How to cut down a leaning tree video
How To Fell A Leaning Tree
Felling any type of tree can be a dangerous business.
If the tree you’re looking to cut down is already leaning in one direction, that can make things even more challenging.
When it comes to cutting down large and small trees, safety is the most important thing.
Here’s the two ways of cutting down a leaning tree:
- Cutting With the Lean — You’ll use specialized cuts with your saw to ensure that the tree falls in the proper direction and there is not any dangerous breakage.
- Cutting Away from the Lean — You’ll insert wedges into the tree as you perform a series of smaller cuts in order to correct the lean.
Let’s take a closer look at felling these two types of trees and how you can get this job done quickly and safely.
Table of Contents
Getting the Tree to Fall Where You Want (And Not Where You Don’t!)
Even the largest, oldest, and most crooked trees can be safely brought down.
Leaning trees often want to fall in the direction of their lean.
This might be a good thing, or it might send that old oak right into your garage.
To cut down a leaning tree, you’ll need to do the following:
- Remove heavy branches
- Uses felling wedges to correct the lean
- Contact an arborist for professional support
Now, let’s take a look at felling a tree in the direction of the lean.
Felling a Tree With the Lean
If it seems like felling a tree in the direction of its lean is a much easier job, it’s because it is.
There are still a few things we need to keep in mind as well as a few basic steps to take in order to cut down a tree in the direction it is leaning.
The only tools you’ll need for this job is your trusty chainsaw.
You also might want to use a ladder and some rope to remove any heavy branches just to make the job a little bit safer and easier.
Check out this video for a demonstration of cutting a notch, a plunging cut, and felling a large tree.
Make a Notch in Your Tree
The first step is to put a notch in the tree on the side it’s leaning.
This will ensure that it falls in that direction.
The notch should be no more than ⅕ the width of the tree.
The notch should also be knee height or lower.
The leaning side of the tree is the hardest to cut a notch into because if it’s awkward shape.
Make sure to take your time to get this cut right and get it done safely.
- Cut the notch into the ground facing—that’s the leaning side—of the tree.
- Cut your notch no deeper than one fifth of the tree’s width.
- Cut the notch knee height or lower.
Make Plunging Cuts
Your plunging cut, also known as a bore cut, is the key to getting a leaning tree down safely.
You want to cut starting on one side just behind and slightly above the hinge of the notch you cut in earlier.
Start your bore cut on one side, and then move to the other to complete it.
This should leave you with the hinge of the notch and a small strap of wood still connecting the tree to the stump.
- Perform your plunging cut just behind the hinge of the notch you just cut.
- Start on one side and then finish the plunging cut on the other.
- You should be left with the hinge of the notch and a small strap of wood on the opposite side of your tree still connecting the trunk to the stump.
Do not cut corners when making her plunging cuts.
Even though a leaning tree is inclined to fall in the direction you want it to, kick back can be deadly if the plunging cut is not successfully completed.
Make the Felling Cut
The felling cut will be made by cutting through the strap of wood on the opposite side of the tree as the notch we cut in the first step.
After you cut through the strap, there should only be about 10% of the width of the tree still connecting the trunk to the stump.
This will snap as the tree falls towards the notch.
By completing the boring cut and then making the felling cut by removing the strap of wood opposite the notch, we are eliminating the risk of any dangerous kick back or breakage as the tree falls.
- Cut through the strap of wood opposite the notch.
- Make sure that any assistants, family members, or anyone else in the area is clear of the area the tree is expected to fall in.
- Safely going through all these steps will allow the tree to come to the ground without incident.
Felling a Tree Against the Lean
This is a less common job, but one you can still do on your own.
You’re going to need a few tools to get this job done.
- Felling Wedges
- Sledge Hammer
Trees typically grow branches more heavily in the direction they are leaning.
In order to remove some of this weight and get the tree to fall in a different direction, we’re going to have to cut off these branches.
