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Could use some help cutting down tree that is leaning away

clydesdale6

clydesdale6

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I would like to cut down a medium sized that is leaning away from where I would like it to go. I need to get some rope around it, up high. So, it seems like I need to purchase a weight and some throw line. I then need to attach some stronger rope to a come a long and pull it off of the tree it is leaning on. Any idea what type and where to buy the rope? Any good tips on the technique or link to video? It is leaning towards power lines, but there are several trees in the way before it would hit that and I don't think it would reach there anyway. I called the power line company and they came and looked and did not think it was a risk, so they won't take it down. I have some rope, but no clue as to how strong it is. Any suggestions on what rope to get for this? If you need a picture or any other info, please let me know. Thanks.
 
old CB

old CB

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You've got the right plan. But there is much here to signal caution. Without photos of your situation and more info as to the species of tree and its condition, it's hard to advise.

You'll need rope with strength enough to handle the task--if you misjudge and the rope breaks you could propel your tree in the wrong direction. To determine what rope is sufficient you need to know what force it must overcome--not something that the average layman has a handle on. You'll also need to know and tie proper attachment at the right point in the tree. Too high or too low can cause grief. Your comealong will give you only so much pull (limited by length of cable) so you have to be sure to have calculated everything properly.

The direction in which you pull can be critical as well. If you pull at the wrong angle you could break your holding wood before the tree comes over enough to go where you want it.

The species of tree affects how it will behave, as does its condition. Live or dead? Healthy tissue where you'll place your hinge? Are you competent to cut a good hinge without over- or under-doing it?

You say the tree is leaning on a neighboring tree. Interlocking limbs could complicate things a great deal, requiring far more pull than you anticipate.

And if there's ANY chance that your tree could encounter power lines if you miscalculate, that can make for the kind of problems you really don't want.

This is one of those scenarios that really calls for a competent and experienced operator.

Think hard about getting that someone to do the job.
 
Natster

Natster

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Cutting trees down is pretty easy. Getting them to fall in a desirable location, is entirely another.
From your questions, you could use a bit of a hand. Have you got a friend, relative, or acquaintance that could do this?
If not, maybe take a few pics, and go to your local saw shop, and get their advice. (By saw shop, I don't mean lowes, or home depot) a real saw shop, that sells, and serves local loggers, and tree service people.
 
Woody912

Woody912

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I would like to cut down a medium sized that is leaning away from where I would like it to go. I need to get some rope around it, up high. So, it seems like I need to purchase a weight and some throw line. I then need to attach some stronger rope to a come a long and pull it off of the tree it is leaning on. Any idea what type and where to buy the rope? Any good tips on the technique or link to video? It is leaning towards power lines, but there are several trees in the way before it would hit that and I don't think it would reach there anyway. I called the power line company and they came and looked and did not think it was a risk, so they won't take it down. I have some rope, but no clue as to how strong it is. Any suggestions on what rope to get for this? If you need a picture or any other info, please let me know. Thanks.
I just got 100' of synthetic bull rope from Bailey's for about $90, I have always used chains in the past but I am tired of dragging them. Everything else that has been suggested applies, without seeing your tree or knowing your level of knowledge will not comment further. This one was leaning back toward a power line and my brothers house, we cut it Saturday, we had a crane and 1/2" wire rope tied on 25' up because we could but never even tensioned it. Wedges are a really good friend also. walnutII.jpg
 

Yarz

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Your basic plan sounds good.
I'll show you my go-to setup for doing similar pulling:
Portawrap and Comealong.jpg
Portawrap and Comealong2.jpg

I use 200' of 1/2" Sampson Stable Braid (I think I remembered that right...), tensioned by hand and locked off in the portawrap. I like to anchor this to a solid tree, but have used vehicles as well, depending on availability, access, and amount of pull required.

Then the come-a-long is attached, at just about max length, using a rigging prusik and steel carabiner.

I add some more tension on with the come-a-long, and reset the rope in the portawrap. This acts as a backup/safety in case there is some problem with the come-a-long. It also allows us to reset the rope if we needed to pull more than the length of the come-a-long.

Then I go cut the face notch, and once I start the back cut, have my brother start running the come-a-long. I set a wedge (or a few) in the back cut as soon as I can, as another backup/safety. Once the hinge is setup, I pound in additional wedges while he cranks more, until it goes over center.

It has worked well for us. We did this for several of the trees on that same property, as well as on two on my own property.

I am not saying that this is the only way to do it, but simply what works for me. As "old CB" mentioned above, though, the pulling direction, as well as type and health of the tree are all EXTREMELY important.
 
old CB

old CB

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Yarz's method is rather equipment-heavy but very sound. Got all the bases covered.

1/2" Stable Braid is what I use for rigging. It's very good rope for medium sized trees.

One thing I didn't mention above is that when pulling a tree you must ensure that your anchor is sufficient for the load. People sometimes hook up to a vehicle . . . only to find out that it's under-matched to the task. I've pulled an anchor tree out of the ground on one occasion (it was uncritical, and resulted only in the loss of a small tree in the landscape) and popped a root on another. As you can see, Yarz is anchored to something substantial.

