Tree pruning stands out to me as one of those jobs that usually needs multiple tools that basically do the same thing. Small branches can be cut with hand sheers, large sheers or loppers are needed for medium branches, and large branches usually need some type of saw. Our Craftsman Cordless Lopper Review showcases a new tool that encompasses all of those tools into one.
Craftsman Cordless Lopper Review Overview
Craftsman has jumped head first into the 20v market with their re-branding. They seem to be going after not only the professional customers but also the home users as well. This cordless lopper kit is a great example of that. The small bar can get into tight spaces between branches and tear through limbs quickly and effortlessly.
This Craftsman Cordless Lopper combines the motion of a large pair of loppers with that of a small chainsaw. While this concept is not new, this release is in the Craftsman 20v line of tools.
Craftsman Cordless Lopper Review Features
The handles are large and easy to grip/hold. They’re big enough to easily grip and use while wearing gloves. The triggers have to both be depressed to turn the lopper’s motor on. That is easy to do since they’re so long. You can easily press them no matter where your hands are on the large handles.
The handles lock securely together to keep the chain and bar covered for safety. The lock is also easy to engage and disengage.
The chain and bar are covered by hefty metal guards. One of which is spring loaded so as to cover the chain but still allow branches to be easily cut.
The oiler was a little messy and cumbersome to fill. You have to fill the included bottle first. The hole to fill the oiler only accepts the tip from the included bottle (or something similar). There is no way to tell how full the oil reservoir is.
Wood chips are expelled through a large opening at the base of the bar. I did not experience any issues with it getting clogged up with chips and shavings from the chain.
The chain is tensioned automatically with a spring-fed lever at the end of the bar. This makes it easy to tighten up the chain, as all you have to do is loosen up the two bar nuts and then tighten them up again after the spring tightens the chain.
Craftsman Cordless Lopper Review Performance
I was quite surprised by the power this little fella had. My trees, unfortunately, did not need to be trimmed, so I used some scrap wood and some mesquite firewood.
The saw tore right through them with surprising ease. I was able to get the chain to bog down if I squeezed the handles together forcefully. The force I had to exert was way more than what is required for typical use. As with all cutting tools, you just need to keep enough pressure on the tool to allow the cutting bit, blade, or chain to do its job.
What was also impressive about this tool is that the woods I used for the testing were harder than what you would generally use this tool for. I can only imagine how easy it would slice through softer green limbs.
The power buttons are large and easy to depress, and using the tool as a whole feels natural. It uses the same form to operate as regular loppers. This makes it easy to pick up and use for the first time, without having to learn a new operation.
The chips were expelled well, and although at different angles they may not fall out as easily, there seems to be ample room to keep the saw from jamming up on chips.
The oiler was difficult to fill. You have to fill the included bottle to then be able to fill the saw. There also is no way to know what the oil level is. This makes it difficult to know when to add more, and how much to add. Additionally, since the short bar is covered it is next to impossible to tell if the oiler is working. You are unable to hold the saw near the ground and see an oil spot appear like you can with a traditional chainsaw.
I found the battery life to be more than adequate. As with all of the Craftsman V20 line, the batteries are interchangeable like other cordless lines, so you can easily amass numerous batteries by purchasing one or two more tools.
The included bar nut wrench almost broke when trying to loosen the nuts. I eventually got them off with the wrench, but it suffered some damage.
Craftsman Cordless Lopper Review Value
This kit is available on Amazon for $129. The kit includes a 2.0ah battery and charger. While significantly more expensive than a pair of manual loppers, it can do way more work. Additionally, the ease of use on larger branches makes this investment worthy.
I hope to see this available as a tool only option as well. If you are already invested in Craftsman’s V20 line, tool only options are a great way to economically add more tools to your collection.
All in all, I think the $129 is a good price for what you get and for how much work it does.
Craftsman Cordless Lopper Review Final Thought
This little tool packs a lot bigger punch than I had expected. The price is right, and the performance is impressive. While probably not able to withstand commercial use, that is not the intended audience. This tool is great for homeowners who need a fast and easy way to prune trees and large shrubs seasonally.