You’ll use the rope to secure your ladder to the tree as well as to pull your chainsaw up to you.
It’s much safer to use the rope to lift a chainsaw up to you than it is to attempt to climb with a chainsaw.
- Raise your letter to your desired height and secure it to the tree.
- Tie the rope to your chainsaw and pull it up to you.
- Safely begin removing branches from the tree.
Removing branches makes felling the trees against the direction of the lean a much safer process.
Notching the Tree
Cut the notch on the side of the tree you want to fall towards the ground.
To begin this cut, make a flat cut about 1/4 of the way into the tree.
Then make an angular cut down towards the flat cut you just made.
When finished, the notch should be a right angle that is taken out of the tree.
Notches should be cut at a comfortable highlight that is typically somewhere around knee height.
- Cut you were not sure about 1/4 of the way through the tree.
- Remember that notches should be cut about knee height.
Start Your Felling Cut
Here’s where things get a little more complicated.
You’re going to want to start your felling cut with your chainsaw on the opposite side of your notch.
Cut about one-third of the way into the tree and leave your chainsaw bar in the tree and running.
Make sure to turn on your chainsaw safety so that it does not begin cutting by accident.
- Begin your felling cut on the opposite side of the notch.
- Cut about one-third of the way into the tree.
Drive the Wedges In
Next, drive your felling wedges into the cut you just created.
Felling wedges and shims should be used at this point to stand the tree upright.
If the tree cannot be straightened by using felling wedges at this stage, it is unsafe to finish this cut.
If the tree is still crooked after inserting felling wedges, you need to call a professional arborist and have them safely take the tree down for you.
- Drive your felling wedges into the cut you just created to straighten your tree.
- If the tree does not straighten, you need to have a professional arborist finish this job.
- Remember to leave your chainsaw bar in the tree during this stage as this will allow you to complete the cut later.
Finish Your Felling Cut
After you drive in your wedges, and only if the tree is now standing up straight, you can resume your felling cut.
Disengage your chainsaw safety and begin cutting towards the notch.
As your chainsaw’s bar approaches the notch, the tree will fall in the direction you have notched.
- Disengage the chainsaw safety.
- Resume cutting towards the notch.
- Stay alert at all times as leaning trees can fall in unexpected ways.
- Always have to clear paths of exit.
- Make sure that everyone else is out of the range of the falling tree.
Leaning trees are often old, damaged, or rotting.
This means that they can fall in unexpected ways.
This is especially the case if you’re feeling a leaning tree against the direction of the lean.
Remember, safety is the first step in felling a tree.
Tips for Felling Small Trees
Trees that are less than 10 inches in diameter are just too small to fill with any of the previous methods we have mentioned above.
Here are some steps that you can take to fill a smaller tree against the direction of the lean.
Make a Cut for Your Wedges
Your first cut should be designed to accommodate your wedges.
Unlike with our previous examples, we’re going to insert our wedges and straighten this tree before cutting our notch.
Drive Your Wedges into the Tree
Next you’ll drive your wedges into the tree.
This time we will be removing our chainsaw from the tree before driving our wedges in.
Your goal is to straighten the tree here.
Again, if the tree does not straighten it is not safe to cut without an arborist.
Cut a Notch
After the tree has been straightened, cut a notch into the opposite side of where you made your first cut.
Remember, the tree will be falling in the direction of the notch so plan ahead.
This notch should be no more than 1/4 of the width of the tree.
Fell the Tree Using Wedges
Now it’s time to fell the tree using wedges.
Drive your wedges in with a sledgehammer, and they will begin to push you a tree over.
If you made your first cut deep enough, driving in the wedges alone should be more than enough to bring the tree to the ground.
Can You Fell a Tree With a Chainsaw?
Yes. Here’s how you can fell a leaning tree with a chainsaw.
- Remove as many large branches as you can from the tree to lower its center of gravity and reduce its weight.
