West Australian agricultural engineer Steve Reid was
tasked with finding a solution for the strategic harvest of
plantation grown eucalyptus trees.
Australian eucalyptus oils are extracted from both Eucalyptus
kochii and Eucalyptus loxophleba lissophloia which are
found only in the semi-arid interior of Western Australia. The
extracted essential oil is used as a medicine to treat a
variety of common diseases and is the active ingredient in
mosquito repellants and cleaning products.
The Reids Mechweld Cutting Grapple is a machine mounted
hydraulic controlled mobile tree grab and cutting blade.
The blade design allows for ground level clean coppicing
and has been developed to harvest mature trees without
damaging the lignotuber. Coppicing is a traditional method of
woodland management which exploits the capacity of the
eucalyptus tree’s ability to put out new shoots from the cut
stump and generate a biennial harvest.
Steve first developed the hydraulic grab cylinder and control
circuit system for the rotation of the grapple.
He found using highly efficient worm drives and a series of
switches he could achieve 360 degrees of movement around the
tree and control the opening and closing of the grab arms
to cut and grab the tree for felling.
The hydraulic system is powered by the machines auxiliary
hydraulic energy storage system, which has a significantly
smaller diesel engine and newly designed machine architecture.
Overall, this is more fuel efficient reduces maintenance and
significantly reduces emissions. The hydraulic ram is
compliant to Australian standards AS1940 and AS1692.
Sourced from Bisalloy Steel the cutting blade component is
GRD80 AS-1548. Bisalloy Steels is Australia’s only
manufacturer of high-strength, abrasion-resistant, quenched,
and tempered steel plate. Bisalloy 80 has a typical strength
of 830MPa providing a 100% sharper cutting blade.
Built to last the Reids Mechweld cutting grapple main frame
is designed and manufactured from high quality steel grade
plate, AS/NZS-1594-HA25 and steel grade structural AS/NZS
3679.1-300, AS1163-C450L0. Mount-on framework base is
constructed out of 450grade 25/32mm pro-formed bar and plate,
with 25, 32mm & 50mm plate mounts and 80mm pins mounted to
sectional reinforcing heavy plate back and sides. The main
grab arms with cutting edges are a high tensile steel edge
Bisalloy plate with replaceable teeth edge mounted to weldable
Going forward, Steve Reid and his team intend expanding the
range of purpose-built hydraulic grapples to include log
grapples, rock grapples, finger, demolition, and gp sorting
Reids Mechweld is an OEM Division C Class-2461 Australian
agricultural equipment manufacturing design and engineering
Proudly designing and manufacturing in Western Australia Reids
Mechweld holds Australia Made Certification licence number
13599, is a member of the Australian Steel Institute, the west
Australian Chamber of Commerce and SAI Global.
Manufacturing agricultural, forestry, mining, and construction
equipment in Australia for tough Aussie conditions.
Reids Mechweld can be found at
or phone Company Director and Engineer Steve Reid
on +61 8 9574 4420
Where to buy
+61 8 9574 4420
* All products may not be available at all stores, countries and regions.