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NOVEMBER 2013 Issue 7 Vol. 22 • P: (03) 9888 4834 • E: email@example.com • www.timberbiz.com.au
Training legacy still grows strong
• Precision forestry page 6
- see page 13 for story
• Steep slope harvesting page 8 • Elise cuts into the record books page 12 • Cutting valuable time page 14 • Use your head page 15 • Skills development a core belief page 16 • Fight fire with forestry page 24 • Improving fire response page 26
New plywood mill for Tasmania By Rosemary Ann Ogilvie
O ASSIST the process of achieving conservation outcomes and a successful conclusion to the negotiations towards the Tasmanian Forest Agreement, Ta Ann Tasmania Pty Ltd (TAT) in 2012 advised it would accept – on a “no commercial disadvantage test” basis – the volume of veneer peeler billets that arose from the harvest of high-quality sawlogs from State forests. Converting this to hard numbers, TAT essentially agreed to forego 108,000m3 – 40% – of its specified veneer logs annually. TAT subsequently briefed the Tasmanian Parliament that if the Forest Agreement legislation was passed, it would look to invest in plywood manufacturing of the majority of its Ta sm a n ia n-produce d veneers. The company had determined that the production of plywood for the domestic market, where more than 70% of consumption is imported product, was the most effective way of ensuring its future in Tasmania. So the Prime Minister’s announcement in September of financial co-funding of $7.5m towards the construction of the new plywood mill was very welcome, as it enables the project to be accelerated, pending regulatory approval. “With the passage of the Tasmanian Forestry Agreement legislation, the forestry sector now has sovereign risk certainty, which gives our company the confidence to make another new investment in valueadded production,” says TAT general manager, Robert Yong, of the initiative. He adds that they have been working with the Tasmanian Government and the Federal Governments to help develop this project with particularly supportive local members such as former MP Sid Sidebottom,
Julie Collins MP, and the Tasmanian Government. The company also had support from Senator Richard Colbeck and newly-elected federal member, Brett Whiteley. TAT was established in 2005 at the invitation of the Australian and Tasmanian governments as a substantial private-sector investment in long-term supplies of sustainable, high-quality hardwood veneers. Two rotary peel veneer (RPV) mills valued at $79 million were built in Huonville and Smithton after the company entered into long-term contracts with Forestry Tasmania to supply an annual 265,000m3 of peeler billets of independently certified hardwood timbers from Tasmania’s public native forests. The value-adding mill will provide further certainty for the ongoing veneer operations at both mills. TAT has been working to restructure its veneer-production business to accommodate changed circumstances, reviewing the shifts required, retraining key operators and locating staff in different parts of business. “We’re also reviewing our management systems, while the compensation payment has partially offset the increase in overheads,” says Yong. The $15m, 4000m2 plywood mill will be located adjacent to the existing RPV mill in Smithton, operated using a combination of new and reconditioned plant, mostly Japanese- and Korean-made. Veneer currently produced in both RPV mills will be used to produce an annual 24,000m3 of structural ply for both the domestic and international markets. “Full training programs for the workers will be necessary as the plywood production process is totally different from the veneer production,” says Yong. “Overseas experts (457 visa holders) will assist with this training, as well as the
Restructuring for changed circumstances
continued on page 4.
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Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 3
ForestWorks’ national Innovation Skills Program is under way I
NDUSTRY LEADERS, managers and workers across Australia have provided a very positive response to the recent launch of ForestWorks’ Innovation Skills Program. The national calendar of Innovation Forums is now officially under way! The opening forums have been held in Mt Gambier, South Australia, and Bunbury, Western Australia, in conjunction with the Australian Forest Contractors Association as part of their successful business development seminar series.
What are Innovation Forums? Innovation Forums are the entry point into exciting and practical innovation skill activities that can make a difference to the future of enterprises in our industry. At the forums, enterprises and associations will learn more about the Innovation Skills Program and listen to new
ideas from businesses, industry and innovation experts. They will also discover the support that’s available for individual participants and enterprises, how they can be part of it and how they can benefit.
Why participate? We live in a dynamic world where change is occurring at an accelerating pace; by working together we will improve our industry’s capacity to keep up with the change through a skilled and productive workforce. Innovation Forums have been designed to give enterprises an opportunity to learn, think, connect and share ideas with like-minded industry leaders and experts. Enterprises’ involvement and feedback will help to strengthen the value of the Innovation Skills Program and improve the outcomes for your enterprise and our industry.
THE AUSTRALIAN Forest Contractors Association continued its “Business is Different Now” workshop series in front of a very receptive audience in Mt Gambier late in August. The agenda for this workshop - the fourth in the series that AFCA is presenting across the country - was linked to the new ForestWorks “Innovation Skills Program” which is designed to assist businesses and individuals to work together to lift productivity through innovation and improvement. The day-long workshop featured the usual range of presentations relevant in assisting businesses all along the supply chain to understand how the chain of responsibility works, and to comply, profit and move
forward in an always changing business climate. The morning session again featured presentations by ForestWorks chief executive officer Michael Hartman who spoke of the importance of improving skills and knowledge through innovation; Nick Molloy (Easdown & Partners) presented ideas on improving management styles; Dallas Frost (WHK Accountants) whose presentation on logistic pricing and profit recovery always attracts a lot of interest. Other presentations during the day by David Bennett (P.F.Olsen Australia) and Brian Beecroft (Timber Trades Industry Association) also helped in making the attendees aware of the necessity to keep up to date with workplace responsibilities and the latest trends in industrial relations.
7 November 2013, Perth, WA To be held in conjunction with Forest Industries Federation of WA (FIFWA), focusing on hardwood processing. 7 November 2013, Melbourne, VIC To be held in conjunction with the Institute of Foresters Australia (IFA). 21 November 2013, Coffs Harbour, NSW To be held in conjunction with the AFCA. Innovation Forums will be announced progressively and will take place until June 2015. To express your interest or to learn more about the program visit the website or contact: p. 1800 177 001 e. firstname.lastname@example.org w. www.forestworks.com.au
Colbeck’s work recognized
Workshop series continues to reap rewards By David Drane Administration Manager, AFCA
Coming Innovation Forums
As usual, the day finished up with a panel of speakers who addressed many vital issues impacting on the industry in an interesting and informative Q&A format. Speaking after the event, AFCA chief executive officer Colin McCulloch said he was really happy with the way that all of the presentations linked together and with the constant cross referencing by the presenters to the other speakers’ information. The day ended with the now traditional industry dinner that is provided by AFCA’s foundation sponsors Komatsu Forests, Hitachi/John Deere, Tigercat/ OneTrak, Caterpillar/William Adams and Waratah. Further “Business is Different” workshops are planned for Coffs Harbour, NSW, and Queensland at a venue to be arranged, before the end of the year.
SENATOR RICHARD Colbeck is the Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture and will assist the new Minister for Agriculture Barnaby Joyce MP. Senator Colbeck thanked Prime Minister Tony Abbott for recognising his work in opposition as Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. “I look forward to implementing the policy that I spent time developing in opposition,” Senator Colbeck said. “Agriculture is one of the Five Pillars of the economy and a vital part of the economy in Tasmania.” “I look forward to working with Barnaby Joyce who has been appointed Minister for Agriculture.” Senator Colbeck said the Coalition would begin to implement the policy measures announced during the election campaign.
Forest valuation seminar THE INSTITUTE of Foresters of Australia, in conjunction with Pöyry Management Consulting (Australia) Pty Ltd, is presenting a one day seminar on commercial forest valuation. The seminar (from 10am to 4pm at Cliftons, 444 Collins St, Melbourne on 8 November) will cover valuing natural forests and plantations for financial management, investment and reporting. This full day seminar provides a unique opportunity to meet with
First commercial harvest goes well AS PLANNED, on 3 September TFS started its first commercial Indian Sandalwood harvest of 30 hectares on the East Kimberley Sandalwood Project No.1 planted in 1999. All planned harvest processes went well.
Harvested wood at PPC.
Within a week five hectares of TFS-owned trees had been harvested and all recovered heartwood and sapwood transferred from the harvest site to the Primary Processing Centre. The newly-constructed Primary Processing Centre had its first opportunity to function as a grading, sorting and preparation facility. As the first trees harvested are owned by TFS, the graded logs will now be transported to the Mt Romance facility in Albany where they will be processed into high quality oil for sale to the fine fragrance and pharmaceutical industry. The harvest volumes are in line with TFS’ estimation for the EKS harvest which is encouraging. All new equipment and staff performed well in their new roles and TFS is very pleased with this initial start to the harvest program. The first 30 hectare harvest is expected to be completed this month (October) with the balance of approximately 114 hectares to start after the wet season in April 2014 and conclude by June 2014.
Operator removing the sapwood.
skilled practitioners to discuss compliant approaches to forest valuation. Topics will cover markets and pricing assumptions; the treatment of land and carbon; and discount rate and taxation effects. The complexities of the national compliance framework will be explained in relation to the national and international standards governing forest valuations. Various methods of forest valuation will be addressed and special consideration given to areas such as insurance and fire.
4 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Insightful outlook for timber industry M
Forestry safety and steep slope wood harvesting. See more page 8.
Features ForestTECH 2013.................................... 8 FWPA....................................................... 9 Cutting edge.....................................10-11 Training.............................................12-16 Forwarders...................................... 18-22 Grapples................................................23 Fire equipment................................ 24-26
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ORE THAN 30 guests attended the Forest Industry Council’s (FIC) annual dinner at Tumut to hear an insightful keynote address on ‘Forest Industry Development and Local Government Influence’. FIC Executive Officer David Priem said the presentation by the General Manager of Tumut Shire Council Bob Stewart and Economical Development Officer Glenn Waterhouse provided an excellent insight into the softwood industry in the region. “The address outlined the contribution of the softwood plantation industry and current economic and regional development strategies required to sustain and expand its base in the shire,” he said. “The presentation initiated a lot of discussion among FIC members and visiting members of parliament and neighboring councils. “And it certainly gave FIC a base to develop its strategic direction during coming years and a clear indication of how the industry can be best served.” Priem said FIC membership was now up to a very healthy 36 businesses across southern NSW and north east Victoria with a combined direct and indirect value of production of around $1.2 billion a year. Guests attending the dinner at Club Tumut included the Federal Member for Riverina Michael McCormack, Tumut Shire Council Mayor Trina Thompson, Tumut Councillor Peter Cross, Tumbarumba Shire Councillor Tony A’Beckett and Director Production TAFE NSW Norm Madden.
Kevin McGrath, Trina Thompson, Theresa Lonergan and Michael McCormack at the FIC dinner.
