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im getting an atv this week. it does not have a winch on it presently.

i plan to eventually get a plow (raised and lowered by the winch)

but for now i want to use it to clean up felled or downed trees out in the woods. i can cut them to 10 or 20 ft lengths depending on the tree width.


i figured i could hook a tow rope to the back and drag the trees out... or would that be something better suited for a winch?

ive been able to pull fairly large tree parts with my GT and a 20 ' tow rope. i figured i could do the same with the atv.

would i need a winch to do this? or can i get by w/just the tow rope like ive done with my GT?
 

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In general it should work fine without the winch.

For the most part I believe winches are designed to pull a load under controlled conditions with little to no shock load. Skidding logs or pulling any load with a winch may subject the winch to significant shock loads.

Whether using a winch or not you should skid the log with the end nearest the machine, raised far enough off the ground so that it adds weight to the machine and prevents the load/log from either digging into the ground, or hitting rocks and or stumps.

A lot of machines have their hitch points relatively low and are sometimes difficult to use to raise a load. You can use your timber-jack to hold the log off the ground while you hook it up to the machine.
Or if you have a car dolly (short two wheel towing trailer) you may easily be able to use it, with a ball on the ATV.
 

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Just a little word to the wise, and what raised my hackles was the word "tow rope."

That covers a lot of ground, some of it bad. Ever seen a rope come unhooked/ break? They can become a lethal missile, ESPECIALLY if made from some material like nylon or partial nylon or (puke) plastic/ poly.

MUCH MUCH safer to skid with a chain or wire rope, and even then, undersized and long pieces of wire can be dangerous

I used to "jeep" even though my ride was a 340 powered Toy FJ40. I KNOW what happens to ropes

Even better would be a two wheeled towing device, now where did I see those? You tow it like a trailer, the log is jacked up into the dolly and just can't go anywhere
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Re: You need a logging arch

In general it should work fine without the winch.
You can use your timber-jack to hold the log off the ground while you hook it up to the machine.
Or if you have a car dolly (short two wheel towing trailer) you may easily be able to use it, with a ball on the ATV.
Timber Jack? I had no idea what that was... now that i see them, that would have saved me about 3 chainsaw blades... ive dulled 3 so far this season from cutting into the mud... :banghead3:ROF



Just a little word to the wise, and what raised my hackles was the word "tow rope."

That covers a lot of ground, some of it bad. Ever seen a rope come unhooked/ break? They can become a lethal missile, ESPECIALLY if made from some material like nylon or partial nylon or (puke) plastic/ poly.
Yeah i kind of wondered about the tow rope, the one i am using is a car tow rope, probably not the best thing to use to pull, i was wondering if that would be an issue... i think i will look into getting a chain to do this.. that seems safer...
:thanku:

Paul funny you used that link... i have a nichols trailer (10 years old now),

that log trailer looks nice. :thanku:
 

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Skidding with your new quad is going to be hard on the ATV, the logs, the trail, and your chain. i tried it with my foreman with a custom built skidding hitch. i was able to lift the nose of most logs to skid easier. the logs still loaded with mud and smoked my saw chain in short order. it was very hard on the trail and i could smell clutch in a very short period of time. my advice from a 6+ cord per year cutter is to cut & split them where they fall and trailer them out.
 

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Foodplotter just nailed it.

If you have a good trail/access road, buck into 18" lengths(whatever size) and haul them out with a pickup or trailer behind your atv. If really large split once or twice(with a maul/wedge) to reduce weight etc.
My brother skids logs for firewood every year with his JD3320 in NH and uses his farmi pto winch. He can get the hitch waaay up high with this. This is possible do to it being connected to the 3 point. Alot less tree surface touching the ground and dragging mud/dirt to dull your saw and F up your bar/clutch etc.

MU
 

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Discussion Starter #8
my advice from a 6+ cord per year cutter is to cut & split them where they fall and trailer them out.
duh... ya know... thats probably the best way to do it... :thanku:


plus less of a mess of ruts and branches on my lawn...

i was impressed that my GT could pull a fairly big log, i assumed the atv would do it better... but no sense battering the thing.. :trink40:
 

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There is absolutely nothing wrong with a tow rope if you follow the one safety percussion, put something like a blanket or attach something heavy to the rope in the middle so that if it does snap (not likely with a 4 wheeler) it's flight will be lowered to the ground and ended by the weight of the blanket or whatever. The only way to get killed with a tow rope is by not using this method, tow ropes were actually outlawed in some states because they snapped and there was nothing to stop them, and they flew through the rear window of the car that was pulling and into the drivers head... killing them of course.
Good Luck, DacMan
 

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Discussion Starter #12
that log rite is slick. 550$ is not horrible in price either.

for the most part, im not needing to haul logs out of the woods. I have a lot of trees that are down, but hung up on other trees, the winch will be used to pull the 'hanging' tree off of the tree. once its freed up and on the ground, ill cut it where it lays and pull the wood out with my trailer. I wouldnt use a chain to do that cuz i want to be far enough from the tree, so when it falls it wont hit me or the atv :fing32:
 

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my grandpa has a 300 Arctic Cat, for places he can't get his Kubota to, he cuts them in 15' lengths and drags up out. The biggest I've saw him pull is about a 14" red oak. Granted he just uses this for those trees way out there, but that little thing can pull it's weight. He filled the tires on it too...
 

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Have to agree about bucking them up where they fall. I've found it much easier on equipment to do this. I used to split them right there as well till I made the splitter.

If you are able to do it safely it's a good idea to throw a few short chunks under the leaning tree. When it lands on them it's up off the ground and makes cutting them up easier. The "timber jack" is a handy tool, I've been using them for years and they sure make it easier to limb and buck up trees.

Be careful using that winch to pull leaning trees down, sometimes they do unexpected things and can go the wrong way. Very possible to snap a cable or damage an ATV doing that. The trick of laying a heavy coat, blanket or tarp over the center of the cable is a good idea, really does slow down, but not stop, the whip of a broken wire.

Never, ever, sit on the quad while winching. This will put you in direct line with the cable and you don't want that. Use a winch pendulum with wires long enough to take cover behind an object so if TSHTF you are protected.

Seen too many people hurt in the woods when they were cutting wood to save a few bucks. Did it for years, burned 14 to 16 cord each winter, but now just pour pellets in the stove and turn up the t-stat.

Mike
 

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No problem hauling logs with an ATV or UTV. I've towed 10 or 12 logs at one time in 8' lengths. 6-8" dia.
 
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