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Lfservices

Low Impact Forestry 👍

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Hi all

 

Toying with the idea of doing low impact forestry. There is alot of unmanaged woodland around me so think there would be plenty of opportunities.

 

im looking into getting a timber trailer for my quad bike, possibly the kelfri with crane or looking at others without a crane

 

I would be planning on using it for my own little bits of woodland management, but was also wondering whether I’d be able to drum up any work for it as well as the setup being useful/beneficial. 

 

please let me know your thoughts. 

 

Many Thanks 

 

liam

IMG_20191103_220508_737.jpg

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1 minute ago, Lfservices said:

Hi all

 

Toying with the idea of doing low impact forestry. There is alot of unmanaged woodland around me so think there would be plenty of opportunities.

 

im looking into getting a timber trailer for my quad bike, possibly the kelfri with crane or looking at others without a crane

 

I would be planning on using it for my own little bits of woodland management, but was also wondering whether I’d be able to drum up any work for it as well as the setup being useful/beneficial. 

 

please let me know your thoughts. 

 

Many Thanks 

 

liam

IMG_20191103_220508_737.jpg

Big J is the man .......

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I looked at this while ago and even went down to the APF to look at trailers.

 

I think it must depend where u are if its viable.

For me the 2 biggest drawbacks that I couldn't see any way round?

 

The first and major 1 was I can often get the quad stuck on its own never mind with a trailer, a lot of forestry in my area is on wet and/or steep ground hard enough to get a quad to travel anyway without a trailer.

I also know when hauling feed out on a wet area about 10 bags ( so about 250kgs) on the light trailer is the limit and even then ur making a mess when going over the same tracks.

I just can't see how even with HYD land drive a quad could pull 1 or even 2T trailer over wet rough ground, atleast in my area.

 

The 2nd problem was the price ucan often buy a 2ndhand full size Botex trailer cheaper than a quad trailer.

1 company at APF had a brilliant looking trailer it it was 20K, lot o money. For that u could buy a complete 2nd hand full size or compact tractor set up.

If I went down that route was going to it tracks on quad to ease 1st problem but that's another 4k.

Just too expensive for me and I think would be very limited in my area atleast.

In drier flatter parts of UK may make more sense.

 

I think used a lot in scandi when bikes running on top of frozen ground and snow which is very different again.

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I do smile at some of the low impact threads on here now and again, and let’s just say the definition of low impact can be somewhat stretched at times from most people’s interpretation of it.

 

Simple fact totally opposite to most things especially Construction, tidy doesn’t pay in Forestry, full trucks out of the gate does.

That’s why low impact is mainly Conservation or wealthier Landowners who simply don’t want any impact or their place messed up.

 

I’ve seen/used most types of kit to deliver what I’d consider genuine low impact solutions, and had more than a few nice touches going in after others who thought that band tracks on a big lump of forwarder would let them walk on water, or the small kit could tackle terrain far outside it’s comfort zone.

 

Fact is it’s a niche market, everyone has a different interpretation and it then becomes like everything a race to the bottom to see what you can actually get away with to call low impact.

Some could do the job and leave the grass undisturbed and others think they’ve done a tidy job because it only took an excavator three days to level the ruts and slop instead of two weeks.

 

As for many of the solutions out there, you can simply do better hiring a tracked dumper with a set of bolsters or extended sides on for a few days.

Load it with an Excavator, tip it sensibly and have the machine man stay on at night to stack it.

I’ve even done it with a roof mount tractor stacking what a decent size tracked dumper was forwarding to him, and it kept him more than honest with an Excavator, loading/raking/tidying it’s way out the other end.

 

A three tonne tracked dumper with bolsters running off a 1.5 tonne machine for a day or two would shift you a fair pile and leave you little to tidy up.

 

It’s a whole subject in itself and we don’t get enough demo days done in realistic conditions of different methods/contractors to see what could possibly work best for who?

 

 

Eddie.

Edited by LGP Eddie
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47 minutes ago, LGP Eddie said:

I do smile at some of the low impact threads on here now and again, and let’s just say the definition of low impact can be somewhat stretched at times from most people’s interpretation of it.

 

Simple fact totally opposite to most things especially Construction, tidy doesn’t pay in Forestry, full trucks out of the gate does.

That’s why low impact is mainly Conservation or wealthier Landowners who simply don’t want any impact or their place messed up.

 

I’ve seen/used most types of kit to deliver what I’d consider genuine low impact solutions, and had more than a few nice touches going in after others who thought that band tracks on a big lump of forwarder would let them walk on water, or the small kit could tackle terrain far outside it’s comfort zone.

