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Tree Care, Irrigation, Landscaping, Hardscapes
Discuss issues dealing with landscapes, hardscapes, exterior landscape lighting and lighting fixtures, lawn irrigation, sprinklers, sprinkler heads, mulch, retaining walls, etc.

Tree Climbing


Tree Care, Irrigation, Landscaping, Hardscapes

Discuss issues dealing with landscapes, hardscapes, exterior landscape lighting and lighting fixtures, lawn irrigation, sprinklers, sprinkler heads, mulch, retaining walls, etc.
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  #1  
Old 09-25-2010, 06:53 PM
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Default Tree Climbing

One of the many services we offer is tree climbing, there is amazing money in this work, anywhere from $150 to $750 a tree and for the most part is pretty easy work. Plus we charge $75 an hour to chip, I have yet to have anyone question these prices.

I along with one staff are certified climbers, I personally do not do a lot of it as I broke my ankle three years ago when staging let go on a roof I was putting on however we are doing an extensive landscape project on this site and some trees that were very close to the house had to come down, these are massive oak trees.

As usual people on the street love to watch, I had planned to get this site done for the staff and move on to another site I am excavating but.....I started at 8 this morning and got home at 8:15 this evening, basically going door to door as people were coming and asking that their place be done, I picked up 7 pressure washing jobs from people I did work for, three small excavation jobs which was great.

We set the chipper up at the bottom of the tree and I just drop branches to staff, this is one of my hardest workers in the image, Frank, engineering student at the local university that works for me on weekends and you would be hard pressed to fins a harder worker. His dad is a farmer so he can run just about everything I have.

Was hoping to get tomorrow off but I had 9 more calls today which I haven't even listened to.....wish we had a year round season at times as I really love the variety of things we do.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Treeclimb1.jpg (139.2 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg treeclimb2.jpg (118.0 KB, 18 views)
File Type: jpg Frankchiper.jpg (139.5 KB, 22 views)
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  #2  
Old 09-25-2010, 10:05 PM
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What would you think about a 55-60" dbh 120' short leaf pine.

its a maximum of 6" from the chimeny, making it very well tight working space for limbing/roping not to mention its on the back side of the house, it cannot be moved by hand because of the treemendous weight of all of it!

However, i can fell it with 80% certainty, minus 20% accounting for "Acts of god". I mean this tree is so heavy that if a good strong wind up there wanted to blow it backwards, the wind can do almost whatever it wants to do.. I would ofc have it blocked to a track machine. Wedges nothing i cant handle as well.

So anyways, im thinking about it and i asked my buddy, he was like thats a 3500.00 tree! I said, lol.. i know man.

But like i said i looked at it and quote it at 1200$.

Keep in mind when i talk about this tree, it is one of the largest of our region, not just a normal persons, this is a large tree.. still 36" 75 feet up.

What would be your charge to fell a 60" tree thats leaning over somones house? Keep in mind this tree is 120 feet tall and although leaning over the house, the majority of the weight is curving back into the lowgrounds/Backyard. The whole top is in the backyard above all the other trees! The home owner just wants it fell, and the top or spar/pole whichever lands there, cleaned off of the 30foot trail/road.

If it gets blown over by a storm, even if it doesn't land on the house, the roots system coming out from under that foundation will destroy it, if the tree fell on the house it would crush the foundation as well i bet this tree is every bit of 8 Tons.

Just wondering if you had any imput on the situation. I will do my best to get some good pictures!

Its hard to get pic of the backyard cause of all the forrest but i will try to get some side pics and let you see the real scenario.

But most of that doesnt matter i feel, its a dangerous tree and its teh biggest of the bigs.. If it takes a Thousand dollar saw to cut it down, and i have 2 other thousand dollar saws on backup in case one goes down during felling operations. 300 bucks worth of rope and rigging tackle used, in jeapordy of being torn apart under once in a lifetime situations but can happen.. Renting a loader for 150 with operator. Groundy 20 bucks an hour, 160 max. Ill set the rigging lines and fell it, maybe have the groundy fell it while i direct the loader.

Should i have charged more than 1200 ?!?
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  #3  
Old 09-26-2010, 04:10 AM
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In 30 plus years of cutting I have never cut anything that large, I am not even sure we have trees that big around here, personally based on what you wrote I would probably pass, risk is just too high. And I wouldn't have a bar big enough for a tree that size.

It sounds like a job for a crane, I can rent a crane (20 ton) 200 foot reach, for $150 an hour plus $200. travel but it's the security. Have him hook on the tops and cut 8 to 10 feet a a time, he should only be there about three to four hours tops. then cut it up once it's on the ground.

As for your quote, pretty cheap considering everything that can go wrong and as we know things do go wrong.

On the climbing side 95% goes where it should, falling trees is about the same, the issue however is a tree can look healthy and we can cut our wedges perfect only to discover when it's to late there is centre rot, mainly hardwoods, when that happens, good lord knows where that tree may go.

I almost always have an excavator on site and use it even if i am sure, this way there are no issues.
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Old 09-26-2010, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
As usual people on the street love to watch, I had planned to get this site done for the staff and move on to another site I am excavating but.....I started at 8 this morning and got home at 8:15 this evening, basically going door to door as people were coming and asking that their place be done, I picked up 7 pressure washing jobs from people I did work for, three small excavation jobs which was great.
Andy, what kinds of things do you suggest a lawn care business owner do when they are working on such jobs to set the stage and welcome people to talk with you?
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Old 09-26-2010, 05:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by picframer View Post
In 30 plus years of cutting I have never cut anything that large, I am not even sure we have trees that big around here, personally based on what you wrote I would probably pass, risk is just too high. And I wouldn't have a bar big enough for a tree that size.

