Nemo Grabo Review: Electric Suction Cup

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The market has opened up to new vacuum lifting equipment that continues to improve and expand into a wide range of industries. If you are interested in improving efficiency in your business and working to adapt new technologies into your business every year to make life easier on your crew, then vacuum lifting equipment is a technology that you need to adapt.

There is incredible vacuum lifters on the market that will replace straps, chains, or clamps to make placing larger items easier such as steps and large slabs. There are also other vacuum lifters that help with placing slabs and pavers with two man or one man lifts. You can read all about these various types of vaccuum lifting equipment and their uses here.

However, in this article we are going to feature a specific piece of vacuum lifting equipment. This small hand-held unit will really help with specific types of materials that you are installing on any job site and can be used with various other materials if you are not in the hardscaping industry. This tool is a powerful piece of equipment to have in your arsenal.


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Nemo Grabo Plus: Vacuum Suction Cups

The Nemo Grabber (Grabo) is made by Nemo Power Tools LTD. It is a battery-powered hand-held vacuum lifter that creates a suction on the surface of various materials. It is capable of almost instantly connecting to almost any surface, whether it is rough or smooth. Easily pick up, move, and place several different materials. With this unit, you can pick up:

  • Concrete Tiles
  • Ribbed Glass
  • Texture Plates
  • Concrete
  • Natural Stone
  • Marble
  • Wood
  • Drywall
  • Checker Plate
  • Metal

Simply pop the battery in place, turn it on, and the vacuum will suction to the surface of the material. You will hear the vacuum stop once the seal has been made and turn back on automatically if needed or it will continuously run depending on the porosity of the material you are lifting or the uneven surface. Once the seal has been made, which is almost instantly, you can then lift the material and move it to the desired position. When you want to release the Grabo suction tool from the material, there is a button to release the vacuum and the seal is broken. It really does not get much simpler than that.

This battery powered suction machine is really handy in those situations where a material needs to be picked up after it has been laid to be able to adjust it. This typically would mean spending time trying to get your fingers underneath the unit to be able to lift it up and using both hands to do so leaving you with no other hands to adjust what is needed to be adjusted. The Grabo allows you to use just one hand to pick up that unit and the other to adjust with no fingers pinched. This may not seem like such a big deal, but imagine how many times you may have to pick that unit up to adjust and how many units in one project that you may need to pick up. How much time would it save to be able to use the Grabo to remove the pain and struggle of picking up each of these in one project. How much time would that save in one season? How much money does that time equate to in your business? Is it worth the investment into one or two Grabo machines? Most likely. And most likely you will have made up the cost of the machine on the first or second job that you have used it on. Not to mention the finger pinching saving of the tool itself.

Grabo Uses

The suction ability really depends on the porosity of the material that you are picking up, as well as the texture of the surface of that material. Porosity depends on the density of that material and the ability to pull air through that material. The more porous a material it is (air flows through that material because it is less dense), the less likely the Grabo has the ability to create a firm seal on the surface of it. For example, natural stone generally has less porosity than a concrete paver. The Grabo has a higher likelihood of being able to pick up a piece of natural stone compared to a concrete paver. That being said, I have seen this tool pick up concrete pavers with little difficulty. Again that would depend on the porosity, texture, and weight of that unit that it is picking up.


We use it in our business in the hardscape industry for placing large step treads, wall caps, pillar caps, and pool coping by using one Grabo unit on each end. This makes it easy for us to have two guys on one unit to simply pick up and place the product without worrying about their fingers gripped at the edges while placing them.

The Grabo electric vacuum suction cup lifter has several different uses for a wide variety of industries and makes for a small and affordable tool to have with you at all times. Whether you want to save your fingers or you just want to create a handle for those large and awkward pieces of drywall or plywood that you need to pick up, the Grabo can be of use to you in your business.

The Grabo portable electric vacuum lifter makes a great tool for tiling when you are placing those hard to reach spots where your fingers are not able to grip around the tile that you are placing. It makes for a great tool to be able to pick up and readjust the material underneath without having to disturb that material with your fingers gripped around the sides of the product. It also makes for a great dent remover in your truck, though we do not recommend that.