Earlier in the day at FIC’s AGM, Theresa Lonergan was re-elected as Chairperson, Kevin McGrath as Deputy and David Priem reendorsed as the Executive Officer. At the AGM Lonergan delivered her Annual Report, which highlighted the success of FIC’s involvement in significant promotional days such as the Henty
Machinery Field Days and Tumut’s Festival of the Falling Leaf. She said FIC had developed and supported the ‘Women in Forestry and Timber Network’, which was formed as a local branch. “This group is only the second of its kind in Australia and is developing into a significant contributor and lead to other communities,” she said.
Lonergan said this year’s FIC scholarships were awarded to Jason Munday, Ben Magaan and Aaron Kelland. “The scholarships provide funding to applicants to undertake their studies in forestry related disciplines and FIC is committed to maintaining this into the future,” she said.
New plywood mill for Tasmania continued from page 1. installation and commissioning of the new equipment.” TAT is working closely with freight companies on the most cost-effective options for the freight supply task from mill to the mainland markets.
Economic benefits The mill will create immediate employment in the building-andconstruction sector in a region hard hit by the forestry downturn. Some 75 manufacturing jobs will follow once the mill has reached the initial operational single-shift phase, rising to 120 in three years when the project achieves full production. The value of production for Tasmania is estimated to $30-35 million annually above the contribution made from the continued operation of the two RPVs. The anticipated flow-on benefits from the mill include: • Increased logistics activity in supplying input materials to the plywood mill, and shipping plywood product.
• Opportunities for new products, such as insulated wall panels, to be manufactured in Tasmania as a result of access to locally produced plywood. • I ncome for private forest owners for forest products for which no market currently exists. • Additional forest contractor jobs to supply raw material from private forests. • Additional revenue to the local government area in which the mill is sited. • I ncreased opportunity for service industries and suppliers in regional Tasmania.
Market diversification TAT has plans in train to diversify markets for both international and domestic exports. “Plywood use is growing in the Australian market, and there is a range of new and innovative uses of plywood in the buildingand-construction sectors,” Yong comments. “Many industry analysts see new opportunities for plywood and other laminatedtimber products as the way of
the future. To this end, we’ve been partnering with our local Australian business networks to develop these markets. We’re currently working with Engineered Wood Panel Association of Australasia (EWPAA), and the Queensland Government’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry’s Salisbury Research Facility, exploring different products with different engineering features. Additionally, we’ve been working with other research providers to generate strength features in the plywood that will provide sustainable longterm commercial advantages.” The company sees sustainable forest management as being fundamental to its new manufacturing initiative. “We believe the future of the hardwood industry depends on long-term sustainable supply of logs from growers with dual PEFC and FSC certification,” says Yong. Raw veneer material for the Huon and Smithton mills is PEFC certified under mutual recognition arrangements with the Australian Forestry Standard.
TAT general manager, Robert Yong.
Yong notes that demand for FSCcertified product is growing in both the domestic and international markets, not least because of the end-users’ increasing awareness around this issue. “Future sales to this accreditation are expected once Forestry Tasmania achieves FSC certification for the logs it supplies to both the Huon and Smithton mill,” he says, adding that the combination of dual certification and the strength of the Tasmanian Eucalypt will be a valuable marketing point to replace some of the current imports of plywood.
Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 5
USC graduate awards A
PLANT biotechnologist whose research aims to revolutionise agriculture and a management consultant who has worked with the United Nations towards world peace are the University of the Sunshine Coast’s Outstanding Alumni for 2013. Dr Amal Johnston, who graduated from USC with a Master of Science in 2002, received the award for his international research in plant biotechnology. He is now based in Germany. Jenny Morawska, who was USC’s first Master of Business Administration (MBA) graduate in 2000, received the award for executive leadership and management. She is based in Sydney. The two were honoured at the University’s Outstanding Alumni of the Year Awards ceremony. Dr Johnston has worked in some of the world’s most prestigious academic and research institutions, and is now leading his own research team in Germany. Amal is the Research Group Leader and Assistant Professor for Germline Biology, Centre for Organismal Studies, at the University of Heidelberg in Germany. He was awarded two million Euros from an Emmy-Noether grant under the German Research Foundation. Amal came to USC as an international student from India and studied, under the supervision of Professor Helen Wallace, the hybridisation of pine trees in Queensland forestry plantations. Jenny Morawska is the founder and CEO of The Morawska Group – a global management consultancy specialising in strategy, structure, sustainable economic and leadership development and business operational excellence, for commercial and public sector organisations. Her passions include banking and finance, science, supporting women as leaders, the right use of power and peace negotiations. Soon after graduating from USC in 2000, Jenny was recruited as the General Manager of People and Performance at Westpac. She has been Executive Director at Price Waterhouse and Director at Ernst and Young. Jenny was a consultant to the ‘Building Capacity for Peace Project’ for the Folke Bernadotte Academy, a Swedish Government agency. The project is about delivering early intervention in the peace-conflict-war cycle. She has worked with the General Assembly at the United Nations to conduct dialogues for peace with senior Government officials and diplomats, senior executives of private sector organisations and international funding bodies such as the World Health Organisation and the World Bank. Jenny is currently studying a further qualification in psychotherapy.
VicForests Community Support Program success VICFORESTS Community Support Program has once again reached out across the State to assist groups and services that are dedicated to helping local communities thrive. “Assisting local community-based projects and initiatives is very important to us. We live and work in many of these communities,” said Liz Langford, Regional Engagement Manager. “Since we started the program in 2010, we’ve helped 124 of community groups and services across the Central Highlands, Gippsland and East Gippsland regions.” One of the 2013 grants has assisted with the implementation of an SMS messaging service at Mansfield PreSchool Centre. The Mgmwireless messaging service allows short messages to be sent to all or a group of kindergarten families. The teachers and office staff will be able to send important notices via SMS to the kindergarten families to remind them of coming events, notify them about changes in the program, and most importantly, contact families in the event of an emergency. All families will be able to receive the same notice at the same time. “We are very grateful to VicForests for granting us the funding for the project. We believe it will greatly enhance communication within our kindergarten community and especially benefit families that travel a long distance so that their children can have a kindergarten experience,” said Sonali La Broque from Mansfield Pre-
School Centre. Other recipients of this year’s Community Support Program were a number of indigenous groups who will use their grants for a range of projects that include First Aid training and understory planting trials. The VicForests’ initiative, now in its fourth year, has granted a wide range of groups with funding that has provided a wealth of services across the respective regions. “The timber industry is an integral part of many parts of regional Victoria, providing jobs, supporting local economies. The annual Community Support Program is just one example of how VicForests and the wider timber industry supports and assists regional communities. “As well as the Community Support Program, we also regularly donate timber to various causes and projects across the State, including the recent donation of $27,000 of timber to Bairnsdale’s All Abilities playground project. In addition to this we also provide ongoing financial support to a number of regional groups and services,” said Liz. The Community Support Program assists organisations that contribute to the wellbeing of local communities by providing grants of up to $2000 to charity groups, sporting groups, educational and community groups located across the Central Highlands, Gippsland and East Gippsland. Applications will re-open in winter 2014 For more information go to www.vicforests.com.au
Global recognition for Canadian forest product research and innovation INNOVATION IN Canada’s forest products sector received international acclaim as a Montreal researcher was presented a prestigious award at a gala event in Stockholm Sweden for his ground-breaking work. Dr Derek Gray received the Marcus Wallenberg award, considered the “Nobel Prize” for forestry, in recognition of his cutting-edge research on nanocrystalline cellulose (NCC) fibre during his career with McGill University and FPInnovations. NCC is being hailed as a wonder material that could be used in everything from plastic car parts, to bone replacement and teeth repair, to additives for paint, pigments, inks and cosmetics based on its iridescent optical properties. The work by Professor Gray and his
colleagues helped result in a pioneering NCC pilot project at the FPInnovations lab in Montreal and in the opening of a world first commercial plant, Celluforce, in Windsor Quebec in 2012. “It is with great pleasure that I congratulate Dr Gray. His innovative research efforts are a perfect example of how collaboration between research organisations can lead to spectacular results,” said Pierre Lapointe, President and CEO of FPInnovations. “This research will lead towards further enhancing of the economic value of the forest resource by diversifying markets and contributing to the development of a new, sustainable bioeconomy.” “This kind of world-leading research and development will help us realize the ambitious
goals of our Vision2020,” said David Lindsay, the President and CEO of the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC). “Transformation in the industry is now taking place thanks to a unique partnership between the forest industry, federal and provincial governments and researchers all trying to maximize the potential of Canada’s most plentiful renewable resource, our trees.” FPAC is the voice of Canada’s forest producers nationally and internationally in government, trade and environmental affairs. Canada’s forest products industry is a $57 billion dollar a year industry that represents 11% of Canada’s manufacturing GDP. The industry is one of Canada’s largest employers, operating in hundreds of Canadian communities and providing more than 230,000 direct jobs across the country.
Shoalhaven celebrates rich timber history SHOALHAVEN’S RICH history will be revisited and recreated during a bigger and better Shoalhaven Timber Festival on 15-16 November. The festival has outgrown its original home at the Dunn Lewis Centre and this year is moving to the Milton Showground where a wide range of activities will be on offer. The action kicks off with the South Coast Timber Worker of the Year Awards in the Milton Ulladulla ExServos Club on 15 November. Ten awards will be presented on the night to recognise high school students, hobby woodcraft and wood turners, retired timber workers, and people involved in all aspects of timber operations including the oldest and longest-running bush and forestry contractors. Award categories include junior and senior high school student woodworker of the year, wood turned of the year, hobby timber worker of the year, sawmill worker and bush worker of the year, which both also have junior sections, and timber worker of the year. Australian Forest Contractors Association
representatives will announce local inductions into the association’s Hall of Fame. While there will be plenty of honours and awards presented there will be lots to do at the Milton Showground with displays including old and new timber harvesting methods, vintage machinery, wood carving, chainsaw operations, chainsaw racing, cross-cut saw racing, bush poetry and children’s entertainment. A professional woodchop even is being organised for the day, and Paul Carriage will make a bark canoe, while Noel Butler will show off his carving skills. A heavy horse team will demonstrate the skill involved in log and timber hauling, while there will also be displays showing different fence post splitting methods, techniques for operating a Lucas Mill, and much more including stalls selling sought-after carved and crafted items. Organiser Jim Butler said the event was all about recognising the important role the timber industry played in the region’s development.
