From splitting to processing to drying, there are a number of innovative solutions available to increase firewood production. In this month’s Buyer’s Guide, we take a look at some of what’s available on the market at the moment.

JAS P WILSON
POSCH

Forestry Journal:

WHEN processing firewood the dream is for straight, max-diameter timber for your processor. However, in reality, a proportion of available firewood timber is twisted, knotted and oversized. This timber can offer a good financial opportunity for those set up to process it into valuable firewood.

Jas P Wilson has a range of professional machines to complement your firewood processor – an additional machine to process this non-uniform, typically difficult timber in a way which makes it not only possible, but comfortable and profitable.

The Posch AutoLogger 420 is JAS P Wilson’s flagship machine for dealing with high volumes of large-diameter arb waste, sawn timber offcuts, windblown trees and site clearance waste as the machine will accept pre-cut timber rounds of up to 42 cm in diameter, or split halves of up to 80 cm. Oversized timber above this size (81 cm+) can be split down further beforehand with a log splitter, such as the Posch HydroCombi 16, and then processed through the AutoLogger. The rounds of timber are often already being produced through tree surgery work. Many arb tasks result in large rings from the trunk and larger limbs – something which up until now have been very time-consuming to convert into uniform logs, until Posch added this model to its range. This machine can be set to automatically split these chunks into a pre-set log size with 12T of force, allowing the operator to feed the machine and simultaneously work a nearby log splitter.

If you’re looking for a machine to convert smaller rounds of up to 25 cm in diameter into kindling sticks, then a Posch AutoSplit 250 is the ideal machine for the job. It also splits automatically to a pre-set size with 5T of splitting force. It can be set to make fine kindling or logs, with an edge thickness of anywhere between 1 and 18 cm. The AutoSplit can also be ordered as the 350 spec model, capable of processing up to 35 cm diameter with 10T of splitting force.

On the smaller-diameter timber where no splitting is required, a fast and powerful PTO, electric or self-propelled circular saw is a good option. Posch has a range of saws with various conveyor options, power sources and all the latest mandatory safety features, to ensure maximum output in a safe and comfortable manner.

These machines are warranty covered and supported with Jas P Wilson’s Advanced Service Commitment, which ensures owners have access to its fleet of regional service vans, large parts stock and a dedicated aftersales service department.

If you are looking for new or used professional firewood machinery, please call Jas P Wilson on 01556 612233 or email info@jaspwilson.co.uk to discuss its range of machines.

www.jaspwilson.co.uk

FUELWOOD
TRANSAW 350 XLS

Forestry Journal:

THE Transaw 350 XLS circular-saw firewood processor has a host of features making it one of the fastest machines on the market for processing logs from timber up to 14 inches in diameter.

Designed and manufactured by Fuelwood at its headquarters in Warwickshire, the build quality and attention to detail is second to none. The machines are available throughout the UK through Fuelwood’s network of strategically placed dealers.

Transaw has been designed with British timber in mind, with a huge infeed area allowing for twisted logs. The transfer tray ensures that even shorter rings roll into the splitting chamber without toppling, and the hydraulically adjustable 0-, 2-, 4- and 6-way or 0-, 2-, 4- and 8-way splitting knives can be effortlessly positioned at the optimum position for each log, or parked out of the way without being removed when cutting smaller-diameter logs that don’t need splitting or cutting rings for kindling machines.

Transaw features a double laser system that means the raw material is fed into the machine at a remarkably fast speed. Tripping the first laser causes it to slow down for just the last inch of travel before coming to rest exactly at the second beam. This means that productivity is kept high, without compromising the uniformity of the finished log length. The range of log length that can be achieved is 8–20 inches (200–500 mm).

The ‘No Grip – No Saw’ feature means that this processor detects whether there is timber to be processed in the infeed chamber. If there is no timber, the saw cannot be activated. This additional safety feature, not found on other processors, is the type of detail that helps Transaw set the standard for firewood processors in the UK.

