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Logging and Sawmilling Journal March/April 2014

August/September 2014

On the Cover:
Greg Smith, Chief Operating Officer of Gilbert Smith Forest Products in Barriere, B.C.—and grandson of the founder of the family-run company—is proud of the resourcefulness the mill and its employees showed in carrying out a major mill upgrade on a tight budget (Photo by Paul MacDonald).

Landmark Alberta forestry agreement
A deal with Northern Alberta Métis that involves long-term commercial rights to 200,000 hectares of forestlands is said to be a landmark agreement and could be worth millions of dollars to the community, say its backers.

Resourceful mill upgrade
The Gilbert Smith Forest Products sawmill in the B.C. Interior has just wrapped up a multi-million dollar upgrade that included some new equipment, a lot of used equipment—and involved a whole lot of resourcefulness.

Tracking down energy savings at the mill
Weyerhaeuser’s Princeton, B.C. sawmill is seeing some big-time cost savings from a number of energy initiatives the mill has introduced over the last several years—and the operation is continuing to track down energy saving opportunities.

Cars made out of …Wood?
The BioComposites Group plant in Alberta is very close to bringing its unique product—wood fibre mat produced from refined SPF wood fibre—to industries such as auto manufacturing that are looking for greener materials, and cost savings.

Northwest an award-winner

Newfoundland logging contractor Northwest Forest Resources—now run by the third generation of the Reid Family—recently added to their award hardware collection, being awarded the Canadian Woodlands Forum’s Contractor of the Year for 2014.

Old iron on the Internet
B.C.’s Todd Smith is on a mission to photograph and video old logging equipment—and he’s now sharing his work, and the rich history and heritage of B.C. logging, on the Internet at Youtube.

First Nations band gets into sawmilling
The Hupacasath First Nations band on Vancouver Island is now in the small sawmilling business, having purchased a portable Super Scragg sawmill from D & L Timber Technologies, and is looking at other opportunities in the forest industry, including getting involved in logging.

Ready for the upturn
With increasing demand for wood products, Nova Scotia’s Consolidated Forest Owners Resource Management stands ready to meet an increase in activity in the woods, with its high level harvesting and forest management services.

The Edge
Included in The Edge, Canada’s leading publication on research in the forest industry, are stories from Canadian Wood Fibre Centre, Alberta Innovates - Bio Solutions, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, Forest Innovation Investment (FII), NRCan and the Woodlands Operations Learning Foundation (WOLF).

The Last Word:
Court ruling a possible
game changer

The recent Supreme Court of Canada ruling in the Ts’ilhqot’in Nation vs. British Columbia case could be a game changer for the forest industry, says Jim Stirling.


Tech Update: Grinders






 CLICK to download a pdf of this article


By Tony Kryzanowski

PetersonPeterson Pacific delivers 2,000th machine

Peterson Pacific Corp., has delivered their 2,000th machine to come off the production line to Tabeel Trading, based in Australia.

The milestone machine is a Peterson 5000H, a Delimber/Debarker/Chipper, which produces high quality low bark content chips for wood pulp and pellets, processing whole trees in one continuous operation.

“Reaching this milestone delivery is a testament to the capabilities of the 5000H, and our commitment to continuous innovation,” said Larry Cumming, President of Peterson. “The new 5000H is delivering on its promise to our customers, and we continue to look at ways to make it even more efficient in the future.”

The 5000H is designed to make engineered wood chips in the field. It delimbs, debarks, and creates the consistent sized wood chips used in the pulp and paper industry.

The first 5000 whole tree chipper was delivered into Canada in the early 1980s from a concept drawn on a napkin, and the end product revolutionized in-field chipping. Peterson 5000H whole tree chippers are extensively used in Thunder Bay and Eastern Canada to feed the region’s healthy demand for clean pulp and paper wood chips.

Peterson hosted a special delivery ceremony on site for their employees, and the machine was adorned with a special logo commemorating the 2,000th machine and the U.S. and Australian flags.

“We are excited that our 2,000th machine is a 5000H—this is one of our flagship models, and we trust that it will be a valued addition to Tabeel Trading’s operations,” said Michael Spreadbury, marketing manager for Peterson.

