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Author Topic: European machine.  (Read 2442 times)

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Offline nativewolf

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #40 on: July 06, 2020, 07:31:34 AM »
Yep LL, you bring up another good point.  That 666 is an old Clark?  It's the same HP as the larger Welte?  I'd imagine it would be a good replacement, maybe more production due to less breakdowns.  BUT...that $$$$$$$$

Eventually all the old Clarks, Franklins, Cats, JDs, Timberjacks, etc will cease to function or be bought up and demolished.  Then where will we hardwood guys be?  I'd love to have a cable skidder to work in conjunction with the forwarder.  However, I don't like old equipment and as you say the new machine payments..whew...

What's a poor hardwood sawtimber guy to do.
There's old, and there's "old."

I like Clark's because they have that boat frame design which is built like the proverbial brick outhouse... strongest frame in the business.Mine is old, but not "old".

Engine/converter radiator 2500 HRS off full out of chassis reco, hitch got done when we bought it 3500 HRS ago, pumps/hoses/rams (rams changed to Cat type seals) about 200 HRS back, winch overhaul probably 1000 HRS back. She's home with a broken rear axle and it will be totally rebuilt before going back to work.
There's a leak on the tranny guess what happens there this wet season?

I've owned this machine 6 years... it's newer than when I got it. The broken axle was me doing something dumb, but I'd throw the old doll into a full year contract without a second thought.

I just buy equipment with good bones and good parts availability and proceed to fix them one component at a time... And when something needs fixing we do it properly. Run them for the year let them make some $, then spend $ where it needs spending. My D8K has 33000 hours on the frame from new... I got it in 97 with 13095 hrs... I'd put money down on her being in better shape than a lot of machines half her age, but 40k is about the frame design limit... metal fatigue gets them. Skidders are the same... It's not age that kills them it's lack of scheduled maintenance.

I'm after a 667 grapple now... I'm.sick of rolling around on the ground with chokes and the 666 while a great machine isn't quite big enough to carry a grapple with my logs.
No insult intended.  Just observing the decline in options for hardwood loggers.  As you say eventually these machines are going to end up in scrap piles.  
Liking Walnut

Offline Satamax

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #41 on: July 06, 2020, 08:01:12 AM »
In the end it all boils down to what manufacturer will finance their machines, and I don't anyone offering a 10 year note on a piece of forestry, construction, or Ag equipment, they would have to offer the warranty for just as long.  
Yep-agree with all of that. LL has a good point below on the financing.  Interesting that the mills there are also keeping loggers broke.  I've had several meetings with mill owners in VA, interviewed a couple.  Was offered owner financing to take over a mid sized super super clean mill- (@southside - give me a call, it might interest you).  My conclusion is loggers are kept on survival $.   I don't see how they make a profit based on what the mills paying.  We keep control of the wood (per LLs comments) and are looking for more control, we'll see.  
You made me think. 
There isn't "loggers" strictly speaking, at least over here. The guys who have that machine, also have a huge sawmill. So it might pay better than being just logger. 
Davin, who retired, used to work that way too. 
But, what i call a sawmill, is small, compared to Maine's big rigs. 1 head saw, 1 or 2 resaws, 1 or 2 edgers. The nearest commercial sawyer to me, has the same saw as mine. and a vertical resaw. The fathher helps, and is doing the firewood. Gui is sawing in spring, till autumn, and grooms the slopes in the winter. And usually, they employ a guy from the lifts or ski patrol, during the sawing season. The biggest now,are the guys with the machine here. It's a fifteen man band, may be. 7 at the mill, 7, may be 10 logging. 
French CD4 sawmill. Latil TL 73. Self moving hydraulic crane. Iveco daily 4x4 lwb dead as of 06/2020. Replaced by a Brimont TL80 CSA.

Offline teakwood

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #42 on: July 06, 2020, 08:11:47 AM »
@teakwood
Why not find a swinging grapple setup from North America? The only thing they dont have is the remote winch but most do have a winch.
Can i load a truck with it? a container?
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Offline Southside

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #43 on: July 06, 2020, 08:40:10 AM »
Thats a very valid point Satamax.  Not the way things are here at all.  I have seen logging crews drive two plus hours to work 65 acre harvests.   
Franklin buncher and skidder
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Offline Corley5

