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Logging and Sawmilling Journal October/November 2011

December/January 2012

On the Cover:

The District of Mission, B.C.’s Forestry Department recently installed Olofsfors Eco-Wheel Tracks on its Cat 525 grapple skidder, and the tracks have been steadily delivering exceptional traction in some extremely steep west coast ground. (Photo by Paul MacDonald)


B.C.’s Central Interior Logging
Association has launched a training
and job placement initiative that will help meet a shortage of operators in
the bush and drivers on logging trucks.

Tackling steep slopes on the B.C. Coast

The District of Mission’s Forestry
Department has found that using
Olofsfors Eco-Tracks allows it to more easily tackle skidding in the District’s Tree Farm Licence 26.

Tigercat tilter buncher takes on slopes in the B.C. Interior

Veteran B.C. steep slope logging
specialists Dennis and Brian Hoobanoff are praising the productivity of their new purpose-built Tigercat LX830C tilter feller buncher, which anchors the company’s logging equipment fleet.

Canada's newest sawmill starts up

The town of Midway, B.C. has teamed up with sawmilling savvy Vaagen Bros. to re-start an idled mill in the town, working on a very tight $8 million budget—but with lots of enthusiasm.

The Logging and Sawmilling Journal CEO Interview: Ken Shields
of Conifex

LSJ talks with Conifex CEO Ken Shields to get some insight on the reasons why he chose to set up a new forest company in the midst of an industry downturn, what they’ve done to improve operations at their two mills—and what improvements are still to come.

Winter tips for log haulers

From doing your pre-trip to figuring out how to manage the weather, Logging and Sawmilling Journal has some solid tips on how log haulers can best deal with winter weather.

Balanced strategic approach to management

What’s in …The Edge!

Included in The Edge, Canada’s leading publication on research in the forest industry, are stories on Canadian Wood Fibre Centre /Natural Resources Canada, Alberta Innovates - Bio Solutions and FPInnovations research projects.

Slow but steady sawmill growth

B.C.’s Bruce Andrews had an intriguing start to being a sawmiller—he traded a boat for a Wood-Mizer mill—but his export driven cedar business has steadily grown, to the point that he is now looking at installing some lumber drying equipment.

The dramatically changed insurance picture for the forest industry in 2012

Tech Update

class 8 trucks

Supplier Newsline

The Last Word

Jim Stirling talks about how the downturn has claimed a number of sawmills, but there are some feisty independent sawmillers in B.C. who are still standing.


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Supplier Newsline

Mobile CrusherMobile crusher helps cut road costs

Resource road users can enjoy significant reductions in hauling and equipment costs by using existing material at roadside or in the ditch to resurface road beds. Roadtech Inc. has developed a patented linear crusher designed to reclaim waste aggregate. The Roadtech V600H mobile crusher is designed to save money, utilizing native material to correct grade, improve drainage and resurface resource roads. This eliminates the requirement for truck transport and pit development.

In addition to producing a well balanced wear coarse, the blend-in fines create a compactable interlocking wear-surface. The mobile crusher operates with its own power source and easily pins on to wheel loaders or other machines. The variable speed arbor, user configurable tooling, and adjustable anvil give ultimate control over production and wear.

The V600H Linear Crusher is a highly mobile force feed rock crusher, but it is not limited to just rock; it can crush all rock types, asphalts, concretes, or any mixture of these materials. A quick hitch coupler and highway legal width make the V600H ideal for transportation to remote areas, says the company.

AusTimberAUSTimber 2012 in March to showcase new equipment—down under

It’s been four years since the last AUSTimber show and the 2012 event being held March 29 to 31 will showcase many new features, as well as new innovations and solutions for the forestry and timber industry.

The organizers say the unique nature of AUSTimber is not to be underestimated, being set in a forest of softwood and hardwood plantations just 15 kilometres from a major regional centre, Mount Gambier, in the Green Triangle region of South Australia, the largest forestry region in Australia.

AUSTimber’s not just about forestry—it’s about processing too. In fact, everything from the seedling to the mill gate and beyond.

AUSTimber is an opportunity to illustrate that though the industry is in recovery, the future looks bright, both in an economic and environmental sense. The show gives businesses that supply the industry the opportunity to display their new technologies and services and gives the industry the opportunity to see what’s new that can lead to increased efficiencies, profitability and sustainability .

AUSTimber 2012 organizers are excited about the range of new machines, technologies, products and services that will be on show to help businesses with efficiencies, profitability and sustainability.

An example is Caterpillar Forest Products who will be hosting displays at both the pine and blue gum sites. The highlight of the Cat display will be the new 568 forest machine, Australia’s first new 500-series Cat Forest Machine.

The AUSTimber 2012 committee has organized a full range of activities for partners to enjoy. AUSTimber 2012 is in a prime tourist region of Australia, surrounded by dormant volcanoes, wineries, the world’s only Blue Lake that changes to the bluest of blue in summer until early autumn, the world heritage listed Naracoorte caves, the Southern Ocean with local lobster, prawns and variety of seafood from pristine waters. For further information about AUSTimber, please check out the website,

FleetmanFleetman Consulting able to cut forklift costs dramatically

In the past, forklift users have had no choice but to contact a particular forklift dealership when they needed help or advice to better manage, acquire and maintain forklift trucks.

