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TimberWest January/February 2011

March/April 2013

Taking Biomass to the Bank
Biomass — a steady revenue stream for Godfrey & Yeager Excavating

Woody Biomass Column:
Pot Smoke is in, Wildfire Smoke is out

Redwood is Where it's At
A glimpse inside Green Diamond Resource Company

Strong and Viable Sawmill
Willits Redwood Company focuses on milling versus logging
American Forest Foundation provides
Forestry Mapping Tools and Plans

Tech Review: Tracked Feller Bunchers

Small Log Conference Review

Oregon Logging Conference Review

Guest Column:
Getting the Most from Your Logging Tires


In The News

Machinery Row

Association News


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Tracked Feller Bunchers


Cat track feller bunchers have the best-in-class combination of lift capacity, swing torque and tractive effort-to-weight ratios. The Cat 541 Series 2 and the Cat 552 Series 2 are full tail swing track machines designed for high production clear cut and for clear or select cut in rough terrain. The 552 is a leveling machine for steep terrain. With a full 35 in. ground clearance between the tracks from front to back, the Series 2 machines are less likely to get hung up on stumps or rocks. Boom reach is 28 ft., 1 in. for both models configured as standard feller bunchers, and 32 ft. 6 in. configured as long reach feller bunchers. As harvesters, the standard reach is 35 ft. and the short reach is 29 ft.

The Cat 522B and Cat 521B are zero tail swing track machines designed for plantation thinning, swamp logging, medium production clear cut and high production biomass applications. The 522B is a leveling machine. The B Series features a new, upsized undercarriage, more horsepower and a new hydraulic design for improved multifunctioning performance. Swing capacity of 61,000 lb-ft gives the operator the ability to swing big loads up slopes. Boom reach for both models configured as feller bunchers is 26 ft. 6 in., and as harvesters the reach is 32 ft. 6 in.

The Series 2 and the B Series machines are powered by the 303 hp Cat C9 engine with ACERT™ Technology.

John DeereJohn Deere

As part of its ongoing commitment to provide loggers with new efficiencies and productivity gains, John Deere recently introduced the optional Rapid Cycle System (RCS) for boom operation on its 900K-Series Tracked Feller Bunchers. The RCS improves machine productivity and operating speeds by automating both boom and cutting head motions, as well as by providing automated harvesting arm cycling to simplify the process for the machine operator.

The RCS felling head auto-arm sequence is initiated when the operator presses a single button on the right-hand joystick in the feller buncher’s cab. A single motion of the joystick engages movement of the boom/stick/head, and the RCS automatically maintains the head’s cutting position throughout each boom reach. With the press of another joystick button, the head’s arms quickly release the bunch of trees. The automatic cutting head leveling, arm sequencing, and quick arm release are all exclusive to Deere and the RCS. The system improves the speed and productivity of the boom while it gives the operator fewer buttons and movements to think about, which helps reduce operator fatigue.

RCS is available on John Deere 900K-Series Tracked Feller Buncher models — 903K, 909K, 953K and 959K. 900K-Series machines are Deere’s most powerful feller bunchers, designed to deliver power and productivity to big jobs on steep slopes and rough, rocky terrain.


Komatsu’s purpose-built track feller bunchers and harvesters deliver superior maneuverability, multifunction capability and high-production in demanding environments.

The XT series models include the XT430-2, and the leveling models XT430L-2, XT445L-2 and XT450L-2. The XT450L, with its larger leveling system is designed to handle severe applications in big timber. Machine base weights range from 27-37 tons. They are powered by 246 300 peak hp Cummins Tier 3 engines.

Each model features high-capacity cooling package with thermostatically controlled auto-reversing fans to improve engine and hydraulic cooling performance, reduce maintenance and improve fuel economy. Engine oil changes feature an easy-to-access filter location.

There are up to nine hydraulic configurations, two boom, and four arm options, these machines can also handle today’s heavier saw heads with full lateral tilt.

The XT series swing-system drives run in a sealed grease bath for improved pinion lubrication with hardened gears for longer life.