 

Nemo Grabo Reviews

The Grabo has numerous raving reviews online for its ability and uses on a job site. With the uses that were described above, there is no doubt that it likely has a use on one of your job sites and would be a great asset to your team.

The package that you purchase with the Grabo comes with two lithium-ion batteries, a battery charger, replacement foam seal, and a lifting strap. The two batteries allow you to always have one that is ready to go to ensure that you will not run out of power on a job site. The replacement foam seal ensures that if your seal shows signs of wear and tear or you notice a difference in the suction ability of the Grabo, you can replace it and have it continue working for you.

It is crucial that you use it within its limits and that you do not try to push those limits, otherwise it could cause safety issues. The unit itself weighs in at just 3 pounds and features a 350 pound lifting capacity.

Nemo Grabo Price

How can you justify purchasing a Grabo for your business? There are really four reasons that you would want to purchase this for yourself or your crew.

  1. Quality of Work
  2. With the right tools at your disposal, you can likely build and create anything. Even without the right tools, you can likely get it done though you would still need some of the basic tools in your industry. However, with the right tools, you can not only build what you have in mind you can also build it with the utmost quality that you want to represent your business. If the Grabo fits in your business based on its uses, you will want to invest in at least one of them.

  3. Labor
  4. It is not a secret that there is a labor shortage. So you should be working to make your company as appealing to work for and making it as easy of a place to work for your employees so that you can retain the good ones. That means making sure that your employees have the right tools and the best tools. That being said, if you agree with this statement then the Grabo is a no-brainer in your business if it has a use in your business.

  5. Safety
  6. Have you ever pinched your finger placing a stone slab? This tool will help prevent that from happening. Instead of having your fingers on the edges of the material you are placing, you only have one hand on the handle ready to place it. There is a lot to be said about this purchase in providing some safety to you and your employees. It will pay for itself in a pinched finger that needs to be medically taken care of, not to mention the wasted time in taking care of that employee. Which brings us to the next point.

  7. Efficiency
  8. Wasted time is something you should be eliminating on every job site. This could be wasted time taking care of somebody who has just pinched their finger or wasted time in having to pick up a product to be able to adjust the material below it and struggling to get your fingers underneath it to lift it, placing it somewhere so you can use both hands to adjust the material below it, and then picking it back up with both hands and potentially disturbing the material below it again while placing it. Either way you look at it, this tool is a minimal upfront investment that would save you time and money on any job site.



If the Grabo saves you just 5 minutes a day and you work 5 days a week for 36 weeks of the year (based on a typical season for us who experience winters in the hardscape industry), that works out to be 900 minutes or 15 hours of saved time.

If this is one of my workers saving the time and they are being paid, along with the cost of employing them such as workers compensation insurance, $25 then that 15 hours saved for that employee would be $375 which is more than the cost of the Grabo. This does not even take into factor the cost savings of your overhead expenses for that time. The 5 minutes a day saved with this tool is a very minimal estimate. If you are a business that specializes in the materials that this tool works with, it will no doubt save you more than that 5 minutes of time each day. It is important that you do your own cost analysis and decide whether or not this is a smart purchase for you.

Having said that, how much would it cost you in your business if one of your employees pinched their finger really badly and required some medical attention? Likely well more than the cost of one of these tools. Guaranteed more headaches than this tool will provide you.

With any tool over a certain amount, I will do a cost analysis to see whether or not it is worthwhile to my business. However, in my business that number is $500 (based on the 100% tool tax deductible cost where I live). With this tool being well below that threshold, it is an easy purchase for my business and falls in my business budget under the budgeted amount that I have created for my tools for the year. You may do this differently in your business, but this is how I calculate these costs for my business.

Whether or not you decide to invest in one or two of these machines for your business, this post was meant to open your eyes to the posabilities of tools that are on the market and to further research other small tools that you can invest in that are cost effective for your business that will actually bring in more money in your business than they actually cost.

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