A combined loading system integrated with portable winch and polyethylene chutes for loading of timber products

Acar H. H.

JOURNAL OF THE FACULTY OF FORESTRY-ISTANBUL UNIVERSITY, vol.66, no.1, pp.329-339, 2016 (ESCI) identifier


Truck loading operation is an important task during timber production operations in forestry. In Turkey, approximately 50 million timber/logs have been produced per year, and then they have been loaded into the logging trucks. The timber/logs have been transported over the forest roads with an average of one million roundtrips. However, the traditional loading methods using manpower are mostly performed while some proportion is done by using loading machines which can be very costly and risky jobs. This study aimed to develop a combined loading system in which heavy logs are loaded into logging trucks by pulling them by a log-line powered by a portable winch within the chute system. The slope of the log-line from ground to logging truck varied between 1% and 25%. Within in the each work cycle of loading operation, only one log was loaded by pulling with portable winch. The average loading time was found as 161.8 seconds per cycle, in which 67% of the time was spent on pulling the log into the logging truck. The results indicated that the average pulling speed with winch power was 840.4 m/hr and productivity was calculated as 4.94 m(3)/hr. The result on system speed and productivity indicated close relations with results from previous studies. The hydraulic grapple loader or cranes are widely used and common loading machines but they cannot be efficiently used in forestry operations, especially ones having low timber productivity rate or having low economic value timber. In these conditions, loading methods that are cost efficient and do not require higher production rate should be employed. Therefore, a combined loading system introduced in this study can be a feasible solution for loading operations in those cases. Furthermore, it is believed that this loading system integrated with portable winch can be cost efficient and time saving solution, as well as ergonomic and safe method in the field.