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View Full Version : Seems like everyone is a tree cutter


turtle
10-20-2010, 09:24 PM
Is it me or are there really more guys doing tree work? It seems like everyone is a tree guy lately. Is it really that easy to start a tree service?

Turf Commando
10-20-2010, 10:32 PM
Most guys have a chain saw, truck, why not...!
I've been around my father in law alot when he cuts trees he was a logger for 30 years in the UP (Michigan) ...
I believe it takes a real talent to drop tress within a few feet of homes, let alone running a saw takes years of experience. Myself tree work is too risky...

JB1
10-20-2010, 10:36 PM
with a $200 dollar saw your in business.

Outdoors_Unlimited
10-20-2010, 11:09 PM
It is easy to break into. Its how I got the courage to break out on my own. I worked for someone for three years and learned the ground work. A nasty ice storm hit here, and I bought a saw to do cleanups. Learned I liked being my own boss, so I bought climbing gear and taught myself to climb (with lots of pointers from my old boss)

There's a big difference between dropping a few trees in the woods, and doing residential removals.

I laugh when most guys call themselves tree guys.
Posted via Mobile Device

DJJS
10-20-2010, 11:28 PM
I laugh when most guys call themselves tree guys.
Posted via Mobile Device

Same here, half the guys I've seen on this site asking about pricing tree jobs, and half the guys I've seen attempting to cut down trees in my area have no business doing tree work. I'm lucky enough to have a very expierenced climber working for me now and I learned to climb as a teenager. Most guys just think a chainsaw and a truck is all you need, but dropping trees within inches of homes and buildings requires so much more as far as knowledge of what you're doing, capable employees the proper equipment and most importantly INSURANCE. Tree insurance isn't cheap, and the proper equipment isn't either.

Richard Martin
10-21-2010, 06:18 AM
A freind of mine has a tree service. He has about 8 employees, bucket trucks, crane trucks etc.. He says the Fly By Nighters are killing him. He'll try to get $600 or more for a complete tree removal including stump grinding etc and the fly by nighters are getting $250 or $300. Here's a pic of them doing some work.

Darryl G
10-21-2010, 08:18 AM
Yes, same here, lots of guys doing tree work now. It can be darn good money..$1,000 plus per day for couple guys with a pickup truck and chain saw.

whosedog
10-21-2010, 08:42 AM
Anybody that's dropping trees and running a chipper without insurance is crazy,way too dangerous,accidents are just waiting to happen.One of the guys I used to work with lost a brother(who left behind a wife and kids)when the scarf he was wearing got caught in the chipper and he got pulled in head first.Fortunately he was working for the town DPW so she got taken care of financially,but money doesn't bring back the husband and father that those kids will miss every day.

LB1234
10-21-2010, 09:52 AM
Anybody that's dropping trees and running a chipper without insurance is crazy,way too dangerous,accidents are just waiting to happen.One of the guys I used to work with lost a brother(who left behind a wife and kids)when the scarf he was wearing got caught in the chipper and he got pulled in head first.Fortunately he was working for the town DPW so she got taken care of financially,but money doesn't bring back the husband and father that those kids will miss every day.

I feel bad for the guy...but what the hell was he wearing a scarf around a tree chipper for???? Thats like saying I "accidentally" lost my hand when I stuck it under the mower with the blades on.

jeffslawnservice
10-21-2010, 11:40 AM
with a $200 dollar saw your in business.

Don't even need a $200 saw. i just use a eight inch Felco prunner. Think I might buy an axe next year so I can take on the big stuff. And by the way if I do buy an axe how much should I charge to take down a 90 year old Oak tree? i was thinking maybe $200 or is that too high?

whosedog
10-21-2010, 12:27 PM
I feel bad for the guy...but what the hell was he wearing a scarf around a tree chipper for???? Thats like saying I "accidentally" lost my hand when I stuck it under the mower with the blades on.

