The Forestry Forum

General Forestry => Forestry and Logging => Topic started by: Andy Kagan on May 23, 2020, 02:13:17 PM

Title: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: Andy Kagan on May 23, 2020, 02:13:17 PM
Does anyone have any experience with the Westtech Woodcracker tree shears? I have found lots of YouTube videos, but not a lot of information on product support, and durability two or 3 years down the road. Any input would be great.
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: barbender on May 23, 2020, 03:41:36 PM
It looks like a lot of fresh marketing of obsolete technology to me🤷‍♂️ But I haven't worked around one.
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: Bruno of NH on May 23, 2020, 04:59:05 PM
I like the unit they make that splits large log up into quarters. 
It does it on the sides of the logs.
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: Skeans1 on May 23, 2020, 08:45:29 PM
@Andy Kagan (;u=50856) 
Looks like my old Hurricana head that’s been in the weeds since the late 80’s, why are you wanting a shear head?

Cheap to operate

Cracks the butts
To produce the same volume of wood it can cost more in fuel
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: mike_belben on May 23, 2020, 11:31:01 PM
Probably pretty low maintenance compared to CTL or hotsaw buncher.  Maybe good for cutting the pulp junk out of a stand. 
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: Riwaka on May 24, 2020, 12:15:39 AM
My understanding is the Westtech/ Woodcracker equipment is made in Austria. It uses good steel like Hardox.
Only as good as the local support is now (with the international freight issues happening now)
Shears are used around live powerlines so you don't throw a saw chain over the powerlines etc.

Shear heads are still used in commercial forests,  in rocky ground forests to pick up wind blow, where one rock hiding behind a tree stem,would take out a disc saw or saw chain.
Main thing is to get the right woodcracker head with the right sized machine.

Products | WESTTECH .:. Woodcracker (

wood cracker also do heads with saw bars.
Woodcracker CS | WESTTECH .:. Woodcracker (
Greifersäge - WESTTECH Woodcracker CS - YouTube (

Quadco (7320) and TC (1800/ 200) still do harvesting shears (
Fecon do tree shears (up to 20 inch tree diameter capacity) (

If the shears are too small Quadco(their QB4400 fixed bar saw head , made by Southstar)and others have put out new bar saw heads.
John Deere FL100 dangle felling head
John Deere FL100 Felling Head | High-Capacity Versatility - YouTube (
Hardwood Products Australia - largest is a 9460 lb fixed head with a 52 inch saw bar/ on a  tc870 (the southstar fd750  dangle has 48 inch bar 5710 lbs)
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: BargeMonkey on May 24, 2020, 03:46:20 AM
 Is there a reason you want a shear head ? I couldn't give away a low hr older buncher that had a large shear head, like skeans said they are a lawn ornament most places anymore. I honestly don't know how well that single knife type actually works, both of mine where double knife with LARGE cylinders and you where still fairly limited on size, slow and don't shear anything good quality because it was torn up pretty good. Great for firewood or pulpwood but that's about it. 
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: Andy Kagan on May 24, 2020, 09:44:12 AM
Thanks for all the input. We are doing “boutique logging “ in subdivisions that involves working around houses, power lines, and brush stacked around trees. I currently use a Ultimate 5300 feller processor head on a 425c Timbco, but the processor wheels just get in the way. Most of our trees are white fir with heart rot and about 60’ tall and 24” diameter max. We skid or forward whole tree to a landing and grind 90%, only a few 16’ logs out of each job.
Basically looking for a simple way of dealing with a lot of junk around the base of the trees and operators that don’t have a lot of forestry time yet.
Would be mounting on a cat 538 machine that has the excavator style boom. We run our mulcher Head on it for cleanup currently.
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: timbco68 on May 24, 2020, 12:54:35 PM
Find yourself an old Timbco barsaw for a fraction of the price of that euro built shear. I've seen nice ones for $7500 . Can put it on your existing timbco and it will work great. They are easy to maintain and  work on . I ran shear for years and the last thing you need is to get a hold of a tree you can't shear off completely and have to re grab on it. 
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: BargeMonkey on May 24, 2020, 11:05:27 PM
Eh... I'm kind of torn on the barsaw head hearing exactly what he wants to do, barsaw head isn't like a shear, been there done that. Only thing I don't get is the 1 side cylinder and the fixed shear knife, doesn't add up to me. My shear was BRUTAL, in 20" wood I could go 16' up in the air and pluck trees apart, in certain spots they work great. 
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: Andy Kagan on May 25, 2020, 09:14:31 AM
One of the other outfits in our area runs a older 2 knife shear. The frame is much wider and I have watched him doing a lot of maneuvering to get into position on tight trees. That was why I liked the look of the single knife frame. The simplicity of a shear in training the help is nice as well.
Based on the cost, I think I will just strip the feed rolls off my 5300 head and run it for awhile.
Thanks again for all the input.
Title: Re: Woodcracker tree shear
Post by: mike_belben on May 25, 2020, 09:50:25 AM
Yours sounds like the right operation for an articulated grapple with a shear.  Basically a big mechanical pruning arm.  

There is a big difference in the dynamics of a shear with a bolt cutter layout, vs scissor configuration, verse one with a blade that has more of a rotary action which travels sideways against the fibers in a sort of progressive plunging cut.

If you look at any of the homemade wood chunkers made from a truck diff and a cut up rim youll see what i mean.  Sort of a rotary shearing action.