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Logging and Sawmilling Journal October/November 2011

October/november 2012

On the Cover:

Aspen Planers mill manager Surinder Momrath (right) with long time Aspen Planers employee Shalinder Wahid, who runs the mill’s LeTourneau equipment. Read all about how the LeTourneau equipment is helping Aspen Planers to efficiently manage their millyard, beginning on page 20.
(Cover photo by Paul MacDonald).

Dust audits for B.C. sawmills

Following two tragic mill explosions/fires earlier this year, British Columbia’s major forest companies are creating a third party-certified dust audit that is expected to cover areas such as the equipment used to reduce dust levels in mills, and what can be done to generally create a safer work environment.

Nice growth curve for Nic Pac

First Nations-owned Nic Pac Logging started out with a few pieces of equipment, but has grown over the years, and now has the latest in processing heads, with two 7000XT LogMax processor heads mounted on Deere and Hitachi carriers.

Managing the millyard in Merritt

Faced with limits on the space they have for log storage—and a good appetite for timber from their sawmill—Aspen Planers of Merritt, B.C. has found LeTourneau log stacking equipment to be a good ally in managing their millyard efficiently.

Top of The pack in plywood

The Columbia Forest Products plywood plant in St. Casimir, Quebec, may be the company’s smallest, but it certainly is near the top of the pack when it comes to being resourceful and productive, with a number of changes and upgrades in recent years.

The Edge

Included in The Edge, Canada’s leading publication on research in the forest industry, are stories from FPInnovations, the Canadian Wood Fibre Centre, Alberta Innovates - Bio Solutions, Natural Resources Canada, Alberta’s Agriculture and Rural Development Department and Universite Laval.

What was new…at DEMO 2012 and the Timber Processing & Energy Expo

Logging and Sawmilling Journal reviews what was new at these two recent major industry shows at opposite ends of the continent, DEMO 2012 in Quebec and the Timber Processing & Energy Expo in Portland, Oregon.

Buncher boost

The new Rapid Cycle System (RCS) boom on John Deere bunchers is delivering a productivity boost, generally simplifying and speeding up the feller bunching process.

Ready-made homes

An automated home building company in Alberta is helping to bring an end to on-site framing crews, and could open a new market for direct wood products sales for forest companies and sawmills.

Portland timber/energy show sees a solid turnout

Getting more ROI on your truck tires

Straightforward maintenance checks in tire-related areas such as air pressure and proper alignments can boost the Return on Investment on your truck tires.

The Last Word

The new Wood Innovation & Design Centre proposed for Prince George, B.C., could spur emerging wood use technologies, says Jim Stirling.




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DEMO International was “Iron Central” for loggers


The DEMO International show, held in Quebec in September, proved to be a large showcase for new logging equipment, with over 8,500 attendees on hand to watch the live demonstrations over the three-day show.

The anticipation was four years in the making, but visitors to DEMO International 2012 were not left disappointed as this massive equipment event made its way back to the forests of Quebec.

Over 8,500 visitors made their way around the approximately 2.6 kilometre long loop to take in demonstrations and to see the latest products, services and equipment available to the industry.

DEMO International 2012 was presented by the Canadian Woodlands Forum and hosted by Gestion Solifor on its property, La Seigneurie de Perthuis, located 75 kilometres outside of Quebec City.

The event and massive crowds enjoyed three days of sunshine and the region of Saint Raymond was inundated with an influx of visitors and exhibitors that filled local hotels and restaurants.

Logging and Sawmilling JournalThe enthusiasm from the nearly 100 exhibitors and thousands of visitors alike was an indication that the forest industry is on the cusp of a major revival.

Visitors were treated to live and in-action displays from the leaders of the industry. Some of the country’s best operators were at the controls of these massive machines, which enabled buyers to make informative purchasing decisions, based on watching these machines in action.

The crowds were also treated to water bomber demonstrations, logging with horses from Jacques Bournival and the Forwarder Challenge. The Forwarder Challenge was jointly presented by the Canadian Woodlands Forum, Gestion Solifor and SMS Equipment. The Challenge winners were as follows:

1st place - Steve Sirois

2nd place - Charles Pilote

3rd place - Adrien Sirois

The real highlight of the show, though, was the heavy equipment on display, and working in the woods.

John DeereJohn Deere added a sturdier U7 heavy-duty undercarriage to its tracked machines this past July, and the company showcased the undercarriage at DEMO. The larger, heavier physical components of the undercarriage add more track power to the machine, delivering 13 per cent more tractive effort than the standard U6 undercarriage. This improves stability in rugged terrain and improves the lifting ability of the machine, which increases operator productivity.

