Two WM4000 Sawmills Replace Four LT40s and Boost Output
"20 years ago, we bought our first sawmill - a Wood-Mizer LT40,” Miroslav Čekal from the Czech Republic recalls. “Gradually over the years we bought more, and eventually we had six LT40s running daily.”
Miroslav’s company is an excellent example of how a sawmill can grow steadily, investing as needed and growing production capacity without incurring too much risk all at once. Even though the company had six sawmills in operation, Miroslav eventually found that he still needed to increase productivity. So he decided to step up to a Wood-Mizer WM4000 sawmill. “It replaced two LT40s and efficiency has increased,” Miroslav says.
Even after the implementation of the new industrial sawmill, their orders continued to rise each year, and so he recently needed to add another WM4000 sawmill to increase their productivity even more.
“We mainly mill oak and poplar logs. We produce poplar boards for coffin producers and some oak lumber for the construction industry, mainly for export, and this particular market is growing rapidly,” Miroslav remarks.
“We wanted to buy another WM4000 sawmill, but the problem was that our production hall was built in such a way that made it impossible to install a typical WM4000 configuration. We needed a machine with a completely inverted timber flow,” Mr. Čekal said.
Miroslav approached Wood-Mizer's agent in the Czech Republic to see if there was any way Wood-Mizer could accommodate this challenge with some custom solutions. “Ever since we got our first LT40, we not only got a great machine, but we also got the best service. They were always available to talk on the phone with us or visit us personally for training or advice. So, I was sure that I could contact him about this problem,” he says.
He wasn’t disappointed. Wood-Mizer’s engineers worked on how to address the space and flow issues of Miroslav’s building, and created a sawmill tailored to his needs. “Wood-Mizer customized the WM4000 sawmill to suit the requirements of our premises, so it was built with reverse hydraulic log handling especially for us”. Accompanying the WM4000, Miroslav ordered an EG300 edger to further improve the capacity of the production line.
These changes delivered the higher production levels Miroslav was hoping for. “We’re now producing 1500 cubic meters of timber monthly,” Mr. Čekal says. “Each of the two WM4000 Sawmills mill 500 cubic meters of timber, and another 500 cubic meters are produced by the two LT40 Sawmills still in operation.”
The upgrades to the industrial sawmills have also resulted in significant savings in labour requirements, blade costs and lower maintenance costs. “Due to the implementation of the two WM4000s, our labour requirements have gone from 10 employees down to only six in the sawmilling department. And we now have less blades consumption, less spare parts consumption and less waste. Our energy consumption remained about the same,” Miroslav figures.
Miroslav Čekal is very satisfied with these improvements in the company, and even now he is thinking about additional machines he can add to keep up with the market. “Our machines already run for 10 hours a day, and it’s not a problem for the machines to work more, but we just don’t want to work 16 hours a day!” He is convinced their next upgrade will again be a machine from Wood-Mizer’s growing industrial product range.