Friday, May 15, 2009

Using the Wedge: Felling Trees The Right Way

Well, I’ve heard of the technique, but like most folks who’ve felled trees I’ve been doing it more dangerously than necessary. New York State Extension Forester Peter Smallidge educates on the wedge method that puts the tree right where you want it without chasing it down with a back cut. He cut his notch, then used the plunge method to leave all but the hinge.

A couple of wedges are placed in the backcut – one just as a safety measure to be sure your saw doesn’t get pinched – and the other to safely and slowly drop the tree. The top should generally never move (no rattling top and falling branches) until you drive the wedge home. Then it falls right on the mark. Take the “game of logging
training Smallidge gives to learn to do it right. He also runs forestconnect.com, Cornell Cooperative Extension site for all things forestry that includes plenty of resources for forest owners, including regular webinars.

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