 

Fact is it’s a niche market, everyone has a different interpretation and it then becomes like everything a race to the bottom to see what you can actually get away with to call low impact.

Some could do the job and leave the grass undisturbed and others think they’ve done a tidy job because it only took an excavator three days to level the ruts and slop instead of two weeks.

 

As for many of the solutions out there, you can simply do better hiring a tracked dumper with a set of bolsters or extended sides on for a few days.

Load it with an Excavator, tip it sensibly and have the machine man stay on at night to stack it.

I’ve even done it with a roof mount tractor stacking what a decent size tracked dumper was forwarding to him, and it kept him more than honest with an Excavator, loading/raking/tidying it’s way out the other end.

 

A three tonne tracked dumper with bolsters running off a 1.5 tonne machine for a day or two would shift you a fair pile and leave you little to tidy up.

 

It’s a whole subject in itself and we don’t get enough demo days done in realistic conditions of different methods/contractors to see what could possibly work best for who?

 

 

Eddie.

Big J started out " low impact "  and as he started making a success of it he bought some bigger kit to do more work . I would say he is up to medium impact now 😁

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In my experience, 'low impact' has a lot more to do with the timing of operations than it does with the nature of the machines that you use.

 

If you're serious about being very low impact you have to wait for the right ground conditions.

 

The best combination I have found is large-ish machinery (meaning fewer trips) in very dry conditions.

 

In Liam's case, working in a variety of small plots, large machinery is probably not very practical. With the range of activities you will be undertaking I would put an alpine tractor and trailer at the top of the wish list. I'm not sure that a quad bike is versatile enough (or heavy enough) for a commercial woodland operation. An alpine on flotation tyres might well have lower ground pressure than a quad.

 

Also have in mind that it is often the trailer rather than the tractor/quad that does the most damage.

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Quads are great and very flexible but, as said,  they don't weigh enough for towing unless you're on good ground. The most I've towed with our Yamaha 550 on steeper ground is half a ton and that was on the limit. You've also got to stop. 😉

 

I wonder how much weight you could carry on the blade of a small digger? I've seen it done with stakes for fencing and it works well. If you could weld up a frame for it you could load yourself up and carry with one machine. Or just tow a trailer with it.

 

Obviously for speed and carrying tools a quad is better.

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32 minutes ago, the village idiot said:

In my experience, 'low impact' has a lot more to do with the timing of operations than it does with the nature of the machines that you use.

 

If you're serious about being very low impact you have to wait for the right ground conditions.

 

The best combination I have found is large-ish machinery (meaning fewer trips) in very dry conditions.

 

In Liam's case, working in a variety of small plots, large machinery is probably not very practical. With the range of activities you will be undertaking I would put an alpine tractor and trailer at the top of the wish list. I'm not sure that a quad bike is versatile enough (or heavy enough) for a commercial woodland operation. An alpine on flotation tyres might well have lower ground pressure than a quad.

 

Also have in mind that it is often the trailer rather than the tractor/quad that does the most damage.

Sadly and it’s getting worse every year, the clients don’t want you near when it’s dry and they’ve never organised themselves enough to get you on in the all important window early September.

 

You can run artics to cart silage if we’ve a drought, but you’d not find many gearing up for it!

In the genuine low impact game, the site tells you what you need and not what you have sat in the yard.

There really is no one solution fits all and the issue isn’t with Contractors they’re busting their balls to buy kit, work around the constraints and weather yet still deliver.

The problem is management of sites that’s lacking in education of alternative methods, or what actually can be achieved with the right kit/methods and timing.

Give the right people the work and they can keep moving forward with you, educating and investing in better solutions.

Cut them out for £500 less and have your site wrecked, then go looking for excuses is more the norm.

 

Lastly, the minimal impact will almost inevitable cost more and that’s where most just say crack on it’ll grass up in spring!


 

Eddie.

Edited by LGP Eddie
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1 hour ago, the village idiot said:

If you're serious about being very low impact you have to wait for the right ground conditions.

Yes, I used to fell and stack cord around March and often sell the oak at stump just prior to extraction, there is often a spot of good weather in May. oak tended to be from clay sites but there would be other work year round on sandier soils.

 

It was explained to me by an old chap that in the south  the farm horses would be used for extraction and they were only available between the hay harvest and the corn harvest.

 

It wasn't at all unusual for my forwarding tractor to sit idle in the winter months but anyone buying a £100k plus forwarder needs to keep it working day in day out.

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