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About Gnarlyoak

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    Senior Member, Raffle sponsor 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

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    Freelance climber
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    SK15 2AU
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  1. Couple of other things to note. If you do the ROLO course this does not include the CITB H and S test. This has to be done seperately at another registered test centre so that's another 1/2 or day off to do that plus the cost of the test. If its been more than 5 years (I think?) since you took your chainsaw tickets, then BALI/LISS will not issue you with a card unless you have recently done a refresher. So if you need to do a refresher then factor in additional costs for more time off to do more courses and re-assessments! A massive rip-off/con/scam tis the CSCS "money-go-round" out of your pocket into someone (and/or several other) elses, just to get on site. Unless you're going to get a lot of construction site work you need to ask yourself if its really worth the cost/hassle/bother.
  2. Hi all, Trying to identify fungi affecting a mature beech which has been in decline for a couple of years. Upper parts of the canopy had been dying back from the tips for past 2-3 yrs. This is the first time any fruiting bodies have been seen at the base of the tree. Not seen the tree for myself recently, and the pictures have sent to me by a third party unfortunately show some fairly desiccated specimens! Anyone any ideas? Many thanks in advance.
  3. Oh god, please please please put heated handles on toppers! I'd give my right bollock for this. So with my offer & Mr.Bolam's, that's a full pair of extra bollocks, what more incentive do you need????
  4. Yep, good point Nepia. Reynauds is a circulatory problem, not an inflammation issue. For me personally, I have the dual issue of Reynauds & arthritis, I'm hoping that by taking Turmeric it may have a positive effect on my stiff arthritic finger joints to lessen the double whammy impact of having both problems with my hands on the cold dark dank miserable days. I suppose what I really should do is make an appointment to see the quack & get a script for the Reynauds. But a, I don't need the lecture about packing in the fags & b, being self employed once I eventually get thru to the surgery how do I know if I'll be free in 4-6 weeks time to make the next available appointment!! But now a further update on the glove options scenario. The Stihl function Thermogrip glove are rubbish for climbing. Even more sausage fingered than the Pfanners! Bah!!
  5. Or if you don't have a ratchet strap handy, I find that on pops & willows if you make two small cuts (10-15% the dia. of the stem) either side of the tree parallel and level with the bottom of the gob cut before making the back cut. This helps to dissipate the tension at the back of the tree when making your back cut & greatly reduces the risk of the tree barber chairing. Seems to work for me. Recently felled a stand of big heavily leaning willows. Put a side cut on either side of each stem before the back cut & every single one fell as planned bish bosh bash with no dramas. There was one stem which I decided not to bother using the same method, the biggest fattest of the lot with a 50-60 degree lean into a big wide open area on site. Figured to myself this was only ever going to go one way & didn't need to bother with the side cuts, I hadn't gone the width of the bar on the back cut when the bugger barber chaired in an explosion of splinters and sounded like a mortar bomb had just gone off. The 441 I was using propelled about 10 ft up and over my head at about 100 mph just missing my face & landing about 20 ft away!! But even then given their unpredictable nature I always try to stretch out and lean back in my harness and move head & body as far out of the way of the tree as its comfortably possible to do so before I do my felling cut. All trees have their own certain predictabilities in these situations, and given that (in the video) this certainly looks like a pop I wouldn't be leaning in over the butt end making my cut as this fella appeared to be just because they have that propensity to do exactly what happened! ie: Barber chair without warning and try and take your face off!! EDIT Just realized that obvs in this vid the guy cutting was'nt actually in the position I just described , but perhaps even worse is he's cutting more or less at forehead height. He really should of been stropped into the other stem & slightly higher up so that his cut was in line with the trunk of his body. Cutting from that position at head height really is a recipe for disaster. Complacency is an easy trap to fall into and karma can be a bitch in these circumstances, but as others have said hope the individual in the vid makes a full and speedy recovery & he's able to make a positive out of a bad experience. ie: Ooh, I'll not make that mistake again......
  6. Best glove combo that I've tried so far is Rab Merino Wool base layer with Towa Powergrab thermo as top layer glove. Still just about functionable whilst climbing but you do lose a degree of dexterity & occasionally fumble a bit with ropes & 'biners. Though pretty good on the ground. Still gets pretty brutal on the hands when they get wet though, for me anyway. Also tried nitrile & silk base layers. Nitrile absolutely pants! Just seem to wick away any heat in a nano second wet or dry! Silk not too bad if temp is in single digits and dry, not so good when its cooler or wet!! Have tried Pfanner Ice Grip as a top layer, but these are not so good in climbing scenario, seem lose too much manual dexterity & feels like I've got sausages for fingers when trying to work 'biners. Not too bad on the ground, but again hands begin to suffer pretty badly once they get wet. Have also gone down the supplement route in conjunction with different glove combos, been taking Ginkgo for just over a month now with no discernible positive effect that I'm able to gauge thus far. Have just started taking Turmeric as well now in addition to the Ginkgo. Have also just got a pair of Stihl function Thermogrip gloves as an alternative top layer, not had a chance to use them yet, but construction wise they feel a bit like an "in between" the Towa & Pfanner gloves!
