|The online newspaper for the forest products industry including loggers, sawmills, remanufacturers and secondary wood processors.|
Best Alternative for Measuring Log Deck Volumes
Measuring log decks at a saw mill is not a simple task. Obtaining a measurement using tape measures and a prism pole is unsafe, provides inaccurate results, and takes multiple people.
Date Posted: 2/2/2016
Measuring log decks at a saw mill is not a simple task. Obtaining a measurement using tape measures and a prism pole is unsafe, provides inaccurate results, and takes multiple people. Conventional methods just aren’t cutting it anymore and are not able to address real world problems efficiently.
John Calkins, a bureau log scaler for 30 years, was responsible for log and chip quality for a north-west lumber company. Like most log scalers, John wanted to know precisely how many board feet are contained in the inventory of logs and the board feet of lumber out the door in order to monitor yield and maximize sawmill operations. The need for accurate measurements became critical as logs are removed from a deck and processed by the mill. In order to control inventory, the decks must be accurately measured to calculate the remaining volume. John set out on a mission to come up with a solution that would: 1) Improve physical log deck measuring for more accurate log accounting. 2) Allow one person to take more measurements. 3) Develop a procedure that would be easy to understand and replicate. 4) Devise a method that would be acceptable to accountants and auditors.
John worked with Laser Technology, Inc. (LTI) to help develop a solution that revolutionized his approach to measuring log decks by using the TruPulse® 360° laser rangefinder with LTI’s Log Deck Volume Solution software. With the laser rangefinder, hazards associated with walking around log decks were nearly eliminated. Log yard managers and foresters no longer had to rely on an inaccurate estimate because of obstacles that make it physically impossible to take measurements using the manual methods. “You measure with the laser rangefinder right to the deck…it’s straight forward, easy to understand,” said John. “I can stay in one position without moving my feet and measure a deck 300 feet long.”
John pointed out that the TruPulse® 360° doubled the accuracy to 5 percent or better. With more ‘shots’ with the hand-held laser, accuracy is increased and approaches the accuracy of individually scaling a log, John explained. Because the technology is quick and easy to set-up, provides instant results right in the field, and can be done by one employee, log deck volumes can now be measured weekly. This allows the mills to control inventory and ensures that they are not over-supplied with costly raw material. With the addition of the Log Deck Volume Solution, which instantly calculates the deck length and area as well as calculates the MBF for specified log species and diameters, John was able to immediately acquire the answers he sought out right in his hand, ensuring he did not make any errors.
As the TruPulse® 360° takes measurements, the data is automatically entered into the Log Deck program. The program then calculates the square footage of the log deck as well as board foot volume. With the ability to enter in customized factors, the Log Deck Volume Solution provides instant, accurate measurements and delivers results right in your hand. With quick and easy set-up, the ability to measure from a safe distance, simple to follow prompts, and instant results right in the field, the Laser Technology TruPulse® 360° and Log Deck Volume Solution can help any log scaler know the exact volume of your log deck anytime.
Do you want reprints or a copyright license for this article? Click here
Research and connect with suppliers mentioned in this article using our FREE ZIP Online service.