Lampe & Malphrus Automates Grading Process
The Lampe & Malphrus Lumber Company has always been an “early adopter” of new technology, but they held off when it came to
automated grading and did not install a scanning system when first available. They now believe that the technology and capability
of grading machines has come of age and purchased a Lucidyne GradeScan® system for their mill in Smithfield, North Carolina.
Their scanner is scheduled for installation in late January 2014 and is expected to improve their grade-out making it easier
for them to follow changes in the market. Their design calls for GradeScan to be installed in one building after their planer,
then the scanned boards will cross over to a second building where the trimmer and sorter reside. The mill will take advantage
of Lucidyne’s True-Q® lumber tracking technology to identify boards, and not have to rely on paint or ink systems to mark the
lumber in case they get mixed up. Lucidyne now has this patented technology working successfully in several mills.
IFG: Complex Sorting and Automated Cedar Grading
Idaho Forest Group has taken a bold step. They started with a planer mill in Lewiston, Idaho, that featured two planer lines,
each feeding its own trimmer/sorter line. Then they eliminated one planer in favor of feeding both sorters from one planer.
They also stepped up from partially-automated grading using a geometric-only system to full grading using Lucidyne’s GradeScan®
system. And that means they have to rely on GradeScan to also grade Cedar – another first. Their Lewiston installation was
complete in August, and a second scanner is scheduled for installation this Fall in IFG’s LaClede mill. These mills require
GradeScan to process a large cross section of appearance grades plus Dimension grades. Keep posted for more on Lucidyne’s
automated grading challenges and successes!
Makes its Debut at Collum’s Lumber
Collum’s Lumber in Allendale, South Carolina, has been plagued by the challenge of producing lumber without above and below
grade issues for the last few years. Over a long July 4th holiday they installed Lucidyne’s GradeScan®automated lumber grading
system in hopes that these problems would go away. Much of the lumber they produce includes high-quality appearance grades with
very little wane or small knots. This means that just a small measurement variation in knots or some other defect will nudge the
lumber from one grade to the next. Collum’s has found that their new GradeScan has the capability to see what is needed to do the
job; and it comes with all the “knobs” the mill needs to control all its SYP products, and design new ones. From day one, the
mill has had no below-grade problems and has seen consistency in their Commons and Dimension products. Collum’s now looks
forward to their inspector’s visits to help them continue to “dial in” the system because GradeScan has the ability to go much
farther toward reducing the above and below grade results than they have been used to - and keep them stable.
Four Months was Long Enough for Anthony Timberlands
GradeScan® was installed in Anthony Timberland’s, Bearden, Arkansas, mill in January of 2013. This project moved the mill
from partial auto-grading with a linear geometric-only grading system to total automated grading. The company ordered a second
scanner for its Malvern, Arkansas, site in May. Their production results while operating the scanner during such a brief time
period were so positive that they elected to move quickly toward getting a second system installed. According to Dan Gibbs,
Vice President of Technical Services, “The opportunity cost was too high to NOT buy another scanner.” Their second
is scheduled for a January 2014 start-up. Anthony Timberlands produces a wide variety of Southern Yellow Pine lumber products,
including 2” and 4” Dimension, Commons, Decking, and Timbers
Westervelt Purchases a Second
The successful installation of Lucidyne’s GradeScan® system resulted in significant value uplift in Westervelt’s Moundville,
Alabama, facility. This improvement, combined with consistent operation and the flexibility to change from one product to the
next prompted Westervelt to purchase a second GradeScan system after only seven months in operation. The second scanner will
utilize Lucidyne’s new Warp Tunnel, which measures bow, crook, and twist on the planer outfeed belt. Their first system uses
Lucidyne’s Warp Bridge, however, this newest installation is limited for space in the lug chain area so is more suited for the
Tunnel. This second line will add 6x6 Timbers to GradeScan’s already successful repertoire of Dimension, Commons, Decking, and
other appearance grades in this mill.
Anthony Timberlands Transitions to Full Auto-Grading
A new high-resolution grading system will soon provide stability and increased profitability to Anthony Timberlands, Inc.’s Bearden, Arkansas, mill.
The purchase is consistent with the company’s strategy to improve its grade yield and respond to increased production demands. Anthony’s latest investment
in technology was to purchase a GradeScan® system from Lucidyne Technologies to complete the move to full automation of their grading process. A January 2013
start-up will position the company for the spring building cycle. In addition to some rough surfaced and other special products, the new lineal scanner will
grade Anthony’s Dimension, Boards, Decking, and Timbers. Board tracking from the planer to the lug chain will be managed by Lucidyne’s patented True-Q®
lumber queuing system using no inks, sprays, or other marking equipment. Anthony’s QC capabilities will also benefit with their ability to access all scan data and
solution information for any or all of the last 50,000 boards produced.
Ingram Lumber Company
Effingham, SC: Ingram Lumber Company selected Lucidyne's GradeScan® automated lumber grader for their planer mill grading, trimming, and sorting operation.