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #44 on: July 06, 2020, 08:48:14 AM »
Here in Michigan a cable skidder and a forwarder used to be the preferred team for hand cut hardwood.  But this was also how our northern hardwoods were high graded.  Too much effort and not enough $$$ to hand cut the pulp/low grade to actually improve the stand.  There's still some crews that do it.  I bought pulp firewood from an Iron Mule crew working just down the road from us the last couple years.  The hand cutters were still short stacking for the machine.  They do a good job but were the first to go home when the markets got soft with the virus.  The job's not finished and they're still home.  No big payments on an old Mule.  Mechanical Cut to length in hardwoods is the preferred method and gets the whole timber stand improvement done.  The jobs look nice when they're done.  The slash is all flat etc.  The cost to have men on the ground with chainsaws is too high.  If you can even find someone willing to work that hard these days.  These European machines look good and would get the job done but around here the economics of one just isn't there.  Tree length skidding is prohibited in DNR hardwood sales and many private sales run by a forester.  Row thinning in pine plantation still allows it but most of that is done CTL too.  I saw a slasher go by the farm a week or so ago.  First active one I've seen around here in a quite a while.  Most aspen clear cuts are done CTL.  Smaller landings etc.  There's still a niche for small cable machines on small jobs that aren't economically practical to move a million dollars worth of equipment too.  It's also not worth it to move a $200,000 machine to such a job and it require a LOT of those kind of jobs to make it pay.   
Burnt Gunpowder is the Smell Of Freedom

Offline Corley5

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #45 on: July 06, 2020, 06:47:25 PM »
To me a forwarder equipped with a winch capable of pulling off both sides and to the rear would be the best.  That would allow pulling timber off hillsides etc. and negate the use of a cable machine bunching for the forwarder.
Burnt Gunpowder is the Smell Of Freedom

Offline nativewolf

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #46 on: July 06, 2020, 07:13:06 PM »
That would be neat and I think we have enough room in/under the center beam to support a winch.  The issue we have is that we get trees that are just too big to load more than a 8' log with the forwarder grapple.  In those cases we'd really like to have a skidder to yank 21' sections back to the landing.  Then we need a more powerful loader on the landing that can lift a 21' section of oak with a small end of 36" or so.  We don't have that right now but are looking.  Looking :)....but newish ones $ say  :'(.  
Liking Walnut

Offline Satamax

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #47 on: July 07, 2020, 12:19:07 AM »
To me a forwarder equipped with a winch capable of pulling off both sides and to the rear would be the best.  That would allow pulling timber off hillsides etc. and negate the use of a cable machine bunching for the forwarder.
Well, addapt a winch like this!  ;D ;D

I never heard of a shasher. I had seen some in TV programs. Don't even know if they exist over here.  How much does a slasher's blade cost? I could cope with one for firewood 
French CD4 sawmill. Latil TL 73. Self moving hydraulic crane. Iveco daily 4x4 lwb dead as of 06/2020. Replaced by a Brimont TL80 CSA.

Offline Riwaka

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #48 on: July 07, 2020, 07:51:04 AM »
Cord king UK use a 60 inch saw blade on one of their firewood processors. There are some german firewood processors too with blade saws.
CS27-40 (Model 60) - Cord King Europe

Alps might have too many rocks and stone fragments for toothed saw blades.
Might use something like a woodcracker splitter, so you can use a less expensive shorter bar and chain (or smaller diameter saw blade)  to cut firewood with.

Woodcracker splitters


Teakwood - could put a fixed head rotator grapple on the big excavator for yard sort and container work.(still allow the excavator to swap to bucket digging mode)
Ensign - Engineering Services (Rotorua) Ltd

Brazil just use John Deere210 with a shallow dangle grapple  rotobec.
YouTube

For loading trucks in the teak plantation, if no trucks with cranes. Convert an older excavator to a log loader with different geometry boom/ arm set. Uses the original rams. (something like ZX 180 or larger, cat 318, volvo etc)
Boom And Arm Sets | SATCO Logging Attachments  

Could use a bluetooth headset on protos helmet rather than remote skidder winches.
PROTOS Integral | Protos Integral

Offline Satamax

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #49 on: July 07, 2020, 08:53:00 AM »
Thanks a lot Riwaka. 

I had seen the cord king. Nice, but expensive, the blade has inserts. 

Instead of a splitting grapple, i'd rather have this. 



Followed by a saw. Mind you, i don't know if it's more efficient than a wood splitter combine. 

But the rotary cone heads cost an arm and a leg! 3000/4000 dolls easy. 
French CD4 sawmill. Latil TL 73. Self moving hydraulic crane. Iveco daily 4x4 lwb dead as of 06/2020. Replaced by a Brimont TL80 CSA.