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6 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
timber events If you would like to promote a forthcoming event, please email details (including contact numbers, email, etc) to: firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 08 8369 9500
2013 28-31 October PPI Transport Symposium 20. The Premier Event for the Global Forest Products Logistics Industry. Baltimore, MD USA. www.risiinfo.com/events/ transport_symposium/ 7-9 November 9th International Conference “Wood Science and Engineering in the Third Millennium” - ICWSE 2013. The “transilvania” University, Brasov, Romania www2.unitbv.ro/il/en/ICWSE2013/ tabid/8547/language/ro-RO/Default.aspx
Bloody good effort! F
ORESTRY TASMANIA has been credited by Red Cross with saving 78 lives in the three-month period from 1 June to 31 August this year … that’s because of the 26 donations made by FT staff under the Tasmanian Winter Blood Challenge organised by the Australian Red Cross Blood Service. Each donation can save up to three lives. Forestry Tasmania ranked eighth out of 37 organisations around the State making major donations. Overall, a total of 887 donations were recorded from all the participating organisations (up on the 853 last year), meaning an
amazing 2,661 lives saved. Chief Executive Officer Steve Whiteley, who participated in the Challenge as a new donor, congratulated everyone else from FT who took part. “Well done – and thank you – to everyone who has risen to the challenge of the Challenge,” he said. “FT has a long and strong history of going outside our core business and supporting the Tasmanian community in a wide variety of endeavours. “We continue to do that and the Blood Challenge is one of the best examples. “You can’t make more of a difference than saving a life!”
Steve Whiteley giving blood at the start of the Challenge this year.
11-15 November PEFC Forest Certification Week, KL, Malaysia. www.pefc.org/pefcweek-2013/home
Precision forestry takes significant step forward
15 November VAFI Annual Dinner. More details to follow soon.
AN IMPROVED fertiliser product being trialled by Forestry Tasmania in its plantations is showing promising results in terms of tree growth and health, as well as cost savings and environmental benefits. Research trials have demonstrated that Basacote, a coated controlled-release fertiliser manufactured in Germany by COMPO GmbH & Co. KG, has excellent potential for use in plantation forestry, and is set to replace the traditional fertilisers used in the past. The objective of the trials has been to quantify the level of growth response, health and uniformity of early growth - to age three – of the gum tree species, Eucalyptus nitens, as well as the economic benefits of Basacote treatments, over traditional fertilisers. There are five trials around the State – two each in the North and North West, and a single trial in the Florentine Valley in the South. Kristen Dransfield, one of Forestry’s Senior Research Technicians overseeing the Florentine trial, is encouraged by the positive results.
23 November Queensland Timber Industry Annual Gala Dinner hosted by TABMA QLD. 6:30pm Moda Events, Portside Wharf, Hamilton. Enquiries to Alicia Oelkers 07 3254 3166 or email@example.com 25-26 November Bioenergy Australia 2013, Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley. Technical tour 27 November. For the past several years this conference has been attended by approximately 300 delegates. Abstracts for presentations and posters are currently being sought. The conference covers all aspects of bioenergy including biomass feedstocks, energy conversion technologies and overarching issues such as greenhouse gas balances and financing. Contact Daniel Evans at The Association Specialists e: bioenergyconf@theassociationspecialists. com.au or Stephen Schuck, Bioenergy Australia e: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.bioenergyaustralia.org. 26-27 November ForestTECH 2013. Forest Industry Safety Summit & Steep Slope Wood Harvesting conference, Rotorua, New Zealand www.foresttech2013.com 9-13 December Metsä2013 Joint session of the ECE Timber Committee and the FAO European Forestry Commission. Rovaniemi, Finland. www.unece.org/forests.html
2014 17-21 February 2014. Gottstein Wood Science Course, Melbourne, www.gottsteintrust.org or email@example.com 20-22 February 2014 76th Annual Oregon Logging Conference – Eugene, Oregon, USA. www.oregonloggingconference.com 3-5 March 2014 Precision Forestry Symposium (Precision Forestry: The anchor of your value chain) – Stellenbosch, South Africa. www.sun.ac.za/forestry/pf2014 13 March 2014 Timber Transport Conference - Scotland, UK. www.timbertransportforum.org.uk/ 2-4 April 2014 Forest Cover Change (FoCC). Freising, Germany. firstname.lastname@example.org
“Basacote has been tested over a number of years by FT and other growers and has proven to be very effective in promoting good early growth of young trees in the important first two years after planting, or the establishment period. “Growth responses are equivalent to, or better than, traditional fertilisers.” Basacote fertilisers have an elastic polymer coating that ensures controlled nutrient release over a range of periods – three, six, nine, 12 or 16 months, depending on the requirement. The advanced coating on the Basacote granule shows a high-resistance to physical stresses and a more consistent dispersion of the nutrients held within the granule. Additionally, the trace elements are placed just below the coating, which results in a more appropriate timing of release of these nutrients. Forestry Tasmania’s Principal Scientist Paul Adams has calculated that using Basacote over traditional fertilisers, such as diammonium phosphate, could result in cost savings of up to 30% per seedling.
“These savings result from significantly reduced application rates of the product, as well as labour savings,” he explained. “The Basacote products use 10-20% of the traditional volume of fertiliser, representing $120 - $140/ha in savings. “That’s about half the cost of the current standard treatment. “They are applied at the same time as planting in the planting hole using a modified planting tool, and therefore also save on labour costs due to one less fertilising operation.” Kristen explained that there were also environmental pluses from this approach. “Targeted fertiliser application is also more environmentally friendly because it uses less product and results in reduced risk of losses from leaching and volatilisation. “And the trees get ahead of neighbouring weeds and out of the dangerous browsing zone a lot faster, which means, on all fronts, that this is a very significant step forward in ‘precision forestry’.”
Securing the future of Tasmania’s plantation resource A HIGH level panel has been established to help secure Tasmania’s privately-owned hardwood plantation industry. “The Government is strongly focused on helping landowners and forest growers realise the opportunities this important resource holds for them and Tasmania,” according to Tasmania’s Minister for Energy and Resources Bryan Green. “The plantation estate that exists around Tasmania is critical to the future. “The loss of Gunns, the collapse of MIS schemes and changing global markets for timber products has made it very difficult for
many landowners,” he said. Green said former Federal Minister for Resources Martin Ferguson would chair the panel which will consult with private forest growers, private landowners and other key stakeholders to explore options for the future. “Martin has been a champion of Tasmanian forestry and farming communities throughout his career and has a thorough understanding of the challenges facing the industry.” The panel will also include Chief Executive Officer of the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association, Jan Davis, Chief Executive Officer of Private Forests Tasmania, Tom Fisk,
and the Secretary of the Department of Infrastructure, Energy and Resources, Norm McIlfatrick. Green said the first objective would be to get a clear picture of the plantation estate. “A detailed assessment of the industry is needed to determine the best way forward. “The first task will be to gather data on the type, quality, location and tenure of the existing hardwood plantation estate across Tasmania and report to the Government. “The second stage will involve broad consultation with the forest industry and communities to help develop recommendations on the
best ways to enhance the value of plantations and capitalise on future opportunities.” Ferguson said he looked forward to supporting the industry as it faced the challenges ahead. “There is no doubt that Tasmania’s substantial and established hardwood resource will play an increasingly important role as we move forward. “The timely establishment of this panel and the valuable data and evidence it will develop will ensure that it is well placed to build on the outcomes of the Tasmanian Forests Agreement to secure its future,” Ferguson said.
Local staff to sow 8.5 million seeds at Blowering Nursery MORE THAN eight million seeds will be sown over the next 35 days at Blowering Nursery in Tumut, the State’s largest radiata pine seedling production nursery. Forestry Corporation of NSW’s Mark Stretch, Blowering Nursery Manager, said 16 casual staff would be brought on to sow around 250,000 seeds a day, seven days a week over five weeks. “Sowing season is a crucial time of year for us,” Mark said. “The seeds we’re sowing have
been produced by specialist tree breeders in New Zealand, and over the next five weeks, we’ll sow each one into an individual container where it can be cultivated into a seedling to be dispatched to a plantation. “Using a sophisticated mechanised production line, we will fill more than eight million individual containers with soil, accurately deposit a seed in each container at the right depth, and cover each seed with vermiculite
and controlled release fertiliser added before rolling the containers onto storage benches. Then, over the next eight to 11 months, each container will be carefully hand weeded, fertilised and watered in line with a customised schedule that takes into account weather and location on the storage tray. “We recently dispatched more than 6.5 million seedlings to pine plantations around the State from around eight million seeds sown a year ago, and we expect a similar
result from this year’s sowing. Sowing and dispatching are our busiest times of year, creating 16 seasonal positions – which are all filled by locals.” “Forestry Corporation is the largest producer of plantation-grown radiata pine in the country, managing more than 200,000 hectares of plantations around the State and producing enough timber to construct about a quarter of the houses built in Australia each year,” said Gavin Jeffries, Manager Strategy and Risk.
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8 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Forestry safety and steep slope wood harvesting
ORESTTECH 2013 (26-27 November) will be a first for the New Zealand and Australian forestry industry. It will include two major forestry events - over two days and - at just one location, Rotorua. The popular forestry technology series ForestTECH has been run by the Forest Industry Engineering Association (FIEA) annually for forest managers and technical foresters in this part of the world since 2007. In 2012, the Wood Transport and Logistics theme for the ForestTECH 2012 series attracted more than 300 forestry managers, forest owners, harvest planners, transport operators and forestry contractors from both New Zealand and Australia
Forest industry safety summit Because of the focus this year on forestry safety, a two-day Forest Industry Safety Summit will be run by FIEA in conjunction with the Forest Industry Contractors Association and NZ Forest Owners Association. It will address the very real Industry and Government concerns around forestry safety and showcase new practices, systems and tools that can be used in the forest to improve worker safety – with a focus on local and practical outcomes. Keynote addresses from leading safety experts from North America will be complemented by presentations from local health and safety managers. The key themes will focus on providing more effective and safer ways for contractors and principals to work together.