The system started up in early March 2012 and is grading all of Ingram's planed products. Ingram spent the last few years closely
monitoring the progress of automated grading and subsequently testing scanners of various vendors before they made their choice. Their purchase also
includes new Lucidyne Trimmer/Sorter Controls and a new M5 Grade Mark Reader. They expect to see a
positive improvement in the value recovery of their
dimension grades, but look forward to the biggest uptick to happen in their appearance products. GradeScan® will integrate with Ingram's existing lineal
moisture sensor and strength grading system to grade MSR lumber and improve yields through e-trimming when additional value is available in the fiber.
Other pluses of the new scanner include its True-Q™ lumber tracking system and its Warp Tunnel method of measuring bow, crook, and twist.
Strength Grading News
The American Lumber Standards Committee (ALSC) has certified a new technology platform for strength grading. The method utilizes a “Strength Grading Module”
developed by Lucidyne and installed in a GradeScan®
automated lumber grading system. The system is
certified to grade MSR and MEL grades using only the scanner
itself, or in combination with other external equipment.
This non-contact technique takes advantage of GradeScan®’s unique sensor configuration and resolution to identify high-strength candidates. The same
technologies consider defect and other fiber characteristics to generate accurate visual grading solutions. A recent doubling of the scanner’s resolution
now makes it possible to find timber break and other tiny defects.
The first application of this technology will be in Weyerhaeuser’s Plymouth, NC, mill. The second will be at Westervelt Company’s Moundville, AL site.
The technology will soon be tested at a Weyerhaeuser mill in Alberta, Canada. Successful testing will be followed by application for certification in Canada.
GradeScan®can also be used with existing strength grading systems to provide significant value uplift through an integration of visual and strength grading technologies.
Tolko Scans Beetle-Killed Lumber
A new high-resolution scanning system is helping Tolko’s Lakeview plant in Williams Lake,
BC process damaged timber. Specifically configured to target the extensive shake and decay issues
caused by the Pine Beetle, Lucidyne’s automated grading system GradeScan® took over the planer
grading process. The new system grades for Dimension SPF products, separates species and interfaces to an
existing Metriguard HCLT for e-trimming MSR lumber. GradeScan® was installed in line with Tolko’s
planer outfeed and cost the mill one day of downtime before they were in full production mode. Boards are tracked from the planer
to the lug chain by Lucidyne’s patented True-Q® lumber queuing system using no inks, sprays, or other
marking equipment. Tolko’s QC capabilities will be enhanced with its ability to access all scan and
solution information for any or all of the last 50,000 boards produced.
for Sonora and Quincy
Sierra Pacific Industries purchases two
more Lucidyne GradeScan® systems; one to
retrofit into its Quincy, California mill and one wide 24" scanner for its new
mill at Sonora, California. Sierra processes several species and
grades, including Dimension, Common, and Decking, with sizes ranging from 1x4 to 4x12 and
6x6 timbers. The Sonora scanner will spend much of its time grading Shop Lumber. The purchase also includes two new RipScans® for
Sierra Pacific mills at
Richfield and Red Bluff.
Westervelt Opts For GradeScan®
The Westervelt Company purchased its first planer mill automated grading system from Lucidyne
Technologies. Their lumber division (Moundville, AL) is the largest Southern Yellow Pine production facility in
North America. Westervelt made this purchasing decision despite a poor economy and weak lumber
industry projections because extensive testing of their lumber with leading suppliers of linear and transverse systems
indicated that Lucidyne's GradeScan® would provide a significantly higher rate of return on investment. The purchase
includes new Lucidyne Trimmer/Sorter Controls and a new M5 Grade Mark Reader.
Read Timber Processing article about this installation. Update:
Westervelt purchased a second GradeScan® system after evaluating their first system for one year.
Sawmill Shares GradeScan® Board Data with Customer
Weyerhaeuser at Princeton BC used GradeScan's
RuleScribe to develop a new product for an I-Joist
manufacturer. Normally, a lumber vendor would have to ship a car load of the
new product to the client for suitability testing before acceptance. In this case their client,
Pacific at Red Bluff, California is also a GradeScan customer. Instead of shipping lumber, the Princeton
mill sent scanned lumber computer files via the Internet. The files were optimized off-line in Red Bluff
system using LP proprietary grade rules. Both parties saved thousands of dollars in lumber
and shipping costs!
Australian Mill trims for Moisture and Low MOE
Our first Australian GradeScan® installation is the
Hyne & Son Tuan planar mill in Tuan, Queensland. Once
Lucidyne's engineers placed the system in automatic it stayed there and has not been switched out since! Hyne's GradeScan system can trim based on moisture
pockets and regions of low MOE. Their output of stress graded lumber has increased dramatically.
"Our product has never been straighter"...They hadn't realized that their graders just were not able to effectively grade for warp because
now the warp system is working so well that all their packages look beautiful.
LP Reduces Material Costs
Louisiana Pacific at Red Bluff, California received a new software module that allows them to scan two new species,
Hem-Fir and Larch DF. Now they can take advantage of reduced material costs for the new species.
GMR Uses Solid-state Lighting System
Lucidyne has designed a NEW Grade Mark Reader that uses the latest in solid-state lighting and
control system design. This Next Generation unit is called the "M5" and is being offered new or as a special pricing retrofit for
existing GMR customers. The most significant features include lifetime bulbs - no replacement required for at least 20 years;
high-speed Internet support; and enhanced color detection--up to ten colors per shift! Click here for more
information on the M5.