The series boasts a reengineered undercarriage design and improved serviceability, including:

  • Roller guards extended to the front and back with improved track shoe support plate clearance reducing track chain side loading on uneven ground
  • Track frame cut-outs reducing debris packing and improving roller maintenance
  • Track drive sprockets with mud/snow relief reducing packing
  • Long track sliders with larger surface area extending idler life

Komatsu feller buncher cabs are quiet, spacious and ergonomically designed for efficient operation. Programmable hydraulic controls deliver smooth and quick machine response.

PSWTechnologies Element PSW

Technologies Element PSW Inc. is a division recently created by the Group Element. The Group Element specializes in the sale, the repair and now in the manufacturing of superior-quality heavy equipment.

The Eltec feller buncher/harvester, built in Val-d’Or Quebec, is designed in three different series: series 220, series 270 and series 310. This heavy-duty tracked feller buncher is designed and purposed-built to deliver high productivity, consistent with the demands of a 24 hour-a-day, 7 day-a-week final felling application. The Eltec offers a maximum tractive effort of a 100,000 pounds, a torque of 85,000 pounds and is powered by an industry leading, highly fuel efficient Cummins diesel engine Tier 4 interim/Stage 3B and a hydraulic system enhanced for the toughest forestry operations.

Operator comfort and safety are key highlights of this feller buncher as it features a newly designed, operator friendly Eltec Cab. The Eltec feller bunchers are also available in a harvester configuration, complete with a long-reach harvester boom and arm and dedicated harvester hydraulics.

Technologies Element PSW Inc. is currently recruiting new dealers in Canada and in the U.S.


The Tigercat C-series feller bunchers are well known for long service life, thoughtful component arrangement and service access, clear operator sightlines and high capacity variable-flow cooling.

Common to all models and unique to Tigercat feller bunchers is ER boom technology. ER provides increased production, especially in high cycle applications. ER allows the operator to extend and retract the boom on a horizontal plane using a single joystick. This transfers energy back and forth between the main and the stick boom functions, reducing the total energy required and freeing this energy up for other machine functions or fuel savings.

The C-series operator’s cab has a floor-to-ceiling front window that provides a clear view of the tracks and excellent right-side visibility.

The L830C is a Tigercat’s high production, zero tail-swing feller buncher, well suited to thinning and final felling. The closed loop track drive X-model (LX830C) provides even higher performance in steep terrain with quicker track speeds when climbing, improved turning performance, better multi-functioning and more hydraulic efficiency. The L830C and LX830C share the same R7-150-2 undercarriage and leveling components as the super duty L870C.

The FH400-based 870C provides the track power, stability, boom reach and lift required to maintain the highest levels of production. It’s suited to steep, rocky, soft or otherwise challenging terrain. Field proven at both temperature extremes, the 870C provides around the clock performance in hostile clear fell applications. The efficient twin swing drive system provides powerful swing torque combined with low pinion loads for extended swing system life.


TimberPro produces a D6 and D7 size track type feller buncher with either leveling or non-leveling. TimberPro has a patented leveling system which levels 28° to the front, 7° to the back and 24° to both sides. This leveling system is simple, functional and does not add an unrealistic amount of weight and cost.

The drive system on these machines is a closed loop circuit with a pump for each track drive system so there is no interaction. The draw bar pull is well above the weight of the machine ,which gives a lot of track power, quickness and maneuverability.

The cooling system is extremely efficient. Besides being over sized, the cooling is done by a hydraulic motor powering a reversible fan, which can be set to reverse at any time to blow debris from the radiator.

Maintenance is done conveniently by most grease points, when possible, brought to a central location. There is gullwing access to the pumps, engine and other parts, which may require inspection and maintenance. The exhaust system on the standard 300 hp Cummins is wrapped in asbestos and there is a bulkhead barrier between all hydraulic components and the engine to help prevent fires.

With a long boom reach, along with no tail swing and an optional 6-foot squirt boom, the machine allows for excellent thinning capabilities.