Land clearing before and after - clearing land for a house and important considerations.

Some land clearing before and after you have selected your favorite site for your home may be necessary. Before clearing land for a house is done, you should have your home design completed.

This is important, because your design should include the existing trees and vegetation in the design. If you remove trees first, you may regret it as your design is being done.

If you'll be doing land clearing before and after clearing some trees from your site, the costs of removing these trees has to do with their size, how many you want to remove and how you want to dispose of or recycle them.

Consider having the wood from the trees cut into firewood, for example. Or you can have the wood from the trees stacked so that it will dry and you can cut it for firewood later. Grinding or digging out the stumps may be needed.

You can choose to hire a contractor to do your land clearing before and after building your home or you can do part or all of the work yourself.

If you want safety help for clearing land for a house when doing the work yourself, make sure you obtain and use protective equipment.

A hard hat, goggles, hearing protection, leg coverings, cut-resistant gloves and steel-toed boots or safety boots should be worn when working with a chainsaw and other equipment and tools.

Removing Trees: Removing large, mature trees is quite a complex operation and using a quality chainsaw will be necessary. Make sure you wear your protective equipment as chainsaws can be most dangerous to work with.

To become experienced with the chainsaw, start cutting much smaller trees first. Cut only trunks whose diameter is less than the length of the saw blade.

It is easier to fell a tree in the direction of its natural lean, but that may not always be possible. You can direct a tree away from its natural lean by using wedges and a tapered hinge cut in the trunk.

How to cut trees safely when land clearing before and after building.

First - Cut a notch in the trunk. On the side of the tree that faces the direction of its natural lean, hold a chainsaw with the blade angled at 45 degrees to the trunk.

With the chainsaw, make an angled cut about one-third of the way through the trunk. Remove the blade from the cut.

Holding the blade horizontally at the bottom of the angled cut, saw to the end of the first cut. Remove the blade and push the wedge-shaped piece from the notch.

Second - Making the felling cut. On the other side of the trunk, opposite from the notch, make an horizontal cut a couple of inches above the bottom of the notch.

Stop cutting when the blade is 2 or 3 inches from the back of the notch, creating a hinge. The trunk will pivot on the hinge, and the tree will fall. Drive in wedges if it does not fall.

What if you have to cut a large trunk...

A tree with a large trunk is one whose diameter is 1 to 2 times the length of the chainsaw.

Start with a notch cut (like described in the first step), then make the first felling cut by holding your body stationary and pivoting the saw through about half the trunk, leaving a 2-inch hinge between the felling cut and the notch cut.

To make the next felling cut, place the saw at the end of the preceding cut and walk the blade around the tree, stopping 2 inches before the notch to leave a hinge. If the tree does not fall, drive wedges into the felling cuts.

Removing logs, stumps, and roots...

Once you have removed some of the large trees while land clearing, you can maneuver the logs around your building site with a hand-operated come-a-long.

Rather than chopping down small trees and then getting rid of the roots, you can uproot them, then either dispose of them or replant them somewhere else on the site.

Transplanting trees - If you decide to transplant some trees, remember that trees taller than 10 feet with trunks greater than 3 inches thick will not likely survive when replanted.

If you transplant any trees, make sure you do it during a period of low growth activity. Transplant during spring before leaves appear or in autumn after the leaves fall.

Moving logs - To clear out heavy logs, use a come-a-long. It is a tool with a ratchet mechanism and a lever that is moved back and forth to reel in a cable.

Removing stumps - For trees that are already cut down, uproot small stumps the same way you would a small tree. Larger ones can be ground down to below grade using a rented stump grinder.

For the very large stumps, you may want to hire a land clearing professional to remove them. Besides trees, you may also need to remove underbrush and rocks from the site.

Clearing vegetation - Cut bushes down to ground level with a pair of pruning shears and dig the roots up with a shovel or pick. Clear tall grass and vines.

Removing a small tree or stump when clearing land for a house.

• 1- With a flat spade with a sharp blade, slice through the roots in a 30-36 inch wide circle around the trunk. Push the blade into the ground at about a 30-degree angle toward the trunk to taper the root ball for easy removal.

• 2- Dig a 24-30 inch deep access trench around the root ball.

• 3- Sever the taproot - the root section that heads straight down into the ground - and any other uncut roots under the tree with the spade. Lift out the tree and root ball with a helper.

You may want to buy or rent a portable stump cutter when land clearing. This machine will help you with chopping and digging up stumps.

Make sure you use goggles when using the machine because you do not want small particles of wood in your eyes, which can easily happen.

Removing stones when clearing land for a house...

For removing stones that are too large to budge, wrap a rope or a chain around them and use a come-a-long. You can also split the stones into smaller pieces so they can be moved more easily.

Fit a drill with a masonry bit and bore holes in the rocks. Then drive in steel wedges with a sledgehammer until the rocks break apart.

Land clearing before and after building a house can be a lot of work, but with the proper safety protection and patience, it can be accomplished by the do-it-yourself person.

Books about buying land and clearing land for a house...

Finding & Buying Your Place in the Country by authors Les and Carol Scher.

Everything is covered in these pages, from looking for property through evaluating it and negotiating price, to the contract of sale.

Important topics such as water and easement rights, zoning and eminent domain are made clear. Land clearing before building a house is only one of the important issues that should be considered.

Sample legal forms and checklists provide the basics, and resource listings point to sources of regional and local information, including internet sites.

A special chapter even discusses Canada's real estate market in case you are interested. Covering current property laws and financing options, this comprehensive resource offers insider's knowledge on how to avoid common pitfalls and prevent costly mistakes.

Country Property Cheap - Finding a Piece of Inexpensive Rural Land by Ralph C. Turner.

The author teaches you how to buy a country property inexpensively to build your dream home, how to avoid brokers, and many more practical tips about buying cheap country property.

The author provides information on at least 18 ways to find potential sellers.

This resource is an entertaining and enjoyable book that helps you buy inexpensive rural land which makes the clearing land for a house part much less expensive.

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