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Tree Surgery Tools

What Tools Do Experienced Tree Surgeons Use?

Tree surgery is a skilled and sometimes dangerous profession. Essential for carrying out the required tasks and procedures is specialised equipment. Accidents can happen in a heartbeat with today’s high-powered machinery.

The safety of the surrounding property and the tree surgery crew relies heavily on the use of well-maintained, appropriately specialised equipment, all of which must be managed by a certified and qualified tree surgeon. People living nearby or passing by will be requested to keep their distance and barriers can help enforce this request.

A chainsaw can down a tree in minutes, while using a hand saw would take hours of gruelling labour, and a cherry picker can raise the operative to any height to deal with a tree that would be dangerous to climb.

When working with trees, arborists rely on both powered and manual tools. The Tree Surgery Org is committed to being environmentally responsible, which is why we use battery-powered equipment whenever possible in place of gasoline engines, and we only buy trucks that meet or exceed current emission standards.

The truck is the backbone of a tree surgeon’s fleet, as it is used to transport workers and tools to and from the job site, tow chippers, and haul away debris.

Power Tools

  • Chain Saws – A tree surgeon’s defining image is one in which he wields a chain saw! These come in a variety of sizes and require training, accreditation, and experience to use safely.
  • Chippers – A chipper is a large, powerful piece of machinery that converts branches and small logs into wood chips that can be used as paths, garden mulch, or transported to a specialist centre for further processing.
  • Stump Grinders – Stump Grinders use powerful rotating teeth to reduce the part of the tree trunk that remains after felling to sawdust, removing the stump as well as the tree and main roots that grow underground. Grinding out a stump eliminates tripping hazards in the garden and also prevents regrowth and decay from affecting other plants nearby. Stump grinders range in size from the size of a ride-on mower to those the size of a tractor.
  • Cherry pickers are used when climbing a tree would be too dangerous, such as if the tree was dead, the ground beneath the tree was not suitable for ladders, or access was difficult.
  • Radios – Communication is essential in tree surgery, particularly between the climber and the ground crew, and radios are a useful tool. They must be weatherproof, long-lasting, and simple to use.

Manual Tools

  • Axes and Splitting Mauls – Although chain saws have largely replaced these tools for felling trees, they are still useful for splitting logs for firewood and removing brush from the bottoms of tree trunks.
  • Hand Saws – Several types of handsaws are commonly used in tree surgery. Pole saws are used to cut small branches as well as trim hedges and foliage when a chain saw is not required. They can be either straight or telescopic. Handheld pruning saws are useful and are frequently curved to make it easier to access the branch. Small jobs can also benefit from the use of bow saws and crosscut saws.
  • Heavy-duty timber trollies are used to transport large or heavy logs from the job site to the truck.
  • Ladders – Tree surgeons use a variety of ladders in their work, including ladders of varying heights as well as traditional ladders and tripod ladders where a stable base is required.
  • Climbing and Load Bearing Equipment – Tree surgeons employ a wide range of climbing and load-bearing equipment. Climbing spikes, ropes, rigging equipment, harnesses, and friction devices are all part of a tree surgeon’s climbing safety equipment, as rotten or heavy detached branches lowering to the ground can cause serious and even fatal injuries.
  • Blocks and pulleys are similar but serve different purposes. Blocks are built to withstand heavy loads, have a locking mechanism, and can be outfitted with a sling if necessary. To lift heavier loads, cable hoists are used, and friction brakes are used to help the climber control the wood as it is lowered to the ground. Pulleys are commonly used to remove small leafy branches and are used to move lighter weights than blocks.
  • Personal Safety Equipment – A helmet with ear defenders and a visor, suitable outer clothing that will not snag or catch, and specialist chainsaw trousers lined with Kevlar or ballistic fibres (known as “Aramid” fibres) are all essential pieces of personal safety equipment for Tree Surgeons. If a chainsaw comes into contact with the outer layer, these fibres are drawn out of the trousers and into the chainsaw’s engine, causing a jam. The chainsaw will then come to a halt, preventing further harm to the wearer. Leather gloves and steel-toed boots are also essential pieces of personal protection.


The Tree Surgeon Org are independently owned specialist arborist contractors operating across the North West Of England. Covering all aspects of arboriculture and ecology, our tree surgeons aim to achieve and maintain the highest standards of tree services.

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