“Tabeel Trading is a valued partner and their feedback from the field helps us develop new forest processing equipment. The exceptional performance of machines such as the 5000H prove that in-field chipping is the most economical way to produce clean chips for the pulp and paper industry,” added Spreadbury.

Prime TechNew distribution/support centre for PrimeTech’s Canadian customers

PrimeTech Shredding Equipment recently unveiled its new Canadian headquarters in Spruce Grove, Alberta, near Edmonton, said to be a strategically ideal location for the company in Western Canada.

Prime Tech, part of the Italy-based FAE Group, is a global leader in the production of self-propelled, tracked carriers for forestry, agriculture and roadwork. The company operates internationally with four models: the 160 hp PT-175; 275 hp PT-300; 415 hp PT-400; and the 600 hp PT-600, with Canada being one of its key markets.

Since 2006, the year it founded its Canadian branch office, PrimeTech has worked to ensure a solid commercial presence in Canada. Among all FAE Group branch offices worldwide, PrimeTech Shredding Ltd. became the foremost branch, both for turnover and service for PrimeTech carriers.

Customers and dealers from all over Canada, including some flying in from Ontario, took part in the opening ceremony for the new headquarters. The ribbon was cut by Diego Scanzoni, President of FAE Group, along with Spruce Grove Alderman Wayne Rothe, Alderman Bill Kesanko and the CEO of PrimeTech Shredding, Andreas Lambacher.

Involving an investment of more than $2 million, the new PrimeTech Canadian headquarters in Spruce Grove, on the outskirts of Edmonton, covers a total area of 7,000 square feet, 2,000 square feet of which are offices and 5,000 square feet dedicated to shop and warehouse space. The expansion will allow PrimeTech to meet the demands of its growing Canadian customer base with pro-active efficiency, through an enhanced and more thorough service for spare part distribution and sale of new and used vehicles, says the company.

“PrimeTech Shredding will continue to provide technical support and training services to both historic and new dealers,” says CEO Lambacher. “We intend to be present throughout Canada through a stable and widespread sales and support network.

“To our Canadian customers this investment is an important sign. It proves that we are committed to this market and we are here for the long run.”

During his speech, Diego Scanzoni emphasized that investment in a new facility in Canada is part of the strategy that FAE Group has been pursuing on an international level. “We aim to strengthen the company’s visibility and presence in the world, and want to do so by setting up new sales offices within strategic markets.”

StihlNew lightweight Stihl chainsaw delivers smooth, steady cut

Stihl's new MS 661 C-M chainsaw has a low power-to-weight ratio and is the lightest chainsaw in its engine displacement class, says the company.

It weighs in at 16.3 lbs, has a displacement of 91.1 cc's, and a power output of 5.4 kWs. Contributing to its lighter weight is the stainless steel muffler and ROLLOMATIC ES guide bar.

The engine uses a cylinder with four-channel technology that delivers high torque over a wide rpm range. This results in up to a 20 per cent fuel savings and about 50 per cent fewer emissions.

The chainsaw includes an innovative anti-vibration system for an even more steady and precise cut. It significantly reduces the vibrations felt by the user.

A microchip controls the engine's ignition timing and fuel supply, taking into account variables such as temperature, fuel quality and elevation. Users no longer need to manually adjust the carburetor.

Finally, the new HD2 filter with radial seal is made of PET material that prevents fine dust from entering the chainsaw.

AmscoIndustrial furnace grates and liners from Amsco Cast Products

Amsco Cast Products produces high alloy-furnace grating for GTS, KMW and similar types of biomass furnaces that supply “green energy” to industry.

The floor grating with heat-resistant castings play a very important role in keeping these energy sources reliable and dependable, therefore, it’s essential that these castings are made of premium alloys.

Amsco is a major producer of industrial furnace and kiln components engineered for a wide range of high temperature applications. The company says its many years of experience have shown it how to make use of the best alloys to produce the higher heat-resistant castings for the most reasonable pricing.

It adds that its engineering department is very capable and can also redesign heat-resistant castings for older and obsolete boilers.

Signode introduces handheld coding system

Signode's new Handjet250 is a lightweight, handheld inkjet coding system that the company says offers significant advantages over traditional coding with stencils, hand stamps and roll coders.

The portable system, capable of printing variable information, provides precise message application and high resolution quality on almost any material, including lumber, plastics, metals and cloth.