There are so many things that go wrong, but it's not rocket science. It's doable if you don't go off half-cocked.
 
NeSurfcaster

NeSurfcaster

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Tough to say but I'd rather remove that one from a bucket. Unless it will drop parallel to the power lines and skim your "blocker tree's" on the way down. Be safe and call for help if your not confident. 50' lifts around here go for 350.00 for the weekend, just something to think about.
 
clydesdale6

clydesdale6

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I think that is my plan. It looks like I should be able to pull the tree towards the other two potential pulling trees and that would pull the leaning tree so that it will fall parallel to the property lines. I will look for the 1/2 rope. I have never used a portawrap, but see that it is certainly a nice tool.

Yarz, I am not sure how you mate the come a long to the rope. I see the two separate devices, portawrap and come a long, but not sure how the come a long attaches to your rope. Also, what type of knot do you use around the tree to be cut? Sorry for the rookie questions. Thanks again.
 
old CB

old CB

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That is a lot of lean, and trying to pull the tree over opposite the lean would be very difficult if it's possible at all.

Go with a lift or some other plan.

And given your admitted novice skills, be very careful about attempting this job in any form.
 
clydesdale6

clydesdale6

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I understand. The plan is to pull sideways, parallel to the street. No way could I pull this to upright and opposite. I will see if I have success roping it. If that fails, no point in breaking out the saw. I have cut about 15 trees down in my woods this year, but this one is more difficult. Thanks for everyone's help with this.
 

Yarz

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That is way more lean than I have ever pulled over, but I have only done ~180° to the lean. You say you want to pull sideways. Just for clarification, is that ~90° to the lean?

Yarz, I am not sure how you mate the come a long to the rope. I see the two separate devices, portawrap and come a long, but not sure how the come a long attaches to your rope.
I use a rigging prusik around the rope that I can hook a steel carabiner to, then the come-a-long to that.

Also, what type of knot do you use around the tree to be cut? Sorry for the rookie questions. Thanks again.
A running bowline.
If I want to be able to retrieve the rope, I'll put the rope through a high crotch, and then tie a running bowline around the trunk, where I can reach it.
If I need a longer pull, and am 100% confident I can get the tree on the ground, I can run the bowline all the way up to the high point.
 
Ted Jenkins

Ted Jenkins

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Clyde there are numerous ways to bring your issue to a safe conclusion with out causing damage. If you are not experienced at this sort of thing you might want to get some assistance. Plenty of AS people have made great suggestions. About a year and half ago I was starting a job that was large for just me and a part time helper. I had about 80 Oak trees that need to be thinned and removed from a small horse ranch. I worked most of the summer when I came to the most difficult tree on site. I was planning on climbing it, but was obviously full of decay. It had a large branch hanging over a fence line and was leaning several degrees down hill over a road. It needed to come up hill or fall on fence line and the access road. At the time the fence had just been rebuilt repaired by owner. I did not know how long the access road could be blocked as the property owners were not readily available. I decided regardless of cost the tree needed to not hit the road or power line. I tried to cut some of the down hill limbs and managed to reduce some of the weight, but certainly not all. So was able to shoot a line about 60 feet up which allowed me to pull three 1 1/8" lines around the tree. I have eight decent 2,000 lb come a longs. So I planned two different angles using two good sized trees up hill. So I pulled seven come a longs tight always leaving one back up in case one fails. I then cut the bottom until it started to lean. I had some of the heavy lines sticking out on the over hanging limb allowing me to pull on the tree unevenly making the tree twist. Once the tree was at a good angle pulled the thing down. It took close to a five day week to get the thing down by my self. Yes it can be done, but it has been a many year learning experience to get to this level and most people do not have any patience. A couple pictures of a couple easy peasy removals. Thanks
 

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Woody912

Woody912

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That is a lot of lean, and trying to pull the tree over opposite the lean would be very difficult if it's possible at all.

Go with a lift or some other plan.

And given your admitted novice skills, be very careful about attempting this job in any form.
I agree 110%. Have pulled a lot of leaners but that one is way outside of my comfort zone. Afraid the hinge would break before it got to TDC
 
clydesdale6

clydesdale6

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I am continuing to assess this situation and I do think I will be able to do this. But, I will not break out the chainsaw until I am extremely confident. I think I am going to follow the idea of the come along, prusik and portawrap method. I am thinking I could possibly use two pulling ropes. One that athe 180 degrees and one at 90 degrees. My thought is that I could straighten it a bit, then pull it off to the side, parallel to the street.
If I proceed, do you have a supplier you recommend? Thanks.
 
old CB

old CB

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I buy rope, saw chains, files, and nearly all my wood-butchering supplies from Bailey's logging supply in CA. Easy to find online. Quick shipping.

With rope you need to ensure that you're getting rigging rope rather than climbing rope. 1/2" Stable Braid (I believe it's made by Samson) is good for what you'll be doing.
 
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