Having survived more than seven years of nasty markets, veteran sawmiller Real Arsenault, from Manning Diversified, is upgrading his small-log technology.
Both single-family and multifamily housing starts are expected to post double-digit gains over last year. However, headwinds continue to hold back even stronger.
High tech reaches new heights at planer operations across Canada and beyond.
Canadian Forest Industries looks at the options available to cut trees and process the logs.
Dan O’Brien and Bid Right Contracting have diversified business to prepare for the upswing ahead.
What's Happening in our Forest?...
What's Happening in our Forest?
New VAB Lineal Grading Optimizer at Sexton Lumber...
New VAB Lineal Grading Optimizer at Sexton Lumber
Eltec harvester at work in the Quebec forest...
Eltec harvester at work in the Quebec forest
USNR log loader minds log gap, improves throughput...
USNR log loader minds log gap, improves throughput
May 7, 2013 – Christer Lennartsson is ready to demonstate his harwarder (a combined harvester and forwarder), at the 2013 Elmia Forestry Fair. He calls the machine, "The Beauty", and it is a ten-wheeler that reduces ground pressure and damage with its specially designed weight distribution system. The Beauty is a machine for final felling and also direct loading and unloading at the roadside without any intermediate unloading of the logs onto the ground. It can do this because of its super tyres and patented quick release mechanism, which means that the machine can alternate between using its crane as a harvester and as a forwarder. Switching to having a grapple on the crane takes 10 seconds. “We wanted to create a machine that is always horizontal for the operator and the load," Lennartsson said. "The result is less stress on the machine, it runs more smoothly and the ground pressure is always the same whatever the gradient.” The harwarder was designed by Lennartsson and his colleague Andreas Andersson, it has 10 wheels instead of the usual six or eight, and has a rear pair of wheels made of solid rubber. The rubber wheels have transverse grooves that fit into the shape of the steel bands and allows for powerful and safe machine operation. The steel bands help to distribute the weight over a larger area, reducing the ground pressure and giving the machine ideal accessibility. The wheels also have a motor in four of the ten wheel hubs, so their speed can be individually controlled. He explains that using solid rubber has many advantages in the forest environment. “You avoid punctures, which are a major problem in the forest. The wheels also have some resilience – they aren’t rigid, and the vibrations are distributed.” He casts the wheels in his own mould at home in his workshop, and can customize tread designed, and widths up to one metre. “I wouldn’t say it’s fully developed – the design could be further refined and be a bit more flexible. And then I’d like a business partner of course who could manufacture the machine,” Lennartsson concludes.
May 2, 2013 - Lebanon, Ohio – Fecon Inc.'s new FMA8039 hydraulic powered milling attachment can process roots, stumps and soil up to 20" below grade, and is rated at 260 to 550 horse power. The weight of the machine (approximately 11,000 lbs) keeps the attachment engaged as carbide tools cut through an 80" wide path of material. The 8039 is suited for treating land already cleared of standing vegetation, often through logging, mulching, or traditional land clearing methods. Applications include pipeline construction, commercial tree farm construction and preparation planting, converting land into tillable acreage, or land clearing for new construction. A 39” x 80” large diameter rotor in the attachment has abrasion resistant steel for durability and performance across a wide range of soil conditions. Sixty-four carbide cutting tools provide a balance of performance, wear life, and impact strength in sub-soil applications. Dual hydraulic motors deliver power to the belt-over-gear box driveline to slow the rotor speed, reduce abrasion, and multiply torque to power through material. The standard trap door can be used to help contain and direct material downward, or an optional compacting roller can smooth out and compact the finely milled material. The FMA8039 milling attachment can be configured with custom mounts, hydraulic motors, and belt ratios to fit many brands of track or wheeled carriers including Fecon’s FTX400 and FTX600 track carriers.
May 16, 2013, Vancouver, B.C. – International Forest Products reached an agreement to acquire the assets of Keadle Lumber Enterprises of Thomaston, Georgia. Keadle is a producer of quality southern yellow pine lumber and has been in business since 1947. The mill produces 80 million board feet on a one - shift basis. Interfor intends to increase the mill's kiln capacity and add a second shift to the operation, as market conditions improve, bringing production to an annual rate of 160 million board feet. The Keadle mill is about 75 miles west of Interfor's recently acquired mill at Eatonton, Georgia and is part of the Company's strategy to grow its presence in the U.S. Southeast. The transaction will be financed from Interfor's existing lines of credit, which were recently expanded and extended. The transaction is subject to final documentation and Board approval and is expected to close prior to the end of the second quarter.
