So, yes I love flashlights, otherwise, why would I be here? I love machines and machinery of all sorts. This past week the loggers have been busy clearing away the burnt and dead trees in the vicinity of our cabin in the Jemez Mountains of New Mexico.
This is on private land. The forest fire in March began on forest service land and spread rapidly through the national forest and some private lands. A small number of us private landowners have contracted with a local logger to cut and clear away the burnt, dead timber. Except for about a half acre right around our cabin, that amounts to about 60 acres of burnt trees. The logger gets to take the trees and keep whatever he can sell them for to the local pueblo sawmill and wood pellet mill; no charge to us. Plus he is laying some trees across the slopes to slow erosion and repair any damage to the roads.
I made some videos of the feller-buncher cutting trees. I find it engrossing, and amazing that it can cut one to three 75-foot tall pines, move them, and lay them down on the ground. Maybe someone else will find it of interest.
There are 7 of my videos starting with the one here. Youtube seems to run my seven and then start showing similar videos from others. Sometimes, it doesn’t show one after the other. I have no idea why so I included a link to that section’s index page.
Interesting that is has that value. Not sure that machine would be able to cut through the trees like that here. Some Australian native timber, ironbark, spotted gum, cypress pine you can’t drive a nail into it has to be drilled first.
The pines and firs are an easy cut, especially when the trees still have moisture content. The fire killed them but they still have a load of water in them and that lubes the blade. Some of the tree tops still have green needles, but the trees are also heat-damaged at the trunk base. The cambium layer gets damaged and no longer has any open, live capillaries to allow moisture up the tree trunk. There may be a few that survive but past experience indicates most will die. The few green needles that remain will stay green until they suck all the moisture that is already up the tree trunk. It can take a year for them to turn brown and fall off.
The blade is a steel disc about 2 inches thick. A big flywheel that is spun up to speed by the hydraulic motor. The cutters are carbide, secured with a big bolt. Those teeth can be rotated 90 degrees as needed.
Another video of tree removal after the Cerro Peldo fire. Some of these were untouched by the fire, but we deemed them to be too close to the cabin. We have had other trees blown over by the wind. We have been lucky those were all either far enough away to not damage the cabin, or fell in a direction away from the cabin. Perhaps we have tempted fate long enough.