The potential problem with this type of relationship has always been the “fox in the hen house” scenario where the loyalties of the dealership sales person would naturally lean more toward the dealership rather than the client, says forklift consulting company, Fleetman Consulting Inc. As well, some dealership representatives may not have enough industry experience to recommend all the right solutions to their clients.

Fleetman Consulting offers an alternative.

In 2008, after spending just shy of 20 years at a Vancouver based forklift dealership, Scott McLeod left his position as vice-president of sales and marketing and soon after launched a company, Fleetman Consulting, that is dedicated to helping the end user achieve a better return on their forklift assets, regardless of fleet size or industry type.

Fleetman Consulting does not sell or service forklift equipment, giving it the freedom to recommend only the very best unbiased solutions to their clients.

Almost four years later, the company has grown one client at a time to become the leading “go-to” company for all matters relating to forklift trucks, particularly when it comes to cutting costs, says McLeod. A long list of client testimonials is posted on their website, he added.

A list of their most popular services includes:

  • On-site fleet assessments which include a written report outlining opportunities for cost reduction, efficiency and safety gains.
  • Forklift purchasing using proven request for proposal (RFP) and / or tendering strategies.
  • Equipment selection to match the right forklift to the application.
  • Dealer negotiations to acquire new or used equipment, parts, service and training programs for less.
  • Maintenance cost tracking and control using their affordable and easy-to-use software.

LiebherrLiebherr log handler offers unique curved-shape telescopic boom

Liebherr log handlers have a maximum lifting capacity of 30 tonnes at an outreach of up to 5.5 metres. A uniquely curve-shaped telescopic boom offers unrivalled reach up to 10 metres and up to a height of 12 metres.

A second key advantage to its log handlers is the possibility of handling logs from below ground level. This comprises the unique possibility of loading and unloading logs from or to barges six metres below the dock. The grapple can rotate 360 degrees and is able to pivot actively forward, backward and sideways.

The LRS 654 H log handler comes equipped with a Liebherr six-cylinder, 362 hp engine, and the transmission is fully hydrostatic. Recommended driving speed fully loaded is 20 km/h and 25 km/h unloaded. Total machine weight is 78 tonnes.

Resources Expo show scheduled to return in 2013

There won’t be a Resources Expo show in June, 2012, but the popular exposition is scheduled to return to its home in Prince George, British Columbia with all its popular features in late April, 2013. Blame the brief hiatus on the uncertain times.

The feedback show organizers have been getting from logging contractors is they’re too busy building back capacity and ramping up their operations in the wake of the recession, explains MaryAnne Arcand, executive director, member services with the event organizers, the Central Interior Logging Association (CILA) based in Prince George.

As well, forestry and resources equipment dealers will have more new and modified machines and services to introduce and demonstrate by 2013. An expansive equipment show should still be an important part of the event. Arcand adds that the CILA is negotiating with a company which has international experience at putting on trade shows to organize that facet of the 2013 Resources Expo.

“There are a lot of uncertainties in the industry right now,” continues Arcand. “By 2013 we’ll be able to see what the new face of forestry looks like.”

Resources Expo began its evolution into Canada’s foremost forest industry show in 1985 as the Prince George Regional Forest Exhibition.

The show’s volunteer board of directors opted for a biennial format after the 1986 event. The regional diversification and growth of other natural resource industries heralded an emphasis shift to the show in 2008 and that was reflected in the name switch to Forest and Resources Expo. The 2010 version was simply called Resources Expo, albeit with a strong forest industry representation.

Caterpillar launches new full tail swing track feller bunchersCaterpillar launches new full tail swing track feller bunchers

Caterpillar Forest Products has introduced its new Series II track feller buncher with smoother hydraulic performance, better fuel economy, a more comfortable operator station and better visibility.

Both the Cat 541 II and the Cat 552 II feller bunchers are full tail swing machines designed for high production clearcut and for clear or select cut in rough terrain. The 552 II is a leveling machine for more comfort on steep terrain.

The Series II features new compensator valve spools in both the implement and travel valve sections. The new valve compensators improve hydraulic stability and flow for enhanced multi-functioning.

Furthermore, the Cat track feller buncher hydraulics can be configured for either high or low flow attachments. This gives owners the flexibility to run any attachment and still maintain fast, smooth multi-functioning capability.

The Series II machines are equipped with the Cat C9 ACERT engine.

Caterpillar Forest Products says its Cat track feller bunchers have the best-in-class combination of lift capacity, swing torque and tractive effort-to-weight ratios.

“With the Series II, we maintained the strong lift capacity of 21,800 lbs at full reach, which exceeds other competitors by 15 per cent or greater,” says Keith Hicks, Caterpillar Forest Products performance engineer. “Ability to handle the larger loads, combined with long reach and strong swing torque means you do not have to move the carrier as much to reach the trees or swing to pile, so cycle times are reduced and productivity increased.”

