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Author Topic: Better keep your mind on your business  (Read 7243 times)

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Online SwampDonkey

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #20 on: February 06, 2008, 02:10:24 PM »
Yeah, when I look at those prices I say to myself.... There must be a market, or they would not be buying. The price is low because they have too much cheap wood. Totally opposite of what they are preaching. ;)
Move'n on.

Offline Woodhog

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #21 on: February 06, 2008, 03:41:21 PM »
Yes its the same old story...

They get a few contractors on the hook for a million dollars worth of processing iron,

He produces huge volume, they see it coming into the yard and down goes the price.

The processor boys then ramp up production another notch or two to make of the price short fall with more volume, log supply to the mill increases, the mill decreases price again.

The fellow in the woods would be better off if all had a small piece of forwarding equipment and a chainsaw, but then its fun to be seen floating that million dollar enterprise thru the community to change job sites with your name on the door.

It goes on and on...

Offline deutz4

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #22 on: February 07, 2008, 10:13:25 PM »
It's not that difficult to make these "fancy machines" feasible. We've been doing it for about  10 years now and we still have no late fees or banks crawling up our butts. Our situation is a little unique but everyone can tailor their operation till it fits.
 1. The most important thing for us is that we are owner/operators. We are 3 brothers in partnership with only 1 employee. I've never seen a machine treated by an employee as well as it is by the guy paying for it. We work a long day and when I'm crawling in bed I don't have to be worrying about somebody out there running over stumps in the middle of the night.
 2. We have never bought brand new. It's easy to spot the difference between used and abused equipment. Leave someone else take the initial hit and keep your eyes open for that low hours machine at a 35% discount.
 3. Get into a situation where you can produce full time. This isn't easy to find but if you have a good reputation and are reliable there are companies out there that will be interested. We subcontract to a great company that keeps us in timber as fast as we can cut it. They have their own forester and usually move us the same day we tell them we are done.
 4. Work EVERY day. Plow the yard when you get home. We don't produce staggering numbers but we do it relentlessly. The guy who is sitting at the coffee shop at 8:00 in the morning should think about what that danish is actually costing him.

Offline Gary_C

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #23 on: February 07, 2008, 10:55:17 PM »
It's not that difficult to make these "fancy machines" feasible.

I know it is popular to believe these machines do not make economic sense. But you have to realize there are many situations like deutz4's where the owners are doing well. Perhaps not if you are going to walk out cold and spent a million dollars with no history or equity. But if you start smaller and work your way up plus work hard, there is money to be made, even in todays markets.

There is one excellent operator I know in Minnesota that at last count had 13 complete cut to length operations, consisting of Ponsse harvesters and forwarders. He usually trades 3-4 sets each year and his used machines are well maintained and have at least 10,000 hrs when traded. You could not tell him these machines do not make economic sense.

When the markets are difficult like they are now, these good operators are the only ones left working. The smaller ones with older equipment do not have access to good markets and have either quit or doing something else.

In my situation, I run older, less expensive equipment and I only cut part time. And I put up with a lot more repairs and downtime than newer machines. Plus it is very difficult to get good help, so I end up working alone way too much. I would love to have one of those new, fancy machines but then I would be into working full time and hiring help.  :)
Never take life seriously. Nobody gets out alive anyway.

Online SwampDonkey

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #24 on: February 08, 2008, 05:30:24 AM »
The key factor is available wood. On private land there is a lot of searching and competition. On crown land they know for years ahead where the wood is and how much they will be cutting, quite an advantage.  Some people seem to ignore this little factor. Doesn't aways matter how good you are, although it can be an advantage. But often you get inundated with people wanting you to cut their 5 or 10 acre lot behind the house or clear their fence row of wired, nailed and crooked wood. Being popular does not always get you good wood. Also, dealing with a mill that likes to play with the rates is very common here.
Move'n on.

Offline Ed_K

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #25 on: February 09, 2008, 09:59:26 AM »
 Do any of you have mechanical experience with a 1110 timberjack forwarder? I have a friend how has one, it was built in europe, it has a problem with movement. One day it starts and moves forward and backward next time you can't move it. Locked right up.
Ed K

Offline Stephen Alford

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #26 on: February 09, 2008, 02:57:22 PM »
Hey Ed ! this may not apply  but I was wondering if anyone has heard of this. A guy here had a machine that would not move , he had replaced the gear oil in the rearend with full synthetic oil. Water got in ,with the old 80-90 the oil would get creamy and stiff, but with the full synthetic the water "completely seperates" and froze. I still run 80-90 but found the story interesting but do not know if it is factual.  ??? Stephen
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Offline Gary_C

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #27 on: February 09, 2008, 04:02:36 PM »
Ed

It could certainly have water in one of the differentials and on cold days it freezes and warm days not. Pull the drain plugs and you could see either water, ice or oil.

Stephen

Never heard that. However any oil and water will not mix. Yes, you can get it stirred together in a milky mess, but when you stop mixing, the water will settle out.
Never take life seriously. Nobody gets out alive anyway.

Online barbender

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #28 on: February 10, 2008, 10:50:07 AM »
Is that Mike Rieger you're talking about Gary? I've heard that he's the largest CTL operation in the country, don't know if that's true or not, I know he's the biggest in minnesota for sure. From what I understand, he's just a regular guy, real down to earth.You don't put all that equpment in the woods if it isn't making money.
Too many irons in the fire

Offline Gary_C

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #29 on: February 11, 2008, 12:10:07 AM »
Yes, it is Mike and he sure is a nice guy. Gave me some very good advice when I was looking at harvesters.  8)
Never take life seriously. Nobody gets out alive anyway.

Offline Ed_K

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Re: Better keep your mind on your business
« Reply #30 on: February 11, 2008, 10:04:50 AM »
 GaryC, this machine has been like this since he bought it last summer. They did check the oils tho to cross that off the list. My son thinks it should be hooked to a computer anilizer and do some resetting? I've never heard of this or gotten into the mechanics of these new machines.
Ed K


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