Landowner Roundtable — The best tools I’ve ever owned

This was a roundtable discussion between landowners.  The questions and answers from the discussion are summarized below (anonymously).

The products, companies, or individuals listed here were recommended by landowners in an open forum. Mention in this list does not constitute an endorsement by Washington State University.  Washington State University is not responsible for nor guarantees the quality, accuracy, or cost of the products or services provided, nor do companies or individuals mentioned represent or speak for Washington State University

Q: What tools do you use to drag logs out of your forest?

A: Farmi Winch for tractor.  Logrite arch for ATV.

Q: Suggestions for mechanized trail building tools?

A: Appropriate-sized chain sawBrush cutter.  Small trackhoe or mini skid steer.

Q: Good gloves?


  1. 1) Gloves, I like leather, but they stretch if they get wet, so I go with the ones that have the fingers dipped to be more tight fitting.
  2. 2) I love the cheap leather gloves from Costco for leather and wells Lamont hydra hide for light duty gloves.

Q: Any tools that will cut back our overgrown ivy?

A: Ivy is tough mechanically and I have not found an easy way.  I use two tools, hand pruners and    loppers.  I have used my brush cutter a lot, but I don’t like to use it around trees.

Q: Best tool to get rid of brambles?

A: For blackberries, I use a 52cc brush cutter with a 10″ 80 tooth carbide tooth blade. Cuts just about anything.  I have used my brush cutter a lot, but I don’t like to use it around trees.

Q: Recommendations for walk behind style trimmer to clear blackberry along roadside and fence line?

A: We us a DR walk behind brush cutter/ mower that someone got at a yard sale for a few hundred $$ to clear our field day stations and trails.

Q: Does anyone have any comments on the best weed wrench available on the market?

A: Check with your weed board to find out what the survey says.  There are a lot of good buys, but also nice tries.

Q:  Where’s a good place to get tools such as log jacks and can’t hooks?

A: Any Forestry Supplier like Forestry Suppliers, Bailey’s, PacForest Suppliers, Madsens, Woods Logging. Cowlitz Rigging in Longview.  Don’t be afraid to buy used from a pawn shop.

Q: HT 132 pole trimmer the four-stroke version?

A: The point made at the roundtable was this power pole saw is powerful, but with a 36cc engine    it is also fuel efficient. And, the user can get up to at least a 12ft pruning lift which is generally what the cost-share programs require, therefore, not needing a ladder to reach the high branches and you have the safety of your feet on the ground.

Q: What was the name of the chain saw all-in-one sharpening tool?

A: Stihl 2 in 1

Q: Any recommended auctions for NE WA or N. Idaho?

A: None

Q: How would I find the Portland, OR auctions?

A: Bar none auction in Woodburn, OR.  Richie bros auctions too

Q: For small landowner (20-acre) with hilly property, what one piece of equipment would you recommend?

A: Chainsaw

Q: Can you chip/shread Blackberries?

A: Yes!

Q: Has anyone tried goats?

A: Yes, they work well for clearing all reachable vegetation.

Q: What pruning saws do you like?

A: Fanno 13” Curved Pruning Saw  and my Stihl telescoping Pole saw, and my Silky saw

Q: What’s the best way to get rid of thistle?

A: I just pull it before it flowers. It’s pretty easy to pull. We go on “thistle hunts” as a family. If it has flowered, then we collect the heads and take them back to garbage but leave the rest of the plant.  Other Management for E WA weeds here.

Q: Is there another name for a witch wand? All I’m finding is something for magicians.

A: There are a variety of “wands” that sprinkle the magic kill juice.  This is one I know works.

Q: McLeod is more for fire prevention, isn’t it ?

A: I believe the McCleod was developed by firefighters.  It’s a great trail building tool, or for grubbing out a spot for planting seedlings.

Q: What brand of dump trailer was mentioned?

A: ABI Workman Dump Trailer

Q: There are so many wonderful information here. It’s like drinking from a firehose. Anyway we can have a summary /note of all the tools mentioned after this section?

A: Done!

Q: My favorite tool is this education!  I’ve never had a chance to talk with other weak people like myself.

A: Bypass loppers are good.  Fiskars makes a geared lopper that really improves torque.  +1  for Fiskers.  Rachet loppers and hand pruners really save the hand muscles.

Q: Saw recommendations?

A: Hand pruning saws with 10-14 teeth per inch.  Fanno is my favorite.  $25ea.  I own several Stihl   13” pull saws too (they are called pull saws because they cut on the pull).  If you use an electric pole saw, you can cut 1 inch away from the trunk.

Q: How to treat knapweed with herbicide?

A: From Dick & Paula Hopkins (consulting foresters and licensed pesticide consultants): Spray knapweed when flowering

Q: What is “grubbing out a site?”

A: Grubbing out refers to removal of living material, duff, and any other branches.  Here’s one landowners comment:  “I had good success planting ponderosa by just scalping the grass using a hazelhoe for my ponderosa pine. But I was only planting 10 acres.”

Q: Does mulching help?

A: Yes!  Here are other comments:  I agree, mulching really helps. Also arch older branches over the seedlings. That way deer may not get the them.  One source for chip mulch is has wood chip drops they do. How much depends on the particular drop.  Free. Just sign up and they will call when they have a load.

Q: Are the tongs a hand tool, or does it attach to a machine?

A: I use a hand- tool tong.   .  You can clip log tongs to a tractor, too.  Make sure to get good ones, too.  There is a lot of junk available that cannot stand the work needed by the tongs.

Q: Hardhat? I like pretty much any full-brimmed, wrap-around hard hat.


Q: Best Saw shops?  (Andy’s note – there are a lot of good saw shops.  Ask for a recommendation)

A: Battle Ground WA ACE (main street) has fast stihl repair btw;

Q:  Pic or vid or link to chaps

A: Get full length, clear to your ankle & foot.  Something like this.