The handheld unit works for 50 hours per charge and can fully recharge in 2.5 hours.

It has variable messaging capabilities, and is capable of storing up to 10 messages or up to 15,000 total characters. Messages can include company logos. It can deliver up to 100,000 characters per ink charge.

Synchronized ink release results in uniform character placement and appearance regardless of uneven application speed or interrupted hand motion.

This Signode handheld printer uses a wireless radio frequency to receive and store messages created on a standard PC within a 150' range.

TigercatTigercat breaks ground for new manufacturing facility

Logging equipment manufacturer Tigercat has officially broken ground for a new $12 million, 127,000 square-foot manufacturing facility in Paris, Ontario, about 100 kilometres southwest of Toronto.

Several hundred employees, community officials, Tigercat partners and supporters attended an official ground breaking ceremony recently to mark the start of construction and celebrate the company’s continued growth. Tigercat also announced the purchase of an existing 66,000 square-foot plant in Kitchener, Ontario, 40 kilometres north of Paris.

“This is a significant milestone for our company,” says company president Tony Iarocci, who was Tigercat’s first employee when the company started in 1992. Tigercat is one of the few remaining heavy equipment manufacturers in a region that once was at the heart of the industry.

The company currently has seven southern Ontario locations, a large parts distribution and training centre in Georgia, a sales and distribution facility in Sweden and a dealer network that spans the globe, covering the forestry regions of North America, South America, Australasia, southern Africa, Europe and Russia.

The new building will be located on the same property as the current Paris facility, on a previously vacant lot at the northwest corner. The new plant will initially focus on swing machines and cut-to-length attachments including the 200 series material handlers and the 800 series track feller bunchers, harvesters and shovel loggers.

Iarocci says that the new plants are just part of the positive story of the scope and capacity of the ever-growing Tigercat.

“These two projects will increase the company’s manufacturing footprint by 20 per cent. The space is urgently needed for existing demand and future growth. We already have over 1200 employees and 200 or 300 more sub-contractors,” he says.

MetriguardMetriguard’s new rail shear tester evaluates edgewise shear in panel products

The Model 840 rail shear tester is the newest test equipment from Metriguard, especially suited for testing I-joist web stock.

The Model 840 provides a simple, efficient way to test edgewise shear strength in panels to simulate shear stress in wood I-joist web members.

Testing panel specimens with Metriguard’s rail shear tester is quick, easy and safe, eliminating the need for tedious and time consuming drilling and bolting of test rail fixtures as detailed in ASTM D1037. Ongoing shear tests can be done for web stock evaluation for ASTM D5055 Standard Specification for Establishing and Monitoring Structural Capacities of Prefabricated Wood I-Joists.

Operation of the system through a touch screen monitor, keyboard or mouse is simple. A single test specimen is dropped into the Model 840 jaw assembly. The operator-initiated test sequence engages protective guards, clamps the specimen top and bottom to a pre-set force and applies shear force until failure occurs. The load at which a specimen shears is recorded into an SQL database accessible by multiple analytic software tools. After a test is complete, the specimen drops out of the jaw assembly, the loading door lock is disengaged so that the access door can be opened, and the system is ready for the next test.

Premier Bandwheel & Equipment offers bandwheel expertise

The initial focus of Premier Bandwheel & Equipment Ltd., which was involved in the mill upgrade project at Gilbert Smith Forest Products (see story on page 12 of this issue) was to make the best bandwheels it could for customers, always keeping safety and cost effectiveness in mind.

Premier Bandwheel & Equipment primarily makes bandwheels for all makes and models of band mills, some of which are running up to 13,500 SFPM. New bearing housings and arbors for band mills, edgers, chip-n-saws and miscellaneous equipment, carriage rails, cable drums, carriage wheels, axles and related parts are available from the company.

Premier Bandwheel & Equipment has done complete band mill rebuilding to bring older machines up to and even surpassing original manufacturers’ specs. Working with the original manufacturer, when possible, for proprietary parts and technical assistance has been a real asset for the company, it says. Harry Penn of USNR has been a consistent source of technical advice when working on USNR product lines.

