Timber Processing’s May issue provides the story of one of the nation’s newest softwood sawmills’ development and startup. North Florida Lumber closes the “execution gap” at its high production southern mill. Also, Leesville Lumber rides the ups and downs of the lumber market on the strength of a long length niche.
Two panel discussions, one on pressure treated lumber and the other on product certification, are on tap for the conference portion of the SFPA Forest Products Machinery & Equipment Exposition, which is scheduled June 21-23 for the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.
Industry veteran Phil Tedder, former CEO of Centralia Sawmill Co., liked what he saw in southwest Washington when he went looking for a place to build a new greenfield sawmill. And the closer he looked, the more he liked it: The region is blessed with a wealth of productive private timberland from a variety of ownerships, including industrial and non-industrial owners and the Washington State Dept. of Natural Resources.
Several months have passed since you read, “Defining the Gap” in the 2006 July/August issue of Timber Processing magazine. At the end of that article you were asked to think about the fact that the “Execution Gap” can be a $20-$35/MBF opportunity that is totally within your control, and also to consider your plan to go get it.
The decision to specialize in long length dimension lumber was made over four decades ago, when the Williams family purchased a defunct sawmill here, then owned by the city of Leesville. “That was basically a market niche product so prices pretty much stayed at a consistent level,” states Rex Williams, General Manager and one of three principals of Leesville Lumber Co. Inc.
Sometimes things aren’t as they may seem. Take this statement from a land manager: “We’re not in the business to make money managing land.” But O.M. Becton, the recently retired Director of Scotch Lumber Co.’s Private Land Management Services (PLMS), asserts that it’s true.
One doesn’t like to write these kinds of columns, but every now and then circumstances dictate it. That is, the passing on of men who have been prominent players in the sawmill industry, and in particular the Southern lumber industry, which lost two familiar names in late March. One was James (Jim) D. Seaman, founder of Seaman Timber Co. in Montevallo, Ala. Seaman died at age 76 on March 31 following a brief illness.
JoeScan has developed an automated side slab sorter for Plum Creek Ksanka’s twin band sharp chain breakdown in Fortine, Mont. The JoeScan Slab Sorter scans logs from each side using two JS20-SR line-profiling scan heads. The JS-20SR’s onboard Smart Sensor logic uses the profile data and current cant width to determine whether the slabs can be further processed into a board and controls the gates for saving or discarding slabs.