In 2015, FPInnovations and its Forest Operations Research group took a lead role in finding solutions to the challenges of steep-slope fibre harvesting in western Canada, by launching the Steep-Slope Initiative (SSI). The Initiative has engaged forest industry members, equipment manufacturers and distributors, regulators, and other stakeholders in identifying and developing best practices and new harvesting technologies for steep terrain.
A study to determine the effect of different harvesting practices on the tension of wire rope in winch-assisted operations was completed in December and the results are now available to FPInnovations Members in the Info Note, “Winch-Assist Tension with the Summit and EMS Systems”. The study compared wire rope tensions at the feller-buncher and at the anchor machine during production logging and using stump/tree redirects. Redirects using a block and stump were compared with the Summit system. Redirects with three rub trees were studied with the EMS system. Events that caused tension spikes during operational logging without redirects were monitored.
The study was conducted in collaboration with Weyerhaeuser, North Washington Timberlands, in two 35-year-old Douglas-fir plantations. John Deere custom-built load cells were shackled to feller-bunchers and the tension data was obtained from a data logger connected to the load cells, as well as from video of the tension display in the anchor machines. Practical recommendations for using redirects are provided. The Info Note is available to members and partners of FPInnovations here.
For more information concerning the Steep Slope Initiative, please visit http://steepslopeinitiative.fpinnovations.ca