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  • rfwoody's Avatar
    3 Hours Ago
    Thanks Butch! On my hanging, the most memorable time, I was moving (squirming) around pretty much, trying to get a throwbag around a limb 10' or so above me. Also that harness was pinching so much I had to keep squirming around :) Well, they say "low and slow" -- I guess that applies here for a beginner.
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    3 Hours Ago
    Thanks all for the comments. For what it's worth if anyone is interested or cares to comment..... *** One of my fears is getting into a situation where my climb line is loose and "falling" a short distance (e.g. 1 or 2 feet) and suffering serious injury because of it. *** Another fear is "gaffing out" while using spurs --- but I understand this happens to everyone(?) --- Gerald Beranek said (as I recall) that when it happens you have to be ready in an instant to shorten your lanyard to keep yourself from sliding down the tree --- and you only have a second or two to react. *** Another fear is being in the tree and it falling down with me in it --- but I suppose this would be very rare on a living tree and/or a tree that doesn't have any unhealthy warning signs. *** and to Butch's tone, which I appreciate.... of caution for older ages ------ I have a doubt of starting totally from scratch on learning something dangerous at 63 years old. Chainsaws are dangerous (and driving the highways) --- and more so with age, no doubt --- but I started with them when my brain was more "supple", so I have (hopefully) safety and good practice and some reflexes already sort of hard-wired into my brain which will serve me now when older. --- but tree climbing is totally new and to take on something totally new and dangerous at my age is a point I am considering.... because the 2nd nature reflex thinking and motions may not soak into my brain like they need to to be safe. That said, "rec" climbing and "working" climbing appears to be two different things --- so if I can get past the entry cost of the gear, I may move forward with "rec" climbing and see if I can acclimate to it safely ---- also it appears to be really good exercise. Now to finish Mr. Beranek's DVD's and start on the beginning climber's thread on this forum!
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    3 Hours Ago
    @Raj -- yeah I'm considering that... at the very least it seems to be pretty good exercise. @woodworkingboy -- Good point. Thanks. --- yeah, I've been eating walnuts (and almonds) for a while now...haha, doesn't seem to magically remove the fat :) --- have been eating Kale too.... also was eating lots of coconut oil for health .... but looks like the joke's on me with that report from a few weeks ago that coconut oil isn't as good as they said it was :) @Grendel -- I think I can see that. Thanks for the encouragement. @FireFighterZero -- Thanks! @Ray -- Thanks for the encouragement! @Willie -- Thanks. @Marc-Antoine -- Thanks a lot for the detailed encouragement. @Mr. Beranek -- Thanks! I've read almost all your book and am about 3/5 through your DVD's ... this must be what an advanced college course would be... and then some. @Butch -- that is my main fear. More easily getting injured with age... and as you have previously mentioned -- longer to recover, even for "minor" injuries. My main "advantage" is that I would not be a "production" tree worker. I could work 100% at my own pace and timetable. For whatever that is worth. I have a few pine trees I really have an eye to climb and take down piece by piece and an Elm near my house that needs to be trimmed (otherwise it will have to be removed -- felled). @JD3000 -- Thanks for the tips. @Benjo75 -- Haha, I admire your dedication to working out, sir. Thanks for the encouragement. @Mick -- When I worked with computers that's the last thing I wanted to do when I got home was fix any computer problem or try to figure out how to hook anything up (especially toward the end of my career) ... and even now -- I just want the thing to work. @Chris E -- Maybe I have a few left :) @Rich -- Thanks for the good words. @Bermy -- haha, Thanks for the words and encouragement! @stig -- Very impressive. I'm going to check out that link. Just with my very limited experience it is fun hanging out up in a tree, and it seems it would be so especially at night (but not that high up for me!) @Sean -- Thanks Sean! Actually I was waiting until I took this class to start seriously looking at that thread. I plan on starting on it soon. @Mearle and Sean -- yeah the low(er) carb thing with plenty of fat seems to be better.... easier to stay on and somewhat "proven" effective.
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    4 Hours Ago
    DMc, I think the most physically demanding part was trying to advance my position, either with the climb line or my lanyard and especially using the throwbag up to the next branch.... this along with hanging in mid-air, like a spider, for up to an hour at a time under a big branch, unable to get anything around the next branch to advance. :) This was very exhausting.
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Days Ago
    When we were logging we used to leave a couple of dead batteries on the loader. We used old battery cables tied to the frame so it looked like they were in use. About twice a year they would come up missing. Two batteries were enough for them to carry and most of the time they didn't bother looking for anything else. The real batteries were hidden pretty good.
    65 replies | 883 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Days Ago
