Stimson Lumber Company recently invested $5.5 million for mechanical upgrades at its Tillamook, Ore. stud mill. An estimated 5%, or $275,000, was spent in Tillamook County on local contractors, helping to boost the local economy.

Plant Manager Chris Stirk described the upgraded, computerized saw equipment as an “optimized canter line,” which uses a computer to scan a log before cutting it. The scanner determines which direction the log should face, and the computer directs the mechanical rotator to turn the log to adjust for optimal recovery of usable wood. The new equipment will increase recovery by as much as 10% and is expected to pay for itself within two years.

With the upgraded equipment, Stimson will be able to produce the same volume of lumber, using fewer logs, with no jobs lost. Stirk described future upgrades planned for the Stimson mill, such as a computerized resaw and optimized edgers.

“I want the community to know that we’re not done investing in Tillamook County,” commented Stirk. “This is just the first step in becoming a state-of-the-art facility.”