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What do you drive wedges with

tfp

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I use a small axe when using a wedge to stop the bar pinching while bucking and a mallet when falling and I really need to bash it in. I’m worried about the hole in the axe head deforming if I go too hard so I don’t use it on the latter.
 
northmanlogging

northmanlogging

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Short straight handled axes, cause sometimes that chopping head comes in awfully handy

Mostly a battered and patched together Craftsmen 3.5#, when I can't find it or its broken again a 4# Council rafting pattern.

Sometimes just another wedge is all you really need for bucking, or the ever present just in case the wind shifts wedge, couple love taps to take up the slack.

If things are really stubborn, a 28000# shovel
 
Gologit

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I used everything from the palm of my hand if I was just slipping one in to stop a set back to a 5lb council that our local blacksmith custom polled for me.
I always tried to avoid having to really wail on the wedges. When you hear somebody knocking wedges for more than ten minutes it's usually a sign that they screwed up. They read the tree wrong or they're trying to pull the tree around with wedges instead of tapering the hinge, throwing a chunk in the face, or putting in a sizwheel.
You'll notice the older fallers spend more time on useful cuts than they do beating on stalled out wedges.
 
rwoods

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I used everything from the palm of my hand if I was just slipping one in to stop a set back to a 5lb council that our local blacksmith custom polled for me.
I always tried to avoid having to really wail on the wedges. When you hear somebody knocking wedges for more than ten minutes it's usually a sign that they screwed up. They read the tree wrong or they're trying to pull the tree around with wedges instead of tapering the hinge, throwing a chunk in the face, or putting in a sizwheel.
You'll notice the older fallers spend more time on useful cuts than they do beating on stalled out wedges.

That is my usual MO. Ron
 
EchoRomeoCharlie

EchoRomeoCharlie

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3.5lb Beaver Tooth on a 28" straight handle....works well.

Righted some pretty big back leaners with it...everyone(non tree people) always wants to bring me a sledge hammer when they see me banging wedges...not real sure why. Swinging a 10lb sledge is going to wear a fella out in short order swinging sideways. I can swing an axe quite a while without needing a break.
 
TheDarkLordChinChin

TheDarkLordChinChin

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At the moment I am using a 2.6lb hultafors with a 26" handle.
I couldn't find anything 3-4lb that would fit in my axe pouch. Car boot sales are a great place to find odd tools but there haven't been many of those over the last year.
 
rwoods

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Typically, the deeper the face the harder the wedge driving due to less leverage. Too deep and the load will increase, inviting disaster.

Today tree had almost all of its limb load on the back side. The tree posted earlier was a back leaner. Due to hazards both had to be felled against the load.

My back cut today also wasn’t level. My error. I am told a sloppy downward sloping back cut also makes wedging harder.

Ron
 
northmanlogging

northmanlogging

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Typically, the deeper the face the harder the wedge driving due to less leverage. Too deep and the load will increase, inviting disaster.

Today tree had almost all of its limb load on the back side. The tree posted earlier was a back leaner. Due to hazards both had to be felled against the load.

My back cut today also wasn’t level. My error. I am told a sloppy downward sloping back cut also makes wedging harder.

Ron
I don't know if it makes wedging harder, cause you at least have gravity helping you swing, it does make wedging a lot more dangerous, cause it creates a fulcrum that can shear off the hold wood.
 
rwoods

rwoods

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I don't know if it makes wedging harder, cause you at least have gravity helping you swing, it does make wedging a lot more dangerous, cause it creates a fulcrum that can shear off the hold wood.
Not sure which scenario you are addressing - the deep face or the sloping back cut. As you know, gravity doesn’t help you on a face cut unless you are cutting compression wood or you have converted the back cut compression wood to tension wood, or severed it and supported it; both of which require some mechanical means - wedge, tension line, jack, heavy equipment, etc. If your compression wood is in the back you have to move the center of gravity forward - a deep face gives you less leverage with a wedge thus making it harder to drive - like starting in second gear. Also like 2nd gear, the stem will be lifted higher with each movement of the wedge. So theoretically, a deeper face requires less wedge height to get the job done but requires more force to get it there - and as you noted it makes things more dangerous - bust the hinge when the center of gravity is still in the wrong place and it over. Nothing here you don’t already know, but maybe some don’t.

Ron
 
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