Tawa and willow are two species that are notoriously
liable to splitting. To overcome splitting, you can follow these steps:
- Place the scarf in the normal manner.
- Make a bore cut, leaving a holding strap.
- Make the back final cut as low as possible.
- The amount of forward lean dictates the distance
between the backcuts. The greater the lean, the greater the distance.
must be maintained if trees are going to be back pulled by winches and wire
ropes. Make sure' your equipment is checked on a regular basis and is
adequate for the job in hand. here are some guidelines and advice:
- Ropes must be of sufficient safe working load (SWL)
to handle the job in hand.
- Do not use knots in any wire rope.
- Wire rope that is corroded, has signs of kinking or
stranded wires or has been burnt should not be used.
- Eye-to eye splices should not be used in any
pulling rope. Joining with splices considerably reduces the rope's safe
- Check that the blocks, shackles clamps, winches or
any other equipment to be used is in first- class order -- your life
could depend on it.
- Only use 'D" shackles with secure pins. 'Do
not use open- sided 'C' hooks. equipment used should have been tested and
marked with the safe working load (SWL).
- As a guide, any equipment used should be 1.5 times
the SWL of the pulling rope.
Before any work begins, discuss fully with your
colleagues what you intend to do. Winch and machinery operators must know
what is required in relation to line tension and pulling speeds.
- Work out your visual and vocal communication before
you start the work.
- Use sound stumps of sufficient size for the job in
- Strops used on stumps should be l.5 times the SWL
of the pulling rope and should be notched in so they do not come off.
- Machines used must have sufficient weight and
winching power to control the tree to be felled. They should be equipped
with a canopy that will protect the operator from roll over or falling
Pulling- is the term used when pulling trees away from their natural lean.
It is done to avoid trees damaging property or falling into an area in
which they will be difficult to process, such as into a gully or over a
- Make sure all the equipment you need is on site.
- Secure the rope as high as practicable on the tree.
The higher the rope, the easier it will be to control the direction of
the tree's fall.
- Do not allow inexperienced people to do the
felling. or to operate machines or winches.
- Carefully read and follow the advice in the
preceding "Winches and Wire Ropes" section.
- Follow the felling techniques outlined in Section
One. Do not take shortcuts or deviate from established felling methods.
- Never allow people to work or stand ("in the
bight" of an operating rope. ")In the bight of an operating
- Never allow machinery or people within two lengths
of the trees being felled in case there's a mishap and the trees fall in
other than the planned direction.
Let's look at methods suitable for different situations. The most common is
a direct pull with the winch or machine further away than two tree lengths.
- Scarf the tree in the normal manner but opposite
- Tension the rope to hold the tree in position.
- Backcut the tree in the normal manner, ensuring
adequate hingewood is retained. Use wedges to hold the cut open if
- Retire to a safe position and signal the pull to
- Pull slowly at first, then increase speed until the
felling cuts take control.
If you cannot get two tree lengths clearance to the
winch, there are two safe methods which you can use in more confined
The first method relies on the use of suitably
located stumps. This method positions the winching equipment and operator
in a safe position and allows good vocal and visual contact.
The layout required is shown below:
The felling procedure is:
- Scarf and start the backcut to the direction of
pull in the normal manner, holding more wood away from the lean.
- Begin the pull and continue the tension as the
backcut continues and until the felling cuts take control.
The second method
allows you to back pull the tree in the confined space without stumps being
present. The layout is illustrated below:
the machine out at about 80" opposite to the lean.
- Tension the rope to hold tree in position of fall.
- Scarf and backcut in the direction of the planned
fall, holding more wood opposite the lean.
- The tree will free fall, swinging on the rope with
no danger to the operator or equipment.
The term "driving" means pushing a tree over by felling another
tree into it. Tree driving can be used in the following situations:
-- To take down a tree that has only partially fallen and is either lodged
against or caught in the branches of another tree.
-- To drive a standing tree that has a slight back lean away from the
desired direction of fall.
-- To drive a tree that has sat back on the cut.
-- To drive a tree into a more favourable position for processing.
Follow these steps for successful and trouble-free
- Ensure people are well clear of the area. Remember
the two-tree length clearance applies to both the driving tree and the
tree to be driven.
- The driving tree must be of sufficient size and
weight to make the drive successful.
- Don't make any cuts in the driving tree at this
- Choose a drive tree that has a good angle -- no
more than 20' off the proposed direction of fall of the tree being
TREES TO BE DRIVEN
- Clear the escape route and your work area.
- Scarf the tree to be driven in the normal manner.
Take up the backcut, and at the earliest opportunity insert a wedge and
drive it home as the cut proceeds. Stop the backcut so that sufficient
wood is held to hold control of the tree.
- If the tree to be driven is leaning and lodged in
another tree, do not go under it or forward of it to see why it didn't
fall to the ground.
- Be aware of any debris, dead branches or material
in either the driving tree and tree to be driven. This material may be
thrown back into the work area at impact.
- Never use a dead tree as a drive tree or drive onto
dead trees. On impact, pieces can fly in all directions.
- Take extra care with the scarf and backcut of the
driving tree as an indirect hit may result in the tree to be driven
swaying back and falling into your work area, or pieces or branches
breaking off and being thrown around.
- As the driving tree falls, remove and shut off the
saw, take the escape route and watch for any dislodged or flying
- If you are driving a leaning or loaded tree, watch
for the driving tree sliding down the leaning tree and kicking across
into the work area.
- If the drive is unsuccessful and trees are hung-up,
mark off the area and get a machine to finish the work.
( Tree Sitting Back on Stump)
If you intend driving a tree that has sat back on the
cut, or a tree that is "cut- up" (scarfed and backcut) and held
by wedges, take extreme care. A small gust of wind can cause the tree to
fall into the work area. Never turn your back on a cut-up tree.
Face the cut-up tree while making your scarf and backcut in the driving
WORKING IN A
Section one described how to deal with single windthrown trees. This part
covers working in areas of windthrow.
In windthrow areas, normal hazards are multiplied by the presence of broken
or shattered trees and varying degrees of tension due to the trees being
interlocked, bent and partially fallen.
Approach each tree with caution. Examine the tree to see which way the
-- whether up, down or sideways
-- and determine the correct method of work.
- Extreme care is necessary in dealing with bent or
leaning trees. If there's a machine present, it can be used to uproot the
tree and reduce the hazard. Otherwise, follow the guidelines given in
this booklet for dealing with this situation.
- Random lays with interlocking stems create special
hazards because of bending and tensions caused by the interlocking.
Carefully examine these and work out the sequence of cuts required to
release the tension in a logical and safe manner.
for rootplates springing back once the counterbalance of the tree is cut
off. Use the cut illustrated below. Note the shift of cutting positions.
- Always be aware of broken material that may move or
be thrown around as you butt off trees or make cuts to logs under
- Many branches are under tension in windblown areas.
Stand on the correct side, release the tension and then complete the cut.
- When felling trees without tops, increase the scarf
distance and insert a wedge as soon as possible to help guide the felling