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Using water to transport logs

An alternative to cable and helicopter logging
  (+3, -1)
(+3, -1)
  [vote for,

This is a method to get logs out of forests, without impacting the forests too much.

In the tropics, a lot of the forests are under pressure from logging. Operations often create tracks and "open up" forests. Local populations then use these roads for hunting or for local logging operations. Forest degradation is the result.

Many alternatives, resulting in "low-impact" logging, have been designed. But few are realistic. Helicopter-logging is costly; cable logging works mostly on slopes.

The idea presented here is to use *huge* plastic inflatable tubes and water to create a small artificial canal in the forest. The tubes would be a bit like the ones used for oil clean ups. But a bit bigger. Fill the contraption with water, and you can use the wood's flotation capacity to transport it.

You would cut the wood first in crude planks. Protect the tubes against the planks, by putting some floating "cap" on the planks (material like isomo or something similar).

Push the planks through the water with ease.

After the operation, you deflate and move on. No trace.

Pic in link below.

django, Feb 07 2011

Tiny canal with *huge* inflatable tubes http://i55.tinypic.com/wbrj4g.jpg
I likes huge and inflatable - this is well known throughout the universe and throughout the halfbakery. Huge. Inflatable. It is ok. [django, Feb 07 2011]

Balloon logging http://www.oregonfo...ow/forests/logc.htm
Apparently not very effective. [MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 07 2011]


       If you put your tube on uncleared forest it would be very lumpy and punctured, on account of the deer with antlers underneath, and the thorn bushes. If you cleared a path for your tube you would then need to pump water up there to get it down. Your workers might just want to trundle the logs back down the path you cleared for the plastic inflatable tube.   

       However, once the forest was cleared local people will need new economic opportunities, so you could put the inflatable tube in the track, put in the water and charge people to slide down. It could be called "Stump Slide"!
bungston, Feb 07 2011

       I like it, but I don't think it will work, for the reasons [Bungston] gave - you'd need to level a strip for the canal, and it would probably be as wide as a logging road.   

       Helicoptering is expensive, but then it's just a matter of competitiveness and is dependent on market prices. It could be made economical if legislation made conventional logging more costly.   

       Presumably, people have thought about using big balloons to move logs? They could be hydrogen-filled, maybe.   

       [Edit - yes, balloon logging is well-known, but is limited in applicability and cost-effectiveness, see link]
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 07 2011

       How about an enormous crossbow to fire the trimmed trunks toward the collection area?
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 07 2011

       or a catapult.
FlyingToaster, Feb 07 2011

       or mechanoid caber toss.   

       ... either of which, when applied to a tree-trunk, could be described succinctly as "an enormous crossbow".
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 07 2011

       Could, but absent bow & thing across it they would be incorrectly so.
pocmloc, Feb 07 2011

       Next time I have nits...
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 07 2011

       zipline those suckers down the mountain
AutoMcDonough, Feb 08 2011

       I grew up in logging country, logs are too sharp and pokey and would shred the tubes.   

       However I am ALL OVER that crossbow/catapult idea annotation. The extra bonus is you wouldn't have to pay for people to do that job. In fact you could charge. I'd pay $20 for a chance to shoot huge logs out of a crossbow.
rossgk, Jun 10 2011

       I second that, as another backwoods denizen. The other obvious downside (NPI) to this idea is that, unlike skidders, skylines, and helis, it could only be used to transport the logs downhill.
Alterother, Jun 11 2011

       what AutoMcDonough said...   

       Use zipline/cable way
VJW, Jun 11 2011

       [VJW] baked; It's called skylining. They've been doing it for decades.
Alterother, Jun 11 2011

       bang enough nails into the log and you could probably rail gun it to its destination.   

       And by elevating the trajectory just right you could make the world's largest charcoal stick when it finishes with all that reentry malarky...   

       Does this explain dinosaur extinction?
not_morrison_rm, Jun 13 2011

       // an enormous crossbow // Tree-buchet, shirley.   

       Unless you're pronouncing the "bow" with an "ow" sound rather than an "oh".   

       Thinking about it more, you could build the tree- buchet in situ, but the impressive feat of engineering would be if you could make it throw itself down the hill when you are finished in a particular area.
marklar, Jun 13 2011

       um how about we change this idea to   

       "create big flat floaty plastic things with rfid tags to spontaneously line canals as well as float on their surfaces to preserve water" then use the conserved water to grow trees someplace plausible.
beanangel, Jun 13 2011

       Are you joking?
Zimmy, Jun 14 2011


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