Saturday, 12 October 2013

Truncator chainsaw logging bench (as seen on Dragon's Den)

A couple of weeks ago at the Weald Wood Fair I saw a logging system being demonstrated, and pretty quickly realised I had to have one! It's the 'Truncator', which has apparently been on the BBC programme Dragon's Den.

I've made a video review which you can watch here, followed by some still images below.



I've got the Pro version with five 'cups', as shown below. I chose to mount the cups on a separate piece of wood, which in this photo is sat on top of the trestle that comes as part of the kit:
DSC_7191 Truncator logging saw bench

The piece of wood with the cups on it is held down using a couple of ratchet straps:
DSC_7192 Truncator logging saw bench

Once you've loaded logs into the Truncator, you use the bungee cord attached to one of the cups to hold the logs in place:
DSC_7193 Truncator logging saw bench

It's locked in using this beautifully simple little clip - the grooves in it not only grip the bungee cord but also use its tension to force the cord into the clip:
DSC_7194 Truncator logging saw bench

I spaced the cups to cut a 2 meter log into six pieces, with the final piece dropping off into a wheelbarrow:
DSC_7199 Truncator logging saw bench

The other five logs stay sat in the cups after using the chainsaw to cut them:
DSC_7201 Truncator logging saw bench

Then you push the wheelbarrow along and tip the cups so the logs fall into it:
DSC_7203 Truncator logging saw bench

Conveniently, one load of logs nicely fills a large wheelbarrow:
DSC_7209 Truncator logging saw bench

The other option is to use the ratchet straps to hold the Truncator on the side of the trailer:
DSC_7211 Truncator logging saw bench

I've attached some small blocks of wood on the underside of the Truncator to locate it accurately on the trailer:
DSC_7212 Truncator logging saw bench

I still use the ratchet straps to secure it though:

DSC_7215 Truncator logging saw bench

As on the trestle, you load it up with long logs - and you can see here why I chose to have five cups rather than six - the sixth would miss the trailer anyway, so may as well be absent, allowing the logs fall into a wheelbarrow:
DSC_7217 Truncator logging saw bench

DSC_7218 Truncator logging saw bench

The logs in the cups can be rapidly tipped straight into the trailer:
DSC_7222 Truncator logging saw bench

DSC_7223 Truncator logging saw bench

Overall it's an excellent invention, and I'm looking forward to using it more in the spring to prepare logs for the following winter. In my view, the key advantages of the Truncator are:
  • No metal parts, so if you hit one of the cups with the chainsaw the chain will be undamaged.
  • Cups mounted on an easily available wooden beam, so if it gets worn down over time by occasional touches from the chainsaw it can be replaced easily and cheaply.
  • Cups can be separated by any distance, so you can produce logs at a length ideal for your woodburner or stove.
  • Integrated bungee cord to hold the logs in place, which can be secured in seconds.
  • Very fast to use.
  • Avoids the need to pick up logs from the ground, saving strain on your back.
If you want one, you can buy them from truncator.co.uk.

Mike

8 comments:

Lord Tea said...

Hi Mike,
Nice Video, production quality has shot up a bit since you sacked the camera woman on the abortive Stovetec Rocket stove review!
Only thing which I'm not sure about is the quite small size of the cups, I wonder why they didn't make them bigger to get more logs in?
For this reason I'm out and won't be investing!
Kind of got used to the Buckingham wood station, just got to be a bit careful about touching the frame with your saw.
cheers
Rich

Mike Pepler said...

Yeah, I wondered why they weren't bigger, but I guess it's to do with weight and the tipping mechanism, as it would have to be beefed up a lot if the weight of logs doubled or tripled.

One big advantage for me is that you get to choose your log length - I don't know if any other log stations allow that?

Have a go next time you're over anyway, see what you think!

Mike

Lord Tea said...

Well maybe there's room for a 'Pro' model with a bigger capacity?

My Buckinghmam woodstation is designed around a 4ft cord, so you can cut multiples of 8": You could have 6 x 8inch logs or 3 x 16" 2x 24" logs (though I've never been asked for them) I have been asked for 48" logs once, for the inglenook of a Manor house! You don't need a wood station for that, but it's a bit of a niche market!
cheers
Rich

Richard Spandit said...

I've got the Oregon sawhorse that probably has 4 times the capacity of this one, although as you say, one does have to bend down to pick up the logs

Richard Spandit said...

I've got the Oregon Easy Cut sawhorse that has more capacity than this one, but you have to pick the logs up afterwards - a lot cheaper too.

Mike Pepler said...

I think the main thing for me is the not having to pick up the logs and being able to precisely choose the log length on this one. But everyone has their own situation and different designs have their pros and cons.

Stephen Stubbs said...

Hi Mike, I remember seeing this when it was on Dragons Den, and at the time thought it was a good gadget, you made a really good video review of it, like the idea of the extra piece of wood,

Mike Pepler said...

Glad you like the video Stephen! I'm looking forward to using it a lot more in a few months, once we've burned enough wood to make some space in the firewood store...