Troy-Bilt Wood Chipper - Super Tomahawk = Our No. 1 Tool For Better Composting

We could not have gotten as far with our sustainable land clearing and composting, if it had not been for our power horse, our Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk wood chipper with its 8 HP Briggs & Stratton motor. We purchased this 31+ year-old wood chipper off Craigslist for $200 about a year and a half ago, and it is still going strong.

Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk wood chipper
Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk Wood Chipper




We've used it about once a week for the past year and a half, and when we encounter a problem, we try to trouble shoot, and sometimes we have to draw on other Troy Bilt Wood Chipper owners, which is why we've decided to make a Troy-Bilt wood chipper video to explain some of the things that we did not know, when we first got our amazing wood chipper.
 



So far we've chopped up and shredded anything our acre of Florida woodland gives us: dead branches, leaves, pine needles, palmetto leaves, palmetto trunks, palmetto roots and old dead tree trunks cut into smaller pieces. It takes it all, it chops it up, shreds it to pieces, and then it spits it out.

Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk wood chipper


Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk wood chipper


The Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk wood chipper comes with three screens for different size chipping, but most of the time we do the chipping without it, as using these screens do seem to make the wood chipper work harder, and it seems it does a lot of huffing and puffing.



Still for certain jobs like chopping leaves or very hardy palmetto sticks, the screens do an amazing job at shredding these items into tiny pieces or grass-like shreds.



shredded palmetto after wood chipper
Shredded palmetto after  having gone through the wood chipper with a screen on.

Shredded leaves
Leaves after being shredded in the wood chipper with a screen.




Thanks to the Troy-Bilt Wood Chipper we have composted so much material that we now have an amazing play area for the kids, and not a single branch or bag of leaves has been put out for yard waste pick up.

We spend about $2 - $2.50 in gas for every 5 - 6 hours that the wood chipper runs, but we are saving so much by not having to rent a wood chipper, by making our own compost and by making wood chips for our gardens at the house and at The Land. While we do not love the fact that the wood chipper runs on gas, we feel that it is offset by the fact that we are not burning off any material from The Land as we compost everything, and we therefore consider it an essential part of our sustainable land-clearing process.



Troy-Bilt Chipper/Shredder Tips:
  • Wear gloves, goggles and ear protection - this chipper is loud, and things fly everywhere.
  • Have patience, don't rush, and take all precautions.
  • Follow the safety instructions and warnings 
  • Take good care of your Troy-Bilt chipper, and it will last a long time.
  • Keep the wood chipper indoors or cover it up with a tarp when not in use 
  • Listen to your Super Tomahawk, and you will soon learn when you encounter a problem.
Troy-Bilt Super Tomahawk wood chipper


How To Use Troy-Bilt Wood Chipper:

  1. Turn on the gas to the upright position
  2. Turn on the motor
  3. Pull the pulley
  4. Start the clutch lever, slowly and steadily 
  5. If the pulley won't pull check our video for instructions
  6. Make sure to use a plunger, do not risk your limbs. 
  7. Don't hold onto limbs and palmettos, as the shredder will rip these out of your hand. We prefer to bend sticks and palmettos into two, and then using the plunger to push these down.
  8. When turning off the wood chipper, just follow the steps in reverse. 
  9. Make sure to slowly release the clutch lever, while it is still running, as this help prevent wear and tear on the belt.  

Troy-Bilt Wood Chipper Trouble Shooting:

  1. If the pulley won't attach, try turning the belt from below until it clicks into place.
  2. If the belt breaks, take it to your local supply store such as Tractor Supply Company for a similar belt. This is where we found ours, and it works great.
  3. If something gets stuck, turn off the machine, wait for it to cool and then attempt to remove it.
  4. If something gets stuck in the chute, you can unscrew it for easier access.
  5. We have yet to sharpen the knives, but if you are looking for directions to do so, we can recommend this Troy-Bilt Wood Chipper Blade Sharpening video from Banshee8989.



If you have any questions about your Troy-Bilt wood chipper, or if you have any tips and tricks to share when chipping, please leave us a comment below. We'd love to hear from you. Also, if you need any info from the manual, let us now as we have the original Troy-Bilt Wood Chipper Super Tomahawk manual.

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If you own a Troy Bilt, how old is your Troy Bilt wood chipper, and how long have you owned it?

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  3. I have a vintage 80's Troy Bilt Super Tomahawk Chipper Shredder. I loved being able to make mulch out of tree branches, garden debris, etc. Last year I split some oak logs that had sat for over a year. I ran the waste from the splitter thru the Super Tomahawk. About half-way thru the job, the machine started making a terrible noise and stopped running. I discovered that the curved steel wear plate welded inside the housing came loose. It did not like chewing the hardwood oak shreds. I disassembled the unit to get the plate out, and to get a replacement made since it had a lot of scoring on it from the chipper tangs hitting it. i got busy on another project and put the chipper repair aside till recently. Now I don't remember what direction or starting point the wear plate was tack welded in place, so i am asking anyone out there if they experienced this issue and how they remedied it. I don't want to trash my beloved chipper, as I now have a small mountain of brush waiting to be ran thru the future repaired machine. Any ideas or comments would be appreciated.

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  4. Hi, I too have a 1980's 8HP Super Tomahawk Chipper Shredder which runs well but has lost the extension spring (part # 97138 in the Parts Manual) that maintains alignment of the clutch lever with the pulley. Can anyone provide the length and diameter of the spring based on one they have on their own machine? Thanks

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  5. Same model, 1984, off Craigslist for $300 about 9 years back. Chips everything but doesn't like srtringy fiber like hickory, so I do go through a few belts. Carburetor backflowed into the air intake which I may have fixed by repeatedly seating the main jet, Now I'm concerned that it idles way too fast and runs hot. Any idea what rpm it should idle at? I can't really tell from the sound track on various videos so I ordered a budget tachometer to give me an idea. I think I may be idling at more than 4,000 rpm. Not good. Great post, thanks.

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