May 14, 2013, Surrey, B.C. – Brunette Machinery Company (BMC) announced a change in ownership at Brunette Industries, and have partnered with Murray Latta Progressive Machine Inc. (MLPM) of Surrey, B.C.The companies have purchased the assets of Brunette Industries Ltd. (Head office in New Westminster, B.C.), Brunette Industries Ltd. (Prince George Div.), Brunette Industries Inc. (Atlanta, G.A.), and BDR Machinery Ltd. (Toronto, Ont.). All branches will now operate under the new company name Brunette Machinery Company Inc. (BMC).The company will now have access to MLPM's 60,000 SF manufacturing facility, expertise, and equipment which will help Brunette increase manufacturing capabilities, and enable expanded focus on product development, and customer service.MLPM has been a custom machinery manufacturing, planer mill equipment and parts distribution, millwrighting and machinery moving throughout North America since 1918. Branch details and locations can be found on Brunette’s website, www.brunettemc.com.
May 19, 2013 – The Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement's (CBFA) three-year term came to a theoretical conclusion on Saturday, May 18, but may be continuing thanks to funding from Ottawa.Peter Foster, in an article from the Financial Post, says that it's unfortunate that a deal in which the federal government played no part, and which was designed to impose "private" political regulation, is now being supported by the people's tax dollars. For the full article by Peter Foster visit, www.financialpost.com.
May 14, 2013, Montreal, Que. – Resolute Forest opened a power island that is producing green energy at its pulp and paper operation in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The $65 million project took just over 21 months to complete and has an upgraded wood waste boiler and a 65-megawatt condensing turbine. "The power island is a strategic addition to Resolute's Thunder Bay facility," stated Richard Garneau, president and CEO. "It will reduce the mill's energy costs as well as maximize our local woodlands, sawmill, pulp and paper, and energy operations by fully utilizing forest-based biomass to produce green electricity." The green power produced will be sold to the Ontario grid under a power purchase agreement between Resolute and the Ontario Power Authority. The project received support from the Ontario Government's Forest Sector Prosperity Fund, as well as from the Federal Government's Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program.
May 14, 2013, Vancouver, B.C. – Ainsworth Lumber has announced its financial results for the first quarter of 2013, and says it is benefiting from the early stages of the U.S. housing market recovery. First quarter highlights: Adjusted EBITDA of $62.5 million versus $9.6 million in the same quarter last year. Achieved a strong quarter of production at 408 million square feet. Progressing well towards restarting our High Level, Alberta mill this year. Strengthened balance sheet will support strategic investment in the business. Financial ResultsSales were $141.8 million compared to $85.1 million in the first quarter of 2012. The $56.7 million increase was mainly due to a 70 per cent increase in realized pricing that was partially offset by a 2 per cent decrease in sales volumes. Adjusted EBITDA for the first quarter of 2013 was $62.5 million compared to adjusted EBITDA of $9.6 million in the same quarter last year. Net income from continuing operations was $36.5 million in the first quarter of 2013 compared to $0.6 million in the first quarter of 2012. This increase included a $52.9 million increase in gross profit, an $8.1 million gain on derivative financial instrument, and a $6.2 million reduction in finance expense, partially offset by fluctuations in non-cash accounting gains and losses and income tax expense. For the full reslease visit, www.ainsworthengineered.com.
May 14, 2013, Vancouver, B.C. - Conifex Timber Inc. released its first quarter results of 2013, reporting improvements in several sectors compared to last year. The company reported a net income of $6.2 million or $0.29 per fully diluted share compared to a net loss of $3.6 million or $0.18 per share for the previous quarter. Conifex also announced that it will issue 6,162 common shares at a price of $8.17 per common share according to severance arrangements with a former employee. The common shares are subject to a four-month hold period from date of issue. The company’s lumber segment improved its net income by $9.9 million since the fourth quarter of 2012. Compared to the first quarter of 2012, the benefits of a significant improvement in mill net realizations and moderate improvement in unit conversion costs were partially offset by higher unit log costs and resulted in a year-over-year increase in lumber segment net income of $13.3 million. For the full report visit, www.conifex.com.
A wireless grapple scale improves wood recovery program at Norbord OSB mill.
The recovering U.S. housing market has pushed profit margins up to stratospheric heights for oriented strand board (OSB) producers, whose engineered wood panels are outperforming lumber in the red-hot forest products sector.
Truckloads of raw lumber arrive daily at the Turuss (Canada) Industry Co. Ltd. facility in Chesley, Ont., which opened last summer as part of the China-based hardwood floor manufacturer.
The increasing use of robotics in the manufacturing sector is now being incorporated into the wood products industry.