YOU'RE only as good as your tools, or so they say. So it's a good thing Forestry Journal has always been the place to discover the gear worth considering and the tech destined for the bargain bin. 

From chainsaws to helmets, harvester bars to bandages, our team of expert reviewers has put the latest equipment under the spotlight during the last 12 months to help you pick out the good from the bad. 

We've brought together some of our reviews from the year just in time if you are looking for a last-minute stocking filler. 

PS - Some housekeeping before we begin. These are just some examples of the many brilliant products out there. Check out our website or the magazine for more on all the latest equipment. 

SIP Protection's Samourai chainsaw trousers

Forestry Journal:

Chainsaws can be dangerous. You don't need us to tell you that. Having the right protection is vital to ensuring operators limit their risk at suffering any serious injuries. 

That's where SIP Protection's new Samourai chainsaw trousers come in. Costing upwards of £200, depending on which version you opt for, they aren't the cheapest on the market but with good reason. 

"In the weeks that I’ve had these on I’ve climbed in them, dragged brash in them, and waded through a few brambles and haven’t seen any damage to the fabric," is how our reviewer described them. "Perhaps all that marketing talk about these being the toughest chainsaw trousers on the market may just be right.

"[They] seem to be an exceptional combination of both flexibility and toughness in a single chainsaw trouser." 

Read our full review here 

CT Aries tree helmet

Forestry Journal:

What do cyclists and forestry workers have in common? They all like a good helmet... 

Released by Italian company Climbing Technology (CT), the new Aries range of helmets are targeted at those involved in rope-access work, work at height and in building sites for the protection against falling objects and electrical hazards.  

Our reviewer wrote: "While this is not the cheapest combination on the market, it is by no means the most expensive.

"So, for someone looking for a mid-range arborist helmet, the CT Aries Tree would be a good, practical and comfortable one to buy." 

Read our full review here 

HAIX Protector Light 2.0: forestry boot 

Forestry Journal:

Let's move from the head to the toes.

The Protector Light 2.0 forestry boot from HAIX is designed for performing tasks in warmer weather and moderate conditions, while retaining high levels of protection and comfort.

"I spend my days either in first thinning work, putting timber down on the floor, or in the cab of my Logbullet mini forwarder picking up timber," our man wrote. "The boots have been more than up to the task of my changeable routine, and surpassed my expectations for a lightweight boot.

"I think they are very competitively priced also, especially for the quality and heritage you are getting from HAIX." 

Read our full review here 

GB Titanium-XV harvester bar 

Forestry Journal:

Our next entry is a bit of a wildcard. It wasn't new to the market in 2021 but remains relatively unknown to UK foresters, so we decided to put it to the test. 

Needing the perfect piece of equipment to take on a bigger job? Then the GB Titanium-XV harvester bar could be for you. 

According to GB, the bar’s patented 15-tooth sprocket allows for higher chain tensions, improving efficiency. It works together with its unique oil feeder grooves to reduce friction and wear, which extends the life of the tip.

"Now the big question: Would I buy GB harvester bars? Yes, I would," concluded our reviewer. "In fact, I definitely will. I don’t think I can give more of a recommendation than that." 

Read our full review here 

Echo DCS-2500T battery-powered top-handle chainsaw

Forestry Journal:

The times, they are a-changin. Like every industry, the move to electric products is well underway in forestry and many of us are now considering whether or not to take the plunge. 

Should you? Well, we put the Echo DCS-2500T battery-powered top-handle chainsaw to the test this year and were impressed with the results. 

Our reviewer wrote: "Given this is Echo’s first foray into the world of battery top-handles, this is a commendable effort with some handy features not found on other ‘first generation’ saws."

Read our full review here 

WoundClot haemostatic gauze

Forestry Journal:

Unfortunately, sometimes things can go wrong in our industry. No matter how much care you take, a slip could happen to anyone. 

If it does, you'll want to be ready. That's where WoundClot haemostatic gauze comes in. Holding up to 2,500 per cent of its own weight in blood, it is actively absorbent for up to 24 hours, giving help plenty of time to arrive. 

Still unsure? Here's what our reviewer said: "I am quite convinced that adopting this new and revolutionary product is not just a logical obligation, but an ethical must." 

Read our full review