BAHCO PX-L2 Fixed Handle Bypass Pruner: Product Review
A very high quality, professional grade bypass pruner
Available on Amazon
The BAHCO PX-L2 Fixed Handle Bypass Pruner falls in the high quality range of hand pruners. As with all BAHCO pruning shears, it features superior carbon steel blades (very sharp) and ergonomically designed handles for comfort and ease of use. Plus, unlike many gardening tools these days, the BAHCO pruners are manufactured in France, not China.
On a side note, the name BAHCO is capitalized – it stands for the initials of one of the original owners by the name of B.A. Hjorth & Co. BAHCO is now owned by the international conglomerate Snap-on, but the name still remains.
A Note about the PACKAGING
The packaging is great in some ways but impractical in others. BAHCO puts the pruning shears in a combination cardboard/plastic scabbard that lets you hold and “cut” with the pruner while it’s still in the packaging. That’s nice but it’s almost impossible to get the pruner out of the packaging! I had to use a flat head screwdriver to pry off a lock-ring that held the cardboard/plastic scabbard to the pruner. This took a lot of prying of the retaining lock-ring to release the pruners from the packaging. Be careful when doing this – it’s easy for the screwdriver to slip. Definitely not an optimal packaging design in my mind.
EROGONOMICALLY DESIGNED Handles
One thing that differentiates the BAHCO PX-L2 from many of its competitors is the ergonomically designed handles, known as the ERGO design, that are intended to maximize comfort and minimize effort.
I found the handles to be very comfortable in my hands from the get go. The bump at the top of the handles is an excellent place for your thumb to rest and the bottom handle has a comfortable place for your index finger to rest.
BAHCO pruners come in large, medium and small sizes. We tested the large size (PX-L2) and found that the handles were comfortable and the pruners worked well even for those with smaller hands.
The handle design also eliminates potential pinch points for hands or fingers.
The top handle has a nice rubberized coating that kept my hand in place, while the lower handle has a smooth, non-rubberized surface that let my hand slide while making cuts. A perfect combination.
To reduce the pruner’s weight, BAHCO manufactures the handles from a composite material that looks and feels like plastic. But don’t think that makes it “cheap” – it’s incredibly strong stuff and didn’t bend even when cutting through the maximum cutting diameter of ¾”.
Sharp Carbon Steel Blades
The cutting blades on the PX-L2 are made from exceptional quality high carbon steel that has a very sharp edge, something that BAHCO is noted for. There is a Xylan coating that’s meant to reduce friction and help prevent rust (although, as with all coatings, it will probably wear off over time).
The blades are offset from the handles so that cuts can be made with a straight wrist, thereby minimizing fatigue and pain that can result when making numerous pruning cuts. The design also makes it easier to reach into tight spots without bending the wrist, where a straight cutting head would make that more difficult.
Cuts Up To ¾ Inch
The BAHCO PX-L2 Fixed Handle Bypass Pruner is rated to cut through branches and stems up to ¾” diameter. I had no problem cutting through even hard wood up to the full ¾ inch. The cuts were very clean with no ragged edges.
Excellent BUMPER & SPRING MECHANISM
There is a very nice bumper incorporated inside the spring mechanism. It provides an excellent cushion even when the handles slam together when cutting through tough, larger diameter branches.
The pruner comes with a coiled spring that easily spreads the handles apart, yet isn’t so strong that you can’t squeeze the handles together when making fine pruning cuts.
ADJUSTABLE BLADE ASSEMBLY
There are two geared nuts that hold the blades at the correct pressure. One is the main gear nut that’s attached to a bolt that goes through the center of the blades. The other is a smaller gear nut that prevents the larger one from loosening up.
You’ll have to adjust a hex nut (attached to the main tightening bolt) to obtain the optimal blade tension.
One nice feature is that the screws that hold these gear nuts in place take either a Torx or straight bladed screwdriver – no special tools required.
LOCKING MECHANISM is TOUGH TO USE
The blades are locked in place with a thumb operated push lock (bolt type mechanism). I found it tough to get the bolt closed or opened with a simple slide of the thumb when holding the pruner in one hand. I have strong hands and had to really squeeze down on the handles before I could engage the lock. Someone with less strength would have a problem closing or opening the lock without using both hands to do so.
Not only are the blades on the BAHCO PX-L2 replaceable, but the handles, nuts and spring are too. Parts can be ordered from the BAHCO Store in the USA.
BAHCO also offers a full line of sharpening tools, holsters, cleaning fluid and lubrication oil, also available at the BAHCO Store.
BAHCO has a pretty standard warranty that covers the pruning shears against workmanship and materials defects.
The BAHCO PX-L2 bypass pruner has quickly become one of my go-to pruning shears. The cutting blade is incredibly sharp, the ergonomic design causes less wrist and hand stress, and it easily cuts through ¾ inch branches and stems, even when pruning hard wood. Overall, this is a very high quality, professional grade bypass pruner.
The biggest downside is the blade locking system; it’s difficult to fully engage without a lot of hand strength. However, the more I used it, the more the locking bolt seemed to “break in” so over time it got easier to fully open and close the pruner.
Also of concern was the packaging’s locking ring that had to be pried off the tightening nut to release the pruner from the back of the packaging.
Despite these two areas or concern, I found the pruner to be ranked in the top of this class of pruners. I would definitely buy another BAHCO PX-L2 given the chance.
WHERE TO BUY
The BAHCO PX-L2 bypass pruner can be purchased through a variety of internet stores. It can also be found at some quality hardware and some big box stores.
But the easiest place to buy BAHCO products is through Amazon where you can find this model for around $37.64 in small (PX-S2), medium (PX-M2) and large (PX-L2) sizes.
You can also buy a larger pruner, the PX-L3, that’s reported to have a cutting capacity of 1.25 inches. We didn’t test that model but it would be worth trying if you’re looking for a bypass pruner with a bit more “bite.”
And now over to you – Which are your favorite pruning shears? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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