Log Loading Winches for Small Trailers

Advice on getting logs onto a trailer. April 18, 2009

I have a question about trailer loading. Previously, I have been having a neighbor load my trailer with his tractor. This will obviously not always be available. I have been reading the posts about winches. As I have no experience whatsoever with winches, does anyone have photos they could post of this process and a description. I have quite a few logs I want to get out and am tired of pestering my neighbor. I appreciate your help.

Forum Responses
(Forestry Forum)
From contributor B:
NovaJack is a Quebec outfit that has many ideas about loading logs in a small scale operation through the use of winches. Also, I've seen one site where they hook a loose chain to the front and back of a flatbed trailer. Then they hook a come-a-long to the middle of the loose chain (after its looped over the log) and the other end to a point on the other side of the trailer or a tree etc. behind you. That way you're out of harmís way.

I hope you can visualize that process as the log is pulled up two skids onto the trailer. In the direct fashion, I've loaded by hand with my trusted peavey and a couple of wedges. Itís better if you have a nimble footed helper moving back and forth to keep the wedges moving along the skids. Make sure the upper ends of the skids are well anchored. The secret here is to take your time. You may need to drive the cant of the peavey into the log with a whack of an axe.

From contributor J:
I have loaded many logs using a hand winch mounted on the front of my trailer. I usually use two ramps on the side. I use two oak 2"x8" 12 feet long. Make sure you use something substantial to hold the weight of your logs. If the logs are under 20" I usually just use a cant hook to load as it is quicker. For the bigger logs I stretch the cable out. I place a snatch block in the center of the trailer to run cable through. I hook snatch block to suspension on the opposite side that I am loading on with a chain. Run the cable through a block over the top of the log and go underneath back to the trailer. As you crank the winch the log rolls up the ramps. Make sure your cable is very close to the center of the log or it will slide sideways going up the ramps and possibly come off. A powered winch would be quicker but it really doesn't take long with a hand winch. Be careful!

From contributor K:
Attached is a picture of a hoist that I made and attached to a tandem trailer. I plan to install a hydraulic winch instead of the manual winch.

Click here for higher quality, full size image