De­signed to re­duce work and costs

Australasian Timber - - NEW PRODUCT -

NE­CES­SITY IS the Mother of In­ven­tion ... or so the say­ing goes, and that’s what has helped shape and build the cre­den­tials of two ma­jor play­ers in the tim­ber ma­chin­ery busi­ness.

MPB En­gi­neer­ing and Jim Magee (Vic­to­rian Tim­ber En­gi­neer­ing) ap­proach ev­ery job with a view to mak­ing things eas­ier and cheaper for their clients. Take the re­cent case of Matthews Tim­ber. They needed a new dust ex­trac­tion sys­tem, so, their ob­vi­ous choice was to ask Jim and MPB what could be done.

The an­swer .... a brand new mod­u­lar sys­tem that can grow with the busi­ness needs -- and far cheaper than would nor­mally be ex­pected.

“Most tim­ber com­pa­nies have very old hop­pers that are long past their use by date,” says Jim. “Some are too small and some just let their dust just fall to the ground and pick it up with a wheel loader.

“Many small to medium man­u­fac­tur­ers have three cu­bic me­tre bins un­der their ex­trac­tors that fill up ev­ery two to three hours; we can mod­ify th­ese ex­trac­tors to blow dust up into a much larger hop­per that can hold 40, 50, or 60+ cubes of dust. In many cases this is about one week’s dust ac­cu­mu­la­tion,” he said.

Jim was proud to ex­tol the virtues of the new hop­per sys­tem --- “it’s mod­u­lar; it can be de­signed to hold from 20 to 120 cu­bic me­tres; it’s free stand­ing; it takes about one week to in­stall; it’s a very solid unit; it comes with four hy­draulic bot­tom swing down doors and sim­ply bolts to the ground. The pan­els are gal­vanised and the hard­ware is stain­less,” he says.

There’s a free site in­spec­tion and quote for those in­ter­ested in this ma­chine and up­grades are avail­able for en­tire dust ex­trac­tion sys­tems.

Jim’s been in the tim­ber in­dus­try for 40 years and has worked in con­junc­tion with MPB since 1988. “We’ve had nu­mer­ous very suc­cess­ful projects to­gether and the hop­per is the lat­est,” he says.

Who were the driv­ing forces be­hind the hop­per sys­tem? “Peter Bot­tom­ley and I de­cided that we wanted to build a mod­u­lar sys­tem so we could ac­com­mo­date re­quests from mills from 20 cu­bic me­tres up to 150 cu­bic me­tres, and we came up with the mod­u­lar sys­tem that grows as the need grows.

“We de­signed the hy­draulics for the hy­draulic doors. We can build it to suit. We can build it to fit in any space,” says Jim.

“Peo­ple are cur­rently dump­ing dust into lit­tle 3cu­bic me­tre bins -- we can swap the over to 60cu­bic me­tre bins quite eas­ily with a few mod­i­fi­ca­tions to their sys­tem. Some peo­ple are chang­ing four or five bins each day. Put it all into one big hop­per get a semi to come in and empty it all at once.

“We can retro­fit th­ese hop­pers to al­most any ex­trac­tion sys­tem,” he said.

Jim started off as a wood ma­chin­ist at the age of just 16 in Vic­to­ria and he’s still in the tim­ber in­dus­try and sup­ply­ing ma­chin­ery to some of the largest sup­pli­ers/pro­duc­ers and man­u­fac­tur­ers in Aus­tralia.

He started his own busi­ness back in 2000 and at one stage had seven em­ploy­ees but, ac­cord­ing to Jim, it be­came far too dif­fi­cult and he de­cided “the con­sult­ing line was much more down my al­ley” and he’s been a con­sul­tant for the best part of a decade. Part of his ex­per­tise is also re­lo­cat­ing ma­chin­ery --- def­i­nitely a spe­cial­ist job!

Jim is cur­rently do­ing a lot of work at Pow­ell­town Sawmill. “They’re go­ing through an up­grade at the mo­ment ad I’m in and out of Pow­ell­town quite a lot. They’ve got a fan­tas­tic new owner, Harold Fox. He’s a man with great vi­sion. He’s rev­o­lu­tionised that sawmill,” says Jim.

He’s very strong on the MPB con­nec­tion and its spe­cialised ma­chines.

“We are cur­rently do­ing a mil­lion dol­lar project in Tas­ma­nia. They’re up­grad­ing plant and equip­ment, and they’ve given the ma­jor­ity of it to Vic­to­rian Tim­ber En­gi­neer­ing.

“Peter (Bot­tom­ley) is cur­rently build­ing han­dling sys­tems and a brand new end matcher which will ac­com­mo­date floor­ing up to 450mm wide. It’s a rev­o­lu­tion­ary ma­chine. It’s a through­feed ma­chine, that’s what makes the dif­fer­ence.

“It will be the first of its kind any­where in the world, so that’s go­ing to be ground­break­ing.”

“Aaron man­ages MPB now and he’s very switched on; very smart guy. MPB re­ally do great work.”

Mod­u­lar sys­tem grows with busi­ness needs.

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