    Knowing when to come down for the day is crucial. Staying past that point is very dangerous. It's hard to do, usually because there's just a few more limbs or a few more blocks. I'm 41 and still have a hard time coming down when I need to. I've been doing more recreational climbing the last couple of years. That has really helped. It has helped me be more efficient in the tree. I work out for about 1.5 hours seven days a week at the gym. That really helps. I work everything but concentrate on core and legs. And end every workout with ten hard minutes on the rowing machine giving it all I've got. Makes moving through the tree lots easier. I would like to go to one of those classes. Sounds like you're off to a good start. The more time you spend in a tree, the better you'll get.
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Days Ago
    Although I have had much respect and admiration for you "working climbers", after taking a 5 day tree climbing class for entry level tree workers, I have 20 times more respect for you. Climbing trees is a lot harder (physically AND mentally) than I thought it would be. At 5'11" and 220 lbs, I fancy myself in pretty good shape for my age (and weight). When I returned home, I was mentally and physically DRAINED for several days, especially the first day. Didn't get sore (except blisters on my hands, and a few leg cramps)... but I was 100% exhausted... mentally and physically. I was discouraged and thought, I'm too old for this. But now that its been a few days and I'm feeling better, I'm reconsidering it. Class was taught by Peter Jenkins of Tree Climber's International. Peter is a gifted instructor who emphasizes safety and simplicity. We learned the doubled rope technique both closed, with a modified Blake's Hitch, and open, a hitch-pulley system with the Michoacan hitch. Now debating whether to buy the climbing stuff and practice at home, with no cutting unless/until I get some confidence. One rule I have and try to always keep is no chainsaw when I am fatigued... so I would have to be able to get into the tree and in position without getting fatigued.... which is a big challenge at this point. Hopefully some of y'all will be motivated by this post to give some more "bare-knuckled" comments and feedback! Thanks!!
    36 replies | 584 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    1 Week Ago
    Is that a grill I see in that first pic? And a fire pit? Looks like ya'll are set up pretty good there.
    4 replies | 143 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    1 Week Ago
    I've been looking at these for a few weeks. Trying to figure out the ins and outs. I would be using it at ground level mostly. But I would like to try it up in the tree too. I'm assuming you stay tied in. That seems like it would be pretty uncomfortable sleeping in a saddle with biners and lanyards hanging everywhere. I guess a rock climbing saddle would work. I've seen tents for them. Does it come with the tent or is it extra? I'm having trouble understanding being tied in and a tent over you. I guess a few feet of slack would work. If it was raining looks like rain would run down your line and right in your lap. Thanks for any opinions, Ben.
    4 replies | 143 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    1 Week Ago
    Good point and questions, Sean. I was depending on trial and error to know my market along with browsing the ad's (e.g. on craigslist) which usually don't say lengths. I have about 8 stacks ready to go, all 18-20" avg., so these were going to be my trial widths and see how it went, factoring in any feedback for future lengths. Yeah, 16" would work for all... unless somebody with a wide fireplace liked filling it with wider logs.
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Butch, is that for a fireplace?
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    I plan to sell by the 4' x 8' x (18 to 20" avg) -- and advertise it as a "face cord" of 18-20" pieces... (or maybe a "load" of 4'x8'x(18 to 20)") (a pretty full load in my full size PU bed). This is approx. 2/5 of a TRUE full cord and 5/6 of a TRUE half cord. Planning to deliver and stack a load for $125 within 10 miles and $150 for up to 40 miles or so. A little unsure about the lengths. Seems most people cut to 16", but I believe that is mainly for wood stoves... and my initial assumption is that most of my customers would be for fireplaces. So far I've only sold one load, last season.
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    wow.. much VALUABLE info here!
    37 replies | 809 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Thanks flashover604. .... "A word to the wise!" Thanks for your feedback and advice. Really good food for thought!
    37 replies | 809 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Thanks murphy4trees. Yeah, even at my level, with just my truck, now I would bid this job I think at at least $300 and maybe $350. Doing this job with my truck causes more motivation on the plus side to invest in a trailer.
    37 replies | 809 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    :thumbup:
    37 replies | 809 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    I only use the winch when I need to lift. I use the bollard the other 90% of the time. We really don't have trouble with the rope jumping over itself unless someone decides not to use the pigtail. Then if you tend the rope in to the inside it will jump over itself then you're in trouble. I don't use the visor plate either. Just get the strap tight as you can. I've had it slip up the tree a couple feet a few times. Especially on an extremely tapered or odd shaped trunk where all 4 feet don't bite in. New ropes seem to slip when using the winch. I'll pack as many wraps as possible and when the cranking gets hard It will slip. Sometimes a handful of dirt will help. Or someone pulling on the tail of the rope. Older ropes don't seem to have this problem. Take the handle out when after tightening when using the winch. When not winching I prefer the bollard since it's lighter and if something gets away from me I haven't lost as much. It never has, just a precaution. If you break the plastic jaws the winch would be almost useless. It sure is nice in storm damage. And pretensioning the rope for negative rigging.
