Discussion in 'Bushcraft' started by Tyler Danann, Jan 2, 2014.
Excellent demonstration of bucking from the rangers doin' it old school:
Good video. When I worked Forest Service we did fire fighting and trail building with mainly double bit axe, sharpened shovel as in the video, Pulaski hoe/axe, and sometimes a McLeod hoe. And a chainsaw. I would enjoy to have worked on a crew with crosscut saws!
A sharp axe can fell a 10" diameter tree faster than futzing with a saw. To make a trail or fir line we would get maybe 6-8 guys in line with alternating tools. Shovel, pulaski, axe, shovel, pulaski, axe, shovel, McLeod.
Each guy takes s few whacks at the ground gets what he cans and moves on. The shovel is used as shown in the video with an elbow pivoting on a knee to scope and scrape, and chop lighter roots. The pulaski can dig/pry out larger rocks, chop limbs in the way and larger roots. The axe stays out of the dirt and clears limbs and trees out of the way and to the sides. A small crew can real blaze a trail quickly working like this. Chainsaw for large trees up to 3 ft diameter and contract pros for anything bigger.
For actually fighting fires other than the fire line we usually worked in teams of two with a sharp shovel and 5 gal piss bag for cruising outlying areas and water pumps and hoses fir the main blaze.
We worked along other crews that probably never used a shovel or pulaski. They would have 12 guys on one hose. Nice to see some forest had lots if old school hand tools. We never saw a video just work with experienced crew leaders.
Awhhh, the old Pulaski. Used one several times working fire lines. We had a couple on our first out fire truck and brush truck. On a safety note--an axe is a dangerous tool. Very useful in competent hands but around people it is an accident waiting to happen. Thankfully have never cut myself or anyone else--can't say that about a chainsaw. Saw proof chaps, safety glasses, full face shields, and gloves gives one a sense of safety but there are still others to consider when working with them.
safety equipment is good to have (and use) but A thinking mind is more important. I agree, people wrapped up in safety gear some times think they are invulnerable, and they ain't. Then they make STUPID mistakes.
Been using a chainsaw for over 5 decades, Professionally, and just for Firewood. Never had an issue where I needed all that Idiot-Proof Safety crap. If one looks at the Loggers, that actually do the felling of the Trees, they wear a Tin HardHat, and more recently a Plastic One, and Carhart Pants, when out working, and that is about all the "Safety Gear" they use. One must keep in mind that most of these things have been invented, to keep the City Folks from getting Hurt, because they have no idea what they are doing, when running a Powered Saw. It is the Mommy State, wrapping them in Pillows, to protect them from themselves. 3 Months working with a Professional Fell'er would be a much better use of ones Time, and Money, rather than encumbering them in all that extra stuff. I have taught ALL my children, when they were teenagers, the correct use of such tools, while out with Me doing firewood collection Duties. Now they all have children of their own, and If they were to need to use a Saw, I am sure they wouldn't be going down the the local Saw Shop, and buying all that stuff, before they head out into the woods to do the Job at hand. This is different from Bicycle Helmets, where it isn't the wearers, that cause the Injuries, it is those other Guys that are on the Road, with them. My Opinion.... YMMV....
That would be why I'm saying a thinking mind is more important than the gear. Know your tools, and what you are doing.
A brushhook, machete, and chainsaw, and axe, a couple splitting wedges, and there is very little I can't do with tree removal or trail clearing. I have a couple two man saws, and the like as back up if needed.
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