When is it 'Too cheap'? Large cottonwood quote.

EchoRomeoCharlie

EchoRomeoCharlie

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So, I'm an amateur climber. I do tree removals for myself/friends/family. I'm not looking to make money, just help out, get some exercise, and have fun. Plus, I really enjoy climbing.

Did an twin stem ash tree removal for a buddy that involved some light rigging, we worked out a deal because I needed some equipment for it. He bought equipment, I did the job. Figured it would have cost him about the same amount if he went with a tree company.

Then as we're drinking some water and talking after that job he asked me about taking down a very large cottonwood. Unfortunately I don't have any pictures, but I'll describe it.

4' diameter easy up to the first crotch which is a solid 15-20ft up. Extremely large horizontal limbs going over structures, and it's a solid 100ft tall, probably taller. Houses to the north and south. House to the north is within 10 feet of the trunk so the north half of the tree is over that house. House to the south is about 30-40ft away. 40 feet to the east is a fence and a bunch of power/utility lines. Maybe 70-80 feet to the west is power lines, driveway and landscaping. I don't believe you can get a bucket truck to within bout 40 feet of the trunk of the tree in any direction.

I told him I didn't want any part of it. It's just too big and too much risk of damage to property for me and my equipment.

Tells me he got a quote from a guy he saw doing tree work at his neighbors house for $1200. Lets assume this is just to put the wood on the ground.


This seems EXTREMELY cheap for this size/difficulty/risk of tree. Am I way off base?
 
Jed1124

Jed1124

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Sounds like a crane tree to me.
I’m willing to bet the company does not have the proper insurance and is in over their head skill wise.
 

Del_

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So, I'm an amateur climber.

==============

Tells me he got a quote from a guy he saw doing tree work at his neighbors house for $1200. Lets assume this is just to put the wood on the ground.


This seems EXTREMELY cheap for this size/difficulty/risk of tree. Am I way off base?








A pro can make a huge mess in a yard if they can leave all of the wood and limbs uncut and left where they fell or lowered.

An amateur wouldn't understand.
 
EchoRomeoCharlie

EchoRomeoCharlie

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A pro can make a huge mess in a yard if they can leave all of the wood and limbs uncut and left where they fell or lowered.

An amateur wouldn't understand.
I don't care how much of a mess you want to make. All but one limb of this tree needs to be rigged down away from the structures. You can't just leave all the crap you rig down in the drop zone...eventually you won't have any room to work with a tree this big.
 
EchoRomeoCharlie

EchoRomeoCharlie

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Talked to my buddy again today, he said this guy has no crew, it's just him and a bucket truck.

So he must be planning on chucking all this wood away from the house it's over? idk...seems like a real **** show to me...
 

Del_

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Talked to my buddy again today, he said this guy has no crew, it's just him and a bucket truck.

So he must be planning on chucking all this wood away from the house it's over? idk...seems like a real **** show to me...

There are lots of ways a bucket operator can use rigging in a tree working alone. One is to swing large pieces from a limb that is over a clear drop. Rig, cut, move over to the swung piece, cut it up. Repeat. The pile on the ground could grow really high as the operator doesn't have to enter that zone.

A Port-a-Wrap tied high in the tree and a nice piece of stout rope of 50 or 60 or more feet long make it very easy for a single operator to swing huge pieces. In a bucket it is like you can fly so it's easy to fly over to the portawarp, wrap it, slice and dice it down to a piece that can be untied and dropped....etc.

I've done it hundreds of times.

Portawrap.png
 

Del_

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Makes sense.

Still seems cheap. IMO.


I've been called to give bids on such work. The removal takes the good money and leaves a ton of work for someone to clean up. The homeowner thinks that all of the hard work is done but there is a 45ft., 4ft diameter tree trunk laying on a huge pile of branches and brush. Often the stump isn't even cut low, just left at the felling cut.

I've never bid such work. I just move on explaining that we are a tree care company, not a clean up after someone else company.
 

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