    9 replies | 254 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Looks simple enough. I'll play with it tomorrow too. Thanks.
    21 replies | 547 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    I haven't tried the Knut. Might play with it tomorrow. I don't think I've even seen where to tie it though. I weight about 225 right now without gear. When I first switched over to this from the Blakes hitch, I used a French Prussic as described in Mr. Beraneks working climber series. It was always too tight for me but opened my world to new things.
    21 replies | 547 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Yep. There's a pulley. I tried a VT for a while. I'm using spliced eyes for now and the VT had too much set back for my liking. When I got enough wraps to avoid setback then it was too tight.
    21 replies | 547 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    I've used Been Line for quite a few years but it is starting to seem to be quite stiff. The Ocean is more flexible. I'll look into the RIT. I guess it's my neverending quest for perfection. I keep thinking back to the days of the closed 3 braid lanyards from Baileys. I still have quite a few of them. Super tough. They would wear me out adjusting on them though especially when wet. I didn't know there was anything better then. I guess there wasn't.
    21 replies | 547 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    21 replies | 547 view(s)
  • Benjo75's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Hey all. I've been playing around with different climbing hitches and just started using the Michoacan the last couple weeks. I really like it so far. So I decided to try it on my lanyards. I've tried several different combinations of wraps. It doesn't grab 100% of the time. When I first adjust it for the limb and have just pulled some slack through it, it will usually need to be set first. Luckily I always load my hitches every time before use and before putting my weight in them. I used VT for a while before the Michoacan. I seem to get the VT too tight and it's harder to tend slack than it should be. Yesterday I tried the Distel and it seemed to work good. I'm going to stick with it for a while. Just wondering what everyone else uses and why. Oh yeah, I'm using 10mm Bee Line on my lanyards. Just swapped to 8mm Ocean for my climbing hitch. My next purchase will be HRC to see how it does. Been hearing good things about it. Thanks, Ben.
    21 replies | 547 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    haha, I haven't done a lot of it, so I haven't had my fill of fun hand splitting yet!
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Thanks Bermy. Quick estimate from my job log/notes: 6 or 7 trips @ ~60 miles round trip @ ~4 hours each round trip, driving and loading/unloading) ... approximate because twice my truck got towed from job site or near job... and twice I drove out in my car (28 mpg) with chainsaw. saying 28 total hours Charged $190 .... originally was $250 but reduced by $50 after 2 weeks because it was taking so long and reduced another $10 because I over promised when I first gave the price... told her "I don't get paid until every last leaf is raked up" ... then, into the job I knocked off $10 to leave a leaf or two... but as it turns out I think I did get every last leaf... Live and Learn! :) So say 300 miles at 15 miles/gal = 20 gallons @ $2.25/gal = $45 in gas I'll say $5 for chainsaw gas, etc. (probably more like $1.00) = $50 ..... (not including wear and tear on truck, chainsaws, and other equipment.... but I get the tax deduction on this and mileage). $190 - $50 = $140/28 hours = $5.00 / hour I am probably overlooking some expenses, right? e.g. GL insurance @ ~100/month However, even at $5 an hour, I would much rather be doing this (minus the truck being in the shop for 5 weeks) than working an inside job for minimum wage.
    37 replies | 809 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    We have a fireplace which is really nice for the ambiance, but of course very inefficient for heat. I had been thinking of getting a wood burning stove for heat and then try to hardly run the central electric heat at all. Since I'm in North Mississippi, it doesn't take a whole lot of heat to get through the winter.
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Just to bring the thread to a full conclusion... finally got truck back from shop and finally finished job. (including buddy of mine who helped with last load in his truck (to left).
    37 replies | 809 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    Thanks for all the great advice, Sean! haha, a youtube buddy, Tim H. Gruchow, up in Minnesota, is the source of much of my original inspiration and/or vision and/or direction for my firewood and tree removal business vision and he splits all his wood by hand. He is a couple of years younger than I am.... but if possible I figure spitting by hand is sort of a fallback or "safety net" for trying to get into or stay in shape! :)
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
  • rfwoody's Avatar
    2 Weeks Ago
    That 2-wheeler looks like a real economical work horse, Sean. Thanks for the great ideas for one man maneuvering, transporting and loading.
    134 replies | 8348 view(s)
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About rfwoody

