Over shoulder firewood carrier

Cold has come to the Northeast, and as a result of a few trees being cut down 18 months ago, I have a large pile of firewood to use in my wood stove…

But… I hate carrying the wood in the canvas carrier I currently have. I’d like to be able to use the strength of my back and shoulders, rather than holding the straps in my hands in front of me. I’m a bulk effort, minimum trips kind of worker.

I imagine something similar to a large tarp, with straps that can be picked up and brought over my shoulder, and carry enough wood for several reloads of my stove. A military style “sea bag” would work, but then you have to dig out the pieces of wood from a bag. I think I’d prefer something more open.

I’m looking for either a pre-made item, or plans to make the same. My wife is very handy with the sewing machine, so any patterns would work. She can handle heavy duty fabrics & strapping with her machines… or I can buy something.

I figure this is specific enough for GQ, but could see a move to IMHO once answered, to discuss the techniques/benefits to different designs.


Okay, you are working from a flawed premise: That you can carry more than that load in a contraption/bag on your back/shoulder/whatever.

It’s actually not very reasonable to assume this. Firewood is bulky, and to exceed the load shown in canvas bags, you are talking about a very back-heavy and awkward load. The military bag is carrying less weight, and different weight.

Once you get past the types of load the canvas bags show, you need some sort of mechanical device (such as a cart or barrow).

I am a pretty robust guy, and I haul wood all the time. I can’t imagine something slung over any part of your body that is going to be 'several reloads" of your stove!

Think ‘cart’ of some type – seriously: http://www.waldeneffect.org/20090502wheel.JPG

How about a brick hod, with bungie cord?

The canvas carrier I bought at a store is a little different than the pic. It’s basically a 4.5 foot long piece of heavy canvas maybe 18" wide. One end has crossed shoulder straps, the other end a canvas handle. You slide your shoulders into the straps and then have the canvas hanging down over your chest and thighs like a giant bib. Hold the handle on the opposit end with one hand and load the hanging bib with wood. You end up with a big sling full of wood hanging against your belly; most of the weight is on your shoulders and back and you hold the opposite end up with one or both hands. Unloading is easy; stand in front of the wood box and let go of the handle; it all falls forward in a big pile still somewhat stacked. I can’t find a picture of one, but if you make it yourself make it long enough so your arms are stretched straight out to hold the handle when the sling is full; that way your arms won’t get tired. You can probably make the sling long enough that it’ll hold more wood than you can walk around with… depending on the density and dryness of your firewood.

take 2 canvas carriers on ropes tied to a board/pole over shoulders. like the frequent Dutch image of a person carrying buckets.

Philster, I routinely carry more than it shows in that picture, with the handles spread wide in front of me. This is an awkward way to carry a load. I can much more on my back, than I can in front of me. My classic example is bags of concrete (or salt for the water softener). I can put one on each shoulder, and move them across the yard. If I try to lift them in front of me, and hold them with just my arms, I can only handle one at a time (and even that takes more apparent effort than 2 on my shoulders). A cart won’t work, as the pile is a bit away from the house, and pulling a cart over snow isn’t much fun.

mmmiiikkkeee, that sounds closer to what I’m looking for. Any idea what it’s called so that I can run a search for one?

My wood stove isn’t very big. It holds 3-4 quarter split logs from a 12" diameter tree at a time. One full canvas carrier holds enough wood to fill our “U shaped” holder next to the fireplace, and will last us the better part of a day, provided we’re not running the stove at “nuclear” hot. I’d like something that will last the whole day, with a few logs to throw in when we get up in the morning, prior to refilling our stoveside supply.

The brick carrier is an interesting idea, but not what I’m looking for. Nor is looking like a Dutchman.

Don’t know what it’s called; I just saw it and bought it - works fine for me. It’s a simple enough thing that you’d be better off having your wife make it; that way you can also size it to fit you (mine is a tad snug in the shoulders and could be longer to hold more). I’m going to my cabin this friday; if you haven’t found another version by then I’ll take and post some pics of mine.

TuffDuck Backsaver Log Carrier?

Doesn’t look like it would be any real trouble to modify it into a back carrier, stitch some straps on either side of the handle (looped like a dog leash “handle”, not straight straps).

Loading it while it’s on or putting it on while it’s loaded, without help, on the other hand :dubious:.

CMC fnord!
An Adirondack style pack basket would be easier, if you can find one the right size. (And don’t mind the prices 18 in. x 14 in. x 21 in. h. $6100 :eek:!)

I’ve seen this done with the kind of long narrow tarp that comes with ropes sewn in along 2 of the sides. You lay the tarp out longways and pile the cut firewood sideways along it. Then you stand at one short end, tie the ropes from that end together in front of your waist, put the ropes from the far end over your shoulders holding the ends, and walk off with it. You aren’t really carrying the wood, but rather dragging it along the ground behind you. This works well when there is snow on the ground (which is a good part of the year here in Minnesota).

This is more what I’m looking for, with the intent that I’d haul it up onto my back, rather than drag it…

It’s looking more and more like I should just design something. It can be a winter project for the Mrs. and I. We found a 4 handle carrier http://www.carriercompany.co.uk/shop/item.php?ProductID=27 which currently our template idea.

Of course, the more I look at this stuff, I wonder if it’s more a matter of just putting longer straps on the one I have now.

That’s the one I got. You can definately design something yourself; people in 3rd world countries have found ways to carry a lot of wood on their backs:



A bit more than I’m looking to carry… but that’s closer! And certainly worth a chuckle!