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Spruce Pirate

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Everything posted by Spruce Pirate

  1. All the old FC machines were road registered as, technically, an FC road is the Queen's Highway and therefore all vehicles need to be road legal. If you're using a vehicle in the wood (FC woods) this is still the case, needs to be taxed, insured and MOT'd. The FC machines aren't registered anymore, but they definitely used to be, not sure what's changed in this. I've escorted a forwarder up the road in the past when I worked for FC as a student - one van in front, one van behind, radio contact between the vans and the machine telling the driver to pull over if traffic was needing passed (in either direction). Not a beacon or hi-vis vest in site but that was a few years ago now. The main draw-back with a purpose built machine is the speed to move it. If you're going any distance at all it is painfully slow.
  2. What is the European audit about? To my way of thinking a little bit of wastage on the stump in wind-blow should be allowed by any auditors on safety grounds, rather than trying to recover every last scrap of timber.
  3. Stumps look fine (for windblow), but I'd be tidying up the end of the piece. I know it's only 3m, but, standards and all that! Are you down there for the next couple of weeks? I might try and drop in and see you as I'll probably be down around Ae at some point. Be interested to get a look at the machine.
  4. I totally agree. Far too many artificially low prices keep the price of logs down be it imports or hobby sellers. Doesn't change the fact that if your costs go up you should be able to put your prices up. Not actually trying to suggest it is that easy though. I'm glad I'm not in the firewood business.
  5. It seems every time the price of oil goes up petrol goes up in price at the pumps and heating oil goes up. Shouldn't be any different in the log market.
  6. Not spectacular, but a couple of months ago on a job, climbers rope got wrapped around a peg that he'd left on the way up, tied in a perfect half hitch, climbing on a prussic system. He was probably 50' - 60' in the canopy of a Scots pine unable to move down. The peg was too high to reach with the ladder and the rope wouldn't flick off from the ground. I climbed to the peg, un-wrapped his rope, descended and we carried on, easy peasy. No threat to life, no time constraints but technically I climbed the tree and "rescued" him. It could have been very embarrassing if I hadn't been able to climb. As far as the legalities of having a certified climber on the ground goes I'm pretty sure anyone looking at it from a legal stand point would say that certified doesn't cut it, they would have to be certified and competent. If it all goes horribly wrong and it comes down to and HSE investigation there's no way they'll look at a certificate for a rescue climber and say, "oh well, that's alright then". All sorts of awkward questions will start being asked, like the level of competence of the rescue climber and how is this documented, how is their competence maintained, when was the last time a rescue was practice? If you're sitting round the kitchen table with the men/women in shiny shoes with clipboards and a big frown on their intimidating faces you want to have a slightly better answer than, "uh, we put him through his climbing ticket 18 months ago, but he hasn't actually climbed a tree since then". All the legal stuff is quite secondary to the poor guy up the tree needing rescued though! I think most of us who have climbed for a while have probably done solo climbs or climbed knowing that the rescue climber isn't up to the job, myself included. Its on the ground risk management. If you're happy doing it then go ahead, but you need to remember if it all goes wrong you could be seven different shades of screwed, both legally and practically.
  7. In addition to all the above: Get a spill kit for the machine - keep one in the forwarder and bungee / ratchet strap one to the processor. Could do the same with first aid kits, a bit larger than a personal kit. Keep a site diary, note any problems, discussions with your cutters, etc - the FC just love paperwork. Wear gloves! They like the FISA Guide box ticking done too.
  8. For occasional use I'm pretty sure that they recommend type C with the all round protection, even for ground work. As far as class 1 or 2 goes you'd have to work out your chain speed which isn't overly easy. Bigger bar and chain is going to lower chain speed, changing pitch can affect the speed. I did have a pair of class 2's for a while, but there's more choice in class 1 trousers so I'm back with them. It's academic until you have an accident at which point you want as much protection as you can get. I'd be really interested to see some comparison tests between the different classes of trousers and saws running at different chain speeds. Don't know if there is any videos or such like out there.
  9. Quad is a great tool for moving materials and tools around, I'd miss it if we didn't have it on the jobs that warrant it. Easy to over-load though, and if you're carrying anything heavy you need to think about how to load it. Not great on side slopes in my opinion, if you're on steep ground better going straight up and down. We're running an old Kawasaki KLF 300, good enough for what I want, easy to pick up second hand for little cash. If you're using it a lot might want to think about something bigger and newer, but more cash - easier to get something road registered I'd think though. Video taking saws, fuel etc out along a ride - quad ideal for this sort of thing, less good for timber extraction type work.
  10. Always cold out east, but at least it's mostly dry - and the midges are nothing like as bad. Wait until you get a good midge day down in Ae!
  11. I know it's an obvious question but could you not just have felled the whole thing into the wood and saved climbing it? Maybe the pictures don't do it justice and there's a good reason for not straight felling.
  12. Very nice. Joins in the timber for the house part are very well hidden.
  13. Any pictures? I'd thought of doing similar to make a kind of a castle structure, quartering a log and using each quarter for a turret and them milling some timber to put in between each turret as walls.
  14. If you've any tips I'm all ears. Other than that, it's sharp saw and a good bar and line things up as best as possible. Not easy on a taper when the wood is longer than the bar length.
  15. Yes, door opens. All hollowed out inside. Selection of photo's from start to finish on our Facebook page if you're on there and want a look. https://www.facebook.com/pg/weir.forestry.arnprior/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1805770152812577
  16. Haven't got round to making a bench yet, but did plank up the CoL to make the roof for a Fairy House for one of the local nursery schools.
  17. Felling here for the last couple of days. Not a bad view.
  18. Good size of tree for a first thin. Is it just the racks you're taking out this time around? Pole extraction with winch? Did a bit of thinning recently - stacking nearly killed me and it's only 2m!
  19. What are you cutting? 2m? 3m? How many bits per tree? Just being nosey.
  20. Pretty standard practice I think. Every now and then get a big chipper in, send a wagon and trailer round to hoover up all the odds and sods left in bings that haven't been collected plus any blow that's been cleared from the roads and left lying at the side and anything else that's worth chipping. Chip it up, sell it on, put the cheque in the bank. Happy days, tidies the place up too.
  21. Thanks for the replies. I'll try and remember and take a couple of pics when I'm done and put them up here.
  22. I've managed to get a few bits of Cedar of Lebanon timber from a recent job, was thinking to get a few of benches out of them, maybe some bird-houses. Am I right in thinking that Cedar is reasonably durable but not construction grade strong? Can some of the resident experts give me some advice? Many thanks.
  23. Put an outer dog on it if you're finding that. Don't have to be massive American style things. I run an outer dog on almost all my saws, normal European style. Got big dogs for some, but only running on the Dolly at present.

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