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Age
63
About rfwoody
Biography:
Robert Wood

Mainly wasted teenage and young adult years in vain and foolish and mind, body, and soul damaging pursuits. Was stopped in my course by visceral awareness of God and Judgement and eternity, and that my only hope was in the Gospel, the good news that God sent his own Son, The Lord Jesus Christ, into the world to suffer the righteous judgement of a good God against sin and for sinners like me, that Jesus suffered and died, was buried, and then rose from the dead. Jesus did this for sinners like me, from the lowest, filthiest sinner, all the way down to the dregs -- the "good", self-righteous, religious hypocrite -- Jesus is willing and able to save the very worst.

...but I digress...

Got married, had 2 sons, eventually got job in Information Technology (IT), as programmer/developer/database administrator, worked 27 years at this, started getting "old and slow" and figured it was time to get out. After money stopped flowing in as much :) now looking to supplement SS with something I can get some exercise at if possible. Have most always liked the outdoors and have been liking and studying chainsaws and tree felling for last 20 years or so.

In the IT world there is a lot of BS, people playing to politics, acting like they know what they are talking about to impress the boss, etc. But there are some real honest, frank technically competent folks and resources which I highly valued --- Just so, it seems to me in this Treehouse forum. I suppose you can't stay in this inherently dangerous sort of business very long unless you are down to earth at some basic levels... and that is what I really enjoy about these kind of guys and this site.

Just a closing thought or two, please:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
-- John 3:16
Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
-- John 8:12

Thank you for viewing my biography.
Location:
North Mississippi
Interests:
Jesus, The Bible (by which we know about Jesus and who God is), Truth, family
Occupation:
In the process of trying to get going in some kind of part time "tree" work and/or firewood.

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- Robert
Quit city job... Now, slowly learning and doing in general direction of some kind of tree work.

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