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Almond Orchard Removal

stehansen

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I was going to a bid the other day and I happened by this operation and I had my camera. This goes on quite a bit around here as the almond orchard last 25 years or so and they have to remove the trees and redevelop the property for another orchard or whatever. The chips are hauled to a co-generation plant to generate electricity. As I understand it the operator charges the farmer $250/acre and gets paid for the chips although I don't know how much. Three dollar and fifty cent diesel has to be hitting this guy pretty hard.

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NickfromWI

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Snowless California
Steve, on trees that size, with those machines around, there are no saws in this operation, right? They are just yanking trees out of the ground and pushing them to the chipper?

$250 an acre? I have a feeling those operators are NOT making $20/hr!

love
nick
 

Al Smith

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That's an awfull lot of equipment running for that price. I would hate to just pay the fuel bill for that tub grinder alone.
 

squisher

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That's one way to eliminate competition, by keeping your pricing so low there's no money in it at all.:D
 
J

JamesTX

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If they are replanting the orchard, I wonder why they wouldn't leave the chips there as mulch?
 

sotc

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cause they wouldnt do it for 250 and acre. the price is double for hog fuel what it was 2 years ago. that big truck holds about 30 ton of chips
 

Al Smith

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Maybe 25-30 years ago my uncle had a bunch of fencing replaced.The contracter went down the fence line with a D8 Cat with a giant mower like thing that ground up 8 inch stuff up like a chipper grinding limbs.

These chips were blown in the back of a semi and hauled for fuel to a paper mill in southern Ohio.

I do know there is no way you could just shove out trees with a dozer and even pay the fuel bill and operater for 250 bucks an acre.
 

sotc

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it doesnt take much machine to push over crop trees, up here they use mostly excavators so the can pull, shake and pile them
 

Thor's Hammer

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I know the hog fuel guys used to get $20 a tonne max. I know that a tub of that size uses a shit load of fuel per shift...
So you have 1 800hp+ tub, 2 loading shovels, 1 excavator, and several semitrailer rigs. Thats a $million dollars worth of equipment...
They must have to clear 20 acres a day.
 
F

Frans

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the operations I have seen blow the chips directly into the 'walking floor' big rig.
Wonder why they didn't do that? Seems like it would save alot of time
 

Thor's Hammer

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I was thinking the same frans. Thats a lot of unnecessary cycle times with the shovels. I would use a tracked grinder with a paddle thrower, rip the tree out the ground, drop it through the grinder, straight into the trailer and off site...
 

sotc

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thats what they normally do here to frans. to bring a grinder on site they want 2 days of tub grinding, they make piles first then bring in the tub. theres also per green ton tax credits from the dept of energy. they wouldnt do it if it didnt pay:dontknow:
 
J

Jonseredbred

Guest
the operations I have seen blow the chips directly into the 'walking floor' big rig.
Wonder why they didn't do that? Seems like it would save alot of time
Could be hired trucks, dont want to pay for trucks in line waiting to get chipped into. make a days pile then start hauling, way faster to load them with a loader than grinding directly in them.
 

stehansen

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  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #16
YEah what all of you guys said is true. People have been reluctant to start up in this business because this guy does it pretty cheap. The trees are plucked out of the ground by some loaders that have these elephant tusk type things sticking out of it and this operation goes on maybe two weeks ahead of the grinding. Then a loader with a brush fork moves in and clears out some space and the grinder sets up. This was pretty unusual with them loading trucks while they were still grinding up trees. Usually the grinder moves out and leaves a big pile of grindings and it is a few days before any trucks show up. I think they may have been trying to beat the storm is why they had hired trucks there and were loading while still grinding. So normally they are like three separate operations each several jobs ahead of the other. Getting the trees out of the ground, grinding, loading the trucks.
 

Thor's Hammer

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Could be hired trucks, dont want to pay for trucks in line waiting to get chipped into. make a days pile then start hauling, way faster to load them with a loader than grinding directly in them.
A big chipper or grinder will fill a truck in 15 minutes. I've seen a model 30 morbark fill a chip truck in 9 minutes...
 
J

Jonseredbred

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That high dump large capacity loader can do it way faster.
 
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