We analysed the effects of total and forwarded log concentrations (m3 (100 m)–1) and the number of loaded assortments on forwarding; The combination of the number of loaded assortments and their abundance (i.e. forwarded log concentration) affected time consumption most; This knowledge enables improved efficiency by optimizing number and assortment proportions in the various loads required to forward a stand.
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Forwarding has been carried out for 50 years, but much is still unknown about this work. Its complexity comes from both stand features and essential decision-making. Forwarding time consumption is influenced by e.g. log concentrations and number of assortments. Traditionally, focus has been on the total log concentration (TLC), referring to all logs at the harvesting site. However, we focused on forwarded log concentration (FLC), the load-specific log concentration which depends on the assortment distribution at harvesting site and the load-specific number of assortments. To evaluate the effects of TLC, number of assortments in a load and FLC on the loading and unloading times, a standardized field experiment was carried out. Pile and load sizes were constant, while TLC and FLC were manipulated by varying the pile distribution on the test path. For all work elements, the time consumption per m3 was significantly affected by the number of assortments that were loaded, but only the “driving while loading” work element was also significantly influenced by TLC. However, when untangling the intercorrelation between tested factors, it was found that the time consumption for driving while loading significantly decreased as a function of FLC and was unaffected by the number of assortments in a load. That FLC influences the forwarding time consumption highlights the need to study the effects of combining various assortment proportions in a load. Such knowledge will enable analysis of the most efficient number and assortment proportions to combine in the various loads required to forward a given stand.