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Dead, Limbless, Topless Pine

Discussion in 'Homeowner Helper Forum' started by Tim Bryant, Feb 9, 2019.

  1. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    The Top fell out a couple years back and after having some very large (80') pines professionally felled, and a couple of pro-level chainsaws worth of cleanup after; I think I'm ready to fell what's left of the old dead, limbless pine out back before it takes out my prized, hand-built shed...
    It's not "exactly" a leaner, but it's got a little curve to it, so I'd feel more comfortable pulling it with a guide rope.
    Problem is, it's dead. Bark falling off. No limbs to speak of. About 50-60' tall, maybe 20-22"DBH, with only a couple stubs of limbs left. I don't want to rope it that high up anyway for fear I'll just pull the top down. It looks bad enough at the base that I'm reluctant to lean my 28' extension ladder against it.
    I've got a throw line with bag, and I bought a 1029lb working load rated 1/2" rope and a 650lb rated pulley block, and just plan on having a friend pull enough to keep tension on it.
    So how do I get a rope up in the tree high enough to gain some leverage.
     
  2. Del_

    Del_ Life is but a song we sing.

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    You toss the bag over a stub, pull up the bull line and tie a running bowline.
     
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  3. Jed1124

    Jed1124 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Use your throw line to set your half inch line as high as you can go over an upper limb. Tie a running bowline and pull it up.
     
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  4. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    Isn't there a risk of the top breaking off...???
    I did just clear the entire area around it (you couldn't even walk up to it for all the briars and brambles) so I'd have a clear shot at it. But the only significant limb (maybe 3'long) is up there within 5-6' of the top.
     
  5. Jed1124

    Jed1124 Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Sure there is. Your going to be choking the stem (not the nub or branch) and the rope is just a little insurance to get it to commit to the lay a little earlier than it would otherwise. Don’t start yanking on it with a vehicle.
     
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  6. rayjay257

    rayjay257 ArboristSite Operative

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    My neighbors have a bunch of dead pines that they have done nothing about except to let them fall where they will. So I have seen how they fall. The majority end up rotting about 8 to 15 feet from the ground. When this area get weak enough the weight of the upper part of the tree telescopes [ accordians ??? ] down at this 8 to 15' high section and then the top section topples in some random unpredictable direction. The last dead one I had in my yard I cut down pretty quickly. The heart wood was still strong so the tree fell just where I wanted with no drama. The moral of the story is don't let a known dead tree deteriorate for any length of time before dropping it.
     
  7. rayjay257

    rayjay257 ArboristSite Operative

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    PS, my neighbor's current dead pine is probably 75' + and 24" dia at the base. It's about 50' from their house and cars. They are ignoring it. I warned them back last August or Sept just making sure they knew it was dead. They don't do anything in their yard but cut the grass so it's possible they would never realize they had a dangerous situation brewing. Pretty stupid.
     
  8. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    Oh, I learned the hard way... Ice storm took the top out of a skinny pine shortly after I moved here 20 years ago, landed on the house and poked a pretty good hole in the roof... It was in a natural area right between mine and the neighbors houses which are only 30-40' part... I didn't know anything about felling trees and couldn't afford to pay someone to cut it so I left it... A few years later it came down and took out my HVAC unit...
     
  9. ArtB

    ArtB ArboristSite Operative

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    I use an 80# bow with heavy aluminum arrow with and added weight. Fishing line over anything up to over 100 ft high, when hearvy nylon cord, then wire rope.

    DO NOT rely on a person just pulling on rope, be sure to have a capstan wrap around something solid. Have seen too many people pulled t;he working way trying that.
     
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  10. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    I had considered attaching my 25' strap come-a-long to a nearby tree and tightening just enough to have tension and then just cutting and tightening rinse repeat all by myself, but I would like to have someone on site just in case... Maybe I'll use that as my safety anchor... Then my helper can pull it but if it resists it won't be reliant simply on human strength because I know that ain't happening... This tree probably weighs well over a ton... Just guessing... Anybody know what a 50' tall 18" DBH 12" at the top weighs...???
     
  11. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    Here's a picture of the little monster... Side View.jpg
     
  12. rayjay257

    rayjay257 ArboristSite Operative

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    My garden tractor is my helper. I also have three TufTug 4" sheave blocks for doing mechanical advantage with my 1/2" rope. I was just in the new nearby Harbor Freight and Haul Master sells a similar sheave block for $13. I would set my rope up above that limb sticking off to the right just above the big bare patch. I would then put a sheave block on my target tree and give a gentle tug with the garden tractor just to see how strong the tree is.
     
  13. Del_

    Del_ Life is but a song we sing.

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    Unless that pine has some lean that is not showing in the photo, it looks like a one man pull on a bull line would do it.

    A Maasdam rope puller would work well, too.

    It is important that you make your felling cuts correctly.
     
  14. Skeans

    Skeans Addicted to ArboristSite

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    I seen a few issues with your plan one is power lines, how much experience do you have with falling timber? I see a house and shed plus a fence even with a rope which I wouldn’t trust pulling anything dead heard of too many guys doing exactly that till the line came up to tension snapped the top out on them.


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  15. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    Here's what I was planning to do... Untitled.jpg
     
  16. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    What if I added a second length of rope further down on the trunk, maybe 10-15' off the ground, just as an insurance policy...???
     
  17. Tim Bryant

    Tim Bryant ArboristSite Lurker

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    Did I post this in the right sub-forum...??? "Homeowner Helper" yep, Homie Homeowner has none, none experience felling timber...
     
  18. Skeans

    Skeans Addicted to ArboristSite

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    Then get someone who has experience dead stuff is a completely different animal vs a live green tree, if you want experience falling work on live green stuff first.


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