Draft Animal Power – Draft animals and sustainable land stewardship › Forums › Sustainable Living and Land use › Sustainable Forestry › Advanced Felling Tricks to Prevent Splitting
- February 11, 2016 at 4:58 pm #87649
How do you modify your basic hinge cuts to ensure you aren’t splitting big oak, or other trees that tend to split?
I have been felling trees for “firewood” for almost 20 years and I am pretty well versed at hinge cuts and the use of wedges. Now that I am cutting bigger logs and trying to sell them, I want to make sure I learn all of the tricks before I go for the higher dollar trees.
ThanksFebruary 11, 2016 at 7:41 pm #87650DennisParticipant
Pretty much how I do it.February 11, 2016 at 7:59 pm #87651
I use the hinge and bore cut techniques as well, but I have heard of some loggers adjusting their hinges, and bore cut locations, and in some cases cutting out sections of the hinge; for high dollar trees of species that tend to split. Anyone on here do anything more advanced?February 12, 2016 at 12:13 am #87655Mike RockParticipant
Here’s a book that will help with felling. A friend at Forest Products Lab in Madison recommended it in 1974 and I never regretted getting it. Met him up there once, knew his stuff. This book might well keep you from killing yourself or someone you work with.
Very visual book. Available from other sources, this is the cheapest I found.
MikeFebruary 12, 2016 at 9:45 am #87656Carl RussellModerator
Jared, do not fool around with what you hear from others. Take Game of Logging training. It will be the best $500 you ever spend.
There are all manner of “tricks” that people use, but cutting out sections of your hinge is potentially dangerous and less effective for directional felling. The secret to keeping trees from splitting is hinge thickness, felling cut angle, geographic terrain differential, and complete pre-felling preparation.
Some times with large trees you do need to plunge into your face cut in order to cut the interior sections where your bar cannot reach, but that needs to be a minimal impact on hinge length overall.
Many people tend to keep hinges too thick on large trees to try to control them, they also don’t align the face cut and the lay of the land so the gap closes before there tree hits the ground, and they try to chase the fall of the tree with a rapid. It instead of bore cutting and using trigger wood.
If you take GOL you will learn that there are a few simple basic rules and measurements that you can apply over and over again for every single tree. Consistency will lead to safety.
I posted a link recently in a thread started by Daniel Grover about chainsaw training. I have seen classes with complete novices together with 50 veteran loggers, and everybody says that they learned extremely important methods and techniques.
February 12, 2016 at 12:24 pm #87660Does’ LeapParticipant
- This reply was modified 4 years, 1 month ago by Carl Russell.
Ditto what Carl wrote. Game of Logging has paid off in spades over the years both in harvesting efficacy and safety. Northeast Game of Logging Training
GeorgeFebruary 12, 2016 at 1:17 pm #87661
I have been game of logging certified for the last 4 years, and my father taught me how to hinge/bore cut/wedge/trigger when I was only a kid. Like I said before I am very confident in my directional felling and safety issues, I am looking for some of the more advanced techniques and conditional things to consider on a case by case basis. This topic is probably best learned through experience and mentorship but I am trying to triple check before I fell some of the higher dollar oaks. During the GOL course the instructor had mentioned some subtle changes for oak and I cant remember them?February 12, 2016 at 5:43 pm #87667Carl RussellModerator
That’s great Jared, then I think it is just a matter of using those techniques enough on large trees to learn to trust them. What I was getting at is that you should be able to repeat those cuts with exactly the same results on very big straight-grained trees.I personally have felled large ash and oak using exactly the same dimensional measurements as with smaller trees.
Some things to remember would be to trim off any butt swell at the hinge, as divergent grain can actually cause splitting. Also, not so much at the felling cut, but felling in general, try to fell forked trees so that they fall with both arms laying on the landing surface. Forks that land on one branch first, or that catch one branch laterally in another crown, can split very quickly.
CarlFebruary 12, 2016 at 9:11 pm #87668
Good stuff Carl. I will let you know how it goes when I get to those trees.
Thanks for all of the help and confidence building everybody!!!February 25, 2016 at 7:07 am #87848BaystatetomParticipant
I bore into my notch and take the center out. I started doing it on ash because I was taught it was the safest way. I have gotten so used to doing it now that I do it on pretty much every sawlog.
~TomFebruary 25, 2016 at 10:40 am #87850
Any numbers or percentages to note when boring the center of the hinge? (Ex. never bore the center of a hinge when the hinge is less than XX wide, or the bore cut is xx percent of the hinge width?)
ThanksFebruary 26, 2016 at 8:20 am #87865vtloggerParticipant
Game of logging! Logged for almost 20yrs before Carl turned me on to horse’s and i thought i knew it all before i took the game of logging ..boy was i wrong… money well spent!!!
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