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How To Cut Down A Large Tree In Sections

Updated on June 16, 2013

Usually, Tree Removing Is Only Done To Resolve A Dangerous Situation.

Trees can grow to great sizes creeping bigger and taller every year. Some trees get so tall that they tower over their surrounding buildings, power lines, and other structures posing great risk if large sections or branches were to break off and fall onto the property below. Wind, drought, diseases and pests can significantly increase the risk of trees falling by damaging the tree's structure and reducing its strength and integrity. Trees at risk of falling on surrounding buildings should be removed. If your not sure about the risk of your tall trees, contact a tree service provider for a consultation. The cost of tree removal varies between tree companies, but estimates are usually free.

How To Cut Down Trees In An Open Area.

Tree felling can be done by cutting a notch at the base of the main trunk. Then a back-cut from the opposite side, allows the tree to fall. Where you can expect the tree to fall is calculated by combining the direction the tree is naturally leaning, and the direction your notch is facing. If you don't want the tree to land on anything, be sure that the sum of those two directions are pointing into an open area that is long enough to fit the height of the tree in.

If you're removing a tree that has a "natural lean" (leaning more towards one direction than all other directions) and its natural lean is toward a large enough open area, the tree felling operation should be very easy. Professional tree services companies classify the more simple tree felling operations as "Non-Hazardous Tree Removals". A simple notch and back-cut, if done properly, is a very effective way to control where tall trees fall.


Never try to fell a tree in any direction that is against the tree's natural lean because trees always fall in the direction they're leaning. To say it another way, the notch you cut must point within 45 degrees relative to the direction the tree is leaning otherwise it will have no control over where the tree lands. It will be completely ineffective. Therefore, a Notch and Back-cut Felling Technique can only slightly modify the direction of fall up to 45 degrees to the right or to the left. This warning only applies if ropes are not being used.

When Do I Use A Rope For Removing Trees?

Ropes are used for cutting down trees when their natural lean happens to be in a direction that you don't want them to fall. Essentially ropes are used to pull trees and force them to fall in a desired direction. If you are removing trees with ropes, you will use the same notch and back-cut technique described above except that the direction your rope is pulling the tree replaces the direction the tree is naturally leaning. One thing to remember, the higher up the rope is tied to the tree, the easier it will be to pull the tree over (just a little basic physics for you to think on ;) ).

Cutting Down Trees With Breakable Objects All Around Them.

Some trees require a more delicate procedure if they are going to be removed safely. When a tree is too large to be felled in any direction without causing damage to people or property it must be climbed, topped, and cut into small pieces or sections while it is still standing. Smaller branches of the tree are cut and safely dropped to the ground. This technique greatly reduces the area of open space needed for cutting down trees without damaging nearby property. Companies that specialize in tree management understand the many dangers associated with removing such a tree, they would classify this type of tree removal as a "Hazardous Removal".

DO NOT attempt to do this without proper training, tree companies hire trained professional tree experts for cutting trees. In order to safely accomplish this type of work, you must have a lot of experience working from heights. Many of the steps taken with the chain-saw while climbing are very similar to the steps that are done on the ground and tree surgeons can make this type of tree work look very easy, However a large part of training and experience in this line of work comes from working with fall protection lines and chainsaws together. Sort of a "Paper, Rock, Scissors" situation where Rope beats Gravity but Chainsaw beats Rope and GRAVITY BEATS YOU! All tree experts started learning how to cut down trees while safely on the ground. Once the safety steps of using a chain-saw are learned on the ground, it's easier and safer to learn the same basic safety steps while climbing in a tree.


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    • Raitu Disong profile image

      Raitu Disong 4 years ago

      Wow I never thought somebody would write a hub on this, but you did it!

      Thanks a lot.

      This is a very useful hub!

      Voted up...