Premier reconditions customers’ existing bandwheels and has a good supply of previously used bandwheels, all of which are magnetically particle inspected to ensure there are no cracks or potential problem areas. They are then sand blasted, re-machined, re-crowned, dynamically balanced and repainted safety orange.

Polyester strapping maintains package integrity

Deformation of stacked green lumber during kiln drying costs sawmills significant amounts of money in degraded material and labor. Continuous dry kilns also present their own unique fire and safety hazards.

Polyester strapping from Samuel Strapping is said to be a practical and cost-effective solution. It is safe and maintains package integrity even when the load is being moved around the yard. This eliminates fallen pieces and the resulting safety issues and labor costs. It also helps prevent fires at the continuous kiln by ensuring each load maintains integrity throughout the drying process, says the company.

Samuel Strapping says the other benefits include: reduced downgrading due to twisted, crooked, and warped pieces, which can provide up to a four per cent increase in kiln yield; a secured package right after stacking; it helps maintain stickers in place; reduces labor costs and increases workplace safety, and it increases fire safety by preventing boards from falling into the kiln.

Lumber-WrapNew cap stapler system for lumber wrap

Utility Composites, Inc. has introduced a new and improved cap stapling system for fastening plastic caps and RAPTOR composite staples in one easy step.

The new RAPTOR RC-SH/04 cap stapler accepts 11 mm composite RAPTOR staples. This system replaces the previous cap stapling system, which only accepted 3/8” staples. The company’s research team found that the SH/04-40 staple provided better holding and more reliable drivability than the SH/05-37 staple when using strain relief caps.

With the RAPTOR RC-SH/04 cap stapling system, Utility Composites says timber and lumber companies no longer need to be concerned with rips, tears or staple pull-through in their wrap, or corrosion, rust or staining and degradation by metal staples. RAPTOR metal-free staples will not set off metal detectors or damage saw blades and sanding belts.

The RC-SH/04 cap stapler can also be used with metal staples.

Cat D9TNew Cat D9T dozer delivers enhanced productivity

The Cat D9T dozer has new features that enhance performance, productivity, operator convenience and safety, and serviceability.

The new dozer features a Cat C18 ACERT engine, which meets Tier 4 Final/Stage IV emissions standards, and delivers 436 net horsepower at 1800 rpm. A high torque rise of 36 per cent enables the dozer to power through tough material.

A new high-efficiency cooling package, advanced electronic controls for the power train and implement hydraulics, a quieter cab with enhanced information monitoring, and safety and serviceability refinements define the new D9T.

A new aluminum bar-plate radiator combines enhanced cooling efficiency with added durability and increased resistance to corrosion. In addition, a new air-to-air aftercooler cools combustion intake air to increase combustion efficiency and fuel economy, and a new air-to-oil hydraulic cooler precisely modulates temperatures for optimum performance and component longevity.

The new Advanced Productivity Electronic Control System (APECS) is designed to improve transmission shifting performance, providing a higher level of comfort for the operator and increasing productivity.

A new multi-color, touch-screen Information Display allows the operator to monitor machine performance and adjust machine parameters to tailor performance to the task.

NRC program targets bioenergy systems for stationary applications

The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has launched its Bioenergy Systems for Viable Stationary Applications research program to help industry capitalize on energy from biomass market opportunities.

“By connecting feedstock, technology and equipment suppliers with end-users in a large-scale, collaborative research effort, we can address interdependent biofuel production and utilization challenges,” said Andy Reynolds, general manager of the energy, mining and environment portfolio at the National Research Council of Canada.

“This will accelerate deployment in markets where bioenergy is cost-competitive, such as remote communities and industry reliant on expensive diesel fuel, and cities facing high municipal solid waste diversion costs.”

The NRC bioenergy program will channel a critical mass of expertise into projects to optimize biofuel production and upgrading, and resolve biofuel-power plant compatibility issues, lowering the capital and operating costs for bioenergy systems and components, says the research agency. These activities will be complemented by technical support for codes and standards and techno-economic expertise to help clients from the project design and feasibility stage, to development, integration, testing and demonstration in the field.

Link-Belt excavators now equipped with RemoteCARE telematics system

All Link-Belt excavators sold after April 2014 will be equipped with RemoteCARE, an equipment-based, user friendly management tool that combines telematics with GPS technology.