I never got friendly enough to ask that kind of question(he was a former boss that I didn't get along with)
--- Jeff's lawn Care;$200 for a full sized oak tree is way to low,if it's as big as the ones around here.You need a really sharp heavy duty chain saw, as oak is dense wood and hard to cut,plus if you chip it and haul it away and you have to pay for disposal(and insurance)you will be working for free at that price.My neighbor had prices ranging from $4000-$2000 on a 12 foot circumference oak,75+ feet tall; he had removed a few years ago.The $4,500 price included a crane to lift it over his house,the guys that did it for$2000 dropped it in pieces then trucked it to their yard where they split it and sold the fire wood after seasoning for one year.Don't even think about getting into tree removal unless you have insurance for it;it's not worth the risk.

Darryl G
10-21-2010, 12:32 PM
Hopefully Jeff was kidding.

cpel2004
10-21-2010, 01:10 PM
A freind of mine has a tree service. He has about 8 employees, bucket trucks, crane trucks etc.. He says the Fly By Nighters are killing him. He'll try to get $600 or more for a complete tree removal including stump grinding etc and the fly by nighters are getting $250 or $300. Here's a pic of them doing some work.

Heck that machine alone is about 60-80k, and we havent even mentioned trucks, chippers, other hardware, did I mention the Liability thats envolved from employees and customers. The tree business is no joke. Did I mention climbing and cabling... Ah, I will pass, too much risk!

DitchDr
10-21-2010, 03:18 PM
Tree work is big money, but it is also BIG risk. We have a tree division with our company. The insurance is pretty high, the equipment is high, the trucks, chipper, stump grinder, and crane will set you back a good deal.

If you want to do tree work first learn how to climb, then become a certified arbor, then apply for the insurance.

We do not touch a tree for less then 1000.00 dollars. If it is in a tight spot the price goes up. Ever thought of the damage a 20k pound tree can do to a 2 million dollar home? If your going to do it, do it right. Dont half ass it. Just beacuse you own a saw does not mean you can take down tree for a living. It is dangerous and one little mistake will put a end to your life!

LB1234
10-21-2010, 03:54 PM
It is dangerous and one little mistake will put a end to your life!

or worse....someone elses!

Turf Commando
10-21-2010, 05:18 PM
If someone else drops a tree, I'll finish the cutting and stump removal but that's it.. ''Man has to know his limitation''s ..

soloscaperman
10-21-2010, 08:17 PM
Cutting down a tree is easy it's the things around it that make it suck. I chopped down a few tree's with my boss at his house back in the day. I am good at dropping them. I told the customer that the tree will land 3-5 away from the flower bed. Knocked the huge sucker down and landed perfectly and it was about 4 feet from the huge flower bed. It takes a lot of commonsense and a good imagination when dealing with tree's. I did it a few 100 bucks cheaper then the other guy that was going to do it since I have my customer from treating lawns to snow plowing. Never let another guy come in contact with your customer.

93Chevy
10-21-2010, 08:21 PM
I'm scared to do "tree work." No experience dropping trees. Sure, I can cut up limbs and brush, but if you're careful and mind your surrounding, most anybody can "cut stuff up" with a saw. I mean, sure, I can learn the trade, but I don't really have an interest in it.

I had a customer that wanted me to drop a tree for her, and I had to tell her "no" 2-3 times and tell her I didn't have tree insurance before she finally got it.

DitchDr
10-21-2010, 08:36 PM
Dont get me wrong it is not "hard" to drop a tree. After all how many so called "tree service" people do you see putting around in a little truck with tree service painted on the side.

To do it right and to make money doing it requires a good eye a knowledge of the tree your working with, where it wants to fall vs where you want it to fall.

Do you need a bucket truck, a 14 ton crane, and a chipper to take down a tree? Of course not. You can rope climb a tree take it down bit by bit, load up all the debris in a trailer and haul it off. We prefer to use the crane as much as we can. We usually have a tree down to the stump in 4 to 5 cuts. Drop the parts into the landing zone where the ground guys are cutting it up and running it through the chipper.

