Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spikes

Sciuropterus

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

I got a call today from the Xcel Energy vegetation clearance manager, (I had e-mailed them), he said that Excel strongly discourages spiking healthy trees and he said he is seeing progress on that front with the contractors, but it isn't going to change overnight. He came across as knowing what he was talking about when it came to tree health, and we had a good discussion.
 

Neutron

New Member
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I work in line clearence and we had two crews out to pull overhang on a tree that the jaraff machine (75' reach) couldn't get. I was going to climb it and the other crew said to just put the gaffs on and spike up. I told them spikes were for people who don't know how to climb and are lazy and inept (with a joking tone of course so as to keep from getting a black eye). Then i SRT'd up the tree and the were like...how the hell did he just do that. That was their education. It was fun.

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So is using hooks worse than trimming the same tree with the Jaraff? If you can make a proper cut with a sky trimmer you must be gods gift to operators.
 

BostonBull

New Member
Different applications. This tree was in a backyard in a very residential neighorhood.

If this were a ROW, I would say no, ones not worse than the other in terms of health of the tree. But those trees are in ROW's and will eventually get mature enough that they will need to be removed anyways for clearance.
 

Blinky

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

Duke Energy allows spikes for clearance pruning but the property owner can request a Customer Liaison visit prior to the work. With contractors doing the veg management, anything can happen.

In three cases I've been in on, the Duke Energy CL was a Certified Arborist and complied with the customer's demands as much as possible without bending the clearance specs. In two of those cases I was hired to do the clearance while the CL and the customer supervised.

The crews around here that are bad are the road clearance outfits. They are the worst hacks I've ever seen... you'd think they would make a collar cut once in a while just by chance but nope, our road are adorned with thousands of internodal cuts and butchered trees.

No lines, they just cut trees back from secondary roads... for no apparent reason. Stuff like that makes me worry about 'shovel ready' stimulus projects. I can see them hacking up every roadside tree in the state in the name of making jobs.

Newly trained tree hacks is something the economy can do without.
 

mikeyott

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

i use to work for asplundh and davey doing line clearing and residential when i was younger they use spikes on line clearing cuz its faster and more production they dont give a s%$& about the trees its all about money to those companies i started out not wearing spurs and got told i was taking my time to much and i had to wear spurs and residential i was topping trees by 20 ft and everything before i knew what i was doing killing the poor thing they can care less about trees just what they produce that all mighty dollar!
 

TLHamel

Active Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

I was climbing in Bloomington, MN on Friday. Asplundh was clearing backyard lines on the same block. During lunch I walked over and introduced myself. I recognized a couple guys from the MNTCC last year, we chatted for a bit. They were working at a great pace, made proper pruning cuts, and did NOT use spikes.
 

mikeyott

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

see well in ottawa they just dont give a bleep i know a couple guys me included that had to wear spurs because the GF thaught we were wasting time throwballing in and whatnot thats why im working for the city
 

tr33thri11s

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

Alot of it stems from production based factors and some from poor management. I remember the time when I was called out on a "complaint" (those darn customers who won't let ya be is how I used to see it, but now its a concern and someone I can possibly educate). The customer was upset that his silver maple had these ugly scratches all over it. Upon investigation I determined that an inexperience apprentice had been put in the tree with a pair of spurs. When the customer informed me he was a professor at a nearby college and held an ISA arborist license, I could do nothing but say sorry and that I was personally going to deal with the issue. Since that day I have promoted using only spurs for three occasions. 1.Removals, 2.Emergency Rescue, 3.When needed in storm work situations. The problem is that nobody will tell another coworker or employee that the practice of trimming with spurs is wrong for fear of the blowup by the employee depending on spurs to ascend the tree.
 

tomthetreeman

Well-Known Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

Actually, another use for spurs is removing large leaders that have no laterals or spots for positioning. Of course you should take them off when you've worked your way back to the trunk.

I have yet to try webslings for this, but it could eliminate the need. Just a little more work setting and resetting them.

-Tom
 

mattmann

New Member
I can tell you that the spiking policy is largely set by the utility.

Out here guys have been fired off the utilities property for hooking a live tree.