- Cut a notch into the tree on the side you want the tree to fall on.
- Begin your felling cut on the opposite side of the notch.
- Drive wedges into the felling cut you have made and hammer them in until the tree stands up straight.
- Complete your felling cut with your chainsaw.
Remember, if your tree fails to stand up straight you should have a professional arborist finish this job for you.
How to Cut Down a Tree Safely
Make it fall where you want it! Check out these expert tree felling techniques.
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Wear the Right Safety Gear
Safety isn't a throwaway word when it comes to felling trees and running chain saws. You must take it seriously. There are a few absolutely essential safety gear items you need to wear for any chain saw work, and especially when felling a tree: - A logger's helmet to protect you from falling branches, a major cause of logging injuries. - Earmuffs and a face screen to protect your ears and eyes. - Safety glasses to keep the dust out. - Kevlar chaps, which will stop a chain instantly should you happen to drop the bar against your leg.
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Buy Felling Wedges
Two plastic felling wedges will prevent your saw from getting pinched during a cut. You can find these at any outdoor power equipment store that carries chain saws.
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Estimate the Felling Zone: How to fell a tree in the direction you want
Trees are taller than you think and reach farther on the ground than you'd expect. When you're planning on felling a tree, you can estimate where a tree will fall by using the “ax handle trick.” This is how to fell a tree in the direction you want: hold an ax handle at arm's length, close one eye, and back away from or move toward the tree until the top of the ax is even with the treetop and the bottom is even with the base. Your feet should be about where the treetop will rest after falling. It's just an estimate, though, so allow extra room if there's something the tree might fall on!
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Clear a Cutting Zone
Even when you're sure which way the tree is going to fall, you're still not ready to fell it. Cut away any brush around the trunk and clear two escape routes on the “non-falling” side of the tree. They should be about 45 degrees away from each other in opposite directions. The last thing you want is to trip while walking away from a falling tree.
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Size Up the Tree
Start by studying the tree. Don't cut it down if you see:
- Dead branches that are broken but attached, or that are actually broken off and supported by other branches. You're bound to knock a branch loose and have it fall on you.
- It is obviously leaning in one direction or heavily loaded with branches on one side. It will fall in the direction of the lean or load despite your best efforts.
- There are buildings, fences, power lines or other things you care about in the felling zone. If so, skip the felling and call a pro.
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Anatomy of a Proper Notch
When felling a tree, the rule of thumb is to make the depth of the notch one-fifth of the tree trunk's diameter. The goal is to make the angles as shown in the diagram (or as close as you can). The felling cut should meet the point of the notch. When the tree starts to fall, the hinge will help guide the tree to fall in the desired direction.
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Plan the Notch
You're going to be cutting a notch on the "fall" side of the trunk. Sight along the handle and adjust the saw until it's pointing toward your fall direction. The spot where the bar touches the bark will be the center of the notch. Before cutting, lay out the notch by marking with chalk or by scoring the bark with the chain saw. Make the notch at a comfortable working height. (You can always shorten the stump later.)
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Cut the Notch
Make the top cut first and then the bottom. When you're making the bottom cut, adjust your hand to control the throttle with your thumb. If you meet the top notch perfectly, the wedge will drop out of the notch. But most likely you'll have to extend the cuts from either the top or the bottom so the wedge can drop free.
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Use Wedges on Big Trees
If you're felling a tree that's more than 18 in. in diameter, go ahead and make your notch cut and begin the felling cut. Stop cutting as soon as you've penetrated far enough to pound wedges behind the bar. Leave the bar in the cut with the saw running, but lock the chain brake and tap in the wedges. Then finish the cut. Wedges will keep the saw from getting pinched in the cut if the tree leans back.
