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Monday, October 5, 2009

Went to the farm this weekend

Met my dad there and we cut limbs, fixed a water supply for game, and set up another feeder.

For cutting limbs I was using a Poulan Pro Pole Saw. I am really pushing this little tool to it's limits. It is not a commercial grade tool and it says in the manual "For Occasional Use Only". LOL. In one afternoon I probably put it through 10 years of the kind of use it will see with the average homeowner. This is the second year I've used it at the farm for opening up areas so we can see game easier. I've also used it some for clearing trails around my house which is mostly cutting the bottom limbs off 15' tall cedar trees.

This little tool has exceeded my expectations. It has been easy to start so far, although sometimes it takes it a few minutes to warm up before it is ready cut. Once it's warmed up it makes quick work of 6" diameter limbs. The largest I cut was about 8".

One thing to be careful of when using a pole saw is sawdust in your face. I wore goggles with foam pads that sealed around my eyes. If there is any wind the sawdust goes everywhere and regular glasses may not help you.

Another thing to remember is gravity. When the limbs come down they sometimes make a funny twist or turn. A limb 8' long and 6" in diameter coming at you from 10' above can be serious. Before you start on a big limb check the area around you and make sure you have room to move without tripping. It is easy to get caught up in cutting limbs and not notice how many you have on the ground. Having a partner helps because one of you can move the limbs out of the way while the other cuts.

I find it easiest to start at the very bottom limbs and work my way up. The reason is that if you start at the top the limbs will sometimes hang up on the limbs underneath and give you trouble - either hanging in the tree or bouncing off the lower limb and moving in an unpredictable direction which usually means right at your face. The exception to starting at the very bottom is on cedar trees or other trees with large limbs right at the ground. They are often so dense that it is hard to see in and cut lower limbs near the ground. I usually pick a spot that looks easy and start cutting. I often end up cutting the same limbs several times as I work my way in.

Another thing to watch out for is wasps, hornets, and wild honey bees. My dad was cutting a limb off a cedar tree with a chain saw and there was a wasp nest he didn't see on that limb. They stung him 3 times on the head and that was when he found out he had a new allergy he'd never suffered from before.

If I had my choice I would have a Husky pole saw but I believe I got my money's worth out of this one.

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