On Wed, Mar 23, 2005 at 08:38:36PM -0800, Roland Wilhelmy wrote:
> It can also help to have a couple of aluminum wedges to free your saw
> and/or nudge the tree in the direction you intend. Aluminum is nice
> because it won't destroy your chain immediately if you happen to touch
> it with your saw.
I've been using plastic wedges. They're useful on larger trees
for making sure that the wind doesn't push the tree over onto
the saw when you are making the second cut. And also for when
you are done with the second cut and the tree's balanced on the hinge.
How you cut the hinge (and the tree's c.g.) determines how the tree falls.
I studied wildlife biology up in the north coast redwood
country. One day on a field trip we came upon a logging crew felling
a very large (200 feet or more, about 6' diameter) redwood. They used
saws with huge bars to cut out the wedge on the front and to make the
back cut. Then one guy got out a tiny little saw and cut out a small box
on the back. Then they drew straws and the loser stayed while everyone
else trooped off to a safe distance, telling the loser that they'd get
his truck if he died. He grabbed a small hydraulic cylinder on a
hose to a hand pump, stuck it into the box cutout, and started pumping.
When it started getting close he'd do one pump, then look up at the
tree for a long time, then another pump, etc. When you are at the
base of a tall tree it is difficult to see if its started moving.
Finally he did a pump, looked up and then ran away as fast as possible.
It still took about five seconds for the tree to visibly start moving.
It made a lot of noise when it came down.