Most feller bunchers utilize one of two chassis designs, depending on the conditions on the site. Light to medium duty feller bunchers use a rubber-tired tractor chassis, similar to backhoes. Heavy duty feller bunchers or those working in muddy or uneven fields may use tracked designs also found on bulldozers. Many well-known manufacturers of farming equipment, including Case, John Deere and International Harvester, also make feller bunchers for the timber industry.
In the field, feller bunchers perform most of the same duties as human lumberjacks. Trained operators drive their feller bunchers into one end of a stand of trees and switch on the cutters or saw blades. Each tree is held in place by a hydraulically-controlled clamp as the blades cut through the tree close to ground level. The tree is then maneuvered to a skidder, essentially a giant sled which can be attached to a tractor and dragged to another area for processing.
Whenever a forestry agency orders a thinning of an existing grove, feller bunchers are generally used to minimize damage. Trees can be cut in place and moved out without collapsing on other inhabitants of the forest. Feller bunchers are also useful for wholesale removal of trees from construction sites. They can literally plow through an entire stand of trees in a few hours. Blades can also be adjusted to cut off trees at any selected height.
Much of the heavy equipment used in the logging or timber industries can be dangerous, but feller bunchers have acquired a reputation for being especially hazardous to operate. It is impossible to predict precisely how a large tree will react after being cut, and operators of feller bunchers are often placed at ground zero. The weight of the tree may pull the entire machine off the ground or errant branches may suddenly enter the driver's compartment. The saw blades may become enmeshed in a tree, requiring a dangerous extraction. While in operation, feller bunchers cannot be rendered completely safe. For this reason, many logging operations try to limit the number of workers in the vicinity of a feller buncher in action.
John Deere is excited to announce its newest forestry attachment offering with the FR27 Disc Saw Felling Head. Now standard on the John Deere 953M and 959M feller buncher models and available as an upgrade on the on 853M, 859M and 903M feller bunchers, this felling head attachment has a larger cut capacity compared to previous felling head modelsBuilding upon the success of the FR24B, John Deere has successfully designed the durable FR27 as a solution aimed to increase productivity on the job.
“We are always looking for ways to enhance operator efficiency and machine capacity. By introducing a larger felling head solution to our line-up with the FR27, we are providing our customers with a larger, more durable attachment to help increase their bottom-line,” said Jim O’Halloran, global product marketing manager, tracked feller bunchers and harvesters & disc saw felling heads, John Deere. “The newly designed FR27 enables loggers of all experience levels to tackle even the most ambitious jobs with confidence knowing their machines are built to endure larger timber and excel in a variety of forestry applications.”
The FR27 Disc Saw Felling Head is designed to take on a variety of timber applications, from large single stem cutting to mid-sized accumulation, and boasts an all-new design and overall rebranding from previous John Deere felling head models. In addition, this robust, high-rotation felling head features excellent cut and accumulation capacity, offering top-of-the-line productivity compared to previous models. The FR27 features an impressive cutting capacity of up to 27.2 in. and an accumulation capacity of up to 7.5 ft, improving capability in the woods.
Building upon the success of the field-proven FR24B, the FR27 features an updated frame and wrist design, which includes a tall horn, long harvesting arms and continuous hose routings that promote easy machine clean-out. The hardened saw housing wear plates are now standard and offer improved saw housing wear resistance.
Additionally, the FR27 offers bolt-on saw housing for improved serviceability, with three separate saw housing sections with integrated skis, getting you back on the job sooner. The incorporated large side chip exhaust chute minimizes build-up and plugging, keeping your machine up and running. The side chip exhaust chute also includes a cover that can be added or removed depending on the application.
Starting now, the FR27 are available on the 800 and 900 M-Series Feller Bunchers models. To learn more about the FR27 Disc Saw Felling Head or the full line-up of John Deere forestry solutions, contact an authorized John Deere dealer or visit www.JohnDeere.com/.
About John Deere
Deere & Company (www.JohnDeere.com) is a global leader in delivering agricultural, construction, and forestry equipment. We help our customers push the boundaries of what’s possible in more productive and sustainable ways to help life leap forward. Our technology-enabled products, including John Deere Autonomous 8R Tractor, See & Spray™, and E-Power Backhoe, are just some of the ways we help meet the world’s increasing need for food, shelter, and infrastructure. Deere & Company also provides financial services through John Deere Financial.
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