Work Photos

27RMT0N

Active Member
Location
WA
Kind of interesting one yesterday. This was an old tree for the area (since most everything was clear-cut about 100 years ago), maybe 150 years old? I didn't count the rings. It was hanging over a driveway and had evidence of significant heart-rot, which is pretty common in the older firs here. The bark on these old ones is thick, rock hard, but can flake off in big pieces when spuring.

As soon as I got about 20 feet up and started seeing the rot in the stubs it was obvious the tree was far worse than I originally thought, and as I got higher the entire tree felt extremely brittle in the way it moved. Making the facecut to take the top was like cutting through compressed dust as there was hardly a piece of intact fiber in the tree, and it turned out the entire thing was like that top to bottom. The original plan was to firewood the tree, but it was essentially a column of rot from about 6' off the ground all the way to the very top at about 4".

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Then my lower back started acting up, and now I'm on the couch for a few days...
 

colb

Well-Known Member
Location
Florida
Finished up my day converting an owl box to a tree duck box by installing a perch per homeowner request... I have never done anything so compressive. I had to stick both forearms through the hole, chasing my milwaukee m18 fuel hammer drill which was oriented upside down and facing me with an inch of clearance for everything that was going on. All while hanging off a dead stub nub redirect for work positioning...

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colb

Well-Known Member
Location
Florida
So, was this pro bono, or was there a bill?
I just charged for an hour... 1.5 hours billable seemed excessive for two screws and a piece of wood. I originally forwarded the owl box install to our rec climbing group. But, no owls came. Then, two tree ducks came but could not get in the hole... it was a last-minute priority kind of thing, so I was paid.
 

27RMT0N

Active Member
Location
WA
Oh look, up another fir! Over a customers walking trail in the woods, just a cut and leave material kind of job. This tall tree uprooted, bent over three smaller firs, then got pinned between a bushy cedar and a dead fir. Climbed up a neighboring tree for a high-tie, swung out and walked up the leaning tree, set a redirect in the dead fir after removing its rotten top and untangled the whole mess from above it. It was actually a pretty fun project.

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27RMT0N

Active Member
Location
WA
Something other than a big removal, dead-wooding this awesome madrone on the water. Set my line in the pine tree behind it (shooting a throwball into a velcro-like pine, into the wind is hard!) which gave me a great tie-in for the whole job. These trees get really long and leggy, and full of interior deadwood, I think I only made two cuts on live material in the whole tree.

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27RMT0N

Active Member
Location
WA
I hope people don't mind I post a lot in this thread, it's just that I work mostly solo and don't have guys to talk shop with (and I've always been into documenting things, so I usually take photos anyway) ;)

It’s been raining for a few days here, but before that started up I had this tree on a recent job. Getting near the edge of ‘too sketchy for solo work’ if I’m being honest. The cabin was on top of a hill in a spot that gets high winds in the winter, and for obvious reasons this big fir leaning over the place (which I told him had so far survived a few decades of wind so far, but eh, I get being uncomfortable with it) was ready to be removed.

I climbed and cut off the longest limbs over the roof for clearance a the peak and installed a pull-line. Then went down hill, across the road down a steep slope and into the brush to install the rope puller which was close to the end of the 200’ line. Some tension, cut the face, some more tension, then the backcut sent it down. The tree landed on this mossy bald which I was trying to minimize impact/disruption on, right between the saplings I was trying to preserve. Limbed it, tossed material downhill, then pulled the log off with my truck. For dropping such a tree it turned out to be amazingly low impact on the fragile moss, keeping the hillside looking nice.

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southsoundtree

Well-Known Member
Location
Olympia, WA
Good stuff.

I solo it a lot. So chill and easy.

Something that can help is retaining line-tension during a back-cut, in some scenarios, especially back-lean.

..a load attached mid-line (a log attached by knot/ hitch to the rope directly, or by a rope/ sling to the pull-line before tensioning), or a redirect to behind the stump for the rope-puller, minding escape paths, clearly, are tools possibly already in your solo toolbox.
 

27RMT0N

Active Member
Location
WA
I solo it a lot. So chill and easy.

Something that can help is retaining line-tension during a back-cut, in some scenarios, especially back-lean.

