New Toy - Big Shot Throw Line Thrower

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peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
I have a bunch of trees that I want to take down along a road. The area is sloped and the trees all lean towards the road. After a few unplanned drops into the road I decided I needed to rope these trees so they land away from the road. The woods are dense and getting a extension ladder to get a rope high enough would be major a PITA. I picked up one of these rigs Amazon product
Basically an industrial strength Wrist Rocket on a pole designed to launch a throw bag with a light line up high in a tree over a branch. The throw weight drops down to the ground and then is used to pull a large rope up into the tree. I then put a loop in the end of the big rope over the other end of the big rope and pull it up until it tight. The end down near the ground gets run to tree where I installed a power pull (I am doing this solo). Getting the rope up high in the tree really helps as it requires less overall tension then tying low on tree. I then notch the tree I am cutting, snug up on the rope with the power pull then make a final cut. The trees drop away from the road.

Its not a fast process but beats having a tree drop on the road. Luckily its a rural road so not a lot of traffic.

A few cautions if someone is considering. The one I picked up came off of Amazon Warehouse, it does not have a trigger. It works but the more expensive version with a trigger would be easier to use. The other caution is this is not a toy, its can shoot a throw weight with line attached to it 150 feet in the air. I am dropping trees prior to them leafing out. My guess is with tight canopy and leaves will take several tries. The rig does not come with the throw weight or the throw line.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
7,086
Downeast Maine
Great thread, I use choke chains, how do you get that set up high above reach, even if you can get the cable/rope up there? My cable specifically says not to use itself as a hitch and to always use the hook attached to a choke chain or something else.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
I am not really sure what you are asking. After I have launched the light weight line, I have the end with the throw bag and the other end looped up over the branch both are on the ground unless things got caught up. I then tie a loop on one end and pull the heavy line up over the branch and back down again. I then tie a sliding loop over one end of the heavy rope with the other end. I then pull the end of the rope without the loop and the loop slides up towards the branch until it stops. I picked up Dynema rope at Hamilton Marine, its stronger than steel cable (used for winches) it slides real well. It is PITA to tie knots in it.
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
3,537
SE North Carolina
Great thread, I use choke chains, how do you get that set up high above reach, even if you can get the cable/rope up there? My cable specifically says not to use itself as a hitch and to always use the hook attached to a choke chain or something else.
Just pull up a bull rope then tie it running bowline knot. Wench the rope. I think the rope stretch helps maintain rain direction as it fall further vs a cable that won’t stretch.

I need a decent throw line. My cord just snags the bark and the weight won’t fall. Tip use a stout piece of wire as a break away connector to hook the weight to the line. that way if you get the weight stuck you can pull hard enough to open the wire and get your weight and line back. (Except for that one time it fell down to the next branch and was stuck there until the next hurricane blew it down.).
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
7,086
Downeast Maine
So these winch ropes can be girth hitched to themselves and then pulled? That will ruin a steel cable, and that's all I've ever used.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
I just make a loop with bowline, simpler than girth hitch but doing the same thing. Yes I agree it would not work with steel cable. Trees are quite flexible when roped up high so its not that hard to put enough tension in it.
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
7,086
Downeast Maine
I don't usually have a need for such a device, but I have some trees near the house and would feel better being able to guide them from the top. Thanks for sharing.
 

Montanalocal

Feeling the Heat
Dec 22, 2014
491
Helena MT
I am going to use this self-locking pulley to fell misleaning trees. It locks the rope tension going one way.


I am using it with this battery powered capstan winch.

B0862132XP
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
7,086
Downeast Maine
I am going to use this self-locking pulley to fell misleaning trees. It locks the rope tension going one way.


I am using it with this battery powered capstan winch.

B0862132XP
Do they have any that are rated for more weight?
 

Montanalocal

Feeling the Heat
Dec 22, 2014
491
Helena MT
This company does not. They have a video that explains how to multiply puling power with multiple pulleys.

 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
The trees I want to take down are probably 50 to 70 foot tall hardwoods. Getting a rope around the trunk more than about 20 feet up off the ground is an exercise in frustration. This rig just allows me to get up much higher on the tree and use the natural springiness of trunk to apply load in the right direction. I have done it lower in the past and it requires a lot more tension as the trunk diameter is a lot bigger down low.
 
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ericm979

Burning Hunk
Nov 2, 2018
202
California
I find that throwing a throw weight up into a tree where I want it can be difficult. I have been wanting one of these slingshots for a while after seeing an arborist friend use it to put a rope high in a big tree.

At least on Amazon right now, a Big Shot without trigger and a trigger bought separately costs less than the Big Shot with trigger
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
I got mine for a discount off of Amazon Warehouse and figured I would try it without the trigger. For what I am doing I can live without it, but it would be easier with one.
 

Nealm66

Minister of Fire
Sep 25, 2020
1,366
Western Washington
I have the exact same one and have used it a few times on bigger tres with school marms. Tough to use if it’s a thicker canopy. I also use a 20’ rope with a heavy snap and an ascender to pass through limbs on large trees. I keep my line in a bucket
 

Nealm66

Minister of Fire
Sep 25, 2020
1,366
Western Washington
I prefer cable when pulling trees. Especially if there’s high liability. I use ropes for pulling tops or lighter pulls. I know there rope that has equal strength and a lot lighter and easier to use but I’ve seen things happen and I’ve never had a claim knock on wood
 

firefighterjake

Minister of Fire
Jul 22, 2008
19,593
Unity/Bangor, Maine
I don't usually have a need for such a device, but I have some trees near the house and would feel better being able to guide them from the top. Thanks for sharing.
I don't have a need for such a device . . . but I am thinking of other more nefarious ways I could use this.
 
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peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
My guess with the trigger, it could be deadly with a shoulder rest but the sling pouch could get uncomfortably close to the users head when fired.
 

salecker

Minister of Fire
Aug 22, 2010
1,876
Northern Canada

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,687
Northern NH
The tubing is a workout to pull down. I believe the trigger acts as described, latch on the tubing and then slide the trigger down to lock it in place.
 

firefighterjake

Minister of Fire
Jul 22, 2008
19,593
Unity/Bangor, Maine
Have you played with a potato gun yet?
Never had the opportunity to do so as a kid . . . we did however take sticks, sharpen the end and stick crab apples on the end to wing at each other after getting tired of seeing how high we could throw the apples into the air.