By Etienne Nagel, Wood-Mizer Contributing Author
Located in the town of White River, South Africa, Mitrek Sawmill mainly cuts pallet components for pallet manufacturers in the region. Sawmill owner Peet Groenewald began his sawmilling career in 1997, starting with a Wood-Mizer LT20 to get the business off the ground. Later Peet added two Wood-Mizer LT40 sawmills along with Wood-Mizer resaws and edgers to expand the operation even further. The decision in 2017 to upgrade one of the LT40 sawmills with the recently launched Wood-Mizer LX450 twin rail sawmill exceeded his expectations.
The main timber species that is cut at Mitrek Sawmill is Eucalyptus Grandis - a hardwood grown extensively in South Africa for pulp and saw log purposes. With an average weight of 3 lbs/bf (640 kg/m3) the timber is difficult to cut with a lot of warp and internal tension. The logs that Mitrek processes on a daily basis typically range in size from 6” to 31½” (15 to 80 cm) in diameter.
With Peet’s longstanding relationship with Wood-Mizer equipment, he decided to implement a new LX450 into the company to raise overall production capacity. “I also know the company, the service and the product and I based my expectations and projections on what the LX450 could offer me on my previous experience with Wood-Mizer,” Peet shares. “In fact, the LX450 has exceeded my wildest expectations. It’s the best thing I’ve done. I’ll have to reconsider everything that I do. The extra capacity that the LX450 has given me, has forced me to change my long-term plan that I had for the mill completely. My monthly turnover has increased by 25%. Timber volume cut per month has increased by 30%. It has also allowed me to diversify into more profitable cutting activities. The speed and accuracy of the LX450 has allowed me to investigate this profitable market.”
Wood-Mizer is currently the first and only sawmill manufacturer with both a monorail or twin rail design to choose from to accommodate various sawing applications and preferences. “Although we’re battling to keep up with the machine, the options that it has given me have left me astounded,” Peet says. “It’s an awesome machine.”
Wood-Mizer’s new LX450 sawmill features a new design that has never been available from the company before. Featuring many of the same benefits of the world-renowned Wood-Mizer LT sawmill series, the new LX450 sawmill offers a maximum cut width of 34” (86 cm), log diameter cutting capacity of up to 36” (91.5 cm) and log lengths of up to 21’ (6.1 m) with additional beds available for extending the cutting length even further. The LX450 features full hydraulic log handling which includes a bi-directional chain log turner makes it easy to load, precisely position and turn heavy, large diameter logs. A key innovation of the Wood-Mizer LX450 sawmill is the rigid LX FRAME saw head that travels on parallel hardened steel bars. The saw head that references off two rails allows for a very stable cut.
Product models, specifications, and availability may vary by territory.
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