..a load attached mid-line (a log attached by knot/ hitch to the rope directly, or by a rope/ sling to the pull-line before tensioning), or a redirect to behind the stump for the rope-puller, minding escape paths, clearly, are tools possibly already in your solo toolbox.
I don't know about easy when you are the only one making every decision, climbing every tree, making every cut and dragging every piece of brush or wood ;) It's kind of a necessity given the scale/scope of my business though. And while I'm sure happy to not have the pressure of keeping an employee busy full-time (hell, I don't want to work full-time!) or the battle to find good help in the first place, there are sure times when I wish I had someone to drag some brush for me! On certain jobs where it's necessary I do get help though.

As far as solo line tensioning, hanging some weight mid-line is something I had never actually though of and seems like an interesting method. Do you have a lot of experience doing that? I'm trying to think of the physics here, and that could certainly take up any slack and add a bit of additional tension as that weight lowers to the ground, but I wonder how much additional force that can apply. Obviously once your pull-line goes slack you have zero force so anything is better than that, but lets believe the specs and say it can apply 1,500 pounds of force. It's not like you could attach and raise up that much weight mid-line, even suspending 300 pounds that way would be a challenge I imagine. Then as it starts to take effect from the line itself slacking, it is also changing the pull angle into a less beneficial one. Questions of force applied in these situations is why I want to buy a LineScale 2 dynamometer and get some numbers for myself.

Not questioning that method, I see where it could work. If you have some photos or experience I'd love to hear more about it.
 

southsoundtree

Well-Known Member
Location
Olympia, WA
It's a Jerry B Guarantee...
Taught in the Fundamentals of General Tree work.

Three times in memory. Tensioned with a mini, twice, Maasdam rope puller the other.







Consider a Honda capstan, chainsaw-powered Simpson capstan, etc for solo work. You can winch a AT, with pvc extensions on the stakes, loaded to 6'.





Solo work, pics.

I had some 'help' stacking piles for the mini to feed, and some raking for one day, but that guy couldn't listen well.
Co-Dom fir, about 4'x5' at standard height. Pulled the back leaning top at about 12" diameter, with a mid-tied log (2 half-hitches).

You can natural-crotch limbs on a speedline, too, preserving slings. If you can get a limb to ride over the obstacle, then fall off in the clear, that much the better.

Natural crotching, you can get 3,4, maybe 5 lowers/ rope if you tie mid line.

Have had 3 ropes, hanging 9 rigs on a maple over a garage, set to hold on their own, releasable from the ground. Cut friction stubs, use wraps, make wraps pinch the loaded line, from the ground, flick off wraps to get the right friction. If you cut weight off at ground level, flick off another wrap, if needed.

Grapple-truck service can be a help.
I occasionally use it. He can legally carry about 1000 board-feet of 18' fir logs or one big ass stub, that he won't do again.

The cedar, I had 3'+ to the sue-happy neighbor's property... Boring.



Undercutting COG is super useful, for solo work. Wedges, too. Carrying a rope-bag, or redirecting your standing-end over other trees' limbs, well out of the drop-zone, helps.


Most times I've had jobsite safety problems, minor fender benders, basic screw ups, it's been employee-related. Certainly, have had employee success, and great safety and productivity, if spoon-fed what to do.


I call solo tree work 'boring'... Everything goes as planned, at a generally smooth, steady pace.
Branch 'scares' obstacles, zero damage... Boring.
Man cuts limb, rope catches limb, rope holds loan until landed on ground... Boring.

With what I can rope down and land in tight places, from way up in the tree, it's sometimes easier for me to cut, run rope, lower and land, and they come back to the next branch ready to be detached, than try to get two people involved.






Maybe find someone dependable who wants to work every Monday and Tuesday, or what not. Maybe they have their own PT biz.
Several people to call for an occasional job.

Paying workers comp is easy enough in WA State.
 

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27RMT0N

Active Member
Location
WA
Thanks for taking the time, it certainly gives me a few things to ponder and play with. I've been meaning to get a copy of 'Fundamentals of General Tree work' for a while, probably time I actually do it.

Out here it's pretty much a forest as you can see and because many people have acreage, a lot of the work is well away from structures so I do very little lowering, that's probably the biggest factor that lets me do so much work solo. Occasionally I'll bring in help, sometimes the customer has their own helper who will assist me, if I'm a sub on a job, that company will often have a helper. There are also some actually useful customers as well, and I take advantage of that when it is safe to do so.
 

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