Steep slope wood harvesting conference In addition to the Safety Summit, a two-day Steep Slope Wood Harvesting conference is being run by FIEA. It will be running at the same venue – and over the same two days. Analysis by Future Forests Research indicates that the proportion of the forest harvest from steep hill country (over 20 degrees slope) is currently 44% of the total harvest. This is forecast to rise to 53% by 2016 and to over 60% by 2025. Nationally over the next 12 years there is a requirement for a new cable harvesting crew every four weeks. Harvesting steep slopes presents a range of challenges. Choosing the appropriate technology requires careful consideration of cost, productivity, safety and environmental impacts. The Steep Slope Wood Harvesting conference will profile innovations – equipment, tools and operating practices - around steep slope harvesting operations. In addition to local innovations, steep slope harvesting specialists from the US, Europe, Chile and Australia will be involved in this two-day program. In addition to NZ companies, a large contingent of Australian forestry contractors are travelling across as part of a wider tour group being organised by the Australian Forest Contractors Association, a group of harvest planners, suppliers and contractors from South America will be visiting, and meetings and site visits have already been set up by key suppliers to this region’s wood harvesting industry. AB Equipment and Tigercat, for example, are running a field trip on 28 November
with visits planned to view a couple of logging operations running Tigercat LH855C Harvesters set up with felling heads working in steeper terrain. International presenters to ForestTECH 2013 include: • Reynold Hert , Chairman, BC Forestry Safety Council, Canada • Enda Keane, CEO, TreeMetrics, Ireland • Rich Wininger, VP Western & Canadian Timberlands, Weyerhaeuser, USA • Don Banasky, President, Falltech Logging & Truck Loggers Association, Canada • Doug Mays, Director of Operations Western Timberlands, Weyerhaeuser, USA • Rodrigo Palazuelos, Harvesting Manager, Forestal Mininco SA, Chile • Norbert Schalkx, Area Director, Asia-Pacific, Africa & Baltic countries, Ponsse Oyj, Finland • Ken MacDonald, Chairman/CEO, Tigercat Industries, Canada • Gary Olsen, International Sales Manager, Tigercat Industries, Canada • Richard Lawler, Director, Worldwide Forestry Engineering, John Deere Forestry, USA • Tony Brown, Remote Sensing Specialist, Forestry Corporation of NSW, Australia. ForestTECH 2013, consisting of both the Safety Summit and Steep Slope Wood Harvesting Conference, runs in Rotorua, New Zealand, on 26-27 November. Delegates to this year’s ForestTECH 2013 will have the option of attending either program – or sessions drawn from either event. Further details can be found at the event website, www.foresttech2013. com It is expected that with the level of interest and registrations to date, that places may well need to be limited. Don’t miss out. Register now on www.foresttech2013.com
Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 9
Turning around second rotation decline in blue gum plantations By Matthew Lovering
ECOND ROTATION blue gum plantations are commonly 30% to 50% less productive than first rotation plantations, with most of the difference due to climate factors particularly rainfall and water stored in the soil. Research, funded by Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) has looked into the severity and causes of this productivity decline to help plantation managers find ways to boost the value of their trees. Across southern Australia nearly all of the 500,000 hectares of blue gum plantations are growing on land previously used for cropping or grazing. This land was cleared in the 19th and early 20th centuries, fertilised and planted with shallow rooted plants such as wheat or grass; in the last two decades of the 20th century the land was planted with blue gums, mainly for woodchip production. The first rotation of plantation bluegums were productive but there is now widespread recognition of decreased productivity in the second rotation on some of this land, particularly in Western Australia where the earliest blue gum plantings occurred. The research team, led by CSIRO, collated first and second rotation growth data provided by the industry partners and developed empirical growth models. These quantified the reductions in productivity
between first and second rotations. Forestry Tasmania researcher, Rob Musk said: “The average decline was 30% across all the studied sites, whilst in dry environments and on deep soils the decline was as great as 50%.” The empirical growth models have been incorporated into a tool that allows industry partners to predict growth in either rotation from measurement data and an index of climate dryness (SPEI). Next, the research team used CSIRO’s CABALA forest growth modelling software that integrates the effects of water, nutrients and other growth factors on forest production, to explore the causes of the growth decline between rotations. They identified that some of the observed decline was due to variation in rainfall and plantavailable soil water. CSIRO researcher Jody Bruce said: ”During the first rotation, trees use water stored in the soil and this protects plantations from drought episodes. Plantations in low rainfall areas are heavily dependent on this stored water. In the second rotation plantation growth is more dependent on rainfall where soil water is not recharged in the inter-rotation period.” They also observed that insect attack was greater on drier second rotation sites. “In the second rotation it’s all about water,” says research team leader Dr Don White. “Drier sites appear to have more insect attack
but if you reduce stocking rates, and as a result reduce tree water stress, the severity of any insect attack maybe reduced.” On the bright side, the researchers found that soil nutrient levels (such as nitrogen and phosphates) do not change greatly between rotations and so are not a significant contributor to second rotation decline. “On many of the plantation sites which had originally been improved pasture there are huge reserves of nutrients, as a result of seven or eight decades of superphosphate application,” says Don. “On one or two of the most nutrient poor sites it may have made a contribution, and so nutrients could very well be a concern for third rotations and beyond, or on plantations established on exbush sites.” As a consequence, Don and his team are working with another research team to look at production methods that keep harvesting and replanting costs down while retaining harvest residue on the site. This will help reduce nutrient decline in the future, thereby enhancing productivity in future rotations. The research team suggests plantation managers can increase second rotation blue gum productivity by incorporating strategies that reduce water stress, such as leaving the site fallow for a period of time after harvest to recharge the groundwater; selecting tree seedlings that cope better with drought; and adjusting planting densities to reduce water stress.
Satellite remote sensing to strengthen quality transparency OVER THE last three years, FSC has participated in a series of trials, financed by the European Space Agency, to assess the potential value and utility of satellite remote sensing to strengthen and increase the quality and transparency of the forest certification process. Having satisfied itself that this technology would be of significant value, FSC has now initiated TransparentForests©, a study to assess the viability of a web-based Forest Certification Information System (FCIS) in delivering an independent source of geospatial data to support better forest certification. The FCIS will integrate Earth Observation (EO) satellite mapping systems, global positioning systems (GPS) and global navigation satellite systems (GNSS) in a web-based geographic information system (GIS), specifically customized for the needs of FSC and its stakeholders. For Certification Bodies, TransparentForests will introduce a source of independent, up-to-date and spatially accurate data with which to plan and undertake audits. It will also offer a platform for stakeholder consultations, especially for forest communities. Environmentally-important features and assets in forests will be identifiable, and stakeholders will be able
to monitor their status. As a result, TransparentForests should increase the robustness of the forest management certificates FSC issues. It should also result in greater stakeholder engagement and process efficiency for both Certification Bodies and forest operations in preparing for and undertaking audits. The feasibility phase of the study was initiated in January 2013. A review of the status and suitability of the core technologies – EO, web GIS and satellite navigation systems – has been completed. User needs have also been evaluated, based on a workshop with Certification Bodies, Accreditation Standards International (ASI) and selected forest operations, held in February 2013. The workshop allowed the project team to identify user requirements, which will be reviewed by the Certification Bodies, ASI and forest operations. The project has also established a Conformity Assessment Body (CAB) Forum, which established a formal link with all the CABs undertaking FSC Forest Management certifications. In addition, it has a Strategic Advisory Group which includes representatives of all stakeholders, as well as the FSC Board, which will be kept informed and consulted throughout the process.
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10 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
CUTTING EDGE M anual hewing. Doing it tough led to a better way.
F irst HewSaw. Finding an easier way with the first HewSaw.
Strong customer relationships initiate continuous development at HewSaw F
ROM HUMBLE beginnings in the 1950s, producing tractor drawn “hewing” machines to produce square timber poles for export from Finland, HewSaw has developed into a world leading technology supplier of complete sawlines. When the Rautio brothers began producing machinery for their own use from meagre surroundings who would have thought that within only a few short years, they would have established their own sawmilling machinery factory and in 1964 started building them. Soon after, in 1976 there were over a dozen sites in Finland utilising these small machines and exporting over 300,000m3 of “squared” timber. Demand continued to grow from other sawmillers wanting to buy these extraordinary machines from the Rautio family and after an upgrade to the engineering and manufacturing facilities, the first HewSaw R115 was sold in 1983 to another Finnish sawmill. The next 20 years and into the new century saw further developments and steady planned expansion with the HewSaw R200/R250 SE machines (now known as the A.1 model designation) being developed as well as the introduction of full Log Scanning and log rotation systems. Next came the heavyduty R200/R250 “Plus” machines (now known as the 1.1) with high speeds up to 200m/min and more. High recovery and productivity developed side by side with HewSaw technology and still HewSaw listened as the reputation and brand awareness continued to grow and spread further afield in North America, Australia, South Africa, France and New Zealand. Requests from the growing worldwide customer base continued to emerge for a HewSaw Sawline. Whilst customers appreciated and relied on the HewSaw R- series machines it was clear that the market was looking for a HewSaw “SL” class
Sawline. HewSaw responded and in the early 2000’s developed the HewSaw SL250 sawline concept with the first machine installed in New Zealand (now the CHH Whangarei Fortress Mill). Offering technology and scope to process logs from 100mm to 550mm in a HewSaw SL class machine again saw another level of expansion at the manufacturing facility in Mäntyharju, Finland. Alongside this technology expansion, HewSaw recognised that ongoing customer support was equally if not more important than simply exporting machinery, so in the following short years, sales and support networks expanded to include offices in Russia, South
Africa, Germany, Australia, North America and more. Staff to service the market were sourced and trained and still the customer base grew as the new generation of HewSaw SL machines earned growing respect and developed
– Idaho Forest Group, Australia – Dongwha Timbers, Finland – Metsä Wood, France – Scierie Farges SAS and more. Further new R200/R250 machines with high technology scan-and-set operation and/or pattern sawing have been delivered
Reputation and brand awareness continued to grow their own high productivity and recovery reputations. Now in the past 2-3 years of the second decade of the 21st century, HewSaw have delivered SL250 Sawlines in Scotland – BSW Sawmills Ltd., Russia - LDK1, USA
in France, Brazil, Canada, Australia, Vietnam, Sweden and Finland – in many cases the second or third time these customers have chosen HewSaw as their business partner. Establishing strong customer relationships and developing
solutions along side customer requests has seen HewSaw grow to become a world leading supplier against any benchmark – be it recovery, production volume, product range, flexibility, efficiency, uptime and more. HewSaw is now poised to embark on another technology step with new generation Log Rotation Control systems, full taper sawing capability, enhanced curve sawing and further machine elements with higher levels of servo technology and preparation for implementation of new and emerging scanning technology... yet still remaining a family owned and operated company with that personable touch. HewSaw – the Sawline with more…
A modern HewSaw SL250 3.3 line in Finland.
Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 11
New system is a “turn” for the better! I
t is becoming more and more unusual to find a sawmill NOT using some type of scanning system to help select saw patterns in the sawmill and/or guide the operator to enable the best recovery from the resource. It is well recognised that the ability of modern computerised scanners can make decisions on the best possible pattern for a log either in the sorting yard for fixed pattern sawmill operations or “online” in scan-and-set operations. It is quite straight forward – scan the log, assess the complete 3D data about the log, compare myriad patterns and value/recovery matrixes for sideboards and centre
Utilising a second scanner ensures very accurate log rotation control.
boards and bingo – out comes the desired saw pattern and the log is sent on its way – either to the sawmill or the sorting bay. So, once the pattern is selected and recovery is calculated, the log is sawn and you get precisely what you expected out of that log. But do you? Regardless of whether the log is being pre-sorted or immediately processed, there is still one constant point – every log is different. Log length, taper, sweep, nodal swelling, occlusions, flutes etc., will add character and differentiation to each log processed and any mechanical turning method for log positioning at the infeed to a sawmill is usually based on knowing how many degrees to rotate the log, knowing the speed of the log and turning the required number of degrees at the required speed to turn the log within its own length. Release the log and “hope for the best”. However, with all these challenges in the character of the log – how do you know the log has actually been turned to the required target position, thereby allowing you to actually recover the material that your sophisticated
scanning system has calculated? Moreover, if you are not realising the recovery – how do you identify the source of the lost recovery and take steps to correct it? Are you getting the best return from your scanner investment? No matter how capable the scanner, it does not physically turn the log – rather predicts an outcome based on a perfect rotation. For many years, HewSaw has produced an accurate log rotator that can achieve a 180 degree turn in a little over 0.5sec and at the same time centre the log in to the chipper canter to ensure the best open face and recovery. The advantage of even the existing HewSaw system is that the feed rollers are purely feeding the log. The rotation is facilitated by the external rotation ring that rotates the feed rollers and log around the log centre axis. However, even with the HewSaw Login System that uses the large diameter rollers to maximise contact with the log and a twin rotating ring, there is still potential room for improvement with challenging logs. The new HewSaw Rotation Control Systems (RCS) which was released at the 2013 LIGNA Fair,
The HewSaw 2R log rotator uses 370mm diameter rollers to feed the log.
now utilises a second scanner just prior to the log rotator to identify the actual log rotation and compare this to the target log rotation and if it demands, performs a correction to ensure the highest possible accuracy in final log position. All this happens with out any extra space, time or costly and messy consumables. By obtaining accurate
optimisation “electronically and virtually” with the scanner, HewSaw can now offer the latest follow-up technology mechanically to ensure that the recovery is actually delivering closer to that calculated value and help sawmill owners better forecast returns. It may pay to consider the investment options between upgraded scanning or more precise log rotation.
