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Author Topic: Felling Leaning trees
Ken Hume
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Posts: 431
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Post Felling Leaning trees
on: March 6, 2016, 09:20
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One of the most dangerous type of tree felling activities is that of safely bringing down a heavily leaning tree. This beech tree has been monitored over nearly 20 years and regrettably the time had come to fell same in a controlled fashion before this fell on its own potentially causing injury to unsuspecting persons. The roots on the windward side of the tree were seen to be non existant having broken many years ago.

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The felling process involved putting in a standard gob cut with this being followed by a making a plunge cut through the centre of the tree with this cut being advanced towards the uncut side of the tree.

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Eventually the tree starts yielding and the fall commences rapidly due to the lean and so the tree feller has to beat a hasty retreat backwards and to the side of the tree.

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As this tree had many branches springing upwards on the same side of the trunk it was bound to roll as it hit the ground and so the fall area was cleared and personal kept clear of this area.

Ken Hume

Ken Hume
Administrator
Posts: 431
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Post Re: Felling Leaning trees
on: April 14, 2016, 13:43
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After walking the wood this malformed young (50 yrs+) beech tree was found with a very prononced lean and so it was decided to remove same as this was hanging over the new log storage area rather than risk it falling on top of woodland operatives or the public.

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The tree was showing signs of bark healing low down consistent with typical squirrel bark stripping damage and although the bark was apparently healed this will not necessarily be the case inside the tree trunk.

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The tree feller first removes any root buttresses and then makes a small gob cut on the same side of the tree that the tree will fall. A plunge cut is then made through the tree at right angles to the direction of fall leaving a hinge and then working the saw backwards till all restraining timber has been cut thru.

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Once the tree is down it becomes obvious the the core is seriously damaged

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The stump is cleaned across with the saw to reveal a series of squirrel bark stripping attacks every 7 - 10 years followed by bark healing over to cover the (by then) dried out timber. The tree is also suffering from rot and internal spalting barriers can be seen.

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This tree is a self seeded tree that was growing under the shade cast by a 150 year old beech tree above. This was probably the principal reason for the younger beech tree developing a lean in the first place. The older beech trees were planted and grew at a time when there were no grey squirrels in the woodland and so these are most likely to contain an undamaged timber core.

Ken Hume - OWG

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