Brandt Group Of Companies breaks $1 billion in sales

The Regina-based Brandt Group of Companies has surpassed a major financial milestone: $1 billion in annual revenue. To show their appreciation to the customers, employees, and communities who have helped them reach this level of success, Brandt will be giving back more than $3 million before the end of 2012.

Reaching $1 billion in annual sales is an accomplishment rarely achieved by Canadian companies—let alone privately-owned companies like Brandt.

“We owe it all to a great team of employees and loyal customers,” says Gavin Semple, Brandt Chairman. “We couldn’t have done it without them.”

Brandt has some very special things planned for 2012 to celebrate this milestone. The company has launched its “Thanks a Billion” program that will feature special gifts and promotions all year long. Brandt made its first major donations of the campaign recently, with presentations of $100,000 to the United Way and $50,000 to the Children’s Wish Foundation.

Tigercat earns positive feedback with prototype 880 Logger

Last summer, Tigercat shipped its prototype 880 Logger to its British Columbia distributor, Parker Pacific. The machine was delivered to Parker Pacific’s Prince George branch where staff hosted a three day open house for customers to view and test drive the 880. Customer feedback was very positive, says the company.

Tigercat undertook the 880 project to offer the marketplace a purpose-built forestry carrier that solves many of the problems experienced by owners of converted excavators. The project involved a wide range of participants from Tigercat and dealer, Parker Pacific. as well as loader and shovel logger owners and operators. Throughout the design process, review meetings were held with these groups to ensure design work was meeting everyone’s expectations.

The prototype 880 was purchased by Blue Valley Enterprises Ltd. during the design phase of the project. Blue Valley is operating the machine near Vanderhoof, B.C. and Tigercat says that early field results have been extremely positive. From an operating standpoint, the 880 is a very stable carrier with excellent lift capacity at extended reach that performs well beyond its size classification. Operators also commented on the quiet operating environment and excellent visibility.

The 880 Logger can be equipped for shovel logging, loading or processing with a live heel, power clam, butt-n-top or processing attachment. The 300 hp engine significantly increases machine productivity and travel speed relative to excavator conversions while delivering excellent fuel efficiency.

RotobecRotobec features versatile power attachment grapples

Forestry contractors have come to appreciate the versatility of Rotobec’s power attachment grapples for their various configuration options, which allow for a wide variety of uses.

They are capable of handling various items due to multiple jaw configuration options. When feeding grinders, a positioned continuous rotator minimizes excavator travel thus reducing fuel consumption, undercarriage wear and maintenance costs.

Rotobec power attachment grapples are available with a dangling or positioned rotator. They come with a simplified valve-in-head option where the control valves are flanged directly on the core of the hydraulic swivel. There are no hoses between the valves and the hydraulic swivel. The high pressure valves with integrated cylinder relief protection are designed for high flow to grapple cylinders.

Rotobec power attachment grapples feature modular construction using proven and reliable valve sections. They are built with 165,000 psi tensile strength steel, which is 65 per cent stronger than T1 steel.

The grapple structure is ready to receive a bolt-on Roto-Cut saw kit. All RT or RGP rotators are available with extra ports to run the saw.

Kenwood TK-3302PKenwood’s TK-3302P portables now approved at 0.192 Watts for grapple logging operations

Kenwood Electronics Canada Inc. has announced that its TK-3302P portables are now approved at 0.192 Watt output for crane operation and grapple logging applications. The company says that in a market with very limited options, the TK-3302P portable is a cost effective solution for various operators/industries at a fraction of the cost of traditional alternatives.

The TK-3302P with 0.192 W Quarter Watt approval is said to be ideal for a variety of applications including logging applications, shipyard crane operations and construction. With WCB frequencies assigned within these industries, the TK-3302P portable is fully compliant with the low power output to avoid interference.

The compact and rugged TK-3302P portable represents ergonomic and quality excellence, says Kenwood. Based upon a proven design with enhanced features, it has the power and performance to satisfy the toughest job requirements. Those using the TK-3302P will immediately appreciate the ease of use and enjoy features such as scan, built-in VOX and long battery life, according to the company. It has reliable performance in all conditions, thanks to MIL-STD 810 and IP54/55 weatherproofing, performing indoors or out, rain or shine.

New Brunswick forestry company purchases new drying system

H.J. Crabbe & Sons of Bristol, New Brunswick has purchased a complete drying system from Baker-Rullman Mfg. Inc., of Watertown, Wisconsin, to produce wood sawdust and shavings.

Baker-Rullman Mfg. Inc. is a manufacturer of corrugated steel storage bins, hoppers, steel structure and triple-pass rotary drum dryers. The New Brunswick system included the company’s 110-34 triple-pass rotary drum dryer, which was installed by Renewable Solutions of Fredericton, New Brunswick.

“We have a lot of wood industry experience particularly in sawdust and shavings so our triple-pass technology was a perfect fit,” says David Schroeder, Baker-Rullman President.

H.J. Crabbe & Sons Ltd. is a family owned supplier of lumber, chips, sawdust, shavings and bark.