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Net wrap style log balers posch 'pack fix' etc

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Anybody in Firewood land ever used the posch pack fix style netwrap log Baler systems?

 

Using IBC's to season and kiln dry in but I'm sick of the sight of them around the yard empty and moving the damn things when empty is the most frustrating thing in existence ha! I'd love to pack split Logs up straight off the processor and stack them away to season or kiln. Could potentially even deliver in the form still...

 

Any opinions positive/nuetral/ negative?

 

The plastic waste bugs me a bit but I think I'll probably end up using a lot less fuel moving cages about on balance.

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Think Binderburger also do one thats better suited to Europallets.

 

Having had several good looking bags fail in the last week ( eyes breaking, one lead to the whole corner splitting away) I am planning to wrap some bale net wrap around an old kiln dried crate and see how it stands up after a few months seasoning outside.  Looks like it can be powered hydraulically. 

 

 

Edited by Alycidon

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Local chap near us made a homemade version of the Posch. He powdered the netting tool with his timber crane and rotator. 
 

as far as I’m aware he was thinking of selling if you’re interest I can pass on his details. 

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I made my own using an ibc cage without the pallet and the top and bottom of the bottle cut off. Cut the bottom third off the cage drill a  few holes in the bottle and cable tie the bottle to the cage. 

Set it on a pallet, fill it with logs and lift the ibc off while wrapping with the net wrap.  

It works very well and is easier than it sounds. 

Stacking the logs in there is better as it holds together well. Don't skimp on the wrap because picking a collapsed stack is pants.

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Net wrapping logs on YouTube
Fair play Bob that's a cracking little invention! Would be done in seconds with our 360. The rotator is rapid!!

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Thinking of a bandsaw mill, which took me to Arbtalk, and thought I'd see what's posted on PackFix.

I have used the PackFix w/hydro turntable base for four years of light production, as I do not have a processor.  I use a kinetic splitter and conveyor, to do about 70 cords/year.

A couple things.

First I use a piggyback forklift to move logs and pallets.  

I do not have anything that dumps, like a tractor frontend loader or tele handler.  That was a factor in eliminating large bulk bags.  Also the expense of bags was difficult to calculate, not knowing how much re-use that would provide.  

I eliminated ubc because of expense, stacking wood in them, the number required for a cord, and empty storage.  A plus for ubc's is stackability and durability.

 

A plus for the PackFix is eight raps of netting or about $2.00 per pallet, four pallets per cord loose, no stacking.   Hardwoods season very well in one year. The hydro base means less forklift use (starts) and longer use when used, as after removing a full pallet, I replenish the two log decks.

I cut/split 16" length.  The shorter euro length may mean you could do a cord in three pallets.

I do get some teepee splits up against the sides which can cause voids.  When wrapped the load may tip or lean.  Because of this, I fill 1/4 to 1/3 full and then check and use a hook-a-roon to eliminate this.  I recheck when 2/3 full, but these splits I can reach by hand and redistribute quickly if necessary. (Again, the shorter euro cut length may eliminate this checking step altogether)

The Posch quality and design was a welcome plus, as I bought this unit new, sight unseen, from the US Posch distributer, that ordered it for me.  The paint is fantastic, the design simple, the stainless steel fasteners for removable panels, etc. all well thought out for outdoor equipment.

Another plus is pallets, which can be stored, stacked 20 high, in a small space.  As for firewood bags, I believe they would also need pallets under them, at least on the bottom row.

Speaking of "bottom row".  I've doubled stacked with mixed success.  Watch the porch videos and note their double stacking.  They're using a lot of wraps of netting, and the pallets are very heavy duty. It takes leveling the top of the lower row, staggering the top row, and using stiff hardwood pallets on top.  I had trouble with settling, and getting the forks in the top row to remove.  I do not have side "tilt" like a tele handler might have.  I have side shift, not tilt.

I also cover the individual bundles.  This keeps leaves off in the fall,which get stuck, wet, and continue to hold moisture whenever it rains.  I use 6' x 6' cut up tarps, fold the corners and sew.  Then run bailing twine around, cinch and tie with half bow which is easily undone, and reused.  I'm near Lake Michigan, which is 16" above long term average this year.  Very wet the last few years which effects seasoning.

There are some drawbacks or rather considerations.

Netting has held up well after more than one year seasoning.  The netting is expensive up front, but as mentioned earlier, I do eight wraps, about $2.00 worth, or less (2016 pricing)  Seven can work but eight gives a complete double wrap to the top. In my case, I bought a pallet of netting, 64 rolls, to make the cost per roll cheaper as well as cheaper shipping.

Delivery:  I have been using a 12'6" flatbed, and hand unloading.  This is very time consuming.  It was to be temporary, and the plan to get a larger truck and carry the piggyback forklift for unloading and placing pallets for customers.  I've decided to go with a dump trailer next spring, and load with a conveyor in the wood lot.  This eliminates loading the pallets, which needed to be groomed off on the bottom and in-between to remove gravel and leaves before loading.  I also had six custom made covers, to cover the palletized wood for transport, as the netting holds the wood, but at eight wraps, not enough for transport on a public road.  When strapping the load, the bundles nudge together, making it difficult at times to get the covers off.  Usually a bar or 2" x 4" could be used to shift the pallets, and the covers slipped off.

A dump trailer will eliminate the covers,loading pallets, strapping loads, and it will keep the pallets in the yard for re-use which a larger truck and forklift placement would not.

Another drawback to consider, is that for me I do not use the PackFix in the winter.  This is because my forklift has industrial tires, which are very poor in the winter.  They pack the snow and slide sideways, etc.  Also the pallets ball up with snow on the bottom and do not sit flat on the ground or on the turntable.  I also do not want to climb around on the truck unloading.

Two of the four winters I've dropped the mast, quite easy to do, and stored the PackFix in a container.  It requires fork extensions to move it. 

Usually by Nov. I'm sold out anyway, but these are considerations if you have a year round operation.

Another possible drawback for you may be the plastic netting.  It is recyclable, where as the treated lumber I used to make wood racks was not.  I gave away the good ones to customers and cut up 30 of 100 because of rot or failure after four years. I had a lot of time and money in making them, and did not want to repeat that.

I am very glad I purchased this equipment, which has eliminated stacking, eliminated the wood racks I used to use and their repair.  

I'm 66, and when done doing firewood for sale, I can sell the equipment and get a bit back, unlike ubc's, bulk firewood bags, etc.

Despite the drawbacks of this system, I would readily do it again.

My buddy said sell it (the PackFix), and pile the firewood, it would be faster. 

My reply was, I thought of that.  The result is dirt in the wood scooping it up from the bottom of the pile.  I would have to sell my lift and replace it with something.  He said pour a concrete slab to eliminate dirt.  Reply. A large enough slab for seventy cord would cost thousands.  When done selling wood, I'd have a concrete slab. The wood will not season well, it will mold.  Now, it seasons, it's clean, I can move it, and I can sell the PackFix and recoup some money if and when I'm done.  And I can sell the land to a perspective home builder without a concrete slab to remove.

I'm not a builder or fabricator, so buying the PackFix, I could set it up and start bundling firewood.  The only thing I've done is change oil, replaces a small spring on the carburetor, and waxed it.  Starts first pull every time.

Very happy to share my experience with this equipment.

 

 

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Edited by sandhill
to add: I no longer double stack. Also, having two drums is great, because when leveling off one drum the excess gets tossed in the empty drum.
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