My guys can have a 100 ft pine down chipped stump ground, and check in hand in under 2 hours. Like i said lots of money to be made, but lots to be lost if you mess up

Outdoors_Unlimited
10-21-2010, 08:39 PM
Only way you'll survive tree work is if you love it.
Posted via Mobile Device

soloscaperman
10-21-2010, 10:10 PM
93 Chevy guy- I respect you that you said no. Some guys do it even though there afraid. If your not relax that chainsaw will be your enemy. Some people go full speed but you have to not just use your eye's but your ears when you hear that baby cracking. Take your time and relax there is no point in rushing with a large tree unless your knocking down the rain forest on a deadline.

turtle
10-21-2010, 10:44 PM
Yeah it takes a special breed to drop some of those big ones. But here is another question is tree removal one of those jobs that all you need is a HIC license?
I know you need an Arborist License to cable and spray trees, and I always thought you need one to prune anything over 10 or 15 feet tall.

Outdoors_Unlimited
10-21-2010, 11:34 PM
In Michigan, you don't need anything but a dba. And if not mistaken, insurance isn't even required by law.
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jeffslawnservice
10-21-2010, 11:34 PM
Hopefully Jeff was kidding.

Haha yea I was kidding. Actually in school I take an arborculture class.

2brothersyardcare
10-22-2010, 04:42 PM
i love tree work the higher i climb and the more power lines ex. the better!

jwsland
10-22-2010, 05:21 PM
Don't even need a $200 saw. i just use a eight inch Felco prunner. Think I might buy an axe next year so I can take on the big stuff. And by the way if I do buy an axe how much should I charge to take down a 90 year old Oak tree? i was thinking maybe $200 or is that too high?



:laugh::laugh::laugh::laugh::laugh:

Cajun Cleanin'
10-22-2010, 05:29 PM
I cut about 4 limbs down over a customers roof 2 days ago.Can I be a tree guy?

I'm gonna have to go out and get some more magnets for the station wagon.

Outdoors_Unlimited
10-22-2010, 08:13 PM
2 brothers, I love the high climbing part, means it'll hurt less when ya fall.

Power lines on the other hand, I wont go within 50 ft of the primaries. Triplex drop no problem. I just don't find it worth my life, especially the way some of these guys price jobs.
Posted via Mobile Device

Richard Martin
10-23-2010, 05:06 AM
2 brothers, I love the high climbing part, means it'll hurt less when ya fall.

It's not the fall that hurts. It's the sudden stop at the end.

DitchDr
10-23-2010, 06:26 PM
It's not the fall that hurts. It's the sudden stop at the end.

Or the second bounce!!

nepatsfan
10-23-2010, 06:31 PM
Tree work is big money, but it is also BIG risk. We have a tree division with our company. The insurance is pretty high, the equipment is high, the trucks, chipper, stump grinder, and crane will set you back a good deal.

If you want to do tree work first learn how to climb, then become a certified arbor, then apply for the insurance.

We do not touch a tree for less then 1000.00 dollars. If it is in a tight spot the price goes up. Ever thought of the damage a 20k pound tree can do to a 2 million dollar home? If your going to do it, do it right. Dont half ass it. Just beacuse you own a saw does not mean you can take down tree for a living. It is dangerous and one little mistake will put a end to your life!

like that garage you hit in that thread a couple months ago?

Andrew & Ben's Lawn Care
10-23-2010, 08:18 PM
Wow, timely thread, I told a customer yesterday; no I'm not a tree guy, I don't have insurance, license, insurance, equipment or the experience to cut down a tree. But on another note I wish I knew a tree company I could refer. With the prices I see on this thread there would be enough to get a kickback and toss some work to another local, non-illegal small business man.

old oak lawn
10-23-2010, 09:50 PM
Tree work is big money, but it is also BIG risk. We have a tree division with our company. The insurance is pretty high, the equipment is high, the trucks, chipper, stump grinder, and crane will set you back a good deal.