It sounds like a job for a crane, I can rent a crane (20 ton) 200 foot reach, for $150 an hour plus $200. travel but it's the security. Have him hook on the tops and cut 8 to 10 feet a a time, he should only be there about three to four hours tops. then cut it up once it's on the ground.

As for your quote, pretty cheap considering everything that can go wrong and as we know things do go wrong.

On the climbing side 95% goes where it should, falling trees is about the same, the issue however is a tree can look healthy and we can cut our wedges perfect only to discover when it's to late there is centre rot, mainly hardwoods, when that happens, good lord knows where that tree may go.

I almost always have an excavator on site and use it even if i am sure, this way there are no issues.
Yea, the only way to crane this one will be with a 90 Ton. as its almost 200 feet to a secure setup area. This home is on a down slope the tree is in the backside/bottom side, and by the time i stretch out a 200' 20-30 ton crane i wont be able to hold any weight. So 90 Ton it is, i quoted 3250.00 with that option, but the man wants it cheap as possible. (Don't they all!) haha.

If you would pass it up, i feel i should have gotten 1500.00 Which was my first quote with a smaller 32" 50 foot leaner in the front yard over his drive.

He will call me back after he pulls the permits, and let me know if he wants the leaner out as well. It would be smart for him to get both for 1500, 300 for the leaner, instead of 500 on another trip with my equipment.

But thats the cost of doing business and thanks for the input.
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Old 09-26-2010, 06:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve View Post
Andy, what kinds of things do you suggest a lawn care business owner do when they are working on such jobs to set the stage and welcome people to talk with you?
Average lawn care could never take on jobs like this without the proper training.

It's like a lot of posts here and elsewhere, how can I make the bucks, well you can but you have to find the niche and make sure you are trailed, if you are the money will flow.

You can't simply buy a cheap mower, trimmer, blower and wonder why the cash and clients are not flowing in, it simply doesn't work that way and if it did, everyone would be making a lot of money.

To me it's simple, work outside the box, perfect things others are not doing well and you have it made.
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Old 09-26-2010, 06:13 PM
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Yea, the only way to crane this one will be with a 90 Ton. as its almost 200 feet to a secure setup area. This home is on a down slope the tree is in the backside/bottom side, and by the time i stretch out a 200' 20-30 ton crane i wont be able to hold any weight. So 90 Ton it is, i quoted 3250.00 with that option, but the man wants it cheap as possible. (Don't they all!) haha.

If you would pass it up, i feel i should have gotten 1500.00 Which was my first quote with a smaller 32" 50 foot leaner in the front yard over his drive.

He will call me back after he pulls the permits, and let me know if he wants the leaner out as well. It would be smart for him to get both for 1500, 300 for the leaner, instead of 500 on another trip with my equipment.

But thats the cost of doing business and thanks for the input.
Although I haven't seen it' I have been doing this as a profession and hobby for over 30 years with no issues, based on what you have stated I would walk, perhaps run.

And to be honest there are some jobs I do walk from, the risk is simply too high and I am a risk taker to a point.
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Old 10-10-2010, 05:10 AM
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Andy, what kinds of things do you suggest a lawn care business owner do when they are working on such jobs to set the stage and welcome people to talk with you?
Park a well lettered vehicle, OMG yesterday was nuts.

Two weeks ago I get a call from a prospect to take out 6 major maple trees along their driveway, I looked and thought to myself this is going to be the job from ..... the trees were in the hydro wires, all leaning towards the street and massive in size, we had to fall every one in the opposite natural direction.

I gave a quote and thought there is no way on earth they will accept, I needed out 5 ton excavator and an operator, climber, chipper, splitter and tractor, they wanted the wood split so that meant another person, they called me later in the day and said we want to hire you.

Before, during and after pictures were taken however I became over zealous when transferring from the blackberry to the laptop and lost them all, of all the projects this would have been the one to really post pictures.

People driving by could not believe we were landing limbs at the base from climbing and falling every tree within inches of where they needed to go, I had staff chipping, blocking, splitting, directing trees with the excavator .....6 of us on site.

We picked up 5 more jobs from this one alone and those of us that climb charge big bucks get it as very few are certified and insured to do it, lots of bug companies around here will do it but their rates are over the top. In short you will make $350 to $500 an hour climbing.

We gave out close to 30 post cards and I see one email this morning from a person who said they stopped while driving by.

It is very rare for us a client will accept all the services we did, especially splitting and stacking, but we are a one stop shop, whatever you need we have the gear to do it, and when you have a setup like we did on such a busy road, everyone seems to want to stop and watch, especially when you are 60+ feet in the air on a tree, I saw a police car stop and watch for a bit also, it was an amazing project and the client was very, very happy.
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Old 10-10-2010, 06:20 AM
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It must have been something for people to watch! Makes you wonder if you should bring some folding chairs with you and a sign that says 'take a seat and watch us take this tree down.' I bet people would sit down and hang out for a bit watching it all.
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Old 10-10-2010, 06:28 AM
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It must have been something for people to watch! Makes you wonder if you should bring some folding chairs with you and a sign that says 'take a seat and watch us take this tree down.' I bet people would sit down and hang out for a bit watching it all.
Excellent idea, I think we should film this and then put the footage on the website, take a very difficult site and show the end results.....I have one next week in the city which we try to avoid due to parking our gear.
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