Using winch to" float" limb/wood


New Member
Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

What do you guys think about using the winchline from the chipper to "float" limbs/ wood over landscape to avoid yard damage. I do this alot and I often wonder if I am over loading my rigging line and or block. On the larger stuff I use a 200ft 5/8 super braid line and 1/2 amsteel on the block and porty. On some of the largest stuff Ive done this to, the porty will be to hot to touch afterwards.


Active Member
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

If I understand you correctly, and I think I do because I've done this pretty many times, the main thing you have to worry about is side-loading the tree you are using. Especially if your climber is still on the stem, and you are winching pieces they've just rigged off. The side load can be pretty great, and that's just not the way the tree is strongest.

I don't worry about rigging huge pieces of wood if the forces are going parallel to the stem. I get worried when the forces start going perpendicular to it.

Also, communication is important - if the portowrap is getting that hot, the winch operator and the pow operator need to slow down and talk to each other (or hand signals) more. Just think, if either rope fails, what is going to happen?


Well-Known Member
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

A fellow buzzer shared a story of how an aluminum porty failed during this pratice. I think he blamed it on the porty being weak from service but it was ultimatly this force that broke the weak link.


Well-Known Member
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

To me, intuitively, Seems like keeping the piece as low to the ground as possible while winching would reduce the force on the system to a degree. When it is near the stem, keep it just over the ground/ obstacle. Dropping it onto the ground and dragging with the winch asap would help as well.

You will have maximum sideloading as the rigging line and winch line become more aligned/ less perpendicular.
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

I am always cautious when introducing "powered mechanical advantages" into my rigging systems. Assuming you have a Vermeer chipper, I believe Vermeer claims that the winch rope line pull is 2,000 lbs (although I'm sure I have seen them pull logs over 2,000 lbs.).
The pulling forces that can be generated with such a device at the flick of a switch is enticing from a "work smarter, not harder" standpoint, but precautions definitely have to be taken to make sure the rigging system is not overloaded.
The GRCS, has similar lifting capabilities but also gives the operator a feel for the forces being generated in a way that a powered mechanical advantage does not (I'm sure others have touched on this in other threads). I would definitely lean towards using the latter.
I think the winch operator's competency and understanding of the forces being generated has to be taken into consideration too. Is it being run by rookie that may not fully understand the rigging system and the potential for failure? Or is it being run by someone that has industry experience, an understanding of rigging forces and most importantly the consequences of failure?
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

thats a great qeustion .. what is a large stainless[ steal port a wrap rated for? ropes blocks and slings are clearly rated,, i ve just always asumed the porta wrap was bullet proof.. i ve seen a friends, wasnt on the job but, a large aluinmuim, port a wrap ear get bent,, just thouht there was slack in the system and it hit the stem really hard?


Active Member
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

2000 pounds WLL,, that doesnt seem right cause shock sould be less ?

[/ QUOTE ]

i might be mistaken by your post, but are you confusing the working load limit WLL with the MBS minimum breaking strength?

The WLL on a POW is i think a 10:1 ratio, where the max weight you should load on it is 2000 lbs with the theoretical yield/break strength is over 20k lbs.

I might have just been confused with your post, in that case, just disregard this.



Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

hey daniel how do you like your asv (in general) how do you like the turf tracks and how does it do picking up (big) logs? ive got a mini and am thinking about an asv with green turf tracks or a bobcat a300 just wanting to know. thanks


Well-Known Member
Re: Using winch to\" float\" limb/wood

be careful... someone around here might get the idea that you plan on using a loader for tree work and you'll be considered a turf thrashing maniac... VERY UNPROFESSIONAL!!

:) pm me...

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