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the business end of a log skidder
Acrylic on masonite, 17 x 30 inches (2008)

This is a sister painting to Universal, showing the part of the log skidder that actually attaches the logs. I have called it the "business end". This type of skidder is known as a cable skidder.

The "yokes" refer to the method of using a cable and coupling to grasp the end of a log. It is a ball and socket arrangement: each cable ends in a steel ball crimped onto the cable. A coupling slides along the cable, with a slot and socket large enough to receive the cable and stop the ball. When the cable is looped around the log, it is inserted into the coupling. As the cable is tightened, the coupling moves along the cable until stopped by the steel ball. The cable now forms a noose around the log, held in place by the coupling. The cables are drawn up by a winch, raising the noosed logs into the air, and nesting them against the backstop of the skidder. Now the hard part: hauling these cellulose monsters out of the bush.

The number of yokes I suspect is dependent upon the horsepower of the skidder: the more powerful this mechanical beast is, the more it can pull. In this case, there are seven.

The original versions of the skidder were actually a winch and cable arrangement on a wheeled frame, drawn by draught horses rather than a big nosiy diesel.

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