Harvesters can work more quickly because the machine reaches farther without repositioning, which enables the operator to cut more from one position. Though the U7 is currently an option on tracked machines, customers have recognized the benefits of the optional heavy-duty undercarriage and orders for it have been increasing significantly, most notably in eastern Canada, says Deere.

As with previous DEMO’s, Caterpillar Forest Products had a strong presence in Quebec. The company has introduced the new Cat HF201B felling head with enhancements to improve performance and durability. Available with 40 degrees partial or full 330 degrees tilt, the HF201B has a cutting capacity of 22.5 in. and is ideally matched with Cat track feller bunchers.

The head is more robust as a result of a stronger dual box section frame design, improved arm box structures, stronger pin retention and more use of abrasion-resistant material on the saw base. Hydraulic plumbing has been simplified with a 42 per cent reduction in the number of hoses and a 52 per cent reduction in connection points. Hose maintenance is easier and the opportunity for leaks is decreased, the company says.

SimformotionSimformotion LLC, a leader in heavy equipment simulator training solutions, released the new Cat Simulators for the FM Log Loader System for forestry at DEMO.

The new Log Loader Simulation Trainer is set in a forest environment where operators can learn the same machine applications found on actual forest production sites, in the safety of the virtual environment.

A realistic training experience is delivered through the use of authentic controls combined with simulated training exercises. The FM Log Loader teaches control familiarization, how to perform a machine walkaround, log handling, loading and off-loading the machine from a low-boy trailer, shovel logging, loading and unloading the log trailer, sorting, and a special open training mode.

Deloupe inc. revealed its new project called Concept GO! at DEMO.

Deloupe’s engineers, supported by specialists in road transport, have designed and built what will become, according to the company, a new standard for logging transport. Concept GO! is currently undergoing off and on-road tests.

Concept GO! will be a completely modular logging trailer, adaptable to the specific needs of a carrier. Deloupe is developing a multi-function forestry trailer on a standard platform. The backbone of this innovation consists of stakes and bunks easily movable by the user, to meet different conditions of transport and delivery.

According to Deloupe, the possible configurations are virtually limitless and allow users to carry, and deliver, all lengths of wood and dimensions with a single model trailer.

WaratahWaratah’s booth at DEMO featured an interactive tent offering multiple static and 3D simulators of Waratah’s TimberRite Measuring and Control system. The system provides additional value to Waratah customers—this automation system is designed for North American logging applications and has the added features and power to meet the demands for increased operator and machine work statistics, as well as full productivity reports on various levels.

Waratah also featured the new 2 roller H270 harvester, a fresh new design offering customers a proven 2 roller Waratah head design for typical small to medium size timber CTL applications. Equipped with a Supercut SC100 saw and the new high flow characteristic EVO 2 valve, the H270 will bring new levels in high productivity to Canadian forests, says the company.

CBICBI successfully demonstrated an in-woods pulp quality chip processing system, the Magnum Force Flail 604 and Disc Chipper 754, at DEMO. The unique features of these machines, and quality high production processing of hard and softwood trees, was met with great interest by attendees, says the company.

In addition, CBI also ran their extremely rugged ChipMax 484T drum chipper which produces fuel quality chips for the biomass market, and the easily transportable Magnum Force 5800T grinder, which processes a mixed pile of forestry debris at impressive production rates into boiler fuel.

Rotobec introduced the company’s Combination Grapples which feature the durability, reliability and productivity the company’s tough handling equipment is known for.

The Combination Grapples are used to handle short wood, logs or tree length wood. These bypassing grapples are used when a combination of wood types must be handled by one grapple.

The grapples feature high-pressure cylinders with sealed bushings. There are replaceable jaw tips on most models, made from high-wear resistance steel.

The jaw curvature and shape allows for optimal rolling of logs. The jaws bypass to handle small logs or bundles.

The Combination Grapples are said to offer simple maintenance with easy access greasing points. There are mechanical stops for both grapple open and close on most models, to help prevent damage to the hydraulic cylinder during operation.

DEMO marked the public debut of Peterson’s new 6830 four-flail chain debarker which was paired with their new 7900EL disc chipper. Designed for high volume, clean pulp and paper chip operations, the new duo was well received with customers anxious to see Peterson’s new offerings.

“We were very excited with the international traffic at this show with customers from South America, Australia, and Canada, who are the ideal customers for these machines” said Michael Spreadbury, Peterson’s marketing manager.

The Peterson 6830 debarker and 7900EL disc chipper put on impressive displays chipping both hard and softwood. Designed for long-stemmed trees up to 30” in diameter, the Peterson machines made short work of the trees at the show.

Peterson also had their new 4310B drum chipper doing live demos as well. Peterson’s tracked version of their drum chipper is proving popular with biomass and land clearing applications that need a machine that is very maneuverable, but still has the power to be able to handle the variety of feedstock that they may encounter on a daily basis.

