Skip to Content

10 Essential Equipment Needed for a Logging Business [Cost Included]

Operating a logging business requires that you have certain specialized equipment. This is so because logging in itself and of course processing the lumbers or trees into products such as logs, plywood, firewood, pulpwood, and high-quality wood products, are carried out with the aid of specialized equipment.

In this article, we are going to look at the essential equipment you must have if you want to start a logging business, and of course, what the equipment is used for.

Interestingly, anyone who wants to start a logging business may decide to purchase this equipment either as brand new if they have the money or as a used item if they are running on a low budget. The truth is that they will both serve the same purpose however, their durability may differ.

Essential Equipment You Need to Start a Logging Business

  1. Chainsaw

Chainsaws are frequently used for cutting and trimming trees, cutting firewood, and processing trees for other products.

For large logging projects, professional loggers depend on gas chainsaws with relatively high-performance levels. This type of chainsaw allows them to conveniently work with ease for long hours. As such, it must feature a powerful engine allowing it to run effectively even in harsh conditions.

Price: 16-Inch Brushless Chainsaw ($139.97), WORX WG322 20V Power Share 10″ Cordless Chainsaw with Auto-Tension ($129.00), and Saker Mini Chainsaw ($79.99)

  1. Logging Truck

A logging truck or timber lorry has it is also known as are large tractor-trailer truck primarily used for hauling tree logs of various sizes and lengths.

Some logging trucks have integrated flatbeds, some are discrete tractor units, and some are configured to spread a load between the tractor unit and a dollied trailer pulled behind it. Often more than one trailer is attached to the logging truck to accommodate more logs.

The two log truck types commonly used for transporting logs are long logger trucks (transporting logs 28-52ft in length) and mule train trucks (short logger) which are configured with a truck and trailer for shorter logs/pulpwood (transporting logs/pulp 14-24ft in length).

Price: You can expect to pay between $70,000 and $150,000 for a new semi-truck. Prices can get above $160,000 for a truck with all the upgrades. For example, you can get a new 2020 International HV607 SBA 6X4 for $155,000.

  1. Skidders

A skidder is any type of heavy vehicle that is used in a logging operation for pulling cut trees out of a forest in a process called “skidding”, in which the logs are transported from the cutting site to a landing.

There are different types of skidders but the most common types include cable skidders, grapple skidders, and the logging arch.

Note that each type of skidder has its advantages and disadvantages, but it is most important to evaluate the types for the specific job site.

Price: Caterpillar 525C Skidder – $ 29,500, 2012 Caterpillar 525C Skidder – $ 65,000, 2015 John Deere 748L Skidder – $ 119,000, and 2010 John Deere 848H Skidder – $ 340,000.

  1. Feller Bunchers

A feller buncher is a type of harvester used in logging. It is a motorized vehicle with an attachment that can rapidly gather and cut a tree before felling it. Feller buncher can work well in both thinning and clear cuts.

Feller Buncher’s ability to control the felling of the trees can reduce residual stand damage in comparison with manual felling. Since the feller buncher does not have processing capabilities, the whole tree is usually extracted to the landing.

Price: 2018 Caterpillar 521B Track Feller Buncher – $ 250,000, John Deere 843K Wheel Feller Buncher – $ 79,000, 2018 John Deere 853M Track Feller Buncher – $ 234,900, and 2019 Tigercat 720G Wheel Feller Buncher – $ 145,000.

  1. Harvesters

A harvester is a type of heavy forestry vehicle employed in cut-to-length logging operations for felling, delimbing, and bucking trees. A forest harvester is typically employed together with a forwarder that hauls the logs to a roadside landing.

A harvester combines the features and abilities of the feller buncher and processor and that may or may not have a bunk to store and then forward the trees or cut logs to the landing.

Price: John Deere 1270D with Waratah 480 Processing Head – $83,500, 2014 Ponsse Ergo – $189,500, John Deere 2054 with Waratah 622B Processing Head – $61,500, and Ponsse Bear Harvester with H8 Head – $715,000.

  1. Logging Trailers

Logging trailers are specifically designed for transporting logs from plantation forests where the trees are generally smaller in diameter. These trailers often have adjustable bunks or stakes to accommodate varying log sizes.

Usually, logging trailers do not have a floor, but one or more beams to support the bunks along the length of the trailer. They are capable of carrying tree-length logs or multiple bunks of log-length material.

Price: A log trailer can cost anywhere from $100,000 to $200,000 or more for a new model and as low as $20,000 for used log trailers.

  1. Axes

Axes are specially designed to cut across the grain of the wood fibers, for example when felling and limbing, in contrast, to log splitting, where the axe goes along the grain of the wood fibers. The head of a felling axe will weigh between two and four pounds, and sit at the end of a long handle.

This long handle enables the user to produce a more powerful swing with greater leverage, making for a better cut. The single-bitted axe is used by fallers for cutting, brushing out, hammering wedges, and as a plumb to determine lean.

The axe head must be kept sharp and free of burrs. The handle must be tightly set into the head and free of splits. The axe head must be pinned to the handle.

Price: The price of Axes ranges from $60 to over $289.

  1. Tree Wedges

Tree wedges help trees fall in the direction of the notch cut by lifting the tree in that direction. Tree-felling wedges are the best tool for cutting trees and logs.

When properly placed, wedges help keep the tree from pinching your chainsaw bar and help the tree fall in the direction of the notch cut.

Wedges also help to protect you and your equipment. With proper placement, wedges help keep the tree from falling backward or pinching your chainsaw bar.

Price: Tree Falling Wedges range from $9.99 to $139.99.

  1. Logging Winches

The logging winch is equipment that connects to the rear of a tractor so you can drag logs or other wood along behind you as you drive.

It’s a relatively simple attachment that allows you to move large amounts of lumber or logs without a complex grappling system.

Of course, the primary function of a winch is to leverage that cable tension to pull a vehicle out of a difficult situation — whether it’s stuck in mud, or water, facing a steep incline, or unable to move under its power.

Price: The price of logging winches varies but the Norse 450 Logging Winch’s regular price is $5,495.00.

  1. Log Grapples

Logging Grapples are all of the modern bypass design, allowing wide opening widths & capacity but still allowing very tight closing.

Intermercato log grapples are designed to grip and accumulate logs and the fixed teeth don’t bite into logs giving faster bundling and high productivity. Log grapples are the choice for stacking logs with forwarders, log sorting, and often for feeding chippers.

Price: On Sale from $1,665 Regular price $1,850 Sale.