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Synthetic rope applications in Appalachian loggingAuthor(s): Ben D. Spong; Jingxin Wang
Source: In: Jacobs, Douglass F.; Michler, Charles H., eds. 2008. Proceedings, 16th Central Hardwood Forest Conference; 2008 April 8-9; West Lafayette, IN. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-24. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 166-170.
Publication Series: Other
Station: Northern Research Station
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DescriptionNew ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene rope has shown good results as a replacement for wire rope in logging applications in the western United States. A single case study trial was performed in Appalachian forest conditions to assess the appropriateness of this technology for hardwood logging applications. The study focused on use of the rope in West Virginia and included a review of the legal status for using synthetic rope in logging and informal interviews with loggers and forest managers to understand which applications might be appropriate and what specifications are required for length, strength, and other characteristics. A 125-foot length of 5/8-inch synthetic rope was purchased and installed on a bulldozer for this case study. The synthetic rope has a premium price almost double that of wire rope. Such potential benefits as improved worker conditions, greater productivity, and decreased negative environmental impacts may lead to wide adoption and eventually lower prices. Trials were observed in a logging operation and road-clearing operation in which the rope performed well and loggers were impressed by the strength, ease of splicing, light weight, and flexibility of the rope.
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CitationSpong, Ben D.; Wang, Jingxin. 2008. Synthetic rope applications in Appalachian logging. In: Jacobs, Douglass F.; Michler, Charles H., eds. 2008. Proceedings, 16th Central Hardwood Forest Conference; 2008 April 8-9; West Lafayette, IN. Gen. Tech. Rep. NRS-P-24. Newtown Square, PA: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Northern Research Station: 166-170.
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