12 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Elise cuts into the record books T
HE WORLD of chainsaw operation is a testosteronerich atmosphere. It is filled by broad-chested males with bulging biceps and rippling forearms. After all, it takes a real man to handle a 6-10kg mass capable of producing between 4kW and 6kW. Thus it is something of a surprise when your chainsaw instructor in the Queensland country town of Childers lifts “his” protective visor for the first time to reveal a surprising lack of stubble and a confusing array of attractive long fair locks. Yes “he” is a “she”. Elise Cottam; Mrs Elise Cottam, to be precise. At this stage Elise is the only - and maybe the first - female Nationally Accredited Chainsaw Trainer Assessor, and proud of it. Elise has been researching this for four years now, recently attending the ATTA workshop, that was amazing for Elise, and she said it was such a relief to be finally accepted as a trainer. [Elise has inquired with trainers and companies all over Australia but to no avail; in years of experience the people she has spoken to adds up to about 900 years.]
Tomboy While it would be unchivalrous to mention a lady’s age, suffice it to say Elise is in her thirties and a mother of three girls and a boy.
Elise Cottam has run her own training firm, Elise Cottam Rural Training (E.C.R.T), since 2007.
She grew up in the Blue Mountains a couple of hours west of Sydney. Elise admits she was a bit of a “tomboy”; the eldest sibling of three younger brothers. Like lots of girls, Elise had a thing about her dad and loved to go to work with the “spec” builder. “I used to work alongside his labourers,” she says, “In fact I used to outwork them!” Some unkind people might use the word “tomboy” as a euphemism for something closer to “butch”. Well, not in Elise’s case. She later met, married and began a family with husband John Cottam before moving north to the warmer climes of Queensland.
Childers Childers is roughly three hours north of Brisbane on the Bruce Highway. The shire has a population of 6500 and town itself about 1300. It is roughly half way between
Maryborough and Bundaberg. An area of mango and avocado orchards, the region also produces sugar, tomatoes and Queensland’s famed macadamia nuts. In towns like Childers you have to be able to multi-task – Elise Cottam certainly does. Amongst her activities Elise Cottam doubles as a photographer for the local newspaper (winning awards) and works for the local State Emergency Services (SES). She has also been a florist and a finance broker. Elise’s training activities began with First Aid. These days she is Training Manager for the Childers SES, where her work encompasses all areas of SES training both in the shire and elsewhere in the region. Amongst her skills she trains security personal, bodyguards, crowd controllers and drug testers. But her favourite program covers chainsaw operation. “I love it!” she says, “I am so passionate about teaching men and women how to use a chainsaw safely.”
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Elise (AKA Liseyc) acquired her own chainsaw qualification from Bob Collins Enterprise (BCE) via Fitec in Brisbane. Elise encountered him two years ago when Bob was training Queensland Rural Fire Brigades in chainsaw operation. “I enjoyed it so much and could see there was a huge need in our area, so I asked Bob if it would be possible for me to work with him.” Bob could clearly see that she had potential, but he was unsure if people would accept chainsaw training from a female - and a young female at that! “Bob could command respect because of his 50-years experience. But I was female and without any grey hairs!” Elise says. Were their fears well-founded? “Surprisingly, there hasn’t been any reflection of that attitude so far in the industry,” Elise says. She believes that she has been helped by her years spent training other proficiencies and by her upbringing,
which taught her from an early age that gender makes no difference. “I have had to stand my ground on occasion,” she acknowledges, “But I have found that the most important thing is to be able to back up what you are saying with what you can and do.”
Elise dressed to train.
Chainsaw Trainer Assessor Elise has run her own training firm, Elise Cottam Rural Training (E.C.R.T), since 2007. Not bad for a kid who only finished Year 9 at school! Most of her students require their accreditation for vocational purposes. “Most of them know how to use a chainsaw – but not safely,” she observes. “By the time they come to me they have acquired a lot of bad habits, which can take a while to ‘unlearn’.” Elise enjoys showing her students the proper way, the safe way, to operate a chainsaw. “Some are just so funny once they learn the correct technique. They say things like: ‘Holy Cow! Now I get it!’ The fact is: a chainsaw is a very valuable device – but it also can be very dangerous; even fatal, if used wrongly,” she says. As an experienced trainer Elise teaches people from all walks of life. She believes that people learn best when they are having fun although they also must recognise when it is appropriate to be serious. “A good instructor can recognise a learning difficulty or a learning barrier quickly,” she says, especially with older trainees. She then ensures that these people do not feel demeaned but quietly endeavours to provide them with the personalised attention needed to overcome their problems.
Gender After this time, does she still face chauvinism? “I still come across some negative souls who say, ‘women shouldn’t do this’, but by the end of day they see
Elise dressed to relax.
it another way,” she says. “I’m used to that. The thing that I find most frustrating is when girls - and guys say ‘I carnt’. ‘Carnt’ is not a word!” Interestingly Elise has found that she is training an increasing number of women in correct chainsaw operation. “It’s a slight increase – but it’s definitely there,” she says. Over the last two years she has seen the proportion of females jump from about 3% of enrolments to nearly 20%. “Operating a chainsaw isn’t for everyone. But the decision should not be based purely on gender. The fact is a properly trained woman can be every bit as good – and safe – an operator as any man.” Husqvarna is willing to do a pink chainsaw - which will lead to supporting the Breast Cancer Foundation - in recognition of Elise being the first and only qualified female chainsaw instructor. The question for our readers is ... Are there any other qualified female chainsaw instructors in Australia, or is Elise unique?
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Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 13
Training legacy still grows strong A
DVANCE TAFE’s Forestec commercial forestry training team are perfectly positioned to offer their wide selection of forest management and harvesting courses across Victoria and beyond. Operating from within Advance TAFE’s Lakes Entrance campus, the team has access to nearby significant forest resources, which cover an area from the Gippsland Lakes through to NSW’s Snowy Mountains. Advance TAFE is Victoria’s major specialist hardwood forest-growing and management provider, and one of only four national providers. Over the years it has provided training to participants from across Australia, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and East Timor. “Given our location, it makes sense that we have been leading the industry in offering timber and forestry courses for more than 20 years,” said Richard Owen, Advance TAFE’s manager Catchment, Land and Sea Management. Advance TAFE’s Lakes Entrance facility is a new base for the training team, which relocated there from the original Forestec facility last year. Training is still conducted from the Forestec facility, just 10 minutes away from Lakes Entrance in the Colquhuon State Forest, and at the harvesting coup it runs through VicForests. “Since the relocation there has been some misconception that the Forestec team is no longer offering its range of timber and forest courses, but we can reassure the industry that we are still going strong,” Richard said. Covering all aspects of the industry, Advance TAFE offers: • Certificates II and III in Forest Growing and Management; • Certificates II and III in Harvesting and Haulage;
•C ertificate IV in Forest and Forest Products It also offers short courses and tailored training packages in: chainsaw, four-wheel drive and three levels of tree-felling training, Lucas Portable Sawmill operation and a one-day timber harvesting operator’s licence. “On top of that we have a range of plant operations training, which provides competencies in heavy equipment including bulldozers, excavators, mechanical harvesters, skidders and processors,” Richard said. One of the regular clients returning each year for training is the Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI), which includes the former Department of Sustainability and Environment and which now takes responsibility for the Summer Fire Crew recruitment and operations. The Advance TAFE Forestec timber training unit has been working with Government departments on their crew training for several years. The Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI), uses a training package Advance TAFE has designed specifically for fire crew. It includes chainsaw tree-felling, trim and cross-cut, OH&S (CIC), first aid and can also include 4WD training. They train around 40-50 summer fire crew for Gippsland area each year. DEPI Gippsland also uses Advance TAFE for their plant operations training. The Advance TAFE Forestec team can tailor training to suit clients and operators of all sizes, and deliver courses to suit commercial needs. Please contact them at 1300 133717 or www.advancetafe.edu.au for more information.
Advance TAFE’s Forestec team demonstrates the training for a Caterpillar 325B excavator with a Logmax 9000 processing head to delegates from the Australian Timber Trainers Association.
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14 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Resource development for technical competencies
S EVERY registered training organisation (RTO) knows, there are lots of different elements that must come together for a training program to be successful. But the overall quality of the course relies on two fundamental factors – the trainer and the training resources. When a trainer is enthusiastic and knowledgeable, and the resources are comprehensive and clear, students have the best chance of maximising their learning potential. Fortunately for trainers, there are countless courses, workshops and other professional development opportunities for them to hone their skills and learn new techniques for engaging with students. But finding the right training resources is another matter. Most industry trainers are not experts at ‘putting pen to paper’ and writing their own materials, because these skills are quite different from those needed to deliver face-to-face training. Even when there are publicly available resources around, they are often generic in nature. Workspace Training specialises in the field of resource development for technical competencies. As an RTO in its own right, the company has a sound understanding of competency requirements, assessment criteria and compliance with AQTF or NVR standards. Much of the work undertaken by Workspace Training is funded by Government
initiatives, such as the Workplace English Language and Literacy (WELL) Program. These resources are formally quality assured and contain learning exercises, assessment tools and training strategies. They are made available to everyone via a Governmentowned ‘creative commons’ licence. The two directors of Workspace Training are David McElvenny and Kath Ware. David is the writer and project manager; Kath is the instructional designer and graphic artist. On website projects the team also includes a web developer and, where required, a voiceover narrator. David’s own background is in the timber industry. He began working as a yardman/ driver in the 1970s and over the years was involved in processing, timber grading, sales and management. In the mid 1990s he was employed by Training Education and Management Services (TEMS) as a timber industry trainer and has been involved in training ever since. Kath has worked in the field of water catchment management and conservation and land management for many years. Her skills include desktop publishing and instructional design. In recent years she has specialised in the development of interactive CDs and graphic design. In 2006 David and Kath set up Workspace Training. The company delivers training to workers in the timber industry and related
industries. However, its primary activity is the development of training resources for workers, particularly those who have poor literacy skills. David is a qualified teacher of English to speakers of other languages and holds a masters degree in education.
