The timber industry, Tasmania. A stationary engine for hauling logs by a wire rope on to the tram


The timber industry, Tasmania. A stationary engine for hauling logs by a wire rope on to the tram

Alternative Title

The timber industry, Geeveston, Tasmania



The important hardwood industry or Tasmania is seen probably at its best at Geeveston, south of Hobart. The Huon Timber Co.'s extensive plant includes several sawmills and many miles of narrow-gauge railway. Our series of stereographs commences with No. 8903, showing a large tree being cut down by means of a crosscut saw. This century-old monarch of the bush measures between 200 and 300 feet. The first work had been to clear away the scrub, and then erect a rough platform. The two men Who are now putting in a saw cut will stop when they are about three-quarters of the way through, and, using their axes, put in a scarf lower down on the opposite side. They stop when the tree shows signs of falling, and hurry out of danger. No 8966 shows the tree in the act of falling. It brings down with it a mass of undergrowth, lopping off huge branches of other trees as though with a knife, and on rare occasions (when the tree is hollow) smashing itself on the ground. The tree down, the scrub and debris are cleared away, and the trunk is cut into lengths (8935), which vary with the diameter—the larger the diameter, the shorter the log. A strong wire rope is put around the log and a "shoe" of stout bent iron is fastened with a strong chain to the front of the log (8945) to prevent the log bogging. A long, stout wire rope connects the log with a stationary engine (8936). Then commences the winding up of the wire rope, which has numerous side pulleys, one at least for every corner the log has to negotiate. The ponderous log sinks deeply into the soft ground, ploughing up great furrows which are deepened by subsequent logs. The district being an extremely wet one, mud collects, forming bogs in which logs often become embedded. Nos. 8941 and 8957 show this splendidly. In the former the rope broke three times in the attempt to recover a, log fully six feet in diameter, the men having eventually to clear away the opposing earth and mud. At length the log reaches the railway line, and is dragged on to a platform from whence a wire rope hauls it on to a couple of trollies (8962). There it is properly wedged underneath, and firmly fastened with wire rope (8902), ready to be hauled to the mill by a small, but powerful engine (8922). Two or three logs usually form a train load, as a greater number might become unmanageable on the steep down grades (8932). A man on one of the logs, controls a powerful brake by means of a wire rope and pulley.

Spatial Coverage


1 gelatine silver print stereograph (10 x 15 cm) mounted on card (10 x 18 cm)


Copyright George Rose. No known restrictions on publication

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“The timber industry, Tasmania. A stationary engine for hauling logs by a wire rope on to the tram,” Monash Collections Online, accessed July 15, 2024,

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