Australian
Screen

an NFSA website





From the Bush to the Bungalow (1920)

  1. A magnificent film, showing a now lost way of life and the skills required.

    The men in the 1st clip are 'tree fellers'. (lumberjack is a North American term rarely used in Australia at the time.) Their skillfully built temporary platform allows them to cut above the bole of the tree. The coordinated axmanship is used to create a 'scarfe' which will determine the direction that the tree will fall. Notice that one man is cutting left-handed.

    Removing the bark is to make sawing easier, strands of bark would jam the saw. Using the cross-cut saw also requires skill and coordination.

    In the 2nd. clip, logs had to be carefully chained onto the wagon to prevent them being lost. The tramway is built with wooden rails and therefore fairly uneven. When loading the log, it is being rolled from the platform onto the tram-wagon using Trewella Jacks.

    Clip 3 starts with some more skillful use of a cross-cut saw. Notice that the saw blade has a high polish from constant use.

    The whole process involved a lot of hard work for man and beast, even though the mill itself is powered by a steam engine.

  2. #1 from roverdriver – 11 years, 6 months ago.
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