Capable of producing in excess of 19 cubic metres per hour, the Transaw 350 XLS has a three-position slewing conveyor to move the enormous quantity of finished product away from the splitting knife. With the three positions, continually loading bulk bags or trailers is easy work for Transaw. The 130-litre hydraulic oil tank with integrated oil cooler means that there are no overheating issues, and producing this volume of logs continuously is no problem for Transaw.

To maximise the output of Transaw, or any other firewood processor, Fuelwood offers a complete range of log decks, from a simple log rack to a full 6-metre-chain-driven, hydraulically fed solution with log singulators.

Transaw is the flagship firewood processor in the range of Fuelwood machines which includes: FuelFactory; Wood Cutta; Splitta 400; Kindlet PRO and Kindlet 200. All are designed and manufactured in the UK in Warwickshire.

For more information on Transaw, visit www.fuelwood.co.uk or call the team on 01926 484673

KILN SERVICES

Forestry Journal: Pictured: 6 x 60 m3 drying kilns.Pictured: 6 x 60 m3 drying kilns.

KILN Services has been designing and manufacturing timber-drying kilns from its base in Essex for over 40 years. The company provides drying and heat-treatment kilns for all sectors of the industry, including softwood and hardwood sawmills, pallet manufacturing, fence-post producers, biomass fuel producers, modified timber and research facilities in universities and training colleges.

In recent years the market for kilns to dry biomass fuel has increased considerably. This has been driven by consumer awareness of product moisture and government initiatives to improve air quality, such as the Woodsure Ready to Burn accreditation scheme.

Kiln Services’ latest range of log-drying kilns are designed to provide a fast and efficient solution to your drying requirements and include many special features. For example, the modular design allows for additional modules to be added as log demand increases. This is done by removing the door set, adding further modules to double or treble kiln capacity, then reinstalling the doors onto the extended kiln. Additional modules are then connected to the original control system, keeping the expansion costs to a minimum.

There are two module sizes –18 m3 and 40 m3 – with each size capable of having five modules. This provides for 10 sizes – from 18 m3 to 200 m3 per batch. The high air velocity – over three metres per second – reverses every two hours to ensure the even drying of each batch. Powerful heat exchangers can provide drying temperatures of up to 75°C (depending upon water temperature). The drying efficiency of the process is optimised by the accurate control of the relative humidity and temperature. Unlike single-air-pass systems where low-temperature, low-humidity air is vented continuously, the air is only vented from the kiln when it has achieved the set humidity and temperature. The importance of this can be explained by the moisture-carrying capacity of air. For example, a cubic metre of air at 20°C and 100 per cent relative humidity will only hold 15 grams of water. However, the same cubic metre of air heated to 70°C at 100 per cent relative humidity will hold over 400 grams of water. Therefore, unlike single-air-pass designs, only a fraction of hot air is vented to remove the same volume of water. Fuel consumption per cubic metre of logs dried can be reduced by over 100 per cent as compared to single-air-pass systems.

In recent months, Kiln Services has replaced several single air pass systems, mainly designed around shipping containers, and installed kilns, keeping the same boilers and Renewable Heat Incentive benefit. Typically, a 10-metre, four-module 72 m3 kiln replacing a 12-metre long container increases log drying by 300 per cent while only increasing fuel consumption by 50 per cent, transforming the company’s productivity.

For more information, please contact 01621 785 935 or visit www.kilnservices.co.uk

OAKLEAF FORESTRY

PALAX

Forestry Journal:

OAKLEAF Forestry is Ireland’s leading supplier of Palax firewood processors. Power options include tractor PTO, three-phase electric and combi models. Chainsaw and TCT circular cutting options are available.

With over 60 years’ experience, Palax ensures its machines are strong, durable and easy to use. A carefully designed and built Palax can be your reliable companion.

The Palax C900 is a firewood processor with a circular-saw blade and powerful performance. In addition to the fast blade, the splitting length of the machine is controlled by the patented Palax Optimi system. Together with the automatic rapid motion valve, it makes the splitting operation unbeatably fast.

The machine is equipped with a hydraulic log clamp and a discharge conveyor with adjustable speed. The all-hydraulic control, the sturdy infeed conveyor together with the 4.3 m long discharge conveyor, make the processing of firewood effective and easy.

