I've owned this for about 4 weeks now, having put about 10 hours on it in that time...so a review is due.
Wallenstein makes all manner of forestry products, and this model is the smallest of their chipper/shredder combos. I forget how many PTO hp it requires, but my MF GC2600 spins it with ease, having 19.6 PTO hp, so consider that. Rev throttle to 1500 rpm, engage PTO, rev slowly to 2500 rpm (the tractor's 540 PTO speed). I should mention that, before engaging the PTO, I first have to lift the tractor seat forward and rest something against the safety switch. Been using a tube of lithium grease, but the right sized rubber ball would be even better. Easy.
What distinguishes this unit from a standard chipper is that it has a large hopper on top meant for "brush" up to 1-inch thick. Most people are familiar with how chipper wheels work, and Wallenstein's is essentially no different, so I'll skip that. But the shredder works totally differently, essentially a series of forked teeth that nearly interlock as they spin. It's actually a little intimidating when you first use it, because whatever you stick in there is ripped from your hands in an instant and vaporized! And I MEAN it. I found that the needled ends of pine branches which don't go through chippers so well are especially suited to this, along with whatever smaller branches/bush bundles I have. You just sort of stick it part way in and pull the chute lever and WHOOOOSH, vaporized. Just have to watch that you fingers aren't caught in whatever you're dropping in...not because of the blades (they're way inside), but because you could definitely have a finger snapped from the down force of the material being sucked in. It's pretty **** impressive.
The chipper is, I've found, probably 'conservatively' rated @ 3 inch branches / 6 inch boards. It has eaten anything I've run through it...including just a couple pieces of dried up 2x6's...but I haven't pushed it beyond the factory specs, and don't plan to. Does a great job with both green and dry stuff.
I have to say, through lots of reading I got the sense that Wallenstein makes uber quality stuff, and I'm not disappointed after owning it. It's commercial/industrial build and component quality. You DO get what you pay for!
And kudos to them, it's made in Canada, and they make no secret of touting it. Like MANY guys on this forum, I will PAY
for American/Canadian made quality machinery/labor.
Just a couple other non-machine comments:
1. You WILL need an extra long top link pin, as the flanges are very wide. Wish I'd known this ahead of time and didn't have to run to Tractor Supply Co. on a Sunday. Other than needing this pin, the only other thing I had to do was cut 1 1/2 inches out of the PTO shaft.
2. You WILL need either a LARGE (as in 15 inch) adjustable wrench, an open-ended 32MM wrench, or a LONG 32MM socket, in order to get the lower link pins on. The adjustable works fine if you lock it on and stick a large screwdriver shaft through the pin hole and turn it like a socket, if you don't own the wrench. Otherwise have fun acquiring a LONG 32MM socket on short notice.
3. When I called around to dealers within 100 miles of me I got a big variance in prices, and none had it in stock. Seems the chipper-only models are more popular (not to mention $1,000 less). I was quoted $3,700-$4,200 among the 4 dealers...until I found Woodward Crossings in PA. I get the impression they move a LOT of these, and they're super friendly and fast. Paid $3,439 all-in DELIVERED, and it was delivered 4 days later...still in it's original factory wrapped crate and plastic.
Given the cost, this isn't an implement I want to leave out in the weather...so I made a dolly large enough and it lives in the garage against the wall, and I just roll it over and attach when necessary. I weighs 450 lbs but rolls with ease...this system has worked well.
This was a big purchase for us, but given the even steeper cost of paying a service to come and clear out trails over nearly 5 acres of woods, not to mention the branch cleanup after every storm and winter here...it was worth it for us to own it. I chose the Wallenstein because of impression I got of the reputation from reading online, and because I found that the Woods I was looking at is actually made by Bearcat, costs the same, and doesn't have the shredder.
This machine would not be NEARLY as useful WITHOUT the shredder...it was worth it to spend the extra $1,000.