Highlands Sawmill prospers with Wood-Mizer

May 2, 2019

Planed and profiled in one pass on the MP360 ready for market.

The road to Harding in KwaZulu-Natal passes through some of the most scenic landscapes in South Africa. Green pastures and plantations are framed by the Ingeli and Drakensberg mountains with timber and cattle farms dotting the valleys and hills.

Highlands Sawmill is located in one of the many fertile valleys outside Harding that is also home to the vast Weza and Singisi forests from where large amounts of sawn timber exit for South Africa and the region.

Highlands Sawmill is located on a third-generation timber and cattle farm owned by the Hogg family, with some 740 hectares (pine and Eucalyptus) set aside for timber production. Geoff Hogg is the current custodian of the farm, which produces sawlogs for furniture and structural grade timber, CCA treated poles and pulp timber for Sappi.

Lee Pauls, Wood-Mizer’s RSA Machine Sales Manager (left) with Jeff Hogg.

The 2018 start-up of the Wood-Mizer MP360 Planer Moulder at Highlands Sawmill added to the sharp increase in production capacity that followed the mill’s commissioning of two Wood-Mizer sawmilling lines in 2016 and 2017.

Line No. 1 uses a Wood-Mizer LT70 Remote with an outfeed conveyor and transfer deck to a Wood-Mizer EG300 edger to produce accurately sawn, 6m structural timber lengths from maximum log diameters of up to 950 mm.

Highlands Sawmill’s LT70 Remote cutting pine grown on the farm.

Line No. 2 is built around a Wood-Mizer Twin Vertical Saw (TVS) and HR700 Multi-Head resaw. The line processes Highland Timber’s small diameter pine logs ranging in size from 150 to 250 mm and up to 4,8 m in length into furniture grade sawn timber.

Progressive and compartment kilns are used for drying while Wood-Mizer Blade maintenance equipment allows Highlands Sawmill to maintain their own blades.

The Wood-Mizer MP360 planer moulder has expanded the mill’s ability to seamlessly convert logs into sawn timber and then into finished wood products for increased profits.http://www.woodmizerafrica.com

“We were in the market for a planer moulder that would allow us to process sawn material into planed and moulded products with better margins,” said sawmill manager Gerhard Pretorius.

“The price of the Wood-Mizer MP360 and the four-sided planing and moulding capacity that it offers, is well beyond anything else available on the market. We can now process sawn material into high-value planed and profiled boards in one pass. In doing so, we have improved our price/cubic meter by 200%.
Wood-Mizer’s Woodworking Machine Range now gives Wood-Mizer the ability to offer a full range of equipment that can seamlessly convert logs into dried lumber and finished wood products.

The range consists of four and two-sided planer moulders, thicknesser planers, a highly innovative universal spindle moulder with an all-purpose table saw adding to the versatility of the range
The MP360 four-sided planer/moulder is a high-production, large capacity machine engineered for professional workshops. It’s a further development of the tried and tested Wood-Mizer MP260 planer/moulder.

Its robust design allows for the processing of thicker timber on four sides offering a maximum planning/moulding height of 230 mm and a maximum cutting width of 510 mm.

The unit’s four cutter head motors range in size from 3-5.5 kW with the feed speed pinned at 3-15 m/minute.

For more info visit www.woodmizerafrica.com

*First published in SA Forestry magazine, March 2019

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