October 17-19, 2018
Portland, Oregon

Veneer & Plywood Manufacturing and Engineered Lumber Workshop

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

9:10 a.m. Opening remarks and introductions by Fred Kurpiel, Program Co-Chairman

9:15 a.m.-9:40 a.m. Critical Issues in the Northwest Forest Products Industry
—Oregon Rep. Dennis Richardson

Sustainable forest management is key to securing our forests’ versatility for the future, providing major watershed and wood products and byproducts, space for our recreation and leisure, guarantor of climate characteristics; and a habitat for plants and animals. The wood products industry has always been a key component of the Northwest economy. Legislative mandates and federal and state regulations continue to impact wood producer companies, not always in a positive manner.

9:45 a.m.-10:10 a.m. Veneer Based Industry Producers Face a World of Challenges
—R.F. (Dick Baldwin), Operating Partner, Atlas Holdings/New Wood Resources

The North American plywood industry, over the past quarter century, has endured a seemingly endless array of challenges. It has been a harsh and demanding operating environment by any measure. Challenges included broad, deep market downturns concurrent with a scramble for market share. The latter was brought about by lower cost competitive products such as OSB. Another challenge was the raw material supply, or how to keep the mill supplied with logs in competition with the environmentalists. There are a number of time-tested practical survival tactics that the mill operator can utilize to overcome these challenges. Realistic suggestions and ideas are offered that cover topics such as leadership as it applies to innovation and competitiveness, effective use of capital, low cost process improvements, and value-added compensation systems. A brief look to the future describes emerging challenges and provides ways the plywood manufacturer can and will survive over the coming decades.

10:25 a.m.-10:50 a.m. Newest Features of a New Turnkey Plywood Plant
—Martin Murphy, Senior Vice President, Raute North America

Raute is involved in some of the biggest plywood plant projects in the world, some of them turnkey projects that have invited the newest technologies into a long-established industry.

10:55 a.m.-11:20 a.m. Peeling Optimization—Lathe Scanning Technology, —Alan Knokey, Vice President, USNR

Lathe scanning technologies continue to refine themselves toward greater recovery and reduced waste in raw material and peeling process. Just when you think there’s nothing more to be gained here, USNR on the foundation of Coe Manufacturing presents new developments.

11:25 p.m.-11:50 a.m. Meeting Challenges and Achieving Successes at a Modern Green Veneer Production Operation
—Scott Weatherford, President, ATCO Wood Products

Achieving success as a producer of green veneer with today’s market
challenges requires unprecedented levels of operational efficiency. As  a
supplier of green veneer to the Pacific Northwest plywood markets, ATCO Wood Products has made tremendous strides in efficiency improvements, which have translated into bottom line results. This discussion will describe some of the successes and challenges that ATCO has experienced in improving fiber recovery, manpower utilization, the use of capital, and overall manufacturing efficiency.

1:05 p.m.-1:30 p.m. Grading Veneer for Structural Applications
—Dan Uskoski, VP Sales, Metriguard

Grading and sorting veneer for proper placement in a structural product is important for controlling the design properties of the final result. As harvest cycles decrease and fiber resources become more variable, sorting becomes critical. Also some high quality species are becoming scarce, making some species thought to be of low quality more attractive. With proper sorting almost any species can be used to produce a consistent structural panel.

1:35 p.m.-2:00 p.m. Dryer Operations—Best Dryer Performance
—Mike Crondahl, President, Westmill Industries

A look into areas effecting veneer dryer performance with an emphasis on principles to maximize production of all types of veneer dryers. This presentation will look at: various methods to reduce energy consumption; best practices for eliminating dryer fires; ways to reduce or eliminate in-plant dryer emissions; common ways to improve uptime run percentage.

2:10 p.m.-2:35 p.m. Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) Development Overview
—Moderator Dominik Wolfschuetz, Market Research and Market Consulting, VDMA-German Woodworking Machinery Manufacturers Assn.

Here is an overview of an important wood system being introduced globally. “Invented” in Switzerland, the commercialization of cross laminated timber (CLT) construction took place in Austria. The technology has spread through Northern Europe, to North America and Asia, to a limited extent. Canada has embraced this system in tall buildings, including code approval and projects in British Columbia and Quebec. In 2015, the use of up to six story frame construction will be included in their countrywide code. At present, there are two structures being built with CLT, up to 19 stories. VDMA members Weinig and Minda have been key players in building these CLT plants in Europe and North America.

2:40 p.m.-3:05 p.m. Resource Efficient Systems for the Production of CLT
—Thomas Kühnelt, Project Manager, Weinig

From the perspective of manufacturer Weinig, this presentation addresses concepts for the product of cross laminated timber, innovative production processes, resource efficient production process, and will include reports on establish CLT projects conducted by Weinig.

3:10 p.m.-3:35 p.m. Practical Experiences in CLT Production
—Robert Falch, Managing Director, MINDA

This presentation offers general cross laminated timber production concepts, automated production process, optimized hydraulic pressing process from MINDA, review of practical experiences, and prospects of further optimized process.

3:45 p.m.-4:45 p.m. Panel Discussion: Meeting Customer Needs
—Moderator Chris Seymour, Region Manager-Western Oregon Region, Boise Cascade; Dick Baldwin, Operating Partner, Atlas Holdings/New Wood Resources; Scott Weatherford, President, ATCO Wood Products

This discussion, which will include attendees, addresses the challenges and opportunities that many companies have seen in the recent Great Recession. Veneer based products continue to grow globally and have seen their substitution by flake and strand products in North America largely neutralized (i.e. plywood and veneer based engineered lumber products sustained much smaller drops in capacity than substitute products. At one time, when a OSB plant was built, the question was how many plywood plants would close. Plywood has moved toward more value-added and consumer specific end markets.