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Make the Felling Cut
Score a line connecting the apex of the notch on both sides for a cutting guide. The back cut should be parallel and even with the apex of the notch. Then make the felling cut. The instant the tree begins leaning, pull the saw free, set the chain brake and walk away along one of your escape routes, keeping an eye on the tree so you can react if it doesn't fall the way you planned. Never take your eye off a falling tree.
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A Lookout Might Save Your Life
When felling a tree, you'll be a lot safer if you have a trusted assistant standing a few feet behind you watching the top of the tree for falling branches and letting you know when the tree starts to fall. Have your assistant tap you on the shoulder with a stick to alert you when it's time to vacate the area. If it's early in the cut and you get the tap, leave the saw and walk away immediately. That means a branch is falling. Near the end of the cut, a tap means the tree is beginning its descent.
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Start Cutting Branches at the Trunk
After felling the tree, cut off branches starting at the lower end of the trunk and working to the top. Whenever possible, stand on the uphill side of the tree. Work from the left side of the trunk (as you face toward the top of the tree). This allows the safest and most efficient use of the chain saw because you can rest the side or bottom of the saw on the trunk and slice off the branches with a pivoting motion.
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Saw the Trunk into Firewood
Cut a log into 16-in. lengths for firewood by first sawing three-quarters of the way through the log. Then roll it over and complete the cuts.
Learn how to cut firewood multiple ways so you can use whichever tools you have available.
Originally Published: May 29, 20190016
"People can't go outside from their houses. Trees can fall on you while you're working." Woodman Speights, a firefighter in stormy Mississippi, has extensive experience with chainsaws in harsh conditions. Certain hazardous tasks, such as clearing trees downed by a storm, should only be performed by suitably trained professionals. "I've seen when a storm has done really serious damage," Spates says.
| Age: 23 |
Occupation: Starkville Fire Department
Hometown: Ponotok, Mississippi
Clearing an area that has been blown down by a storm is one of the most dangerous tasks a chainsaw can do. According to statistics, the number of injuries during the clearing of the territory after a storm exceeds the number of injuries directly during it. Woodman Spates and his colleagues at the Starkville Fire Department always have chainsaws on hand to help. During the last task of clearing trees after a storm, the team had to work in an emergency situation: a large oak tree collapsed on a private house.
"We got a call saying that a tree had broken the roof of one of the houses. But before we could get to it, we had to clear the streets of a lot of other fallen trees."
Woodman's team used chainsaws to accomplish this task. The task was challenging, as they had to work with debris and broken wires that pose a fire hazard.
"The most important thing is to always remain calm. If you start to act rashly, you will probably get hurt. And you don't want to get hurt in such a situation," says Spaites.
Thanks to the volunteers who helped remove the cut branches and debris, the first part of the clearing work was completed in 30 minutes. After that, firefighters were able to get to the right house. They found that the crown of a huge tree completely blocked the passage and the family was blocked in one of the bedrooms on the second floor.
"First, we checked to see if there were any live branches in the crown. There were no such branches. Then we started sawing off branches to clear the way for the residents of the house."
"The most important thing is to always remain calm. If you start acting rashly, you will probably get hurt."
What advice would you give chainsaw owners about felling downed trees?
"Remember, if you're not sure you can handle a task, don't take it on. If you feel like you don't have the resources, the experience, and the situation isn't urgent, it's best to get the job done by a professional."
7 tips from the pros for clearing trees downed by a storm
|Before starting work|
1. Choosing the right equipment
Make sure you have the right protective clothing for your chain saw. It is also necessary to regularly check how quickly the protective functions of your equipment work. Carry a first aid kit with you at all times, as well as extra fuel and oil for your vehicles.
Remember, the most important thing you can take with you when you go to work with a chainsaw is a partner. Try never to work alone.
"Usually a team has a foreman who distributes tasks. In addition, volunteers often help us. It is extremely important that all participants have a good conversation before starting work, because then it will be almost impossible to hear anything because of the noise chain saws and ear protectors," Spates explains.
|Storm Forest Equipment|
2. Work planning
Before starting work on a forest site with trees felled by a storm, you should carefully assess the situation. Are there broken wires or debris in the treetops? Is there stress in the trunks or trees uprooted? You should not start work without looking around properly and without determining the scope of work. It is also extremely important to consider an escape route in case of an emergency.
