Entropy

Relax in southern comfort on the east bank of the Mississippi. You're just around the corner from Beale Street and Sun Records. Watch the ducks, throw back a few and tell us what's on your mind.
Gold
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Re: Entropy

Post by Gold » Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:32 pm

I only want to cut up downed trees. My GF has a hard rule that only trees smaller than 4” in diameter are safe to cut down. I obey.

I’ve dealt with a lot of heavy things and in general I’m comfortable with moving heavy things safely. A tree is such an unbalanced load I know I don’t have enough experience to have an idea what a large tree would do when it falls. Way too dangerous for me. There is a reason arborists are liscened and bonded.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:30 pm

Gold wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 10:41 am
I’m supposed to get a chain saw lesson from my friend the excavator in the future. He’s on me to make fire wood out of some of the trees he cleared for the road. He says there is over $500 in firewood. I’ve never used a chain saw. I’m scared of them. I’m kind of partial to my limbs and digits. He also volunteered to Bri g over his log splitter. We have some of the wood covered and drying but some of it is going to start to rot soon. There are some really nice cedar logs that we want to save for posts.
Chainsaw technology is much improved in recent years, so they are far less dangerous than they were, but agreed trees can be unpredictable. Don't tell your girlfriend but even a 4" tree could get you. (I bought a new modest sized Stihl a while back and love it.)

I have a lot of experience making sawdust but even I can have trouble making them fall exactly like I want them to (trees obey gravity, and internal flaws, more than what I want) . Cutting up a tree that is already down is a lot easier, but you need to figure what limbs still have the full weight of the trunk on them to avoid the chain binding, etc.

I dropped a tree in my neighbor's yard a few years back that my neighbor wouldn't even touch, and he ran a logging company when he was younger. Not only wouldn't he touch it, but while I was cutting it, he stayed about 50 yards away (true story). This tree was dead and eaten from the inside by carpenter ants and more, several different kinds of ants inside. Trees like this can be unpredictable because the internal structure is unknowable. I treated the tree with respect, because I knew that my neighbor knew stuff about trees that I didn't, but I really wanted the tree down (it was an eyesore). A few minor surprises but I was on my alert so no extra drama.

A city boy has no need for chainsaw skills,,, sounds like you may need to figure them out living in the woods. Not rocket science but useful to get somebody experienced to show you how, not just tell you how. How far is the closest emergency room? (kidding), but of course be careful.

JR

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:41 pm

mediatechnology wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:52 am
JR - You predicted the eminent demise of that pecan tree just a week or so ago. Your aerial power drop was the first think I saw and thought "what a lucky break."
I happened to be looking out the window when tree fell and branches hit my power line and made it jump up and down a bunch. You can't tell from the pictures but my phone/dsl line runs through that corner too.
That was too close for comfort. A new service entry would be a big huge hassle. You've got some good smoking wood for the barbecue.
been there done that, with katrina. I have several lifetimes of good smoking wood.
Paul - I think chainsaws are a lot like motorcycles, weapons, aircraft etc. The day you stop being afraid of them is the day you get hurt. My Dad taught me a lot about chainsaws and their danger when we I was quite young. He climbed - I refuse to climb. So that's one danger eliminated. Lately my big worry about using the chainsaw are the snakes beneath my feet. There's one guy in Texas right now bitten by a small rattlesnake whose medical bill last I heard was $175,000.
That snake needs killing.

JR

PS: I was reflecting on how lucky I was with how the tree fell, but that good fortune is tempered by seeing all the beautiful pecans that will never ripen. Hundreds maybe a thousand pecans and they looked better than years past.

Gold
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Re: Entropy

Post by Gold » Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:57 pm

JR. wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:30 pm

Chainsaw technology is much improved in recent years, so they are far less dangerous than they were, but agreed trees can be unpredictable. Don't tell your girlfriend but even a 4" tree could get you. (I bought a new modest sized Stihl a while back and love it.)
Larry was saying that new chain saws have a different type of teeth. He says they are much less likely to bind but are more difficult to sharpen. His father was a logger and his brother is a logger. He knows a lot about it.

With a 4” tree even if it gets you it probably won’t kill you or put you in a wheelchair. She knows someone who was paralyzed cutting a tree down and died a few years later.

We have a lot of white and yellow birch, beach and sugar maple for hardwood. Most of the land is conifers though. The hill we look at is almost all hardwood which makes great views in the fall.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Sat Aug 11, 2018 11:57 pm

Gold wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:57 pm
JR. wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 6:30 pm

Chainsaw technology is much improved in recent years, so they are far less dangerous than they were, but agreed trees can be unpredictable. Don't tell your girlfriend but even a 4" tree could get you. (I bought a new modest sized Stihl a while back and love it.)
Larry was saying that new chain saws have a different type of teeth. He says they are much less likely to bind but are more difficult to sharpen. His father was a logger and his brother is a logger. He knows a lot about it.
I have my own sharpening file, but pay my local guy a few dollars, who has a custom sharpening jig he made. I had him sharpen my blade this spring and it cuts like butter.... It will still bind up if a ton of tree is squeezing it. That is part of the art of making saw dust, reading the internal stresses in wood (so you can avoid binding up).

