Tech-Update Self-leveling Bunchers and Harvesters

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibreJohn Deere

John Deere’s G-series wheeled harvesters are versatile machines that help overcome obstacles, no matter what the harvesting application or terrain.

These machines are loaded with improvements that boost performance, says the company, including an enhanced Intelligent Boom Control (IBC) system option on the 180S boom for the 1070G, CH6 boom for the 1170G, CH7 boom for the 1270G, and CH9 boom for the 1470G that delivers more precise boom control.

The rotating and smooth-leveling cab turns 290 degrees providing 360-degree visibility to surroundings and boom movements. The auto-leveling cab keeps the operator balanced and comfortable in steep and uneven terrain. In addition, the TimberMatic H-16 control system on the G-series wheeled harvesters provides reliable, efficient control of all harvesting functions, for more precise, quicker boom movements and greater productivity.

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibreTimberPro

TimberPro feller bunchers are built from the lessons learned by over the past four decades, which translates into a machine that is well balanced and light on its feet, says the company.

TimberPro’s leveling system is simple yet robust, and by utilizing its tapered pin design, it provides a trouble-free system that’s designed for the long haul. The innovative auto-leveling system sets the standard with up to 28 degrees of forward leveling, 24 degrees of side leveling and 7 degrees of rearward leveling. Combine all the leveling capability with its quiet and comfortable cab which has class leading visibility, powerful hydrostatic track drive system, stout booms with long reach and TimberPro feller bunchers provide operators with the performance and confidence to harvest on today’s steepest terrain, says the company. All this performance is possible due to the powerful and efficient Cummins stage V 9-litre engine that puts out class leading 390 hp in the 765/775/785 variant and 350 hp in the 725/755.

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibreTigercat

Optimized for steep slope work—with innovative features and technologies—Tigercat’s leveling track machines are used in a wide range of applications including felling, harvesting and shovel logging.

Tigercat’s patented super-duty, leveling undercarriage provides exceptional stability on steep slopes, says the company. It uses two massive hydraulic cylinders and heavy steel sections for a solution that is simple, robust and reliable. Unlike competing systems, the Tigercat leveling system leans into the hill when leveling to the side, which further improves machine stability and operator comfort.

To further enhance the ability of Tigercat’s track machines to work on slopes, an optional cable assist mount is available. The tether anchor bolts firmly to the main carbody structure of the undercarriage, and allows either single or double cables to be attached to the track machine. A variety of third-party winch systems can be used to assist the track machine up or down slopes.

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibreEltec

Eltec has developed and refined its leveling system a great deal with its clients, especially in New Zealand, where very steep slopes are the norm.

The input it has received has been invaluable and guided the company to implement a few obvious design principles that produce more effective leveling equipment. First, a lower centre of gravity increases stability. Secondly, Eltec has made sure that there is plenty of track power for the climb. Thirdly, it has also managed the weight transfer, when tilted, to the front of the machine which helps make the most of the machine’s track power and is the equivalent to climbing a hill on the ball of your foot instead of being flat footed, says the company. The demands on forestry equipment are very high, so Eltec makes sure to use top-tier components to produce its product, and bring its ideas to life.

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibreKomatsu

To harvest trees in tight, dense and rugged-terrain forests, operators need machines with maneuverability, power, versatility and reliability. With Komatsu’s XT-5 tracked harvesters, operators can harvest closer to the carrier and maneuver confidently thanks to a lower center of gravity and offset boom.

Even on sloped terrain, operators can work with confidence. The XT465L-5 is equipped with a heavy-duty, four-way leveling system that promotes front, rear and side leveling for exceptional stability. The fuel tank placement lowers the centre of gravity for enhanced stability.

Made to perform in demanding conditions, Komatsu’s XT-5 closed loop tracked harvesters enable operators to simultaneously travel, cut, delimb, harvest and swing timber. Engineered with hydraulic lines for each function, operators can use tracks, boom, arm and tools concurrently.

Benefits of the XT-5 tracked harvesters include: significantly greater lift capacity, 10 per cent more horsepower, 16 per cent more torque, 5 per cent lower fuel consumption, and excellent uptime and serviceability, says the company.

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibreWeiler Forestry

The Weiler Forestry B458 reduced tail swing track feller buncher and H458 harvesters can be equipped with optional extended track roller frames.

The B458 and H458 with extended track roller frames utilize 11 rollers instead of the standard 9 and offer an additional 29” of track length, while maximizing tractive effort. This provides increased stability, operator comfort, and maneuverability. With the well-matched swing torque, 35” of unobstructed ground clearance and the ability to cable-assist the machine as needed, the B458 and H458 are well-suited for all steep slope applications, says Weiler.

The reduced tail swing self-leveling Weiler machines feature excellent multi-function capability with dedicated pumps, field proven components, and excellent serviceability, according to the company.

The new spacious cab maximizes operator visibility by providing an open field of view to the work area and upwards through a large skylight. An optional 14 LED light package is available for improved productivity in night shift operations and an optional heated and cooled seat keeps operators comfortable.

A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibrePonsse

The Ponsse Scorpion Giant harvester conveniently fills the gap between the Scorpion King and Bear models in the Ponsse harvester line-up.

It has a powerful two-circuit hydraulic system, which is particularly good in regeneration felling. The power, torque and fuel economy of the Mercedes-Benz engine is better than ever, says the company.

The operator is literally the centre point of the machine. The cabin is located in the middle of the machine, making it easier to see its extremities. The unique crane solution is said to offer excellent visibility in every direction. Good visibility, also on both sides of the cabin, enables efficiency without any limits.

The Ponsse Scorpion Giant features the new H8 head. It provides strong durability, excellent reliability, and lower lifecycle cost, says Ponsse. The same is true of the saw blade and chain. The renewed saw box prevents snow from packing, and the completely new Active Speed function enables changing the feeding speed literally on the run.

Logging and Sawmilling Journal

November/December 2022

On the Cover:
The last several years have been busy for B.C.’s Lizzie Bay Logging. In that time, in addition to diligently carrying out active logging activities during COVID, the company has become joint owner of a custom sawmilling business, acquired a towboating company, launched a concrete company—and started a tree services business. Read all about the company’s successful diversification beginning on page 12 of this issue. (Cover photo courtesy of Lizzie Bay Logging)

Filling the need for fallers
There’s a shortage of certified fallers in B.C.—but fallers in training like Melie de Jonge are helping to fill that need, with the help of veteran faller—and certified instructor—Richard Butler.

Playing defense in forestry game
Veteran B.C. logger Clint Carlson is playing defense to weather today’s skewed business environment in the forest industry.

Successful diversification
B.C.’s Lizzie Bay Logging is still very focused on logging, but is also finding success in diversifying its business.

Solid formula for sawmill survival
Strong faith, no debt and diversification have all helped Mardis Forest Products survive in turbulent times.

Pivoting to pre-finished products
Ontario’s Muskoka Timber Mills has made a successful market pivot to custom, pre-finished wood products, rebuilding after a devastating mill fire.

Tapping into an under-utilized fibre resource
A Haida-owned company in B.C. is working with under-utilized fibre, harvested sustainably, along with a custom sawmill operation, to produce value added wood products.

Included in this edition of The Edge, Canada’s leading publication on research in the forest industry, is a story from the Canadian Wood Fibre Centre (CWFC).

The Last Word
Tony Kryzanowski notes that West Fraser Timber is investing in the future as Canadian softwood lumber producers face a tough year ahead, after some pretty flush times during COVID.


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