Removing my 6'7" coastal redwood yard tree

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nate0918

New Member
Sep 24, 2021
49
Keizer, Oregon
I am having a coastal redwood tree cut down in my back yard. It's small for a redwood, but huge for a tree at 6'7" diameter measured at 4' up from the base. The only access to get at the tree is through an alley on the edge of my property that is about 10' or so wide max, I'll need to double check this. The neighbor's hedge row is right up to the fence line with a building on the other side of the alley. What methods could I anticipate having 20' log sections removed if a mill wanted to buy the logs?
 

kennyp2339

Minister of Fire
Feb 16, 2014
6,840
07462
crane
 

Simonkenton

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
2,298
Marshall NC
Most mills don't want a tree that grew in a yard. Too big of a chance that nails were driven in for a clothes line, or for a tree house. There could be nails 12 inches deep inside the tree.
 
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DonTee

Minister of Fire
Dec 1, 2021
694
Upstate NY
Some portable mill guys don’t mind yard trees, but I don’t think a portable mill can handle a tree that big.
 

nate0918

New Member
Sep 24, 2021
49
Keizer, Oregon
I have heard that about yard trees, from the metal in the tree aspect as well as too many limbs. I actually spoke with a few mills so far. I have a couple people interested in the tree. Sounds like winching the logs up the alley is an option. I assume they would use some kind of a wheeled sled? There is no way a crane could get close enough to get them out unless my neighbor would be ok with them driving the crane on their driveway. I doubt that.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,876
Northern NH
The approach with the neighbor is that at some point the tree is going to come down or at least launch a few branches. When they do come down they are going to do damage regardless of property lines. Sure insurance may cover the damage but not the hassle. If the weather is dry most driveways can take crane loading and the crane operator will ahve wooden pads for spreading the outrigger loads out.
 

ClintonH

Burning Hunk
Jan 4, 2014
153
NW OH
When I work with my uncle and his crane, he can reach 110' from the center pivot, with the jib out. Not sure of load table at that distance, but WOW, they reach more than you think sometime. Load it up and roll down the road--beautiful machine to see in action.
 

Corey

Minister of Fire
Nov 19, 2005
2,775
Midwest
Saw the title... 6'7" tree... and was going to come in and say "Wait till next christmas, then whack it off with a pair of pruning shears or a handsaw." .... then you had to throw out 'diameter'! Sounds like a monster. Good luck with it!!
 
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mar13

Feeling the Heat
Nov 5, 2018
497
California redwood coast
They use cranes around here if close to the house and hard to access. Very expensive. They will take the wood to a mill, if possible, and discount the total price some for being able to sell the lumber.

In Oregon, I suppose it'd have to be some craft mill as the larger commercial places are set for different Lumber. Probably the same down here in despite redwood being a common lumber wood in t hese parts.
 

nate0918

New Member
Sep 24, 2021
49
Keizer, Oregon
As an update, the tree is down. The tree service dropped the first few chunks in 10 to 15' lengths and dropped the last 45' in one big piece. Wow, the thud from that must have registered on a richter scale from miles away. Anyway, I couldnt find a mill that would commit. Several people were interested but there just wasn't enough value when factoring in the cost to haul it off. I had one person that would haul it away for free but that was it. My plan was to sell it, not expecting a huge chunk of money but moreso that it would have a better purpose than being firewood. But rather than just give it away, my uncle and I are probably going to cut it up and have some large slabs made just for fun.
 

mar13

Feeling the Heat
Nov 5, 2018
497
California redwood coast
As an update, the tree is down. The tree service dropped the first few chunks in 10 to 15' lengths and dropped the last 45' in one big piece. Wow, the thud from that must have registered on a richter scale from miles away. Anyway, I couldnt find a mill that would commit. Several people were interested but there just wasn't enough value when factoring in the cost to haul it off. I had one person that would haul it away for free but that was it. My plan was to sell it, not expecting a huge chunk of money but moreso that it would have a better purpose than being firewood. But rather than just give it away, my uncle and I are probably going to cut it up and have some large slabs made just for fun.
Chainsaw sculptures!
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,876
Northern NH
I wonder if there are any portable sawmills in your area that could handle that tree?. Plenty of them around me in NH but they usually can only handle 30"
 

lowroadacres

Minister of Fire
Aug 18, 2009
544
MB
Am I the only one that would like to see photos of this tree and the project?
 

Simonkenton

Minister of Fire
Feb 27, 2014
2,298
Marshall NC
It makes good furniture. You could cut some slabs, 2 feet wide, 5 feet long, and 2 inches thick. Furniture guys would pay for the wood, could make some nice tables. You want to cut the five foot with the grain.
 

nate0918

New Member
Sep 24, 2021
49
Keizer, Oregon
Alright, ask and thou shalt receive. Pics before work began...

20210818_160152.jpg 20210818_160640.jpg 20210818_160705.jpg
 

nate0918

New Member
Sep 24, 2021
49
Keizer, Oregon
FYI, the guys in the pics are from the tree service, I take no credit for the work. I checked with portable mills and they can't take that diameter. I will likely cut it lengthwise with my chainsaw and wedge it to finish splitting it. At that point the mills could take it. I was definitely thinking of slabs for tables, bench seats, and possibly decking or fencing planks.
 
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peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
7,876
Northern NH
Great photos. I love the one of the guy standing on the stem way up in the air.

If you are going to be keeping the wood, I woudl suggest getting some AnchorSeal and coating the end cuts. It reduces splits on the ends.
 
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NickW

Minister of Fire
Oct 16, 2019
891
SE WI
What a beautiful tree, too bad it had to go. Definitely an absolute must to do something with some of the wood besides firewood (this coming from the guy who has oak timbers and black walnut & cherry slabs laying around that are probably 10 years old...🤣🤣🤣).
 

DonTee

Minister of Fire
Dec 1, 2021
694
Upstate NY
Wow that’s an impressive tree. Maybe I missed where you said it before, but why did it have to come down?
 

EbS-P

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2019
4,033
SE North Carolina
As a back yard chainsaw miller I can say the size of that tree is going to make things difficult. I have a Chinese 660 saw pulling a 52” bar and can make 43” wide cuts. Cost of everything was about 900$. Anything bigger you are looking at double the cost at least. I forget the name of the mill that you can set up around the log. It can do 6’ cuts but it really expensive. Maybe you could find someone with one.

There are people that freehand mill but i can’t do it. Maybe you could split it with wedges cut it as deep as you can with chainsaw then start hammering away. Might take a long time. And slap a won’t be flat but you theoretically could break it down to workable sized pieces that could go through a single headed chainsaw mill.

947B8DB1-4FF9-4479-A39F-8F49E8F38DC6.jpeg
 

NickW

Minister of Fire
Oct 16, 2019
891
SE WI
Do you have an estimated height on what that was? By the photos I was guessing 150' or so, but it can be really hard to judge by a photo and no real depth perception...
 

lowroadacres

Minister of Fire
Aug 18, 2009
544
MB
Thank-you for sharing what was an incredible tree and a challenging removal. While I way too far away to rescue the logs If I was anywhere near I would be all over that.