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International Society of Arboriculture

Ask the Rigguy

Do you have a question about using one of our products?  If so, we want to hear from you.  Just fill out the form below and we will respond.  We will also post your question/answer on this page for others who may have the same question.

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Previous Questions Received by The Rigguy

Question - When I try to open the EHS strand to the pattern I see on your web site, it does not look right. The wires stick together.

The RIGGUY - Several things could be happening:

1. The cleaner the strand is cut the easier it will open to the star like pattern. The more burrs on the end of the individual wires the more they will tend to stick together. I use a pair of Klein heavy-duty bolt cutters to get a quick, clean cut.
2. Use a nut driver to open the EHS strand.  This is a good way for people that are not familiar with the system to get started. Select a driver that will just fit over the strand and turn the driver ¼ of a turn counter clockwise. This will break apart the wires and start them in the right direction.
3. Resist the temptation (unless you know what you are doing) to move individual wires. You do not want to bend or manipulate the individual wires out of their natural reversed lay positions. Try re-twisting the strand together and unwrapping it again. The more you do this the easier the strand will open to the reverse lay star pattern.
4. Practice on the ground – It is easier than when you are hanging on the side of a tree trunk!  This process should be very easy, if it isn’t, your doing something wrong. Call me and we can talk about it – 706-340-1288

Question - Sometimes when I am installing the second end of a Rigguy system and I have tensioned it with a come-a-long and a wire grip I cannot get the EHS strand to open to the right pattern.  Can you help?

The RIGGUY - Yes:

1. When you are tensioning the EHS strand, keep the come-a-long as close as possible to a strait line with the strand being tensioned. The more off set there is from strait the more side tension there will be on the cable inside the limb being cabled.
2. If you are still having trouble, cut the EHS strand 5-6” beyond the limb so that you can open it without any side tension on the strand, then just work the pattern back to the limb and install the Wire Stop. ( Note: the  WS block should already be on the strand before this process begins)

Question - Steve, I've got your wire stops ready to go... I'm about to embark on my first DIY tree cabling project -- still trying to figure out how I'm going to tackle it. It's a 70 year old Japanese Cherry in my backyard -- fragile and vulnerable to disease, and I'm trying to save it. Some limbs are leaning too far outward from the mid line of the tree, and I'm trying to stabilize them and reduce outward stress. I'm leaning toward spoke and hub because it's more attractive, less damaging, and it seems it will provide load relief from the appropriate angles, but I've been reading online that spoke and hub isn't as stable and should only be used when the triangulation method isn't possible. What's your general experience with spoke and hub versus triangulation? Is it a reasonably viable alternative to triangulation, or would I be sacrificing too much stability? Thanks.

THE RIGGUY -  It is hard to know with the situation you describe Todd. Unlike most folks, I think the hub and spoke is generally better because it allows more movement which allows the crotches to continue to produce strong wood while at the same time provided the needed support. I think my decision would be made by the stability of the crotches. If they are good, I would use the hub and spoke. If you are concerned about the crotches strength, I would triangulate.
Hope that helps,   -  Steve

PS - You might consider taking some weight off of the leads before cabling