Callander relies on German technique for log handling

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Holtec For more than 50 years the family enterprise JAMES CALLANDER & Sons has run a sawmill in the South Scottish Falkirk. The enterprise grew continuously for years and had already come to its limits at the existing area some years ago. As an expansion at the existing site was not possible, Callander decided for a new site near Kincardine, midway through Devilla Forest, to replace the existing sawmill site and expand the business. The first step was the installation of a sorting line starting in late summer 2011.

The company mostly produces sawn timber for the British building industry and packaging industry as well as for the agriculture. The processed spruce logs are exclusively from the local forest. The wet-mild climate in Scotland provides a quick tree growth and causes butt ends larger than average. Diameters of >700 mm are not uncommonly.

The delivered logs with a length range of 2.5 to 6.2 m are uploaded on a two-part log deck with integrated load separation. After the separation the bars are measured on a longitudinal conveyor. The measurement result determines how the bars are conveyed (top end first or butt end first), reduce yes / no as well as oversized logs and undersized logs - if necessary.
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A v-rollerway below the turning device is used to accelerate the logs in an optimal and safe way. After transporting the bars through a metal detector and a 3D-measurement they are sorted in one of the 20 sorting boxes. For the first time the ejectors at the sorting conveyor are equipped with a new drive system, with which the wear intense and high-maintenance brake motors can be avoided.

In a first step the system is dimensioned for a capacity of 130.000.00 fm/a. In a second step the capacity can be increased by adding a bypass to sort out the bars, which must not be reduced.

The first bars had yet been sorted at the new log yard before Christmas Day. Until a saw line is also installed at the new site, all bars are transported to Falkirk for sawing. Apart from the new saw line, the processing should also be relocated to Devilla. Another peculiarity in this project is the operator's platform. The building has a basal area of 200 m² and spans three floors. The captive wood products were used to build the wooden construction. Bars from trees, which former grew on the site had been sawn and processed to boards. Those boards were then used to clad the building.

"The project was really demanding, because we had to start building on a greenfield site or rather midway through the forest and we had been far away from the nearest public supplies. The result was a real technical challenge. Nevertheless all involved had been working together successfully to cope with all upcoming issues", so Gordon Callander.

Further information to the topics long log optimization, log sorting and sawmill infeeds you can get at

Anlagenbau zur Holzbearbeitung

Dommersbach 52
53940 Helllenthal

Tel.: +49 (0) 2482 / 82-0
Fax: +49 (0) 2482 / 82-25
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