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Small Farmer's Journal
PO Box 1627
Sisters, Oregon 97759
800-876-2893
541-549-2064
agrarian@smallfarmersjournal.com
Mon - Thu, 8am - 4pm PDT

Log Arch

Log Arch

Log Arch

by Ken Gies of Fort Plain, NY

Here is my version of a small logging arch that is light enough for a team of minis or a Haflinger pony. Its major feature is the use of a ready made removable strap winch of the kind used on flatbed semi trailers. It also is easily converted from the pole to shafts with a few bolts.

Log Arch

The arch was built on a small trailer axle that I cut down to 3 feet wide and tacked back together. This was done so that I could keep the wheels parallel. I cut the middle out after construction was complete. I used heavy wall pipe from my scrounge pile for the various frame parts. It is topped off with an angle iron bar for added strength and to provide a mount for the winch and some slots for extra chains. I added deflector bars in front of the wheels after snagging on some 3 inch brush.

Log Arch

The winch is made by bolting the tail of the skidding chain into the strap slot in the winder tube. I welded two bolts onto the ratchet side of the winch to mount a spring that would hold the ratchet in the cogs. It is set so that the spring over-centers either in the locked in or locked out position. I could not justify the cost of “real” logging slip hooks so I used one off of a broken come along and welded a nut across the opening so it looks and works just like the real thing. The winch handle is a 12 inch long 1?2 inch pipe nipple with the cut off halves of a coupler screwed on the ends as keepers.

Log Arch

There is an excellent book, The Horse in the Forest, by Hans Sidback from Sweden. I stole heavily from a diagram on page 82. When the shafts are used, the tug chains are connected to the frame via clevises. There is play purposely built into the shaft mounts that allows the frame to flex and act like a single tree to accommodate the horse’s shoulder movement.

Log Arch

One horse shafts laid beside the logging arch.

The upper frame is tilted forward to compensate for the high hitchpoint. This is to stop the tongue from lifting under a hard pull. Note the placement of the clevises for the single horse hitch. These also are set to balance the load so the shafts don’t lift. Follow- ing that logic I used a short tail chain for the double tree when the pole is attached. That was done so that I could set the double tree either over or under the cross bar based on how the tongue behaved under load. It it lifted I could put the double tree over top of the bar to add a little downward pressure. If it didn’t lift I wanted to be able to lighten the tongue with a slight pull from below. So far, I can use it underneath.

The largest log I have skidded with this rig is a 9 inch, green, black locust butt, 20 feet long. The minis (or a Haflinger) have to work at it a bit. The turning ability is seen in the last photo. It tips over when a log binds in a tight turn. That is its biggest limitation so far. As always, my ideas are made to be tweaked.

Log Arch

Turning angle.

Spotlight On: Book Reviews

Horsedrawn Plows and Plowing

Setting Up A Walking Plow

Here is a peek into the pages of Horsedrawn Plows and Plowing, written by SFJ editor and publisher Lynn R. Miller.

Barbed Wire History and Varieties

Book Excerpt: The invention of barb wire was the most important event in the solution of the fence problem. The question of providing fencing material had become serious, even in the timbered portions of the country, while the great prairie region was almost wholly without resource, save the slow and expensive process of hedging. At this juncture came barb wire, which was at once seen to make a cheap, effective, and durable fence, rapidly built and easily moved.

Basic Blacksmithing Techniques

Illustrated guide to basic blacksmithing techniques, an excerpt from Blacksmithing: Basics For The Homestead.

Posts

Driving Fence Posts By Hand

Where the soil is soft, loose, and free from stone, posts may be driven more easily and firmly than if set in holes dug for the purpose.

An Introduction To Grasslands Farming

From Dusty Shelves: A World War II era article on grassland farming.

How To Dry Up A Doe Goat

How To Dry Up A Doe Goat

You are probably thinking why would I want to dry up a doe? If the plan is to rebreed the doe, then she will need time to rebuild her stamina. Milk production takes energy. Kid production takes energy, too. If the plan is to have a fresh goat in March, then toward the end of October start to dry her up. The first thing to do is cut back on her grain. Grain fuels milk production.