PonsseThe Bear 8w harvester that Ponsse had at DEMO offers extreme performance for heavyweight timber harvesting. Its key strengths include what the company says are unparalleled motor and hydraulics efficiency, Ponsse’s most powerful crane ever and the durable Ponsse H8 harvester head.

Thanks to its usability and reliability, the Bear 8w meets all the special demands set on a first-class harvester, says Ponsse. The product development is based on Ponsse’s extensive experience and close cooperation with customers and other experts. The new PONSSE Bear 8w harvester performs best in stands with bigger trees. Its well-thought-out features enable quick, precise and safe handling of heavy trees in demanding terrain and conditions. The exceptionally powerful crane uses two slewing motors, which guarantees enormous slewing power, says the company.

TigercatTigercat was in full force at DEMO. Not only did the company bring a full complement of machines including feller bunchers, harvesters, skidders, forwarders, the 480 mulcher and the 880 logger, Tigercat also debuted an all-new machine.

The live demonstrations consisted of two separate applications, a softwood clear fell and a hardwood partial cut. On the softwood side, the felling was accomplished with a Tigercat H845C harvester equipped with a Log Max 7000XT head and forwarded to roadside with the 20-tonne capacity 1075B forwarder.

On the hardwood side, an 822C equipped with Tigercat’s new FC5185 bar saw felled. A 630D skidder pulled to roadside where the wood was processed with an H855C harvester equipped with Tigercat’s TH575 harvesting head. Tigercat also pulled full tree hardwood to a CBI flail/chipper that was equipped with the Tigercat 215 loader.

Of the static machines, the big 880 logger and 480 mulcher received a lot of attention but all eyes were on the prototype 615C six-wheel drive skidder.

The 615C fills a void in the marketplace, says Tigercat. For contractors with lower volumes or extremely tight and challenging partial cuts, a 635D is said to be just not the right machine for the job. With the 615C, contractors can now have all the advantages of a six-wheel drive skidder—excellent traction, high performance in steep and soft terrain and a smoother ride—in a compact package with a lower purchase price. And what will be most shocking to contractors is the drive speed. Tigercat will be reporting more on the speed and performance of the 615C after it hits the field.

PrinothPrinoth demonstrated the strengths and capabilities of the newest member of its equipment line-up, the Raptor 800, its powerful brush cutter. DEMO attendees had the opportunity to see live-brush-cutting events and admire how the operator skillfully but easily operated the Raptor 800 through the dense and rough Quebec woodlands.

The tracked mulcher is equipped with a Caterpillar C18 engine which develops 630 HP and a maximum torque of 2,042lb/ft at 1,400 rpm. The power of the engine is transferred through a patent pending powerbelt system, increasing the power of the mulcher head.

KomatsuAt DEMO, Komatsu featured its 911.5 EPA Tier 4 interim compliant harvester, which replaces the 911.4 harvester. The 911.5 offers power of 228 HP, with operating weight from 38,140 lbs.

The primary change to the 911.5 is the incorporation of Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) technology that meets Tier 4 interim regulations. The SCR emissions reduction process takes place “after combustion” to maintain high engine performance. When combined with a high pressure common rail electronic injection system and new pistons, improved combustion efficiency reduces fuel consumption and particulate matter (PM). The Komatsu 911.5 rear swing axle has been upgraded to the new trunion bearing mounted axle used on the larger 931 harvester. This stronger reinforced cast axle has stronger stabilizer cylinder mounts and brake lines integrated into the axle housing. Hydraulic connections have been upgraded to O-Ring Face Seal (ORFS) seals throughout the machine for fewer leaks. Improved hose routing across the articulation joint further improves hydraulic reliability.

Olofsfors generated a lot of interest at DEMO with its new Geared Tightening Tool. The geared tool saves significant time over the standard ‘ratchet type’ tool during track installation and adjustments. This tool features an extension bar that connects to a drill/impact driver that mechanically tightens the tracks. Equipped with different end lugs, this tool works great if different track models are being used or if the tracks are frequently removed and re-installed.

HultdinsHukAt DEMO, Hultdins featured its Chain Grease Pump, which can be installed on a harvester head or other chain saw attachment. The pump is controlled by existing hydraulics (no electrics, no check valves), and its grease container holds 2.6 lb. It has adjustable lube volume (two fixed settings). A simple grease refill of Envirosys Chain Grease with quick coupler ensures cleanliness on the pump. It features a twin pump system; constant pressure controlled feed pump and high pressure portion pump. The Chain Grease Pump has a separate valve ensuring trouble free return of feed oil
to tank included.