Delivery of industry training Workspace Training offers a range of short courses and full qualifications in forest and forest products, horticulture and conservation and land management. A specialist contract trainer is used to deliver chainsaw training throughout NSW. Other contractors are used to deliver horticultural and conservation and land management courses. The Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (TAE40110) is also offered as a customised course for supervisors and key operators in industrial workplaces. It covers all aspects of the qualification, but places particular emphasis on the skills needed to train and assess industry workers. The course includes the new literacy unit that will become mandatory in 2014 -TAELLN411: Address adult language, literacy and numeracy skills. Over the years, Workspace Training has developed many e-learning resources for timber industry competencies, including an interactive CD called ‘Chainsaw operation
– beginner to advanced’ and three Flexible Learning Toolboxes. Michael Hartman, ForestWorks CEO says “David and Kath at Workspace Training have been valuable contributors to the learning efforts of many participants in our industry. They possess unique talents and abilities and combined with their down-to-earth approach, they deliver user friendly products and services. They also volunteer a lot of their time to the broader industry training effort, and on behalf of the industry we are grateful for their efforts and commitment.” More recently, the company has produced e-learning resources for the furnishing industry. These have included a Kitchen and Bathroom Cabinetmaking website and a Flooring Technology website. Both were funded by the WELL Program and are now hosted by the Manufacturing Skills Australia (MSA) Industry Skills Council. In addition to these large Government funded projects, Workspace Training also develops training resources for organisations on a fee for service basis. Materials include print-based learner guides, Powerpoint presentations and interactive CDs. For more information about the services offered, or to see examples of resources developed, go to Workspace Training’s website at: www.workspacetraining.com.au.
“Cutting” valuable time during emergency situations REMEMBER THE avalanche at Thredbow many years ago? During the rescue efforts a large tree adjacent to the rescue needed to be removed as it was restricting access for large cranes and other rescue plant and equipment. Apparently no-one on site was capable or qualified to fall it and it took considerable time to find someone and further time to get them into Thredbo. Valuable time was wasted in the process. When Jeremy Lowe, a Station Officer with the Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) within the Western Australian Fire and Rescue Services (FRS), heard about this scenario at a debriefing, he considered that valuable and potentially lifesaving time should not be lost to inadequacies in the service. His position was that rescue services should not accept unwanted and in this instance unnecessary delays in rescue efforts. He considered that having qualified tree fallers within the FRS would reduce and even eliminate time wastages occurring again. If there was a qualified faller included in the Thredbow rescue teams in the first instance then the problem tree could have been removed in minutes and not hours. Tree falling expertise within the service would be useful in other emergencies including wildfires and severe storms or cyclones. Jeremy went to FRS management with a proposal to have enough quality trained chainsaw operators and fallers strategically based throughout the metropolitan services. Coincidently the demise of the forest and timber
industry through the WA Labor Government’s ‘no old growth logging policy’ and the move to mechanical falling effectively removed an immediate availability of timber industry fallers. The other major firefighting agency in WA was CALM, (which was DEC and is now Dpaw) which had at least one advanced tree faller in each firefighting gang unit. However, DEC/Dpaw’s firefighting resources are regional-based and are not immediately available as FRS is metropolitan-based. Jeremy’s goal was to duplicate DEC’s/Dpaw’s proven model within his own service. The year was 2003. Jeremy convinced FRS to approve his plan, was appointed the ‘faller coordinator’ and then went searching for a training provider to put his plan into action. He tracked down Bill Towie, an experienced Forester working in State Government forestry. Bill’s long forestry career also included extensive experience in fire control and most importantly ready access to plentiful and suitable trees to fall. Bill was the perfect person (a tree faller trainer with lots of fire experience) to help Jeremy achieve his goal. There was an issue with availability during those early times as Bill was already struggling to fit his existing commitments with the CALM fallers around a busy Forester’s workload. Jeremy’s plan slowly but surely came to fruition during those first 5/6 years as Bill squeezed this extra training into a tight program. It was frustrating not being able to get sufficient access to Bill, but in hindsight it allowed the program
extra time to lay strong foundations and consolidate. Bill resigned a few years back and formed his own training and safety business, Towie Timber Training (TTT). FRS now had greater access to Bill and fast tracked its faller program based on strong foundations from those early days when he was in Government. TTT provides Units of Competence from the Forest Products Industry national training package (FPI11) (as published by ForestWorks ISC) and auspices its accreditation through Great Southern Institute of Technology at Albany. Bill is a long term executive director of the Australian Timber Trainers Association (ATTA) and often mentions he liaises with his ‘equivalents’ from other States for advice and direction. He learned his falling trade on the job through a long association with professional fallers in WA but always remembers to identify key people who had a significant influence on his faller training skills, they being existing professional industry faller Steve McMillan, WA’s first industry faller trainer Fred Lindberg (who has left the industry) and Greg Howard of Timber Training Tasmania. Greg continues to act as mentor to Bill. Bill was a primary contributor as a technical expert in the recent ForestWorks’ publications of the national Chainsaw Operators Manual (2009) and the Tree Fallers Manual (2011). Some 10 years on and FRS now has nine qualified advanced fallers strategically located throughout the metro area and through successional planning, another 10 officers trained
Bill Towie and Jeremy Lowe. Photo by Michael Watson.
to intermediate level. Six of these have done the advanced course this September. There is another intermediate course scheduled in 2014 which will bring total numbers in the program to 25. This regime ensures there are always numbers available as officers get promoted and may not necessarily be available for field work and tree falling in particular. This year TTT will take the original advanced faller group to another level as they complete the Unit of Competency (UoC) (also published by ForestWorks ISC) machine assisted falling, with emphasis on the ‘fallers’ aspect of this unit. Bill has arranged to complete this UoC with a native forest logging contractor, training and assessing the machine operator simultaneously. TTT schedules a week of annual refresher training where fallers get the opportunity to fall many trees in active logging coupes to help
maintain competency. Verification of competencies is completed during this training and faller certification is renewed every three years. Bill encouraged FRS to make time available annually for refresher training as only a few would get the opportunity to fall trees during the year. Annual refresher training also helps Jeremy demonstrate to management his fallers are maintaining competency. Some of the officers rate the training provided by Bill as the best they have attended. This is a huge statement as their roles require many and varied training opportunities, including travelling internationally to attend special courses. Jeremy’s initial thoughts about Bill being a good choice of trainer who not only knew more than most about falling trees correctly and safely, but also having invaluable expertise in fire control has proven to be a master stroke. There is a perfect ‘cultural’ fit between Bill and this falling group.
Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 15
Use your head ... and a camera! I
T’S A simple matter of ... camera and action as the latest technology is utilised by the Latrobe Valley Training & Assessment Centre. For its training/assessing, LVTAC has introduced helmets that have a small camera attached that will record a student demonstrating a skill for either training analysis or as evidence of competence for assessments. “In the past, our organisation has relied on paperwork, still photographs and the evidence gathered by an assessor to assess competence, but with the use of the camera video footage, a real time version of the student performing the task can also then be viewed by other assessors for their opinion and maintained as evidence of competence,” says LVTAC owner/ manager Terry May. “We also plan to implement a program for contractors to enable them to check the skill levels of their accredited employees, as required, without added cost to the company. “ANC Forestry Group have been issued a helmet to trial in a hand falling environment to ensure that the footage gained under different degrees of slopes, sunlight exposure etc. will be viable and reliable and that the camera does not impact on the user,” he said. “If the camera passes the “bush test” we will make available more helmets to be used by industry as well for new or existing employees who already hold an accreditation but need to undergo a check to confirm their current skill levels. “The employee will wear the helmet, gathering evidence while falling, then the complete helmet will be returned to our office. We will remove the data and one of our assessors will view the footage and prepare a report,” said Terry. “It is assumed that the majority of employees will not need any further training so at this stage the process has been cost neutral. In the event that a skills gap is identified, the employee can be shown the footage whereby they can see the issues for themselves rather than just being informed that they have a skills gap and require training. “This is less confronting for an experienced operator,” he said. “The fact that a supervisor or assessor is not standing next to the user while they are working will also assist in gathering the evidence as the user will not be placed outside of their comfort zone. The footage will only be viewed by qualified assessors from Latrobe Valley Training and Assessment Centre and then passed on to the employers’ management team to view and include on the employee’s file. “The only cost to the company would be if a training need
was identified for an existing employee and a trainer allocated to implement further training,” said Terry. LVTAC is based in Traralgon.
T erry May (owner/manager of Latrobe Valley Training and Assessment Centre), Shane McMahon (ANC Forestry Group), Rob Gray (ANC Forestry Group), Trevor Hodge (trainer/ assessor with Latrobe Valley Training and Assessment Centre) and Maarty Krygsman (Hancock Victoria Plantations, Gippsland Region).
Nationally Accredited Funding available to eligible applicants 7 Rocia Road Traralgon, Vic 3844 P: 03 5176 6484 E: Ivtac@bigpond.com W: www.Ivtac.com
• Certificate II and III Forest Growing and Management • Certificate II and III Harvesting and Haulage • Timber Harvesting Operators Licence (THOL’s) Course • Harvesting accreditations for THOL’s Licence • Chainsaw and Falling courses • 4X4 Driver courses • Civil Construction Accreditations.
Training and Assessing across Victoria
16 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
1300 133 717 03 5155 6500
07 4126 1030 0427 251 697
Advance TAFE is uniquely positioned in eastern Victoria to provide training and assessment in a wide range of units from the Harvesting and Haulage, Forest Growing and Management, and Sawmilling sectors of the FPI05 Training Package. Also offers 4WD training, chainsaw, first aid and OH&S. Customised training packages are available for any sized business. www.advancetafe.edu.au
Level 1 & 2 Chainsaw Course, Full First Aid Course. Services Bundaberg , Childers, and Australia wide. My training and delivery method is tailored to suit the learner’s abilities and work scene. People don’t learn being preached at, they learn by engaging and having fun where possible.
