by Joe Gallagher
North Billerica, MA – Since 1993, Marquis Tree Service has helped thousands of customers throughout Massachusetts with their tree care needs. Between their crews doing land clearing and tree removal, there’s no shortage of material coming back to their lot on a daily basis. But running a tree service company out of a relatively small one acre yard means that material piles up quickly.
“For years, we’ve always enjoyed being able to dispose of material for nothing and have people come take it for free,” said David Happ, operations manager at Marquis Tree Service. “As the market shifted and waste chips became less valuable, there was less demand for material. We found ourselves in a position where we were generating more material than we could get rid of, so faced with trucking and paying to dispose of it — the Log Screw presented itself as an economical way of reducing material and becoming more self-sufficient.”
The CBI Log and Stump Screw is designed to split oversized butt logs, pole wood, and stumps into more manageable sized material to be further processed into firewood, wood fuel, or other value-added finished products. Strong enough to crack wood up to seven feet in diameter and manufactured to be mounted on the mini 15,000-pound excavator at Marquis Tree Service, the Log & Stump Screw XP model was the perfect niche solution for the one acre yard.
“It’s a small unit on a very small excavator but I’ve been pretty impressed with the size of material it’s been able to produce,” Happ said. “We’ve been able to crack beech logs up to sixty, seventy inches. We’ve been able to reduce everything that we brought into our yard into manageable debris that we can actually either sell or dispose of at a lower cost.”
Not too long ago, the tree service company would typically pay to dispose of large material with irregular crotches and good amounts of rot in it. With the Log and Stump Screw, they send an employee out for a few hours in the yard to crack up the material then sell the wood chips. Employees at the company enjoy using the Log & Stump Screw and picked up its quick learning curve with ease. If employees want a few extra hours, they hop into the machine and crack a giant pile of wood. The sale of wood chips offsets the labor costs of cracking the material.
“The wood screw definitely cut down on trucking costs and overall time of disposal because the best viable option we had for getting rid of material on a large scale basis was a 45 minute drive from here,” Happ said. “We looked at costs of trucking of the wood 45 minutes each way, loading it, unloading it, and then the liability of running down the road with a 70,000-pound truck three to four times a day to get rid of it.”
Pound for pound, the attachment hasn’t disappointed.
“For the money, I don’t think it could be beat,” Happ said. “I don’t think you could touch it for any other machine that could reduce wood of the same diameter. Especially with the size constraints we have at our yard. We’re running thirty guys out of one acre including material, so we don’t have space to put massive material in here or lots of equipment, and we can’t afford to store much material on site because of that reason. So to put it on a mini excavator that only weighs 15,000-pounds is a pretty nice option.”
One example Happ gave was a 12,000-pound, 70-inch log they put on the deck of a log truck with a crane and unloaded in the yard — he was able to crack it with the Log & Stump Screw and send it through a 20-inch chipper.
“It’s nice to see they overbuilt the options,” Happ said. “Everything is very large steel, I don’t think we’re going to break anything on this unit anytime soon.”
“The versatility of the machine with the screw on it was great because it takes us about ten minutes to swap it over to a different attachment, it’s not a dedicated machine,” Happ explained. “It really didn’t take anything other than running a dedicated case drain line — the install was pretty seamless. Everything matched up perfectly from the factory to the machine based on the specs of the machine so it allows us to have versatility of using one machine to do multiple tasks.”
For more information on Continental Biomass Industries and their complete lines of attachments, visit www.cbi-inc.com.