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open face notch? anyone use it?

Discussion in 'Forestry Community' started by skip sail, Aug 7, 2017.

  1. skip sail

    skip sail Super OPE Member

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    I've recently got a copy of Jeff Jepsons excellent book "to fell a tree"
    Lots of good stuff in there,but i wasnt sure about his insistence on the open face notch. No-one I know out in australia uses it on our hardwoods,and I've never tried it,so i thought i'd give it a go.
    i tried it on a few smaller yellow box eucalypts the other day,and really didnt like it,i had one come sideways off the stump at me(something ive never had happen with an ordinary notch) and i felt a lack of control. Maybe i was doing something wrong,but i wont mess with it again.
    Is it a common technique in the USA? if so,why,and what are the benefits?
     
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  2. Ryan Browne

    Ryan Browne Pinnacle OPE Member

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    I use it quite a bit. I'm no professional feller, by any stretch of the imagination, but I learned the technique from a chainsaw safety class taught by a logging safety organization. As I understand it, the main benefit of the open face notch is that it allows the hingewood to control the tree for a much greater portion of the fall. When a traditional or Humboldt face cut closes after say 30 degrees of fall, the holding wood breaks or pulls out and the tree goes wherever it wants. Since the open face notch doesn't close until almost 90 degrees of fall, the holding wood stays intact much longer. IIRC, the amount of fibers pulled out of the log from the stump is reduced this way also.

    If I was felling more often, I'm sure I'd use lots of different techniques, but for a guy who only fells trees a handful of days a year, I like this method. I feel very in control making an open face notch, bore cutting and making an ideal hinge, then cutting back leaving a trigger. Tap a couple wedges in, cut the trigger and walk away in most cases or drive the wedgesa little more sometimes. Either way, I don't have to worry whether the tree is falling, while I'm cutting in from the back, and I can focus on making a good hinge without any pressure. I still pay attention to leans and barber chairing, but it's not very likely when bore cutting, and leaving a trigger allows me to triple check the fall zone immediately before putting the tree on the ground.
     
  3. Czed

    Czed Jon1212 Approved!

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    No way conventional mainly 20170730_171411.jpg . download (30).jpg
     
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  4. Rob Stafari

    Rob Stafari Pinnacle OPE Member

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    I use it for most trees I fell. 100% for heavy leaners, when I'm wedging or pulling a tree back over the stump, or have a narrow drop zone with side lean and I don't want the hinge to break too soon. My understanding is that some places out west it is regulated and required on every tree these days... rope at least 2/3 the way up, open face notched, bored, wedge placed, then trigger released. I can see why people find it cumbersome as all that isn't necessary for every tree. I can also see that they're trying to keep people safer and alive.

    I started using it after a lot of reading up on the subject and a couple youtube videos that husqvarna put out. After learning about the theory and physics behind it it just made sense. Especially since at the time I was mostly cutting alone. Anything and everything I could do to make myself safer was a no brainer. Wouldn't fire up the saw without the PPE and every single move was a thought out calculated one. From prechecks for hangers, to felling plan, to reading compression/tension while limbing/bucking to stay as safe as possible in an already dangerous situation. I certainly didn't learn from others around here that way. Still work with people that make me cringe at some of the things they do knowing there is a safer way. I wouldn't say it is always the safest way. Old school works well in a lot of situations. Heck sometimes it is even handy to have the hinge break sooner so the tree can roll off through the canopy. However, I've never found a time when the new way seems markedly less safe, only the other way around.





    I especially recommend the second video to all the little experienced newbies I come across. A lot of kids these days around here never learned from anybody. They just get a chainsaw and start cutting with little to no understanding of the forces and reactions involved. I still like to play with some of the old time techniques when I get a chance to drop something with nothing around to damage. Intentional dutchmen and clipping corners off hinge faces to get them to turn mid fall and such.
     
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  5. Rob Stafari

    Rob Stafari Pinnacle OPE Member

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    Disclaimer: I am no expert on the subject and simply do what makes the most sense to me and works well for me. Different trees/different situations all react differently and plans need to be made accordingly.
     
  6. RandyMac

    RandyMac Stiff Member

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    LMAO!! at the 2nd video, smacks of that lame GOL stuff.
    oaks 033.jpg
     
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  7. RI Chevy

    RI Chevy Stihl Runner

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    Guy needs to sharpen his chain in the 2nd video. Looks very dull to me. Making dust.
     
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  8. Manofstihl066

    Manofstihl066 Pinnacle OPE Member

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    I always use he humbolt style undercut. That's the way my dad taught me. I like the way the tree comes off the stump better this way.
     
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  9. Czed

    Czed Jon1212 Approved!

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    I'm most comfortable with conventional but have used them all
    The open face i just don't care for.
    I'm sure we all cut different species with different issue's
    For here it does the trick for me.
    No pro faller but i cut for friends and neighbors mostly.
     
  10. RandyMac

    RandyMac Stiff Member

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    There are a few kinds of facecuts, some are specialized, some are not.
    I have used them all over the years.
    Go steep and deep.
     
  11. Czed

    Czed Jon1212 Approved!

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    88-year-old neighbors felling style.
    I've been dropping tree's for him since i saw this lol 20170730_172439.jpg
     
  12. P.M.P.

    P.M.P. G.F.Y.

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    Your good man. That's scary chit right there.
     
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