"The only time it's better to rush when clearing a site is if a tree falls on you. At that point, you just need to throw the saw away and jump back along a pre-planned escape route," comments Spates.
3. Making cuts where stress is present
The most common problem encountered when clearing downed trees is stress in fallen trunks. Stress can cause the tree to move unintentionally during sawing. As a result, springy branches can jump out and injure you, damage equipment, or move the trunk, which in turn can cause the saw to get stuck.
Woodman Spates explains how to deal with stressed fallen trees:
"First, we cut off all the small branches to improve visibility. Then we cut off the areas of the trunk that have the most weight before moving on to the stressed branches. On the next In this step, we make a small cut on the stressed side to release the tension, and then slowly and carefully make three or four additional small cuts until the tension is completely released. It is extremely important to release the tension slowly and in stages."
This is a dangerous job that only professionals can do.
Overstressed: Pressurized side cut
Cut through the inside of the bend (because this side is under pressure). Make an open guide notch with a wide opening angle. File a little at a time on both sides at the same time until the tension is relieved. With full control of the situation and the right direction, the tension gradually decreases. Handle the rounded top of the tire with care to avoid kickback.
Medium tension: open reverse cut
- Make an open guide notch on the inside of the trunk bend to a depth of approximately one third of its thickness.
- Remaining on the inside of the bend, make small cuts on the outside of the bend at the center of the guide notch until the trunk breaks. fell trees in the correct sequence
Avoid risky actions and always think over escape routes.
Start with taller trees to reduce the risk of falling trunks that can trap you.
The trees shown in the picture should be removed in the following order: 1, 2, 3 and 4.
- Leaning tree
- Broken tree, hanging/fallen tree
- Uprooted tree lying on the ground
- Trunk without crown, high stumps
4. Felling a tree with a natural slope
Start with a tree that has a natural slope. The roots of the tree are probably under tension on one side and the position of the tree is unstable. For this reason, in no case should you walk in the felling area. Fell the tree with a safe straight corner cut. On a steep slope, a regular or deep wedge cut should be made. After that, the tree will begin to slowly fall. In this case, the trunk will be integral with the stump, which reduces the likelihood of splitting or damaging objects in the immediate vicinity.
5. Felling broken trees with hanging crowns
- Saw off the top of the tree first to make the trunk easier to unroll.
- It is necessary to lower the broken part of the barrel using a swivel hook or strap, or to free it using a special technique.
- You can now knock down a tall stump in the normal way. However, it should be remembered that a bare trunk falls faster, can bounce off the butt and roll back in any direction.
6. Handling fallen trees uprooted
Uprooted trees should never be sawn from the butt if there is the slightest danger of the trunk falling towards you. If you need to process the whole tree with a chainsaw, it is better to start from the top. This will relieve tension before you get to the roots. Start by delimbing so you can see if there is tension in the trunk.
Estimate the length of the top of the trunk and cut where it ends. Or saw off the butt of the log in such a way that the roots cannot rebound. After that, use a tractor with a grapple or a winch to tilt back the uprooted tree with a high stump.
Warning . After the trunk has been sawn off, the uprooted tree must not be left upright. If the tree is not completely felled, it could fall on bystanders and cause serious injury or death.
Saw off the roots by hand before the harvesting equipment arrives, only if there is no risk of the uprooted tree turning over. You must be in a safe place in case the barrel falls.
After sawing off the roots, the trunk can move to the side with great force. Therefore, a clear escape route should always be provided. Stand with the root system to your left, and cut the trunk to the right at a distance of about 0.5 m from the starting position. This will protect your legs in case the trunk falls to the side during the sawing process.