I work out on the high lines, in the woods. If it needs to be trimmed, it needs to be removed. So I get to hook a lot. But I can do the old hip thrust with the worst of then if I need to
 

Grais

Member
I started in this business working on Big Orange Pumpkins, Asplundhs original truck color was 'Omaha Orange', and the guys I cam up with were all great tree guys.
Sure there is always going to be a few bad apples, but too tar and feather a whole company because of one crew, or division that is having trouble keeping up with the times is simply unfair too all the hard working and decent guys that Asplundh has working for them right now.
It simply pisses me off when people start making blanket proclamations condemning people they have never met or have the slightest clue about.
-Grais.
 

BostonBull

New Member
I think that Asplundh has a bad rep nationwide because of their failure to enforce Arboricultural standards. you'll never hear someone praise them for doing the right thing, bit when they do it wrong you best believe they will be blasted in every way. its just the nature of working for the public.
 

JJackson

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

I agree with Bull, when they were on our property (contact with utility) none of them wore spikes to prune. This is controlled by the utility and we did not look the other way. I now have in house crews but back in the day I expected the same quality of work from the contractors, except their chippers did not like the larger wood.
 

classictruckman

Well-Known Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

Well I know of a few Asplundh guys in my area, most of the good ones are hired by the city of Ottawa. The ones I am most familiar with are ex-asplundhs who run their own company and if you want them to trim your tree without spurs you have to pay extra.
 

UpYourTree

Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

I wonder if they charge extra so they can use that money to go to school and learn to trim properly.

Now I'm not saying I'm perfect either, I spike everything on the right of ways, It's a rule where I work, but working in the muskokas you have to be careful if you're spiking on someones property, I usually have my groundie take my slack for me, unless it's a 60' poplar with no limbs, than I'll at least spike the side not facing their cabin. Normally once I'm up, I'll toss my spikes down though.
 

easyphloem

Well-Known Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

As a company, I have seen vast improvements in the quality of training the Asplundh crews get in my area. They buy all the newest gear for their climbers who want to learn new school techniques.

I hear they are mandating that every crew leader be a C.A., so they can have one on site when doing residential work.

Also, big orange is a huge sponsor of the CAA TCC, and without their help year after year, we wouldn't be able to run such a smooth event.


SZ
 

Dan_Watkins

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

Glad to hear Asplundh is trying to improve their company image. It was, and still kind of is, regarded as a sub par utility company as far as proper arboriculture goes. Im sure their are some good guys their getting a bad rap. But when you are a company as big as they are, you need those trucks to roll everyday, so im sure their is room for improvement.
 

oldschool

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

[ QUOTE ]
Glad to hear Asplundh is trying to improve their company image. It was, and still kind of is, regarded as a sub par utility company as far as proper arboriculture goes. Im sure their are some good guys their getting a bad rap. But when you are a company as big as they are, you need those trucks to roll everyday, so im sure their is room for improvement.

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asplundh is not a utility company. as far as utility "contractors" go they are far from sub par. Ive worked for a good many of em. they are all basically the same, with the same methods. actually asplundh had the best equipment out of all of the ones ive worked for. Doing the large volume of "vegetative control" that they are required to do for the price they are awarded requires sub par techniques to accomplish the contracts. either you as the electrical customers pay a substantial rate hike for delivery/maintaince or it will always continue as is.
sometimes its like putting a square into a circle....the right way to do it just wont work
 

BostonBull

New Member
Re: Asplundh doing line clearance pruning with spi

[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
Glad to hear Asplundh is trying to improve their company image. It was, and still kind of is, regarded as a sub par utility company as far as proper arboriculture goes. Im sure their are some good guys their getting a bad rap. But when you are a company as big as they are, you need those trucks to roll everyday, so im sure their is room for improvement.

[/ QUOTE ]

asplundh is not a utility company. as far as utility "contractors" go they are far from sub par. Ive worked for a good many of em. they are all basically the same, with the same methods. actually asplundh had the best equipment out of all of the ones ive worked for. Doing the large volume of "vegetative control" that they are required to do for the price they are awarded requires sub par techniques to accomplish the contracts. either you as the electrical customers pay a substantial rate hike for delivery/maintaince or it will always continue as is.
sometimes its like putting a square into a circle....the right way to do it just wont work

[/ QUOTE ]

this option shopuld be up to the customer and homeowners, not the lazy trimmers. It IS possible to make your quota, and do quality work.
 
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