  7. Thanks for all the words of wisdom. Bullet bitten, ZZ ordered. Also ordered a replacement HC, for £40 for pulley & some cord seemed a bit churlish not to. Least it gives me options to play around with whilst I get use to another new climbing technique!
  8. Cheers Steve. That was a bloody quick response, I know it's your site and you're the main moderator, but do you actually have a life outside of AT?
  9. As an oldboy Neanderthal tree climber, I recently progressed up from 14yrs on a prusik to a hitch climber set up earlier this year. Took me a little bit of time to adjust but quite liked the HC attached with a VT knot and in conjunction with a CT foot ascender where appropriate. Also had a "go" on someone else's Zigzag and found that to be a very smooth climb on a big ugly willow, and this had me toying with the idea of progressing again this time to a ZZ climbing set-up at some point in the future when I had a bit of spare cash to play around with. Gutted this morning to find some scumbag scrotey arsehole had broken into my van overnight and nicked my rope bag with my mainline and all the associated climbing paraphernalia therein contained. So I'm having to fritter away my afternoon browsing online sites to order replacements for the gear that was stolen. Seeing as these set of circumstances have forced my hand I'm having a bit of a mental battle as to whether or not replace like for like HC setup or move on up to the ZZ. What would you do? All relative of course, different strokes for different folks 'an all that. But anyone else changed recently, would you go back or do ya love it so much you wonder why it took so long. Was it/is it worth it. Then there's also the minefield of which rope/dia works best with ZZ. Thoughts & recommendations please.
  10. Could this be what you are looking for. Skyland have these in stock, £10.18 (inc VAT) https://www.skylandequipment.com/ct-climbing-technology-qt-universal-support.html
  11. Nail on head there Mark. To my way of thinking and comparing the damaged stud to the opposite side, what is required is some kind of raised post (5mm high) with an internal thread. It needs to be raised to accommodate the pre-shaped form of the handle. And it has been looked at by a saw service repairman who sucked his teeth and shook his head & warned me it would probably need the entire casing replaced to fix. Clearly an expensive option to implement on a 2 1/2 yr old saw, upwards at least if not more half the cost of a new saw. Wanted to sound out peeps on here if there was an alternative to having to replace the casing or scrapping what is to me a cracking little saw. Appreciate other comments posted, have to admit some of it has gone over my head. Whilst I'm no knuckle dragging dummy, I climb & cut trees me, I don't have much in the way of engineering skills or access & knowledge in the use of lathes & welding equipment! Must admit, as at least one has already suggested, it had crossed my mind to find a local engineering firm to see if they could provide a workable solution. Might be the way forward. It's not that I'm too tight to replace the saw, but I just begrudge having to sacrifice a perfectly serviceable saw to the scrap heap for the sake of a single busted screw hole!!!
  12. Managed to snap off the nipple stud to which the right hand side of the chain brake handle screws into. Effectively this now mean I can't secure the handle to the body of the saw. So far so bad, but the loss of this screw point means that I can't operate the chain brake on the saw, as the handle flaps about and I'm unable to generate sufficient cohesive force to lock or unlock the chain brake. I have tried to fix by attempting to mould a new stud with a metal epoxy putty which I intend to tap to create a new screw hole. But doesn't matter if I leave it to cure for the recommended 1 hr or 12, the metal putty will not bond to the body of the saw and it just breaks away. My guess is because the saws body shell is some kind of alloy!?! Anyone any ideas or recommendation on how to fix this issue or am I looking at having to replace the entire casing of the saw body???? Attached pics show broken stud, and what it should look like (pic of stud on other side of saw)
  13. In Liverpool, try Rob Minchin Robminchin@hotmail.com 07799 444848 Good bloke, won't rip you off
  14. Snap! Switched from steel Buckingham's earlier this year for Distel Gecko's and immediately began experiencing frequent gaff outs when I first started using them. So bad early doors that I actually began to think I must of got a faulty pair!!! Persevered with them though as despite this nagging irritation they were soooooo much more comfier to wear than the old Bucky's that I'd been using for over 10 yrs. After using them for the last 3 months, I do find that I still gaff out on most climbs but the issue is far less severe than when I first started using them, so I do think that climbing technique is part of the issue. No sharpening guide included in my set like there is with Buckingham's, but I have given them a slight tickle with a flat file. Don't think your supposed to file the two outward facing sides, I just run a file on the side facing your instep, the side with the slight kink in the top. Place the spike in a vice, and hold a flat file in both hands draw it up firmly from the bottom to the tip in one smooth stroke, allowing it to follow the "bent" profile. Repeat for as many times as necessary to achieve the result you desire. But as others have mentioned it doesn't have to uber sharp and pointy to the point where if you miss the tree you end up shagging your boots and stabbing your foot therein!!
  15. Decided that a multi pronged approach might be the best step forward to try & see if I can ease my additional winter aches and pains. So gone for a combination of taking Ginko extract; silk glover liner; or a nitrile glove liner (or 2) when its wet under my existing choice of daily work gloves. Then a couple of pairs of Pfanner Stretchflex Ice Grip gloves for when it get really unbearable/miserable. This recent cold snap has already started to play havoc with me hands. The knuckle joints are already swollen and twisted, they look more gnarled than me grans, and she's been dead for nearly 20 years!


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