BRUSH CUTTING TECHNIQUES
»Having the right equipment is the first step in mastering techniques that will unleash the clearing heads full capacity to cut underbrush.
• HARD HAT WITH EAR PROTECTION TO 28Db
• FULL COVERAGE WIRE SCREEN FACE SHIELD
• FULL LENGTH WRAPS AROUND PROTECTIVE CHAPS 3 PLY
• COMFORTABLE ADJUSTABLE HEAVY DUTY QUICK RELEASE HARNESS
• SAFETY GLASSES, MEDIUM WEIGHT GLOVES
The above safety equipment will put the operator in a safe world of his own to aggressively cut brush.
» Adjust the harness and handlebars so that the cutting head is balanced in front of the operator just able to strike the ground flat (from front to rear direction). The cutting head should be swiveled and tightened in position so that there is a slight angle toward the ground. This starting posture of both operator and saw will allow easy motion changes to enable cutting flat on the ground as well as cutting notches and mulching. This basic start up adjustment can then later be altered for each person’s best cutting posture.
» The most difficult part to master is that of not having to swing hard or tighten up because of kickback. Relax, hold the handles loosely (helps with anti vibration) and trigger the saw just bumping the stem for each cut to be made. When cutting grasses and other less woody material swing the saw evenly with less trigger action (higher RPM required). The clearing head will cut this type of material in both directions so get a good feel for the cutting as well as hearing the saw work. Cutting the material in front of the operator is the least strenuous part of the process. Getting the cut material out of the way sometimes is most of the work.
» Hearing protection of 28dB is recommended so that outside noise is eliminated making it possible to hear and feel the cutting process rather than actually seeing the blades cut. In many cases in thick brush it is possible to put the cutting head out of sight of the operator. This technique is not putting the operator or cutting head at risk because of the anti kick-back characteristic of the cutting head. There is also no concern of dulling the cutting blades. Using this method of cutting confirms the concept of getting the blade to the work and letting the tool do all the work not the operator.
» The cutting of larger woody stems 1” and greater requires some of the same techniques as using a chain saw. If the purpose is to cut the 2” stem at ground level it is sometimes best to cut the stem, get it out of the way and then carve the stump by starting lower in the ground angling the saw slightly and using the top of the cutting blade to carve across the stump in one direction left to right. This carving action also works well cutting larger woody stems actually carving a notch, and making it bigger until the tree falls. You can also create a notch like this to fall a small tree in a direction as with a chain saw.
» Mulching material that has already been cut depends on the job at hand. Sometimes it is necessary to mulch just to walk forward. The process is simply done just by angling the cutting blades and dragging them over the ground until the desired effect is accomplished. Sometimes a chopping motion works well remembering that violent swinging is not required. Ground mulching is one of the big advantages of the clearing head, and it does not damage or hurt the blades to hit the ground.
» When cutting trails through dense undergrowth it is sometimes necessary to cut woody stems flush to the ground and mulch the material in place to form a walking or driving (minimum tire damage) trail. This is an effective method to go in one direction for long distances.
» Cutting around rocks and other hard materials is easily done without fear of dulling the blades. They merely wear out more rapidly but still keep on cutting.
» With care and practice the operator can cut woody stems with either forward and backward motion or bumping action. This ability allows for greater maneuverability in close situations such as backing into trees and felling larger stems.
» As with all tools there is a learning curve during break in that just takes practice. Developing the confidence in the tools ability to do what is being asked of it without violent reactions or consequences later on is a big step in mastering the clearing head. Work consistently and methodically keeping in mind just what you are accomplishing and how difficult this task would be with any other tool.
» The blades are made of a material that is designed to wear down as they do there work. The need to change blades will become evident to the operator because of the feel of the cutting action and the requirement for higher engine RPM to do the same cutting as new blades. When this becomes evident and cutting takes more effort it is time to change blades. * The blades are not intended to be sharpened however they can be. It is better to just replace the blades (all three) when worn for the following reasons.
▪ As the blades wear the length becomes shorter thus reducing surface ft/min of the cutting edge.
▪ Hitting rocks sometimes has the effect of sharpening or rolling an edge, this is an advantage until the blade becomes so worn it just needs to be replaced.
▪Replace the blades if there is excessive wear of the hole in the blade (real sloppy or irregular movement of the blade on the pin). *
▪There is no set time as to how long a set of blades may last but a regular visual check and the feel will tell the operator when he is loosing efficiency, then it’s time to change the blades.
» There is nothing to do except cut as long as there is fuel to run the saw. When the operator stops nothing more than a visual check of the equipment is required. This is the time to refuel and rest for the next work period usually 45 - 60 minutes.
» Unlike other clearing saw blades there are no recommended restrictions as far as the type of material that the clearing head will cut effectively. That means the operator can cut grasses, small woody stems or large woody stems at ground level with normal wear of the blades.
Used blades can be extremely sharp. Always wear Gloves.
THE CLEARING HEAD
P O BOX 1720
EL CAJON CA 92022-1720
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