Atlanta EXPO Attracts a Crowd


5/25/2017 9:47:23 AM

The 34th Forest Products Machinery & Equipment Exposition – Expo 2017 – opens its doors June 14 for three days of exhibits housed at Atlanta’s Georgia World Congress Center. More than 180 exhibitors will display the very latest in technology and equipment that advances the wood products industry into the 21st Century.

“This international show promotes the sawmilling industry as high-tech, providing the tools and machinery needed to produce quality products that help build global economies,” notes exposition director Eric Gee. “Like our show two years ago, Expo 2017 is a sold-out showcase of mill upgrades for both softwood and hardwood operations,” he adds.

A visit to the show is enhanced this year with the debut of a new app for handheld devices. The app provides full coverage of the event’s exhibitors, the floor plan, special events during the show, with links to social media. It’s available for Android and I-phones – download on the Goggle play or I-Tunes App Store; search: FOREST EXPO.

“Here is a handheld tool to manage your show schedule in real time,” noted SFPA exposition director Eric Gee. “Visitors can schedule appointments with exhibitors and take notes about what they see at the show,” he added. They can also connect with other attendees and exhibit personnel, making for a more interactive networking experience. “This app is the latest in exposition event technology and provides the user with a wealth of information in the palm of their hand,” commented Gee.

Sponsored and conducted by the Southern Forest Products Association (SFPA) every two years since 1950, this event has traditionally included many of the biggest names in the business displaying everything from sawmill machinery to materials handling equipment, attracting key representatives from the nation’s largest wood products manufacturers.


Hakki Pilke firewood processors are built in Haapajarvi, Finland with over 30 years’ experience. Every year thousands of machines are shipped to five continents around the world. Customers are using the products in varying conditions but mainly for producing firewood professionally for sale. For a manufacturer it is a challenge to fulfill different customer needs with the product, which is why Maaselan Kone listens international Hakki Pilke users and dealers carefully in order to understand the market needs and challenges. All product development is based on customer feedback and extensive testing. Testing is done in close collaboration between the factory, importers and experienced customers.

The latest model in the lineup, Easy 43, is designed for professional wood processing. It is a successor of very popular and globally well-known model Easy 42. Most of the inventions and new features of the new model derive from the requests and suggestions made by Hakki Pilke users. Hakki Pilke distributors were already involved in early prototype testing phase to help the factory to find the right direction in the project. Maaselan Kone finds this kind of close collaboration highly rewarding and successful.

New Key Features Requested by International Customers

Hakki Pilke Easy 43 raises the bar for firewood processing by many world’s first features such as the new cutting mechanism only seen before in forestry harvesters and the delay-free splitting system designed to make processing as effective with both small and big sized logs. “After comprehensive testing in 6 different countries and over 20.000 cubic meters (5.500 cords) of hardwood and softwood species processed, we have developed many long-awaited solutions for international Hakki Pilke users. New ergonomically designed interface and other features such as log landing plates, automatic log infeeding and the patented AC 10 automatic saw chain tensioner are all solutions for the industry’s existing problems,” says Timo Jussila, Development Manager, Maaselan Kone Ltd.

NEW TYPE OF CONTROL
All the main functions are ergonomically positioned on the joystick. Sawing button performs following functions:
- log clamp activates
- saw is activated and lowered
- log landing plates are raised
- log measuring device is retracted

HYDRAULICALLY RETRACTING LOG MEASURING DEVICE
The hydraulic log measuring device retracts automatically during sawing to allow the cut log to fall freely into the splitting groove. The firewood is measured precisely to ensure right sized final product.

LOG LANDING PLATES
The log landing plates ensure that the logs land into the splitting section in a controlled manner. Landing plates can be used in automatic or manual mode. Manual operation enables the controlled dropping of the last piece of log.

