When you’re looking for used machinery for sale, hitting forestry equipment auctions is a great way to save some capital for your business. But if you’ve only focused on one area of logging or are just getting started in the business, these auctions can have a wide range of used equipment available that you may not be familiar with. Here’s our guide to typical varieties of machinery found at a forestry equipment auction.
Types of machinery found at forestry equipment auctions
A forwarder moves small and short logs from the cutting area to a roadside landing for removal from the area. Unlike a skidder, it carries the logs completely off the ground, reducing soil and turf impact, but this reduces the size of logs it can carry out.
A harvester is used to cut smaller trees and shorter logs, and is capable of felling trees in a particular direction, delimbs them and cuts them to length. It’s often used with a forwarder to move the logs it cuts out of the harvesting area. These machines are commonly used for thinning and can work on moderately steep slopes, making them ideal for hilly or mountainous areas.
A feller-buncher cuts larger trees and can fell them in a specific direction, helping promote harvest site safety. They’re also able to work on moderately steep slopes, and is used to place trees into bunches, hence the name.
Though harvesters do well to delimb smaller trees, larger logs require a separate machine, often used in partnership with a feller-buncher to remove the remaining limbs on the log to provide easier handling to the roadside landing for shipment.
Used to clear underbrush for habitat improvement, planting preparation or fire hazard reduction, a mulcher/masticator is a smaller machine that is either tracked or wheeled and has front or boom-mounted equipment. It grinds underbrush and then sends it through a mulcher to further break down the waste wood from the clearing process.
To help clear space at roadside landings, a brush cutter is used. Typically boom mounted on a tractor, a brush cutter has a grinding head that is used to clear brush and cut small trees at the side of the road, including trimming back small limbs from larger trees to provide better vertical clearance at the landing area.
A skidder or skid steer is used for moving larger logs to a roadside landing by grabbing the log with grapples or choker chains, lifting the front off the ground while dragging the remaining length of the log across the ground. Though they can be used to move larger logs, they also cause a much larger impact on the soil and turf in the understory. Though most are wheeled, some tracked versions are available to provide better traction in difficult areas.
Resembling a crane, shovels are used for moving brush around a harvest site and loading trucks with logs at a roadside landing. They’re typically a mobile machine purpose-built for each forestry location.
Now that you have a better idea of what to expect, it’s time to check out some forestry equipment auctions. For the best possible selection, especially with specialty equipment, many business owners find online auctions to have a great variety that they can check into at their own convenience.