If you want to do tree work first learn how to climb, then become a certified arbor, then apply for the insurance.

We do not touch a tree for less then 1000.00 dollars. If it is in a tight spot the price goes up. Ever thought of the damage a 20k pound tree can do to a 2 million dollar home? If your going to do it, do it right. Dont half ass it. Just beacuse you own a saw does not mean you can take down tree for a living. It is dangerous and one little mistake will put a end to your life!

Tree care division ? You posted a few months ago about a tree removal and you were in this little tree , not tied in with a saw in your hand and had your wife dragging brush. I am thinking the trend was removed. I posted and said you and your wife were the tree care division. I call BS.

bradseabridge
10-23-2010, 10:17 PM
Tree care division ? You posted a few months ago about a tree removal and you were in this little tree , not tied in with a saw in your hand and had your wife dragging brush. I am thinking the trend was removed. I posted and said you and your wife were the tree care division. I call BS.

GOT EM!!

It's not the fall that hurts. It's the sudden stop at the end.

Or the rest of the branches on the way down.

Mowingman
10-23-2010, 10:20 PM
I just do stump grinding, no tree cutting at all. I can not believe the goofballs we have in this town who are in the tree trimming/removal business.
I have one of the only stump grinders in town, so a lot of these guys ask me to come in beind them and do the stumps. One guy has no transportation. He has a friend drive him to the job, then unloads his Walmart Poulan saw, gas can, ladder, and rope,and starts cutting away. No safety gear, no insurance of any kind, and a helper he pays by the bottle. Others pull up in an old car, unload their Homelite saw, and go to work.
I think we have about 4 reputable tree service companies here, and about 25 fly-by-night guys at work.
Kind of like getting into the mowing business, wher anyone can load a mower and a broom in their trunk, and call themselves a lawncare business.

whosedog
10-23-2010, 11:04 PM
I just do stump grinding, no tree cutting at all. I can not believe the goofballs we have in this town who are in the tree trimming/removal business.
I have one of the only stump grinders in town, so a lot of these guys ask me to come in beind them and do the stumps. One guy has no transportation. He has a friend drive him to the job, then unloads his Walmart Poulan saw, gas can, ladder, and rope,and starts cutting away. No safety gear, no insurance of any kind, and a helper he pays by the bottle. Others pull up in an old car, unload their Homelite saw, and go to work.
I think we have about 4 reputable tree service companies here, and about 25 fly-by-night guys at work.
Kind of like getting into the mowing business, wher anyone can load a mower and a broom in their trunk, and call themselves a lawncare business.

How do they get rid of the tree after they take it down? I have cut up and hauled a fallen medium size tree to the dump and it took 4 trips back and forth with my 8 ft pickup truck bed filled to the max.My friend who has a tree service can take down and run several trees through his $60G chipper before he needs to dump.He pays a mulch Co. $20 per dump load to take his mulch,they chip it some more, then dye it and sell it for $32 brown -$37 red per cubic yard.

Mowingman
10-23-2010, 11:11 PM
They stack the cut up tree along the curb. The homeowner then calls the City Solid Waste Dept., to have it picked up. Solid Waste comes by, and for a fee based on cubic yards, will use a grapple truck to load and haul off the pile.
Only the 4 reputable tree companies offer to haul off the wood. Everyone else leaves it up to the homeowner to call for a hauloff.

Richard Martin
10-24-2010, 05:09 AM
Or the rest of the branches on the way down.

The assumption is that you would be cutting them off as you go up the tree. :laugh:

bradseabridge
10-24-2010, 11:25 AM
You never know with all the hacks running around. I've seen some weird stuff.

2brothersyardcare
10-24-2010, 12:51 PM
dude ive climbed so many times now that i have no problem with falling and hitting the ground and i have fallen 45 feet but i didnt hit the ground