Forest Industry Training Centre
02 6981 4800 0428 424 234
Qualifications in: Forest Growing and Management, Harvesting and Haulage, Sawmilling and Processing, Wood Panel Products, Forest Operations Skill Sets, all chainsaw/tree falling competencies, short courses customised to client needs. Services NSW, Victoria, Queensland. www.rit.tafensw.edu.au/Tumut/forestindustrytrainingcentre.aspx
Furnishing Industry Assn of Aust (FIAA)
Tony Willis Dean Brakell
0434 318 233 0433 601 968
Training programs and apprenticeships that support the kitchen, furniture and furnishing related industries. For full details of what we offer, visit our website - www.fiaa.com.au
Terry May and Heather May
03 5176 6484 0428 595 660
Training and assessment in Harvesting and haulage, Forest growing and management, Timber Harvesting Operator’s Licence, chainsaw and 4×4. Individual machinery assessments for both forestry and civil construction.. Services Victoria www.lvtac.com.au
Certificate I to Advanced Diploma in Forestry, Horticulture & Agriculture Transport & Warehousing, Construction & Mining, Licensing Business, Education, Occupational Health & Safety & Health. Services All states of Australia, PNG, Solomon Islands, Indonesia. www.mtogroup.com.au
07 4033 0130
Steve Smith Chainsaw Training
07 5457 3544 0408 711 704
Full range of chainsaw competencies, log grading, brushcutting, tree climbing. Services Queensland, Northern NSW, PNG, Singapore
Timber Training Creswick
03 5345 2018 0409 869 827
Sawmilling, timber drying, wood machining, sawdoctoring, forest growing and management, timber manufactured products, chainsaw. Services Victoria. www.timbertrainingcreswick.com.au
Towie Timber Training
0427 447 510
Training and assessment in chainsaw maintenance and handling; basic, intermediate and advanced tree falling; treejacking techniques, all aspects of OHS, including safety management systems, incident investigation, training and audits. Services South-west WA, and other areas in WA by arrangement. www.ttimbertraining.com.au
0403 570 673
Chainsaw training, trainer/assessor training, WELL (Workspace English Language and Literacy) training, resource development. Services Eastern states of Australia. www.workspacetraining.com.au
Skills development is a core belief THE AUSTRALIAN Timber Trainers Association (ATTA) is a national network of trainers and assessors working in the forest and forest products industry. Members come from all states and territories and work in private registered training organisations, TAFE colleges, partnerships and industry consultancies. Our core belief is that the best way to achieve a strong and sustainable forest
industry is to educate its workforce, so that employees can continue to develop their skills in the use of safe, efficient and environmentally sound work practices. ATTA has been holding annual workshops for the last 21 years. Each year the workshop is held in a different state or territory with the venue being located close to places of interest to ATTA members. The purpose of the workshops is to bring
together industry trainers and assessors so they can share their experiences, validate their assessment processes, and hear presentations from a range of industry experts, government agencies and ForestWorks, the Industry Skills Council. It is also an opportunity to see local industry sights in various field excursions, and gain a better understanding of the issues in that region.
In the last couple of years, ATTA has established a LinkedIn discussion group called ATTANET. It is open to all members who wish to share their views on the latest trends and issues of importance. To find out more about ATTA, please go to the website at: www.atta.org.au. Email enquiries can also be made to David McElvenny, ATTA Secretary, at: email@example.com.
JOIN THE ADVENTURE ROTTNE H20B IS PERFECTION FOR THE AUSTRALIAN MARKET H20B is a well established, effective and powerful harvester. The chassis, loader and harvester head are designed to cope with our demanding Aussie forest year after year. The swivelling and levelling cab with its fantastic visibility is designed to give the operator superb comfort. Rottne H-series harvesters from T1 to clear fall.
ROTTNE F18 HAS EVERYTHING WE NEED IN AUSTRALIA A well-balanced power train with a fuel efficient engine, 3-speed automatic hydrostatic transmission for a 22 tons tractive force and portal bogies with large and wide wheels to ensure excellent stability and a smooth ride. RK-160 loader, largest in its class, with 45 kNm swing torque and 8.5 mt reach, adjustable load gate and bunks for different length wood. A world class leading operator cab with ROTTNE COMFORT LINE, another first from Rottne. Machine weight 23,500 kg.
FOR FULL RANGE OF HARVESTERS AND FORWARDERS WWW.ROTTNE.COM Contact us for more info Randalls Equipment Company Pty Ltd 8 Wallace Avenue, Point Cook, Victoria 3028 Ph: (03) 9369 8988 Fax: (03) 9369 8683 AH: 0418 356 306
18 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Reliable and productive machine A
LMOST FOUR decades ago KC & MR Boult started logging with one truck and two trailers and a home-built Mack Forwarder but the business has certainly come a long way since those formative days. Now, it runs 15 trucks hauling logs and chip and specializes in mobile chipping in softwood, CTL operation in hardwood and CTL operation in softwood. “We were running an 890 Valmet in hardwood and an 890 Valmet in softwood. With the 890 Valmets getting older and the demand for hardwood increasing the company decided to purchase another Forwarder,” says Gerard
Boult, of the Mount Gambierbased enterprise. “After speaking with people who have purchased Rottne Forwarders and were happy with the product, and looking at the Rottne myself I was happy with what I saw, in terms of toughness, cabin layout and overall ergonomics and generic running gear, we purchased the Rottne in June this year. “It currently has 810 hours on it and it’s proven to be a reliable and productive machine thus far,” he said. The three-speed transmission in the F18 is a point of difference as no other Forwarder has this type of
hydrostatic drive system; there’s no need to stop the machine to change up or down . The F18 has an extendable load bunk area and load gate which means that in blue gum it allows the contractor to take out large volumes of wood.
The Rottne F18 working in blue gums during a demo with KC BOULT in Mt Gambier .
New forwarder series is rEvolutionary THE REVOLUTIONARY John Deere ESeries forwarder range gives higher productivity than ever before. New, improved features and technical innovations deliver longer uptime and lower operating costs. Extreme controllability and high class comfort and rock solid dependability bring efficiency and productivity to a new level, according to. Simon Shackleton (General Manager at John Deere). Through its dealer In Australia, Hitachi Construction Machinery Australia, John Deere offers two
models of John Deere forwarders - the highly versatile 1510E for thinnings and regeneration harvesting and the 1910E which can handle the biggest job with cost effective efficiency. All John Deere forwarders come standard with the highly fuel efficient John Deere PowerTech Plus engines with high torque at low RPM, allowing heavier loads and faster forwarding even in the toughest terrain. “There are thousands of similar engines used around the globe and because John Deere builds them they
manage the technology, reliability and fuel efficiency. The John Deere PowerTech Plus also come standard with factory installed hydraulically driven variable-speed reversing fan. The reverse function blows debris out of the cooler. It can be controlled automatically or manually to optimize cooling and reduce fuel consumption,” said Shackleton. The John Deere 1510E and 1910E come with redesigned steel frame structures for increased durability and uptime. V-shaped frame bottoms make the machines glide smoothly
over stumps and rocks. Robust and standardized components such as middles joints maximize machine performance. New DurAxles heavy duty bogie axles are standard for 1510E and 1910E forwarders. “These axles are built to carry heavy loads in tough terrain and over long distances. Not only are the bogies more durable but have the new V-groove axle mounts to the frame which will bear up to 20% higher dynamic side loads,” he said. ESeries forwarders feature newly designed load spaces. Pipe type mounts have been replaced with new flat bunk mounts which offer advantages such as higher durability, better grapple access and quick bunk adjustment to fit different log lengths. “The John Deere E-cabin is the most innovative, industry-leading work environment combined with top ergonomics. Automatic levelling and rotating functions absorb terrain changes keeping you focused on the boom. Large curved windows provide great visibility to
the working area. With an efficient design and newly enhanced features the operator’s outlook is always in the right direction following the boom movements for safer more ergonomic log loading,” Shackleton said. The E-cabin is available with automatic air-conditioning, adjustable air suspension seat with armrest controls, electrically controlled stairs, reverse camera, a heater/cooler for refreshments and plenty of storage space, among other improvements. “Due to ergonomics, including the 290 degree cabin rotation, the operator remains energetic and becomes more productive. With John Deere E-series you can take forwarding to the next level of productivity with enhanced comfort and control. “The John Deere precise and powerful booms follow your commands precisely thanks to Smooth Boom Control. As a result of smooth boom control and high continued on page 20.
Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 19
Tough machine for tough conditions N
EW ZEALAND forest contractor Scott Bradley needed a machine change for his one-man Forwarding business so he opted for a Cat 584HD ... and he’s been rapt with the new machine! The 20-ton forwarder has now clocked up almost 6,500 hours and, according to Scott, he’s pretty impressed. He says the Cat is bigger, more comfortable, got heaps of lifting power and great on fuel. For a bloke who started in the forestry industry almost two decades ago and has seen many changes in machines that’s quite a testimonial. “I got sick of working in gangs,” he said, “and people had tried it (Forwarding contracting) and weren’t doing too good at it. I was on a forwarder working for DT King doing a thinning operation and running around in a six wheeler when I saw these guys carting this blue gum out and I thought I can do that and I can do it better than them. “I thought if I bought a machine for myself I could give it a decent go.” Scott made the decision to “go it alone” about eight years ago and started Brad Forwarding, based in the southern tip of New Zealand’s south island. “It was just me and my Forwarder,” he said. Unfortunately, his first Forwarder (not a Cat) didn’t work out well. He reckons he had to replace just about everything while he had it ... “almost the whole shebang”. “I had to look at something else. I stuck all the paper work on the table, all the specs and went through them and thought I’d give the Cat a go, so, I got the 584HD – it’s a heavy duty machine.” He made his purchase through Gough Cat regarded as one of the longest serving Cat dealers outside North America. Incidentally, the Gough Group was founded in 1929 by Edgar Gough, Harry Hamer, and Tracy Gough. As Gough Gough and Hamer Limited the company’s original focus was on the electrical industry. In 1932 the company made a transformational change in its direction when it acquired the New Zealand Caterpillar franchise.