Offline longtime lurker

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #50 on: July 07, 2020, 08:23:44 PM »
It's a problem for every small operator.

I am trying to grow the sawmill - I may still do a bit of outside logging when things are dead slow but I'm there to kill trees for someone else rather than my own mill... and thats nearly always just swinging a chainsaw.
With regard supply to my own mill - I'd prefer to use a contractor. The price tag of decent equipment today makes it difficult to justify good equipment unless it works continuously - you can't go and spend a whole heap of $ on machines that sit around five days a week to work two. And when you factor in the whole range of issues.... time /staffing/maintenance/capital costs... the reality is that even with a well maintained older machine like my little old 666 cable skidder: it's actually cheaper to buy in logs a lot of the time than cut my own.
Best place for me to spend money is in the sawmill on the things that make me the money because I get paid to sell wood not logs. 
And the best place for me to spend time is in the sawmill driving saws because thats where I make money.
And man with chainsaw and cable skidder won't be able to do the job as cheap as man with harvester and grapple skidder. There are exceptions to that but... not many.

By rights to keep cutting my own logs I need to buy another loader. We do full stem/trailer length rather than CTL so it has to be able to lift 4 ton logs or its pretty much useless. We're talking CAT 950 class straight away, with forks and grab... few dollars in a decent one of them. Then how did I get to work and how will I get home and.... might as well drive a truck and bring it home loaded. I have a 12 ton (capacity) truck with a 28' tray.... by rights I need to turn that into a prime mover and folding skel or jinker because as it stands I cart the short stuff and I'm hiring in trucks for the long ones. Then really I need to upgrade the 666 to a 667/ 548 class grapple because rolling around under logs setting chokes doesnt pay anymore. (The oddball idea is to get maybe a Cat 953 class drott and fit a grapple to the back of it ... but slow and only effective on a short skid.)
Soooo... buying decent secondhand how much $ have I just spent?

So my current  business plan is to keep my old equipment in good working order and... dont work it a lot. I've just cut and snigged 200 odd ton of log for myself but.... I did it myself because none of my contractors felt like shifting for that job/ didnt want to get their boots muddy. Way I see it I own my own logging plant while not really cost effective can do a small job like that if I need to. It also means I negotiate rates with my contractors from a better position: I do not screw my contractors.... I need them financially viable and making a good living because I want them there next year and next decade. But I don't want to get screwed because they have me over a barrel either so my own gear.... they know if the rate is stupid I'll do it myself. And they also know that.... in the event of breakdown my gear is available at a really good discount hire rate because.... I'm all about long term business relationships, and my skidder is their skidder to get them out of a jamb.

It's reaching a point where - ticket price to enter the game - you just can't be small. That doesn't mean you have to be a big business with 20 guys in a couple crews... but the guys seem to be doing okay here are not working by themselves... its the 2/3 man operation with decent equipment and steady work that seem to be doing okay.
The quickest way to make a million dollars with a sawmill is to start with two million.

Offline teakwood

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #51 on: July 07, 2020, 08:37:41 PM »
Cord king UK use a 60 inch saw blade on one of their firewood processors. There are some german firewood processors too with blade saws.
CS27-40 (Model 60) - Cord King Europe

Alps might have too many rocks and stone fragments for toothed saw blades.
Might use something like a woodcracker splitter, so you can use a less expensive shorter bar and chain (or smaller diameter saw blade)  to cut firewood with.

Woodcracker splitters


Teakwood - could put a fixed head rotator grapple on the big excavator for yard sort and container work.(still allow the excavator to swap to bucket digging mode)
Ensign - Engineering Services (Rotorua) Ltd

Brazil just use John Deere210 with a shallow dangle grapple  rotobec.
YouTube

For loading trucks in the teak plantation, if no trucks with cranes. Convert an older excavator to a log loader with different geometry boom/ arm set. Uses the original rams. (something like ZX 180 or larger, cat 318, volvo etc)
Boom And Arm Sets | SATCO Logging Attachments  

Could use a bluetooth headset on protos helmet rather than remote skidder winches.
PROTOS Integral | Protos Integral
Thanks Riwaka for your thoughts, my priorities have changed, i'm no longer that needy of a grapple for the excavator as i have stopped selling to the hindus, they pay half of what they paid in 2018, international market is bad for teak now and will not recover in the near future. i don't want to gift my wood away at these prices so i started sawing everything and try to sell in the national market. As i make a good quality product i have found a market, it's not a get rich market but my prices are way way better than roundwood and i can't complain. so my plans are more towards a sawmill shed, log deck and the whole process of sawing and drying.
https://forestryforum.com/board/index.php?topic=80957.msg1735150#msg1735150
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Online mike_belben

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #52 on: July 08, 2020, 12:12:17 AM »
I dont care what business you are in, the "economics" are always better when you arent buried in debt. 