The technology advances I was thinking about are anti-kick.... They claim to have a chain design that mitigates that, but the best solution is to not cut using just the tip of the bar. There have been advances in shock mounting the bar, and more. This anti-kick safety is the great white whale for chainsaw makers.
With a 4” tree even if it gets you it probably won’t kill you or put you in a wheelchair. She knows someone who was paralyzed cutting a tree down and died a few years later.
I try not to argue hypotheticals on the WWW, but be careful cutting 4" trees too.
We have a lot of white and yellow birch, beach and sugar maple for hardwood. Most of the land is conifers though. The hill we look at is almost all hardwood which makes great views in the fall.
I'm getting a lot of practice cutting pecan this weekend. :lol:

JR

PS: I don't think Stihl uses anti-kick chains, but has a bar brake that locks the blade... I never use it, but the primary reason for the bar brake is safety. If the bar kicks up in use, it automatically locks the blade brake.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:57 pm

Maybe I was subconsciously trying to prove my point about danger from small wood... but today I had a 1" branch spring up and hit me right next to my eye... didn't draw blood but got my attention. I was cutting small wood with compound lopper that cuts well without gasoline and causing global warming (my burn pile will do that).

After three days of clearing the small branches off the downed pecan, that I can reach, I was ready to seriously start cutting big wood. This is when I need my brain fully engaged. I cut maybe a half ton of easy big branches without having to deal with any supporting weight. So I figured it was a good time to punch out for the day, after three days of cutting and burning.

No rattlesnakes so far, but it did get stung by a bee :o ... I don't know what I did to piss him off, but he left his entrails attached to his stinger still in my arm, so he paid the ultimate price for his anger. I think (hope) I got the whole stinger out, but in the middle of the work day, with my lousy eyesight, who knows? I will find out later. The arm feels a little inflamed and sensitive, but no specific localized pain, so maybe it's just some residual bee venom doing what it does.

Tomorrow will be more fun, cutting bigger branches. I have a plan, but no plan survives meeting the enemy, so we'll see.

JR

PS: I have kept my burn pile going for three days straight so far... piled high with big wood, so will still be going tomorrow AM.

PPS: I has cramps saturday night from electrolyte (sweat) loss. I now have a half gallon of saltwater in my icebox that I dose with ( a few ounces each break) during my hydration breaks. No cramps since then but I have to use moderation. I don't recall reading about people lost at seas drinking only salt water that survived. :lol:

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mediatechnology
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Re: Entropy

Post by mediatechnology » Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:09 pm

I got smacked the same way with a small twig a few years ago.

You might want to get some of those leg cramp pills.
They do help.
Cramps are one of my frequent problems particularly if I'm working on a hill, dragging brush up the hill, or are having to work in an area where I don't have good solid footing.

That bee sting may give you some joint pain.

You have some nice pecan for smoking.
Time to fire up the grill.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:08 am

mediatechnology wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:09 pm
I got smacked the same way with a small twig a few years ago.

You might want to get some of those leg cramp pills.
They do help.
they sell some electrolyte powders for athletes (I saw my carpenter using some). I don't recall the exact ratio but 80-90% of ringers solution is sodium.
Cramps are one of my frequent problems particularly if I'm working on a hill, dragging brush up the hill, or are having to work in an area where I don't have good solid footing.
pubmed sez wrote: Abstract
International guidelines suggest limiting sodium intake to 86-100 mmol/day, but average intake exceeds 150 mmol/day. Participants in physical activities are, however, advised to increase sodium intake before, during and after exercise to ensure euhydration, replace sodium lost in sweat, speed rehydration and maintain performance. A similar range of health benefits is attributable to exercise and to reduction in sodium intake, including reductions in blood pressure (BP) and the increase of BP with age, reduced risk of stroke and other cardiovascular diseases, and reduced risk of osteoporosis and dementia. Sweat typically contains 40-60 mmol/L of sodium, leading to approximately 20-90 mmol of sodium lost in one exercise session with sweat rates of 0.5-1.5 L/h. Reductions in sodium intake of 20-90 mmol/day have been associated with substantial health benefits. Homeostatic systems reduce sweat sodium as low as 3-10 mmol/L to prevent excessive sodium loss. "Salty sweaters" may be individuals with high sodium intake who perpetuate their "salty sweat" condition by continual replacement of sodium excreted in sweat. Studies of prolonged high intensity exercise in hot environments suggest that sodium supplementation is not necessary to prevent hyponatremia during exercise lasting up to 6 hr. We examine the novel hypothesis that sodium excreted in sweat during physical activity offsets a significant fraction of excess dietary sodium, and hence may contribute part of the health benefits of exercise. Replacing sodium lost in sweat during exercise may improve physical performance, but may attenuate the long-term health benefits of exercise.
Wow, they say losing salt due to heavy sweating is a health benefit for typical people who eat too much salt... :lol:

I recall seeing salt pill dispensers back in the 60's and IIRC they offered us salt pills in the army during long marches.