RemoteCARE provides timely and reliable machine utilization and operational information, as well as 24-hour surveillance and geo-fencing capabilities. The system enables remote monitoring and tracking of machine location, operational performance, working status and periodic maintenance requirements. Operational data can be downloaded on a daily, weekly, monthly or yearly schedule to help users better manage their job requirements and asset investments.

Link-Belt’s RemoteCARE tracks and records both routine and major service intervals for machines and transmits that data to the dealer, insuring that all parts and consumables needed for any particular machine service procedure are quickly and efficiently accounted for prior to the machine’s arrival in the shop.

In addition to service reminders, RemoteCARE provides alerts to potential failure conditions as they arise. When a diagnostic trouble code (DTC) is detected, a warning message appears on the machine display, and an e-mail is automatically sent to the dealer.

The RemoteCARE telematics system is available on all new Link-Belt excavators, and can also be retrofitted to any X3 model.

Autolog offers new approach to transverse scanning

Autolog has been a leader in transverse scanning technology since the early 1990s. Over that period of time, many improvements have been made to their equipment designs to increase lumber recovery, while reducing maintenance.

Autolog’s transverse optimization family (trimmer, cant and edger systems) is equipped with ¼” scan density, 3000 scan/min Hermary sensors. These scanning heads are mounted on heavy duty slotted brackets which can be moved in order to clear the chains from being detected.

In 2009, Autolog introduced an innovative idea: slanting the sensors at an angle to increase board edge detection. Slanted heads offer many advantages:

  • Detection of steep edge wane
  • Better width accuracy
  • Slanted heads stay clear from debris and dust
  • No need for air cleaning system

The first system with slanted heads was installed on a trimmer optimizer in Maine, and every new system sold since then has been supplied with slanted heads.

The same technology applies to edger and cant optimizers, the only difference being that the angle of the scanning heads is different for each system.

Autolog also offers its newly designed user interface with:

  • Windows 7 - 64 bits
  • HD screen resolution
  • Independent user account and custom personal
  • configuration
  • Configurable users’ read/write access for each screen
  • Archive and save parameters manually and automatically
  • Alarms center
  • Advanced board solution analysis
  • Swap language
  • Swap measuring unit
  • Real-time production curve
  • Real-time product distribution

DoranDoran introduces new tire pressure sensor

Doran Manufacturing has introduced a new tire pressure sensor specifically designed for off-the-road (OTR) tire applications.

“This sensor was meticulously designed and manufactured to combat the extreme operating conditions of OTR tire applications.” says Jim Samocki, General Manager of Doran Manufacturing.

The OTR tire pressure sensor includes a patent pending, seal design with a built-in filter to protect internal sensor components from rim conditioners and other liquids present in most OTR tires. The innovative seal design with brass housing provides consistent valve core depression and temperature resistant seals.

A high performance lithium-ion battery is also included for enhanced tolerance to temperature extremes and to provide reliable RF signal transmission for an extended period of time.

In addition to the true innovation in the seal design, the Doran OTR tire pressure sensor incorporates a high-impact nylon housing with a spin-welded cap and proprietary potting material, which encapsulates and protects the internal components from vibration, impact and extreme temperature changes.

GCARGCAR Design introduces the ALSLS log singulator

GCAR Design’s first ALSLS log singulator was recently started at the West Fraser mill in Edson, Alberta.

This log singulator incorporates many new and desirable improvements, both operationally and for reliability, says the company. The machine is comprised of two completely separate modules—each module optimized for its primary purpose. The lower module straightens and meters the logs and then elevates multiple logs per step into a storage skid. The second module elevates and singulates the logs into the take-away conveyor. The upper module contains cam profiles at every log transfer step to ensure complete log singulation, even on all small logs, with no double dealing into the take-away conveyor.

Each module is self-cleaning and completely balanced, with all drive components located on the outside of the bin walls for visible operation and easy access, with all mechanical components oversized for reliability and long life. Residual conveyor requirements are reduced due to the internal chuting, with the machine base frame completely open to the residuals system below.

The geometry of the lower module allows the ALSLS to fit into low basement applications, especially important in retrofit situations, says the company. Custom models are available to suit any situation and operational requirement. Singulating speeds can be as high as 50 LPM, depending on log size.