2016 – Various – Reducing Injuries To Truck Drivers in the Logging Industry About The Project – Team 6

About The Project

We were contacted by Madden Timberlands out of Old Town, Maine to come up with a design to help reduce the injuries to truck drivers in the logging industry due to the process of securing loads by throwing straps. Their drivers are getting severe injuries causing them to miss time at work which in turn is hurting the business and putting the company behind. Our goal is to come up with an idea that is convenient and easily usable, while also being able to survive any sort of condition’s that it will be under as the logging industry is one of the toughest in the world.

Shetty, M , “Overexertion Injuries Resulting from Installing Log Load Wrapper.” Retrieved September, 2015

Who We Are

Dan, Ronnie, Nate and Brett


4-25-2016          Today we finished up our new design! We completed the pneumatic strap launcher design and the tension design! We were able to test each and got positive results. We tested our pneumatic launcher at 60 psi which is below our calculated psi and it worked perfectly.

Final Pneumatic Idea

We also completed our tension ratcheting device design and got it mounted on our display table that we will be using to demonstrate it with on Maine Day. We welded the two sockets onto each end of the ratchet and bolted it to the table.

Final Tension Idea

We would like to thank everyone who contributed to this project including Madden Logging, The Advanced Structures and Composites Center, The University of Maine, everyone who donated to our Go Fund Me page and our professors! None of this would have been completed without all of this help!

4-21-2016          We got together today to build our new pneumatic design. All of our parts arrived that we ordered and we started to piece our build together. The new design as we mentioned before will be using air to launch the strap over the load. We calculated that we needed around 70-80 psi in order to get the strap over the load. We are using a 150 psi tank and high strength plastic tubing to create this new design.

Pneumatic Design

We also worked on our strap tension design that we came up with also. Our idea was to weld two sockets into each end of the ratcheting device found on almost all log trailers in order to be able to use an impact wrench to tighten the loads instead of a cheater bar. We built a stand in order to show how this design is supposed to work.

Showcase Table for Ratcheting Device

We plan on finishing the build tomorrow and will have more photos to come! Stay tuned!

4-14-2016          Today we ordered the new parts we needed for our updated design. By next week we will begin to build and test the compressed air design and post photos of it in the album! We are pushing hard in order to complete the project by May! Keep checking back for update

We would also like to thank the Advanced Structure and Composite Center for letting us barrow a 1/2″ drive impact wrench to use during our presentation on Maine day! We will be using it to demonstrate our tension idea!

4-11-2016          We met as a team today to discuss our new design using compressed air. We concluded that we would use a two part design incorporating most of our original components. The top part would be the same with the inner tube and the strap holder while the lower section will become an air chamber with a ball valve separating the two. We will post pictures of the design when we finish drawing them up. Stay tuned!

4-7-2016          After our initial test of using a tension spring idea we decided that we need to combine it with the compression spring to get the force we need to meet our expected height and velocity. We cut down the initial compression spring we ordered to half its length (1.5ft) and created a tube for the spring to slide into(The photos of the setup can be seen in our album). After we tested this new idea we unfortunately got the same results. After some calculations with our spring force we concluded that we will not be able to reach our intended height using springs. The amount of force that we needed exceeded 180lbs, which would require an external tension device. We are now working on a version of our same design using compressed air. We will update you more on this new exciting design next week.

3-24-2016          We returned from our winter break this week and took today to head back to Home Depot to get some more supplies for our design. We have decided to change some aspects of our system around such as going from a compression spring to a tension spring design. We feel good on what direction we need to go after experimenting with our design ideas and soon should have another working prototype to test. We are also in the process of trying to acquire an impact wrench for our strap tension design. For more information about that feel free to contact any of us at our information at the bottom of the page!

2-29-2016          Got together as a team and started to build our design! Put our main outside tube together with both of our top and bottom caps. We also ordered a spring that we think will work with our design and need to wait for that to come in to finish our first proto-type. Our goal is to have it together to test it before we all go on break in order to see what we have to change/work on. We took some photos and videos the build process so feel free to check them by clicking on the photo and video links below!

2-18-2016        After finalizing our main design that we are going with we took a team trip to Home Depot to acquire some of our materials to start building our project! We ended up getting everything that we needed except a custom order part that we had to specifically design. All of the items that we bought can be seen in our photos!

