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Forest clearing
  • @Mattbb wrote:

    My name is Matt, I am from Quebec, Canada.
    I just joined a few days ago and my rights on the forum are limited.
    A friend (eng.) referred me to your forum because I was talking about a project of Permaculture and Aquaponics with a small group.

    I was talking with one of the ppl in my group about some unoccupied territories in our province. The perfect area to install a new colony.
    His main objection was the time and hard work involved into forest clearing. Our province is covered with trees, especially in those remote areas.

    That is where an eng. friend referred me to your project for opensource machinery. 
    You guys tough about almost everything, except forest clearing. To clear forest and prep the land for agriculture, you require heavy machinery.
    Even with a Tractor and a Backhoe, removing each tree is very time consuming so I researched some more and I found an invention that make the task ridiculously easy.

    I want to post in the "Proposal and Development Status" section the following video:

    In this video, you can see a really simple but ingenious backhoe scoop that does the heavy work by pushing the tree from below instead of just pulling it out with brute force with a powerful and expensive heavy duty backhoe.
    I am sure some of you can figure out easily how to make an open source version of that machine from the video.

    I truly believe this piece of machinery is essential to your machinery list.
  • 4 Comments sorted by
  • One way to look at this is that if it were too easy to remove trees you might take more than you really need.

    For those obviously evil trees that deserve to be destroyed, a dozer driver I know puts his blade up nearly as high as it will go and either drives forward and or lowers the blade against the tree and they pretty much fall over. The root ball tends to roll out so the dirt can be smoothed over the hole left behind. Doing this while the ground is moist, but not wet, may help. It's usually a matter of long term planning and knowing which details to sweat.

    A couple of years back I attended a seminar on rain water management and trees were considered pumps. The plan was to grade the landscape and collect roof water, then run the rain into troughs around the trees. The water could be held for years deep underground until the tree pulls it up to make something useful for the tree and humans, such as shade for crops, wind breaks, leaf litter for compost, fruit to eat, and for evil trees, wood to build with or burn.

    Here in California, trees and water are in very short supply, so we tend to take these issues pretty seriously. I was on a jury that awarded close to a million dollars for the mistaken cutting of 60 or 70 oak trees of all sizes ($13,000 each).

    Kirk Wallace
    California, USA
  • Vote Up0Vote Down
    October 2012
    Hi Kirk,
    and thank you for your reply. I understand your point and agree on the importance of trees.

    I have to disagree with your position regarding this equipment.

    No piece of equipment should be discarded because "too effective"
    Let me remind you we are what most wallstreet penguins would call hippies or treehuggers...
    We are not about wiping a forest, We are about modifying an hillside area into a permaculture.
    So with all due respect, the argument about been too dangerous for nature if made too efficient doesn't hold.

    My main point is that OpenSource Ecology is about providing ppl who have little money, a lot of altruism and dream for a better future for our specie with the means to accomplish a better world knowing that the actual system put all odds against us.
    We don't have the kind of money to buy a powerful and expensive bulldozer and repair it hours away from civilization...
    But we sure would be able to assemble some LifeTracks with backhoes and complete them with a highly efficient scoop that fits it like a glove.
    We are talking Cheap, sturdy, flexible and efficient.

    So I believe that innovative Scoop should be part of the arsenal.
  • Vote Up0Vote Down
    October 2012
    You should regard yourself lucky, that you may have access to that many trees. Lumber is a very valuable resource with lots of uses.

    Factor in the forest in your permaculture and sustainability plans and regard it as a resource for building material and energy. Go step by step and clear as little area as possible from the trees. Calculate the size of your planned community and how much lumber and wood you might need for building purposes, and for energy provision. Take into account, that good lumber needs 50 to 100 years to regrow. Calculate how many trees you will need over that time period, and make sure, that the regrowth rate meets the the rate you take wood out of it.

    When you are cutting trees, do it with the mindset of using the trees later, not with just freeing space. This leads to an approach to tree cutting with a more a quality than quantitiy focused mindset.

    You do not need heavy machines for this. You can do it with manual labor, it will only need more time, but it will make what you get so much more valuable to you. You can rely on axes and handsaws, like people did very successfully for thousands of years, but you can of course burn mineral oil, contribute to planet pollution and use chainsaws, if time is pressuring you. When what you are doing is just clearing a hillside, you do need to invest in machinery anyways. A much more cost efficient approach would be to sell the wood and let the purchaser clear the hill for you, taking the wood as payment.
  • Vote Up0Vote Down
    November 2012
    Source Ecology is a network of farmers, engineers, and supporters that
    for the last two years has been creating the Global Village Construction
    Set, an open source, low-cost, high performance technological platform that allows for the easy, DIY fabrication of the 50 different Industrial Machines that it takes to build a sustainable civilization with modern comforts.
    The GVCS lowers the barriers to entry into farming, building, and
    manufacturing and can be seen as a life-size lego-like set of modular
    tools that can create entire economies, whether in rural Missouri, where
    the project was founded, in urban redevelopment, or in the developing

    I hate trolls.
    With all due respect, you are missing the point.
    I do not need preaching from anybody.

    I though my answer was harsh. But after I read your post to one of my partners and his reaction was:
    "Isn't this suppose to be an engineer forum about down to earth stuff?"
    "What is that guys doing there? I hate when that kind of ppl go on their lil bubble and babble about ridiculous sermons irrevelent to the subject of the conversation"

    3.1c. Noun

    A member of an internet forum who continually harangues and harasses
    others. Someone with nothing worthwhile to add to a certain
    conversation, but rather continually threadjacks
    or changes the subject
    , as well as thinks every member of the forum is
    talking about them and only them. Trolls often go by multiple names to
    circumvent getting banned.


    If you have NO TECHNICAL INPUT on the subject plz ignore this post.
    Ok now that we are done wasting time on obvious facts and sermons,
    plz let's go back to a REAL conversation about low-cost and high performance tree stumps removal compatible with the Lifetrack.


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