UKTC Archive

Re: Non invasive cable brace

Subject: Re: Non invasive cable brace
From: Jerry Ross
Date: Dec 21 2006 08:03:50
Jonathan Mills wrote:

  By the sounds of it non invasive rope bracing is not very good. I have
  personally never been a great fan of bracing of any kind and have
never specified
Scott Cullen Wrote:

Setting aside the cost or alleged cost of "maintaining" the synthetic type cable braces 
(flexible is a mis-nomer since stell cable braces are flexible in all axes but one; the synthetic 
systems are elastic in that directions as well), I have to ask why one would "not be a fan 
if" cable bracing.

Say a tree has a useful life of 50 years except that there is some issue with 
potential failure of a fork.  Installing a steel cable brace significant;y 
reduces the risk of faiure for at least 20 years with typically no 
maintenance.  Say it's replaced in 20 years.  That's 4/5 of the useful life 
retained for a fairly minimal investment.  40 yars for other trees to grow 
into the iste or neighborhood.  Live canopy and safety bith maintained.  
Whats the problem?

I'd tend to agree Scott, if only arborists (and tree-owners) wouldn't specify cables where they're not needed. The problem is that in perhaps 60% of cases (should that be 80%?) they're fitted across forks that would be perfectly capable of supporting themselves without the cable. Un-braced, the tree will happily accommodate increasing stresses resulting from ongoing tip-growth.
Add a brace, no reaction growth and the tree becomes addicted to the cable.
Which may or may not have been fitted properly and may or may not be maintained adequately.


But if a brace is justified, other than in special circumstances (e.g. where a valuable decay-prone species really needs extra support), I'd go for steel every time.


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