Palax C750 works with its impressive speed and power to meet all demands with its 750 mm hard-tip blade. The more robust splitting blade and improved gripper make the machine more comfortable to operate. The infeed conveyor and 4.3 m turning outfeed conveyor, both supplied with the machine, keep the wood in motion.

The machine guarantees a brisk working pace, as its automatic rapid motion valve maximises its splitting speed.

The Palax C1000 is a robust firewood processor for tough use, equipped with several significant innovations. The new design makes it easier and more efficient to use. The 1000 mm hard-metal cutting blade makes work quick, clean and maintenance free. The machine is equipped with automatic V-belts tightening, which radically increases the service life of both the V-belts and the entire power transmission.

For further information on Oakleaf Forestry’s large range of equipment, contact +44 28 3833 0011 or visit www.oakleafforestry.com

BERCON ENGINEERING

Forestry Journal:

LARGE rings of timber always presented a challenge because of their weight and size to handle. It would take three to four men working together to stand one of these rings on its side so that it could be cut in half and then quarters with a chainsaw to reduce its weight, so that it could be lifted onto a log-splitter to be made into firewood. This work is very dangerous with regard to modern-day health and safety requirements, etc.

This invention was designed to split large rings of timber up to two metres and above in diameter, 200–400 kg in weight, into manageable pieces of timber of 15–20 kg without any manual intervention from the operator.

This machine works from over or above the timber as it catches, manoeuvres and splits. It feeds itself and in doing so it mimics the motion and the dexterity of the human hand. It uses the slew motion of the prime mover (digger) to move these large rings from where they are lying into a pile of manageable pieces. Because of the way it articulates, it quickly follows the position of the ring of timber to become parallel to it and split it in any position, from horizontal to vertical, and, in doing so, it speeds up the process as it is neither a vertical or horizontal splitter in the conventional sense. Rather, it is a multiple-position splitter that hovers over the timber in the clear view and precise control of the operator at all times.

With the addition of hand controls, it quickly converts into a manual horizontal splitter with safety interlocks, two-handed controls, and automatic return to split these manageable pieces into firewood.

What used to be a physically strenuous job for three to four men can now be done safely by one person.

There are currently machines working in Ireland, England, Scotland, and New Zealand.

For Irish sales and hire, please contact 00353 87 2533101, email info@berconlogsplitter.com or visit www.berconlogsplitter.com

MULTI LOG

EAZI PAK

Forestry Journal:

WITH the log season looming, preparation has begun to get material ready for next season. This includes bagging small nets for both wholesale and retail customers. Much of this is done using log chutes, which often involves lots of lifting, bending, twisting and other strenuous movements. This is a tiresome chore and not popular with regular staff, let alone those specifically employed to net logs.

Eazi Pak firewood systems from Multi Log offer a solution where cut logs from a storage hopper are delivered over a cleaning screen and presented to a packing table. One, two or three operators can work continuously and with little effort over long periods, achieving consistently high volumes.

The problem with employing staff solely to net logs is that it is often all they can do; therefore they need to be organised for long-term shifts, whereas regular staff are an overhead and this can be utilised in short, sharp bursts when appropriate. For example, two people should manage to pack over 500 nets on a four-hour shift. Remember, one extra employee on minimum wage costs over £1,500 per month. A machine on hire purchase would cost a fraction of this.

Being single-phase electric powered, the Eazi Pak is relatively quiet, which allows normal conversation to be held and this, combined with an adjustable log-delivery speed, ensures any operators can work within their comfort zone.

One of the main advantages of the Eazi Pak is that the hopper can be left full and the machine can be fired up instantly by any staff member, which then ensures all free time can be utilised.

Two machine options are available – the Eazi Pak Maxi and the Eazi Pak Midi. The larger Maxi is the standard machine with a storage capacity of over 3 cubic metres. The Eazi Pak Midi is the more compact option with a storage capacity of up to 1.5 cubic metres. Both machines have the same delivery output.

For further details, contact John Wilson on 07730 581291 or sales@multi-log.co.uk. Videos of machines working can be found at www.multi-log.co.uk

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