Highlights: In standard cutting stands and thinning areas with windbreaks there occurred three-activity operational cycles. In mature stands with windbreaks the occurrence of stable sequences supplemented with five-activity cycles was noted. Consequently, the operational time in post-disaster thinning stands should be increased by 55% whereas in mature stands it should be 30% longer in comparison with standard stands.
The aim of the study was to characterize repetitive cycles of harvester operation. The study was conducted in thinning, mature and post-disaster pine stands. The sequences of the activities characteristic of harvester operation were described as time series. In order to detect the cyclic variable structure of the analysed time series, the methodology of the single spectrum Fourier analysis was applied. In standard stands, post-disaster late-thinning stands and mature stands, the existence of stable operational cycles with the length of three activities was discovered while in post-disaster mature stands additional five-activity operational phases were noted. Described in this way, the lengths of the operational cycles of harvesters working in post-disaster areas were higher by about 55% and 30% respectively, as compared to standard thinning and mature stands.