2-4-2016          We are currently in the process of finalizing our main design and working through some details. We are hoping to start building and testing in the next couple of weeks. Once we begin the building stage we will be posting more updates and photos with what our design is and how it is working. We are still currently seeking funding sources and donations for the project if you would like to contribute to it please feel free to contact any of us below. We would also like to thank Charlie Adams for his contribution to our project through his design ideas and knowledge of the industry. He was a truck driver for Madden for 45 years and has been very helpful with understanding what drivers would want for a solution. Stay tuned for more updates coming.         

1-22-16           Second semester has started for us and we are ready to continue on our capstone. We would like to  thank MEMIC for their generous donation towards the development of our  project. We will be posting more updates in the next few weeks with more information on what our design is and how we are progressing on it. We are currently still seeking some potential sponsors that would be willing to donate towards our project as well, if interested please see our contact information below in our Point of Contact section.

12-9-15            Completed and submitted our interim report number two to end our first semester of the project. This                             report included our 4 design ideas, budget analysis, hours put into the project and our future outlook                             on the project for the coming months. We will continue working over break to keep the project moving forward and be ready for next semester.

12-7-15            Sent out a proposal to potential sponsors seeking either monetary or material help towards our                                         project. It described what we were doing, who were doing it for and what we are looking for in terms of donations.

11-19-15           We are continuing to come up with design ideas and critique our current ones. We now have a                                           complete preliminary report that we can send to our client for their revision. We are also in the                                          process of reaching out to potential sponsor sources for our project. We have also created a YouTube page for our videos that you can view by clicking on the videos link below!

11-7-15             Went on an active site visit in Milford, ME to observe the conditions that the logging trucks and                                         drivers are having to work in. We were able to interview two different truck drivers and get their ideas                             on designs and concepts. We then took this information into our design ideas and made some                                            significant changes. Look under additional content to view photos from our visit.

10-27-15          Finished our Midterm preliminary report for the project

10-09-15            Had our first meeting with Madden Timberlands at their log yard. Introduced the project and talked about potential ideas and preliminary thoughts going into it

Additional Content

To see our photo gallery for our project please click on Logging Photos

To see any videos of our project please click on Logging Videos

To see the videos of our final testing please click on the two links below

75 psi Attempt

50 psi Attempt


Strap Launcher Design:

Strap Launcher Design

Strap Ratcheting Design:

Tension Idea Using Ratchet Block

Team Members

Daniel Jacques:

“I am a senior at the University of Maine studying for a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering Technology and a minor in Electrical Engineering Technology. I have been working at the Advance Structures and Composites Center for three years as a Student Research Assistant during the school year, and this past summer I worked as a Project Manager Intern for Elmet Technologies. I plan on trying to pursue a career in the defense industry or material composites industry when I graduate in spring 2016. In my spare time you will find me outdoors or in a pool. I enjoy going camping, cliff jumping, and a new favorite sky diving; I also swam competitively for thirteen years and now just do if for fun.”

Ronnie Dube:

“I am a senior in the Mechanical Engineering Technology program. I plan on applying what I have learned from this program in the construction industry. I have worked for Sargent Corporation for two summers and could go back to be a Junior Foreman once I graduate in 2016. During my free time you’ll find me hanging out with my son, riding my motorcycle, or working on something with an engine.”

Nathan Bucknell:

“I am a senior at the University of Maine studying for my Mechanical Engineering Technology B.S. degree. I have a variety of experience in multiple industries from engineering to construction and even commercial fishing. I worked as a intern at a mechanical engineering firm this summer and currently work as a product design technician part time for an HVAC company. I plan on pursuing a career in a design and testing field where being able to get out of the office and get hands on is a priority. I graduate in 2016 and I look forward to starting a rewarding career where I can enjoy my hobbies such as snowmobiling, hunting, fishing and traveling.

Brett Taylor:

“I am a senior Mechanical Engineering Technology student at the University of Maine. I have enjoyed my time in Maine and am looking forward to applying the skills I have learned here in the Manufacturing business. I spend my free time golfing or watching football, Go Broncos!”

Point of Contact

For more information on our project please feel free to contact us at the information below:

Nathan Bucknell:                                                     nathan.bucknell@umit.maine.edu

Ronnie Dube:                                                             ronnie.dube@umit.maine.edu

Daniel Jacques:                                                        daniel.jacques@umit.maine.edu

Brett Taylor:                                                               brett.taylor@umit.maine.edu

Keith Berube (Project Advisor):                            keith.berube@umit.maine.edu