HYDRAULIC AC10 – Saw chain tensioner
The AC10 maintains optimal chain tension, preventing it from coming loose or breaking. The correct chain tension notably increases the service life of the chain and bar. The chain can be replaced effortlessly without any tools.

LOG INFEED ASSIST MECHANISM
The infeed assist mechanism feeds in a new log during every splitting motion, ensuring that a log is always ready for sawing at the right time. When infeed assist is turned on processing a log requires using only two joystick buttons.

Resulting productivity and satisfied customers

The new Hakki Pilke Easy 43 is an example of a product boasting many features the end users have requested from the manufacturer. It is very easy to use and reliable in all conditions. It is flexible in terms of processing different type of raw materials from small timber to big knotty logs. Processing is continuous and has no disruptions with cycle time below 3 seconds for cutting and splitting. Improved ergonomics in processor control and log handling enable the operator to work longer without getting tired. Further development will be done in collaboration with professional heavy users.

“Thanks to the new features of Easy 43, processing firewood is now easier and more efficient than ever before”, praises Anssi Westerlund the Managing Director of Maaselan Kone. “In addition, appearance of the new machine follows the modern and user friendly Hakki Pilke design”, he adds.

About Maaselan Kone Ltd

Maaselan Kone Ltd has been manufacturing world leading firewood processors since 1984, and exports 80 % of its products to over 29 countries worldwide, being market leader at many of its markets. Hakki Pilke firewood processors are renowned by professional users around the world for high productivity and fast investment payback time. International Hakki Pilke users are always at the heart of the product development process. For more information, see www.hakkipilke.fi We are expanding our distribution network in the US, contact us for more details.


Moving with the markets is something we’ve always tried to do. So when local markets in Mississippi tightened up back around 2000, we got in the mulch business, then added a hardwood circle mill in Oakland and a scragg mill Winona. After eight years running three operations, in three locations we decided that the time had come to merge into one location, update and modernize our milling operations.

Once we made the decision to build a state of the art hardwood sawmill to replace the multiple smaller mills we were running, the search began. And it was a long one. I traveled for a year and a half across the eastern United States and Canada visiting sawmills. The goal from the beginning was to build a mill that would efficiently produce a wide variety of materials so Fly Timber could move with the markets. The mix included cross ties, long timbers, crane mat material as well as hardwood grade lumber. This flexibility would insure that we could always produce what the hardwood lumber market sought and operate with an eye toward maximum return per log. Getting’ the squeal out of the pig as the old-timers called it.

We found out early in the planning phase that to meet this goal, we would have to deal with multiple machinery manufacturers and find a way to smoothly connect everything from the debarker to the main production machines like the Cleereman carriages, McDonough band headrigs and optimized edger, gang and trimmer. All the way out the back of the mill, not to mention the challenge of processing and flowing cross ties to rail cars.

During my many mill visits, whenever the discussion turned toward log or lumber conveyors, Rosserhead debarkers, log turners, lumber stackers and material handling equipment, Mellott was the name that kept coming up. From a very rugged built Rosserhead debarker, stand-alone decks and complete systems – nearly everywhere I went there was Mellott. That convinced me, I needed to see for myself, so I visited their plant in Pennsylvania and that sold me. Dale and Stacy Mellott and the entire staff at Mellott Manufacturing are fine people to do business with. They did an excellent job of working on this very complex job, dealing with multiple suppliers, engineers and deadlines. Each time we asked for something to be beefed up to meet our spec’s or to make something longer to expand our product line, the staff at Mellott stepped up to the challenge. That’s why the first thing a log sees when it arrives is a customized Mellott LMR 48” Heavy Duty Debarker, Mellott Log Haul trough, Mellott log decks, slab conveyors and the last thing is the custom built tie lifting system and lumber decks and rollcases.

Fact is looking back on the project, I can’t see how we could have done it as well without Mellott. They truly became a partner in our new mill and in the future of Fly Timber.

Ricky Fly
Fly Timber
Grenada, MS