A Notch in Time....

By Tim Ard, Forest Applications Training, Inc.


In the past couple months I have led training workshops and demonstrations in several areas of the country and met several people who have been operating a saw for years. Preparing for the eVideo I watched a passel of videos online that show felling, bucking, limbing and other chain saw techniques that cover and display a wide range of skill and applications. Hundreds of face notches, bore cuts, miss-matched cuts of various configurations are visible on these websites. I have heard statements of how techniques used originated and how it's the way I've always cut, they say.

I have been following chain saw training in the USA very closely since 1983. Even before that, in the late 70's, I remember the name Soren Eriksson in and on chain saw related materials from Scandinavia. Jonsered and Husqvarna had Soren in pictures, films and poster materials back in the early 1970's. Soren made some of the first training visits to the USA in the late 70's working on projects for Weyerhaeuser and Westvaco wood products companies. Jonsered distributor, Tilton Equipment organized many workshops with Soren and Dan Tilton was one of the first to begin spreading Soren's Swedish Logging Techniques throughout our country.


The first time I met Soren Eriksson was in 1983 at a Stihl function but it was in or about 1986 when I finally was afforded the opportunity to assist in putting on a demonstration in South Georgia where Soren was brought in to work with a group of loggers for the Stihlñ Distributor Meier and White Equipment. At that time I was the Shop Manager for MWE and was responsible for technical training. I held some basic chainsaw safety meetings for local dealers and power companies but it wasn't until the logger workshop that my eyes and ears were open to the possibilities and huge need of training for the chainsaw operator. Logging was SorenÕs focus venue but I knew the techniques were something that could change all chainsaw operators everywhere.

Soren Eriksson
  Soren Eriksson

I researched it heavily and it was Soren Eriksson who had pioneered the techniques of Open Face and Bore-Cut into the USA but the real accomplishments of his techniques; Soren Eriksson brought thought, safety, planning processes and professionalism into USA chainsaw operations. 

Soren's major promotion arm in his early days in the states was the American Forest Resources Association (at that time called the American Pulpwood Association) and Dave Zerfoss of Stihl, later US President of Husqvarna. Soren's training really took off when he and one of Scott Paper Company's foresters organized the first Game of Logging.


When I went to work nationally for Stihl was when I began to travel with Soren and organize his training and the GOL events. I wrote the above to more or less illustrate this in the timeline... There was not any use or discussions of big notches and bore-cuts before Soren Eriksson brought them to the USA through his training programs. When I became involved in promoting Soren Eriksson and his training with Stihl and later Husqvarna, I can assure you not many knew anything of what he was doing and fought against the training and techniques in both the eastern and western states.


So from now on, when you make that face notch you have always made, bore-cut to establish a hinge you have always used, after putting together a five step felling plan you've always used-- you can say a quick thank you to Soren Eriksson – a logger and training instructor for bringing them to you. Yes, those logging techniques work well for Tree Care, Logging, Government Crews, Disaster Volunteers and me and you! Every recognizable training organization in the USA teaches with Soren's techniques and training formats. They just make them their own... they think!





Thank you Soren for being persistent in training, techniques and design to make our chainsaw work safer and more productive.



Good Sawing!







Tim Ard and Soren Eriksson GOL Finals 1995
Tim Ard and Soren Eriksson GOL Final 1995