - to the Broomfield Hall Campus of Derby College.
There we ask Matthew Ford to put the machines through their paces. Before coming to the college as arboriculture trainer and assessor, Ford worked in the industry, where he used Jenson woodchippers. Having no previous experience of either GreenMech or Timberwolf, he is well placed to review the new models. We were also joined for part of the test by Douglas Porter, who having studied at Derby is now a tree surgeon.
The weather on the test days was dry and sunny. Willow timber was used through all three machines.