Starting Your Farm

Starting Your Farm: Chapter 5

You might think that your new farm is fenced all wrong, or that a certain tree is in the wrong place, or that a wet area would be better drained, or that this gully would make a good pond site, or that a depression in the road should be filled, or that the old sheds should all come down right away. Well maybe you’re right on all counts. But maybe, you’re wrong.

Timing the Bounce

Timing the Bounce: Resilient Agriculture Meets Climate Change

by:
from issue:

In her new book, Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems for a Changing Climate, Laura Lengnick assumes a dispassionate, businesslike tone and sets about exploring the farming strategies of twenty-seven award-winning farmers in six regions of the continental United States. Her approach gets well past denial and business-as-usual, to see what can be done, which strategies are being tried, and how well they are working.

Apples of North America

Freedom has been called the ugly duckling of disease-resistant apple varieties. But that shouldn’t detract from its many merits. These include the freedom from apple-scab infection for which it was named, a high rate of productivity, and an ability to serve as a good pollinator for its more attractive sibling, Liberty.

Wheel Hoe

The Wheel Hoe: A Tool For Shallow Tillage

When we bought this little farm I soon realized I needed a wheel hoe. The size of the horse and tractor dictated space wasting wide rows in crop production and, to some degree, so does my two wheeled tractor.

Training Workhorses Training Teamsters First Time Hitching

First Time Hitching

More from Lynn R. Miller’s highly anticipated Second Edition of “Training Workhorses / Training Teamsters.” Today’s excerpt, “First Time Hitching,” is from Chapter 12, “Follow Through to Finish.”

Build Your Own Earth Oven

An Introduction To Cob

Mixed with sand, water, and straw, a clayey-subsoil will dry into a very hard and durable material; indeed, it was the first, natural “concrete”. In the Americas, we call it “adobe”, which is originally from the Arabic “al-toba”, meaning “the brick.” Invading Moors brought the word to Spain from North Africa, where an ancient mud building tradition continues today.

Art of Working Horses

Lynn Miller’s New Book: Art of Working Horses

Art of Working Horses, by Lynn R. Miller, follows on the heels of his other eight Work Horse Library titles. This book tells the inside story of how people today find success working horses and mules in harness, whether it be on farm fields, in the woods, or on the road. Over 500 photos and illustrations accompany an anecdote-rich text which makes a case for the future of true horsepower.

Plowing with the Single Horse

Plowing with the Single Horse

All other aspects being equal, the primary difference in plowing, comfortably, with a single horse is that the animal walks on unplowed ground immediately adjacent to the previous furrow, rather than in the furrow. This will cause the point of draft at the shoulder to be somewhat higher and will dictate hitching longer and/or higher than with the animal walking down 5 to 8 inches lower in the furrow.

Haltering Foals - Training Workhorses Training Teamsters

Haltering Foals

Lynn Miller’s highly regarded book, “Training Workhorses / Training Teamsters,” is back in print! And that’s not even the most exciting news: The Second Edition is in FULL COLOR! Today’s article, “Haltering Foals,” is an excerpt from Chapter 8, “Imprinting and Training New Born Foals.”

Art of Working Horses Another Review

Art of Working Horses – Another Review

by:
from issue:

One could loosely say this is a “how-to” book but it is more of an “existential” how-to: how to get yourself into a way of thinking about the world of working horses. Maybe we need to explain what a working horse is. A working horse is one, in harness, given to a specific task. So, in that context, the book illustrates the many ways Miller has worked with his equine partners over the years – helping them understand what he wants them to do, as both work together to create relationships that help achieve desired goals.

Starting Your Farm

Starting Your Farm: Chapter 3

What goes with the sale? What does not? Do not assume the irrigation pipe and portable hen houses are selling. Find out if they go with the deal, and in writing.

Small Farmer's Journal

Small Farmer's Journal
PO Box 1627
Sisters, Oregon 97759
800-876-2893
541-549-2064
agrarian@smallfarmersjournal.com
Mon - Thu, 8am - 4pm PDT