If you’ve been hanging around the site for a while, you might be wondering when the veritable wellspring of backpack blower reviews will dry out. Recently, we had the opportunity to look at 7 of the industry leaders in professional-grade, gas-powered backpack blowers. In the spirit of healthy competition, as well as because of our genuine curiosity, we set them against each other in our Best Backpack Blower Shootout. Since then, we’ve had the chance to look at each blower individually as well. So, here it is, the end of the line. We’ve taken a look at the best, now let’s take a gander at one of the rest. The seventh, and last, model in our series on professional blowers is the Shindaiwa EB802 backpack blower.
Overall Comfort and Noise
One of the things that we really liked about the Shindaiwa EB802 backpack blower revolves around its perceived weight. It weighed in at 25.3 lbs, which sets it right smack dab in the middle of the blowers we tested. But, perhaps because of its weight distribution, or perhaps because of its smaller shape, it felt like one of the lighter options. The word “nimble” comes to mind; this blower isn’t bulky or obtrusive.
The Shindaiwa EB802 backpack blower was one of the few models we tested that utilizes hip controls, rather than the seemingly standard pistol grip control. We don’t usually have a preference, so long as we have the option of setting the throttle and getting to work. The EB802 does have a cruise control, as well as an easy-to-access kill switch.
It’s also worth mentioning that the EB802 was one of the quieter blowers we tested. At the ear, it cranked out 101 dB(A). From 50ft, the Shindaiwa hit the 78 dB(A). Of course, all of the blowers fell within a few decibels of each other, so the benefits of the Shindaiwa over any other blower are probably only minimal.
There are a couple downsides to the Shindaiwa on a comfort level, however. For one thing, we felt considerable vibration through the back and hands. Where the Stihl BR700 has included some anti-vibration shock reduction, the Shindaiwa EB802 backpack blower doesn’t really do much about the vibration. Another thing that we noticed with this blower: Shindaiwa neglected any sort of active cooling. Just about every other blower did include this feature, which doesn’t seem like a terribly difficult thing to work into the design.
Shindaiwa EB802 Backpack Blower Performance
When testing the blowers for performance, we looked at 4 different categories. We looked at the Newton force each blower generated, as well as airspeed, and air volume. We also ran all the blowers through our best approximation of a real-world application, a wet sand swath test. In this test, we looked at how many square inches of wet sand each blower could remove from porous concrete.
Do you want the good news or the bad news first? The good news about the Shindaiwa EB802 blower is that it cranks out some serious airspeed. This blower topped our charts at 203 MPH, which edged out the Echo PB770T. In perfect weather conditions, Shindaiwa claims that their blower can reach a theoretical peak top speed of 245 MPH.
Here’s where things start to get a little bit dicier for the EB802. In all three other power tests we ran, the Shindaiwa finished seventh. In the force test, the Shindaiwa backpack blower generated 28 Newtons of force. To put that into perspective, the Makita EB7650TH finished in sixth place, almost 6 Newtons better than the Shindaiwa. The winner, the RedMax EBZ8500, finished 5 Newtons better than that at 38.9.
The Shindaiwa lagged even further behind in the CFM test, which measures the volume of air each blower generates. The EB802 pumped out a relatively measly 586 CFM. The top 3 finishers all put up numbers over 900 CFM.
Sometimes, these nerdy math stats don’t matter all that much when it comes down to real-world applications. However, this was not one of those times. Again, the Shindaiwa EB802 finished in last place in our Broadest Swath Wet Sand Test. Where the other blowers cleared around 750 sq. inches of wet sand (or better), the Shindaiwa could only manage 672 sq. inches.
The Shindaiwa EB802 backpack blower has a few things going for it. It feels light and nimble, and it revs up quickly. We liked the hip controls, which includes a helpful kill switch and a cruise control style throttle toggle. The footplate was a nice touch that not every manufacturer included, believe it or not. It even generated the fastest airspeed at 203 MPH.
Despite that last fact, however, the Shindaiwa lags a bit in the power department. It finished last in our Newton Force, CFM, and swath tests, and by a considerable amount in each instance. It was probably the least comfortable blower that we looked at, due to the considerable vibration this blower generated. It also lacked any active cooling.
However, none of this is to say that the Shindaiwa EB802 isn’t a good blower. It did finish last in our competition, but that’s no reason to write it off completely. For one thing, it had some pretty stiff competition to work against. For another thing, the Shindaiwa blower still provides more than enough power to get the job done. There’s an obvious benefit to having a light blower with a decent sized gas tank, even if it might be a little bit underpowered.
- Model: EB802
- Displacement: 79.2 cc
- Weight: 25.3 lbs
- Fuel Capacity: 67.6 oz
- dB(A) @ ear: 101
- Max Air Volume: 586 CFM
- Max Air Speed: 203 MPH
- Force: 28.0 Newtons
- Tank Runtime: 1 hr 2 min
- MSRP: $529.99
To find out more information on the Shindaiwa EB802 blower, click here .