Marty, do you bore cut every tree?
Marty, do you bore cut every tree?
The hinge does not do all the work to get a tree to the ground.
1) Face provides the initial part of the release,
2) Back-cut - step two of the release,
3) Hinge, if everything is done properly, controls the release - the fall - the direction of fall.
Often on the fireline, the trees being dropped are snags.
GOL - Open Face is a moot point in dead or drought timber. Remember a hinge that breaks prior to 90 degrees negatives the control, (theoretically), at the point where it breaks.
Dead snags will have the hinge break commonly around 40-50 degrees. Sometimes earlier. Rotten trees may well have no hinge control whatsoever. Drought trees of any species, (live fuel moistures down to say 110%), will be more brittle than that same species fully green, (live fuel moistures above say 160% minimum).
Spending time making an open face, (Tek9Tim's point), is a waste in large conifers generally. It is a huge safety consideration when dealing with the very dangerous dead and recently weakened by fire trees/snags on the fireline. I have yet to see a photo or appropriate emphasis by GOL training materials on looking up while falling danger trees.
The Open Face is the second hardest of the four face cuts. It apparently requires a lot of concentration. The Block Face w/Snipe, (four cuts and lots of ability needed), is the hardest.
Remember, an unobstructed limb, will fall 50 feet in less than 2 seconds and be going 40 mph when it hits the faller. LOOK UP is golden rule #2 is danger tree falling. (#1 is don't be afraid to say no).
For most people, the conventional undercut is the easiest to accomplish and allows the most vertical situational awareness. I will concede that many Humboldt professional cutters on the west coast are so good at that technique that they can and do look up very well. If you have any photos showing this by GOL - Open face practitioners, please post them.
This photo shows an Open Face Cutter in action. The serious error is not looking up, of course. This photo was not picked out selectively to make this point. The entire batch from this project showed not one single instance of the faller looking up while cutting dead trees with widow makers overhead.
One point I should also make regarding the last photo is the height of the felling cuts and how that makes for unsafe falling.
Note how the faller is cutting at a height where his posture is poor.
Sounds like a parent scolding a grade schooler doesn't it?
Really, it is that basic. He can't look up readily and has the added exposure of an unprotected cervical spine by being bent over.
Felling at this height, failing to look up, not recognizing those problems would result in flunking where I come from.
I would like to take the courses and know that I would learn something, but it is hard to believe that this part of training is not beaten into everyones head.
And a huge hell yeah to go along with Smokechase's posts.
Blis: if a tree's dead or on fire, why does it need to be cut low?
Dolmar 5100 Baby Saw
Makita 6401 w/7900 top end
Stihl 460 Magnum ported by me
Stihl 660 Magnum Ported by Washington Pro Saws
Go to one knee. This is for 'safe' trees. Your back it still vertical. Does requiure some acquired skill but you can look up except when in tree wells from snow etc.
1) Solid green tree, no observed hazards. Cut low. Most commercial cutters will have tree after tree like this. Particularly in second growth stands. I suspect that in Finland, to some degree, there are not the numerous snags that we have in our 'unhealthy forests' of the Western US.
2) Hazard tree, something has your attention. Rot, loose limbs, dead top, going to brush against neighboring trees etc. Cut at a comfortable height to look up and escape as cutting low also means slower escape.
There is a lot I don't know about falling.
But I'm going to say that I do know a fair bit about danger trees.
38 fire seasons.
There are also times where falling by chain saw is not an option.
The only GOL - Open Face materials I am privy to are Tim Ard's eBook and what is on the net. Often that internet stuff is from associated groups that have adapted to GOL techniques.
I've asked before. Can anyone put forth some quotes from the GOL world here?
1) Looking up throughout the felling of danger trees is needed.
2) Emphasis on becoming ambidextrous so that the danger side of some trees can be avoided. Provided a long bar is available.
John, I think a good portion of this comes from its Scandinavian roots.
Green second growth and not many snags means a few things.
Smaller trees, solid timber and less hazards.
It is logical that they would have a reduced emphasis on looking up, quicker escapes, cutting from either side and longer bars.
It is not logical that what works in any one part of the world should be mandated elsewhere.
Tonight I'll go through Tim Ard’s eBook. It’s on CD and easy to search and I'll post what he has.
Last edited by smokechase II; 04-16-2007 at 08:41 AM.
Excellent posts Smokechase. The B.C. fallers and buckers manual (written by westcoast fallers and buckers) is pretty clear on snags or other danger trees. With snags you must 1) use a saw thats bar is bigger than the tree 2) put in the cuts at a hieght comfortable to you, so you can easily look up 3) only wedge it if you have to and only then if you determine it can take it 4) use a deep undercut 1/2 of the tree, on short fat snags, over 1/2. All the other rules apply as well, escape paths, standing in the right spot, etc.
To add to this...And there will probably be a hornets nest afterwards....GOL focuses on harvesting valuable trees. The emphasis is on safety, correct method, and efficiency. The GOL classes that I took were taught by Soren Eriksson and took place on Mead/Westvaco property in southern Ohio. During the classes I remember that a good deal of emphasis was place on taking inventory of the top, looking for dead or loose braches and other hazards. During felling however, Soren believed it was not a good idea to look up to much. His theory was that if a branch came out of the tree that he wanted it to land square on the top of the hardhat, and not in his face. I know the PNW guys are not going to agree with most of what the GOL program has to offer. The timber that GOL is geared towards is Eastern hardwoods and softwoods, not the large softwoods of the PNW. GOL techniques have served me well, and for those with limited experience working in the woods I think it is time and money well spent.
That pic shows how our forests are, that is "young" forest, time for first thinning (we usually clear the area with clearing saw first, then 1-3 thinnings and then cut all wood then the circle begins again)... Hardly anything falling to watch for (expect snow)...
Husky for life
Hq 238se POS
International 574 (the fast model)
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)