Revelation 3:20

Offline Ed_K

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #53 on: July 08, 2020, 09:23:08 AM »
 L.L. look at Golden Rule Equipment, their offering a totally rebuilt 548 g w/ 6mo warranty for $125.k . They have an ad in the Lumbermens Equipment Digest.
 As far as logger's surviving if they would get together and work with a few small mills and the small mills get together to make enough product to sell to a buyer. Wouldn't that get more business's making money enough to more than survive?
Ed K

Online mike_belben

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #54 on: July 08, 2020, 11:19:16 AM »
Globally, the middle class has been living on easy credit and an over ripe economic boom that is peaking out and collapsing as covid strangles the economy.  Its hard to sell wood when all anyone wants is toilet paper. 

Survival money is a pretty good goal as we convert from capitalism to socialism. Theres gonna be a lot of fire sales so in my opinion,  it'd be wise to cling to your cash. 
Revelation 3:20

Offline dgdrls

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #55 on: July 08, 2020, 01:43:24 PM »
I'm a great admirer of European equipment.  With the terrain and forest practices in many regions
smaller yarders and skyline rigs with skid mounted drum winches are the rule. 
Wyssens and Koller appear to be top notch suppliers,  very informative websites.

D


Online mike_belben

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #56 on: July 08, 2020, 11:05:55 PM »
That would be neat and I think we have enough room in/under the center beam to support a winch.  The issue we have is that we get trees that are just too big to load more than a 8' log with the forwarder grapple.  In those cases we'd really like to have a skidder to yank 21' sections back to the landing.  Then we need a more powerful loader on the landing that can lift a 21' section of oak with a small end of 36" or so.  We don't have that right now but are looking.  Looking :)....but newish ones $ say  :'(.  
Get a hydro ax, switch the buncher over to quick pins,  and have someone fabricate a fixed fork rack with a grapple top clamp and a 5ton military winch behind the headache rack.  The hydraulics will already be plumbed to the front for the buncher and itll have forestry rubber on it.  

You can stab the forks into the dirt and winch the big logs to the trail to load the forwarder, or skid them out in reverse to the landing.  Driving backwards the weight balance will be just like a skidder.  With the boom up you could reel up some ugly hillsides without snagging the butt. It'll lift a house.  And then youd have a buncher to make quick work of any stands needing a fast heavy haircut.  Could be dynamite in front of your forwarder.  They can be had cheap too since everyone looks down on tire bunchers these days.  
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Revelation 3:20

Offline Riwaka

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Re: European machine.
« Reply #57 on: July 10, 2020, 08:35:45 PM »
For using a rubber tire buncher like a skidder,, how much pull in reverse do they have? Would you need to swap the axles so the bevel gears are not overloaded (pulling in reverse)?
The Olympic truck cranes seem to be able to self load a fairly large log. Pick up one end at a time and slide between the bolsters. For your Great Lakes type log trailers with the end racks might need some remove-able bolsters. (crane trucks seem more flexible than a knuckleboom loader truck dedicated to loading logs)
Self-Loaders & Marine Cranes - Capital Industrial  (Olympic log loaders)
The 'traditional' one man logging crew machine was the traxcavator. Fork log grapple on front, front engine, 3 speed powershift and rear winch.
Cat 983B  (winch and bucket loader - traxcavator)

Euros having some fun in the snow/ ice. NH 7040 with T16 winch

Holzspalter- wood splitter.

Probably possible to move a fairly large log with a forwarder converted for the purpose. Winch up near the forwarder crane,  Shiftable rear bunk, blade shift the large log on other logs to reduce the lifting height, set up a mid bunk fairlead to get the large log aboard.
Kombiforwarder - forwarder bunk rear bolsters used as clambunk.


I remember back in the day some oversize logs were bought into the mill. There was a Vee blade for a rubber tire loader to split them up. They might have chipped the split logs and burnt them in the co-gen plant.  Alaskan mill or chainsaw and long bar can be less expensive than buying big machinery to handle the occasional big logs if there is little to no benefit to the logger to do so.


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