Renting a treemek for the first time

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
So I am looking into renting a tree mek for the first time, I have gotten in contact with an individual who lives in the same town as me that purchased one about a year ago. I do not have his exact crane model but it is a palifinger with 100 foot vertical and around 80-85' horizontal reach, the saw is the mecanil SG220.

Nothing is set in stone yet, and I do not even have a particular job that I need it for, but I am curious as someone who has never worked with a crane, what should I expect? I'd be happy to hear from guys who rent cranes, as well as guys who sub them out.

The first time I hire him will likely be for a job that the crane is not really needed, as I like the first time I work with someone to be a fairly straightforward job to see how we work together.

Thanks in advance,
Justin
 

climbhightree

Well-Known Member
Also Carolina Tree on Instagram has a ton of high speed videos using the TreeMek

Steve's video and Carolina's should give a good idea of what to expect.

But any crane use really comes down to the operator
 

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
Not to give the wrong impression, as this is my first time looking at renting a crane, I would never go out and rent a crane and expect to be taking a 5,000 lb brush picks with no training. If I needed that to happen I'd hire a crane and a climber until I felt confident in doing it myself. Being as this is a tremek this offers a unique opportunity for me as I am a 2 man crew at my biggest, here lately all of my work has been solo and using a mini to do the grunt work. In addition to to being able to knock out a bigger job with less fatigue it will also help me network with another small business in my area which I have found invaluable when you need help in a pinch with a job due to equipment or any other issues.

Just wanted to give a better idea of where I'm coming from and that I don't take climbing with a crane lightly. Thanks @deevo for the heads up on that class, if I have time in my schedule I'll have to check that out.
 

climbhightree

Well-Known Member
Not to give the wrong impression, as this is my first time looking at renting a crane, I would never go out and rent a crane and expect to be taking a 5,000 lb brush picks with no training. If I needed that to happen I'd hire a crane and a climber until I felt confident in doing it myself. Being as this is a tremek this offers a unique opportunity for me as I am a 2 man crew at my biggest, here lately all of my work has been solo and using a mini to do the grunt work. In addition to to being able to knock out a bigger job with less fatigue it will also help me network with another small business in my area which I have found invaluable when you need help in a pinch with a job due to equipment or any other issues.

Just wanted to give a better idea of where I'm coming from and that I don't take climbing with a crane lightly. Thanks @deevo for the heads up on that class, if I have time in my schedule I'll have to check that out.
Sounds like a treemek subbing is the best option for you (one or 2 man crew). I've always been a 2 man crew company, and with a mini you can make that work with a 40ton stick crane. But it works even better with a mek.

With your no experience it is even more important to have an experienced crane operator (experienced on doing trees with it), the more the better. This decreases greatly when using a grapple saw, but for trunk wood that comes off and a climber goes up. Sg220 has an 18" bar...so that is his max diameter cut unless he does snap cuts with it. With snap cuts he could almost double the diameter, but it gets tricky doing this type of cut.

Use 2 straps for the spar (one on each side...3 and 9 o'clock or 12 and 6 o'clock depending on lean etc). Brush picks should be balanced with multiple slings so they come of without changing pitch or rotation...this is almost more important on knucklebooms vs stick cranes. As much as possible try to use shelf cuts, v cuts, saw kerf cuts etc. These help to limit branch or trunk swings till the climber is clear and the crane starts lifting it away.

Tcia has a book call Crane Best Practices that explains all this and more. I definitely recommend getting it. https://www.tcia.org/TCIA/Shop/TCIA Item_Detail.aspx?iProductCode=CBP4&Category=
 

ROYCE

Well-Known Member
Also...is the operator going to see the job first? I ask because I believe the knuckle boom cranes can not have their wheels off the ground. This is something to consider in where your going to position the crane. I mention his because as a salesman it is my job to determine how long a job will take...often that is determined by where I can get equipment. I would hate for you to think the crane will be set up in the side yard...only to find it is too steep of a hill for the crane. I hope that makes sense.
 

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
Also...is the operator going to see the job first? I ask because I believe the knuckle boom cranes can not have their wheels off the ground. This is something to consider in where your going to position the crane. I mention his because as a salesman it is my job to determine how long a job will take...often that is determined by where I can get equipment. I would hate for you to think the crane will be set up in the side yard...only to find it is too steep of a hill for the crane. I hope that makes sense.
Good point. I had a conversation with the crane operator on the phone and we discussed him coming to look at a job I'm bidding. This is in part to help me bid it accurately and also for him to see the kind of access. Unfortunately the first tree I have for him will mean either setting up 100' away and across some power lines or to drive through two neighbors property in order to avoid driving over field beds.
 

deevo

Well-Known Member
Good point. I had a conversation with the crane operator on the phone and we discussed him coming to look at a job I'm bidding. This is in part to help me bid it accurately and also for him to see the kind of access. Unfortunately the first tree I have for him will mean either setting up 100' away and across some power lines or to drive through two neighbors property in order to avoid driving over field beds.
100’ radius is pretty far he may not even reach it, cranes will destroy septic beds, that’s the first thing I ask customers on every single job is where is the septic tank and bed. You might be into a bigger crane if you have to reach that far, but good call on getting the operator out to look. My new k booms got 93’6” horizontal and 98’ vertical, again let us know how it pans out!
 

Jehinten

Well-Known Member
Yea. I think I can get him close enough cutting through one neighbor's driveway and then the others yard. Then of course speaking with the crane OP and see what he thinks of the plan. If my route works he'll be driving 250-300 feet off road, depending on where he sets up.
 

jareese

New Member
It might be a good idea to go to one of his jobs and observe him work the crane. That way you will understand the capabilities and limitations of the machine and it won’t cost you a thing.
 

Baja Mike

Active Member
Unless the k boom is 65 meter tons or larger at a 100’ radius you won’t be doing much. That’s 110 territory. It is much easier to learn cranework working off a stick crane. As your moments are more simply up and down and if your strapping away from the stick a good operator can swing you back in towards the stick. Having greater capacity at radius gives you a greater safety net starting out judging pieces. In stick crane world the smallest crane I would attempt to work with at that radius would be a 45 or using a 60 AT would give you plenty of capacity to do the job quickly and effectively instead of taking tiny pieces. The Mek is an awesome tool. But like every tool it has a place in the toolbox.
 
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