7. Felling of broken trees without hanging crowns
Broken trees and high stumps are felled in the usual way - just like normal trees. However, it should be remembered that a bare trunk falls faster, can bounce off the butt and roll back in any direction.
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How to cut down a tree on the site - a master class and tips
- ✓ Theory
- ✓ On the benefits of the helmet
- ✓ Useful tool
- ✓ Real savings
- ✓ How to cut down the tree of the chainsaw in the right direction: video
As soon as a new accumulative chain saw appeared, for the country. IT IMMEDIATELY FOUND A JOB: IT WAS NEEDED TO CUT TWO DRIED TRUNK OF A BIG APPLE TREE. TRUNK HEIGHT APPROXIMATELY 6 M, SAWING SHOULD BE AT LEVEL 2 M.
I saw all the fruit trees in the garden with great pleasure. The wood is valuable, after drying it is used to make useful things.
To fell a tree correctly, first you need to determine the potential slope of the trunk and try to fell the trunk in this direction. From the side of the slope, we cut a wedge to a depth of 0.3-0.4 of the thickness of the trunk, with the lower cut being horizontal, and the upper one at an angle of -45 °. On the reverse side, we make a felling cut just above the wedge. Be sure to leave nedopil (hinge). If you do not leave it, the fall of the tree can become unpredictable - and you will not have time to rebound!
EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR THIS ARTICLE IS HERE >>>
Before you start making a felling cut, be sure that there are no people or animals in the area where the trunk is likely to fall. After the felling cut is made, the tree begins to fall in the direction of the wedge cut. Here you need to quickly get out of the working area. If the tree is in no hurry to fall, you need to help him a little - drive a wedge into the felling cut.
As soon as the barrel starts moving, leave the working area immediately!HOW TO CUT A TREE IN THE REQUIRED SIDE
I studied the theory, but it is sometimes far from practice. Until you try it yourself, you won’t understand why, for example, you need to wear a protective helmet and gloves. And one more thing: the tool should be comfortable, especially when working at height! So, climbing a stepladder with a cordless saw is much more convenient than with a gasoline one. The first one is easier and you don't need to start it.
The cordless saw cuts slightly slower than a petrol saw, but much faster than a reciprocating saw. The cut was made from the reverse side just above the wedge. In my case, the trunk did not fall towards the wedge, but simply hung on the branches in the crown of the apple tree. I broke one of the rules of logging: to lighten the trunk as much as possible, removing branches to the maximum.
Life hack for summer cottage: how to cut down a tree
Watch this video on YouTube
ABOUT THE USE OF A HELMET
I could not even imagine that I would ever need it. I put it on just to pose. But when I sawed off a couple of branches on which the trunk hung, and it began to slowly fall over, I did not have time to get off the stepladder, and I got an uncut branch on the head. Helmet protected. If it were not for him, his head would have been thoroughly scratched! The trunk fell on a neighboring apple tree, fortunately without breaking it, and hovered above the ground. I sawed off part of it and laid the trunk on the ground.
Daughter also liked the new cordless toy. Before her appearance, she was afraid of the chain saw. And then I took Stihl and sawed the trunk of an apple tree into several parts. Apple logs were laid to dry under the barn - there the blanks do not crack.
Then my daughter broke up: she tested the saw with a fully charged battery. I've always wondered how long one charge lasts. It turned out to make 54 cuts with a diameter of 14-17 cm. The last indicator light on the battery went out at 55 slabs. The saw cuts were laid to dry in the attic.
Recently, neighbors called in professional sawyers to cut down a birch tree that was leaning dangerously towards the house. For 20 minutes of work and the removal of sawn wood took 7000 rubles . This I mean that a chain saw is an extremely necessary thing in the country, which allows you to significantly save money.
See also: Root offspring - why they appear and how to remove them correctly
How to cut a tree with a chainsaw. How to cut a tree in the right direction
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