So far my salt replacement pretty much prevents cramps that I can get from unusually heavy sweating days. I suspect I am way below average salt consumption, while some foods have sodium in them too.
That bee sting may give you some joint pain.
right now that part of my arm is a little sore but not localized to a specific sting site... if the stinger is still in there, it will reveal itself soon enough. My joints are always sore, but the last few days of heavy work seem to be helping more than hurting.
You have some nice pecan for smoking.
Time to fire up the grill.
After 3 days solid of burning pecan branches and logs, I can't smell it any more. The trunk is kind of hollow from ants eating the insides of tree, so I may start a fire inside the base of the trunk to finish it off, when I get down to it... I will have plenty of wood available for fuel.

JR

PS: I think I have a plan for one dicey cut tomorrow. Even though the tree is down, one of the sideways branches is now sticking straight up higher than the power lines in the street nearby. If I cut the limb, I need to control how it falls to make sure it misses the power lines. I think I can hook my branch cutter with extension pole to a thin part near the top of the branch and tie the cord to the tree so when the branch falls it will swing down and away from the road. It will probably miss anyhow, but some extra insurance doesn't hurt. 8-)

[update] Branch is too thick for tree trimmer to clamp onto.. I hooked a smaller branch near the top but it may just cut through that. I think I can carefully control the drop angle... we'll see soon enough, up first for this morning.(after one more cup of coffee). [/update]

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mediatechnology
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Re: Entropy

Post by mediatechnology » Wed Aug 15, 2018 7:30 am

The trunk is kind of hollow from ants eating the insides of tree, so I may start a fire inside the base of the trunk to finish it off, when I get down to it...
Throw a bag of sugar on it and wait. The sugar will feed everything and it will breakdown faster.

Managing a load line by yourself is difficult.
I've seen one of my tree guys attach a line to the tree that he's felling and then loop it around another tree so his assistant can control it from a different position.

I'm about to call a guy today with a bucket truck to take a cedar out over the driveway and utility drop.
A bucket truck isn't required but its safer and faster then sectioning it down by being on it.

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JR.
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Re: Entropy

Post by JR. » Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:38 am

mediatechnology wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 7:30 am
The trunk is kind of hollow from ants eating the insides of tree, so I may start a fire inside the base of the trunk to finish it off, when I get down to it...
Throw a bag of sugar on it and wait. The sugar will feed everything and it will breakdown faster.
I am inclined to spray some more bug spray to kill the carpenter ants that are running amok on what's left of the tree... Yesterday I sprayed down a bunch of carpenter ants climbing on my closest pecan tree that was 50' feet away before, but close to lots of fallen branches.
Managing a load line by yourself is difficult.
I've seen one of my tree guys attach a line to the tree that he's felling and then loop it around another tree so his assistant can control it from a different position.
I could have used an extra hand, or four, several times but I tried hard to not do anything really stupid (so far so good). 8-) Closest thing to injury is the bee sting. The arm is still sore and there is a discernible lump where the sting occured.

The good news is even though my attached line had no effect (not really attached very well at the top), but the branch didn't come close to the power lines when it finally came down. I had one other questionable branch wedged against one of those big pine trees that I was going to leave until today, but around 2PM when I was sitting in my kitchen rehydrating, I got a knock on my door from some guy driving by who asked if he could have some fire wood. :D :D I said yes of course and he told me he would come back later when it was cooler. Apparently I am the only dumbass who works during the heat of the day in MS. :oops:

Since I didn't know his saw skills I decided to drop the last remaining dicey limb myself. I left him a pile of big wood that he could cut down to wood stove size.

I was pleasantly surprised to be sitting inside after beer o'clock, chilling and rehydrating, and hearing a chain saw at work in my yard. :D He had a newer stihl saw than mine and looked like he knew what he was doing. He wore a kidney belt to help with lifting. He filled up the back of his pickup truck twice (two trips). He even took some of the big wood I had already carried over to my burn pile to burn. I told him he could have it, but would have to haul it back to his truck himself. :lol:
I'm about to call a guy today with a bucket truck to take a cedar out over the driveway and utility drop.
A bucket truck isn't required but its safer and faster then sectioning it down by being on it.
I have been dragging my feet, because I am cheap, but I have a stand of tall old pine trees (10 or so) that need to be topped, because they tower above power lines and would hit my house, or my neighbor's house across the street, if they are dropped in one piece. I have been hopeful that the power company might have some interest to protect their lines, but so far no interest. Maybe after one drops they will get interested in the rest.

After 4 full days of hard (for me) physical labor, I am ready to take a break. All that is left of the pecan tree is about 20' of trunk almost 2' diameter at the small end. I may just stare at it for a couple days. I need to get back to normal life again.

Good news is my salt water worked and no more cramping after that first cramping event late saturday night. Oddly I haven't lost any weight according to my scale morning weight (actually gained a pound or two), but my hydration level may be higher from all the extra salt. My pants are fitting looser, so I know I didn't suddenly get fatter.

JR

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