The company grew around the Caterpillar name and was closely linked with the development of infrastructure in New Zealand throughout the 1930s and 1940s. In 1937 the Minister of Public Works, the Right Honorable Bob Semple is famously known for crushing a wheelbarrow under the tracks of a Caterpillar bulldozer as a symbol of the move from the manual age to the technological age in New Zealand. The Hyster Materials Handling dealership was added in 1945. The Transport Wholesale and Transpecs businesses were added in 1992 along with the Palfinger Materials Handling dealership. Expansion into Australia also began in 1992 with the acquisition of HDTE - a heavy transport engineering business. Several subsequent acquisitions were merged into HDTE to form Gough Transport Solutions. In 2010 the Group added the Australian Palfinger dealership to its portfolio of quality International brands and catapulted the Group into the top 10 worldwide Palfinger Dealerships and top five Independent dealers. The Gough Group is now a diverse entity comprising a number of international premium brands and servicing customers across every sector of the New Zealand economy. Anyway, back to Scott and his thoughts on the Cat 584HD ... “It’s got the strongest bogeys ... that was my biggest problem before. These bogeys are the strongest that have ever been made so they say, and I was pretty much sold on that. “It’s bigger and more comfortable and yeah, I like it. You can see your front chains, tracks - whatever you want to call them - you can see your front wheels, you can look out the side windows and you can see the whole lot. “There’s more view in the Cat, and it will lift more. “There’s another guy down here who has a 19 tonner with a cab that does the movement about and follows the boom. He came to sit with me and do a couple of loads and was totally impressed with how much wood it can lift
compared with his machine,” says Scott. “I can pick up my 1300 litre diesel tank and walk away with it. If anyone’s going to pinch my diesel I can make things difficult for them because you can’t tow my trailer out from where I stick it; that’s because of the stumps and ditches. I just stick it in the scrub and set it down and that’s where I can leave it safely. “It’ll lift a fairly good handful,” he says with total assurance. He explained that he had never done pine work and that his whole operation had centred on blue gum. “It’ not big wood so you grab a reasonable sized handful. It’s planted close together and they whip it out at 14 years old and you get five lengths out of a tree – it’s a whole heap of little sticks. “The harvesters are ripping through it and I’m running around after them picking it up,” he says. And what of the motor – “I don’t have any problems with it. If you get into a situation where you’re trying to come up a bank and it’s a bit nasty the motor won’t let you down. “It doesn’t burn as much fuel. It’s only got a seven and a half litre motor for a 20 ton capacity and yet it does the job. It burns less fuel. The only thing is doesn’t travel as fast. The ground speed is nowhere near as fast as the previous Forwarder, but it still gets along. “You can drive it with both hands; you’ve got steering on the left hand and steering on the right... if you get any itchy nose you can use either hand,” he quips. “And the climate controlled cabin is great. It doesn’t dry the air out. You set the temperature you want and go to work. It’s quite nice that way,” says Scott. And again he lists the lifting power as a definite plus with the Cat then adds ... “they’re surprisingly stable on the hills. I’ve never even come close to tipping a trailer over. Done the same work and in the same areas, been in some pretty tricky going, you know; I’ve been close to talking to it, but it’s never tried falling over ... different to the other machine.
“Another thing I like is where the computer is mounted. It’s on the back dash. When you’re loading you’ve got your computer screen which is quite big and you can look at it. When you spin around and you’re driving forward if an alarm was to go off it’s got a panel in the roof which sounds and flashes that there’s a problem, you can spin your seat around to see what’s on the computer. You haven’t got all those wires going with you on your seat. “Another is when you double hit your extension for your headache frame ... at the end of the bolsters; it stops the logs from coming and getting you! “You just double click it, flick the finger off joystick and go beep beep on the button and go back to work. Takes a split second. Don’t have to wait for it. It’s all about time, isn’t it. Time is money,” he says. Scott works in the Lake Hauroko area near Tautapere (southern tip of the South Island) and is normally in hilly terrain but at the moment he’s got as contract working in relatively flat country. “It’s only the second time I’ve ever worked on the flat,” he says but added that normally he works on some pretty nasty ground. “I put blades on the front of my machine. If you’re going to drop down over a bank or something you can knock the edge off. I wouldn’t have a Forwarder without a blade. Had to make a few modifications to my machine and put chains from the machine to the blade so it doesn’t drop under and hook up (because of the terrain). The chains are encased in rubber wrap; they’ve (the chains) got a loop in them, when the blade’s down the chains are straight, back up to the loop. The blade can only go down so far. “The headache frame had a bit missing out of the middle but we’ve fixed that. Blue gum’s so small and greasy and when you put your grapple on top when you’re going to leave to go to the road site you don’t want it moving,” says Scott. Overall, though, he’s pretty impressed with his Cat 584HD
20 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Major machine deal
OMATSU FOREST has won a deal to supply more than 130 forestry machines to the Suzano paper companies in Brazil with delivery scheduled to start this December. Competing against all forestry machine manufacturers, Komatsu Forest won the tender and will have its machines working in São Paulo, Bahia and Maranhão states. “The whole package is more than 130 machines,” said a Komatsu Forest spokesperson. The machines include Komatsu PC200-8F tracked harvesters with Komatsu 370E harvesting heads and Komatsu 895 6x6 forwarders. Komatsu Forest also signed full maintenance contract for five years for the Maranhão unit were Suzano is building new pulp mill. The Komatsu PC200-8F/370E is a proven machine, has great
mechanical versatility and performance as well low fuel consumption, and these features are well recognized by the Brazilian market in general and moreso by Suzano. “When it comes to forwarders, the Komatsu 895 is a big forwarder with a 20ton load capacity and shows unique features compared to other models in the market,” the spokesperson said. Correct maintenance is key factor to achieving low costs per cubic metre and Komatsu Forest’s management system for contracts has been developed over the years with several other pulp and paper businesses in Brazil. “This world class maintenance is one of main reasons that led Suzano to choose Komatsu machines and the Komatsu full maintenance contract concept.” Komatsu Forest is an
international group with its headquarters and technology centre in Umeå, Sweden. Komatsu Forest produces the
Komatsu brand of forest machines and is one of the world’s largest manufacturers in this sector. It is the world’s second largest
New forwarder series is rEvolutionary continued from page 18. lifting and slewing torques loading and unloading an ESeries forwarder is more efficient than ever before and friendlier for the operator! “Smooth Boom Control brings added efficiency and operating comfort. SBC enhances boom precision and reduces vibration. It’s a new John Deere innovation, designed to make the operators’ work easier. Loading is faster, more efficient and accurate, and easier for the operator which all adds up to increased productivity. John Deere’s new option for forwarders – Intelligent Boom Control – is accurate and unprecedentedly easy to operate. The boom tip is now directly controlled by the operator instead of controlling all the independent joint movements. IBC also considerably reduces the number of tuning parameters needed and increases the durability of boom structures and hydraulic cylinders. Time-saving and user-friendly the Intelligent Boom Control provides productivity and makes operators feel more comfortable. John Deere won the “Innovation Award” at Elmia 2013 for IBC.
Control and information systems TimberMatic F-12 is a clear and user friendly control and information system. It improves the overall productivity of the machine and is an excellent tool for controlling all forwarder functions. It also enables data transfer between the harvesters, forwarder and office for example by making use of the data the harvester collects at the location of the harvested timber. The PC based system and large coloured screen make it possible to utilize tools from Windows such as email, GPS software, TimberLink, weigh scales, reversing camera and the newly introduced JDLink for forestry machines. “With TimberMatics support you get the best out of your forwarder in all situations,” Shackleton adds. TimberLink is designed to monitor performance from your forwarders. TimberLink enables contractors, operators and maintenance staff to optimise the productivity and uptime
of the machine and minimize fuel expenses and other daily operating costs. The overview display is standard in every forwarder. The data captured can be read in the machine or can be transferred to an office elsewhere. Information collection includes fuel consumption, driving time empty, driving time loaded, offloading time and driving time loaded. In addition machine parameters can also be monitored such as engine and hydraulic temperatures. JDLink is a new feature exclusive to all John Deere forestry machines. JDLink offers customers features such as aerial view of machine locations, ability to create and maintain geofences, track machine idle and working times, maintenance alerts, machine tracking providing maps and driving direction to machines, diagnostic connection to local dealer, on board diagnostic trouble codes and fuel usage. “John Deere offers the most advanced timber harvesting solutions in the world and there is no compromise when it comes to the range of ESeries forwarders,” Shackleton said.
manufacturer of construction, mining and forestry machinery, with annual sales of US$20.1 billion .
T he John Deere 1910E forwarder in action.
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22 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Forward(er) thinking keeps things moving well T IGERCAT’S TWO forwarder models – the 1055B and the 1075B - are powered by the world-renowned Mercedes 906. The 1055B is a heavy duty 14-tonne forwarder built to handle both selective and final felling applications. Offering 228hp, up to 10m of crane reach, extendable bunk options and a choice of two wagon frame. “This is an excellent all-around forwarder,” says David Hazell, managing director of Onetrak (the Australian distributor for Tigercat). The 1075B is an extreme duty 20-tonne forwarder for final felling applications, long distance forwarding and scarifying applications. Offering 275hp, wide spread bogies, an extendable bunk option and a choice of two wagon frame lengths. “The 1075B excels as the largest, most productive, and lowest impact forwarder on the market,” he adds. Hazell was quick to extol the virtues of the models during a recent interview. Here’s what he had to say ...“The bogies are enhanced with thicker gear sets, thicker walking beam wall thickness (1075B) and stronger wheel mounting areas. The outboard planetaries allow for larger gears. The 1075B forwarder bogie has the largest differential (20 tonne) and gear train in the market, making it more durable than competing machines. Tigercat forwarders feature on-the-fly differential lock shifting that is easily engaged and disengaged. The extra-long centre to centre walking beam distance (1.89m) greatly reduces ground pressures and outperforms competitors in deep snow and soft terrain. The increased wheel stance allows the bogie to roll over bumps gradually, reducing abrupt movement in the cab and in turn improving ride comfort for the operator. “The Tigercat centre joint is extremely durable. It is constructed with thick steel plate and the
articulation and oscillation joints feature oversized, sealed, tapered roller bearings with large pins and sacrificial bushings all held together with reliable shim adjustment that is designed to stay tight for the life of the machine. The bearings are preloaded to prevent play. The unique center section design does not require an oscillation lock, allowing the operator to reach out and pick up a load of logs while the machine is still in motion. The 1055B comes standard with an oscillation lock. “Both models are equipped with a modern, well finished and spacious cab with extended windows for excellent visibility to the load area as well as the ground. The cab has reverse sloping windows on the front and rear to reduce the need for wipers in wet conditions. The cab tapers out at knee height providing exceptional
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space for rotating the seat as well as providing site lines down the sides of the engine enclosure to the ground. The large window area provides an open feeling, reducing the perception of being confined machine cab for long periods. A quiet environment is important for better operator comfort and productivity. The forwarder cab is insulated and isolation mounted for reduced noise levels and vibration. Sound insulation is used under the cab, on the engine wall area, and the engine hood to reduce driveline and engine noise. All connections to the cab use bulkhead fittings to reduce noise transfer. The interior finish is impressive and exceptionally durable due to the use of high impact strength materials throughout. All windows are 12 mm thick polycarbonate with hard coating for scratch resistance. “The B-series forwarders are equipped with an automatic variable speed reversing fan system that provides minimum necessary fan speeds to maintain optimal operating temperatures. This feature dramatically reduces
fuel consumption when high fan speed is not necessary. The fan is driven hydraulically with a manual ‘purge’ function that reverses the fan direction to clean debris from the heat exchanger area without exiting the cab or halting production. In cold conditions the fan runs at low rpm, allowing the machine to come to operating temperature quickly at start up. The generously sized heat exchangers contribute to lower fan speeds and allow the machine to work through a broader ambient temperature range with a given oil viscosity. The reversing feature of the fan contributes to keeping the heat exchangers clean, further reducing the need for high fan speeds. “Tigercat forwarders are equipped with a large drive motor, allowing the motor to constantly work within its optimal efficiency range. This provides excellent drive performance characteristics and allows maximum engine horsepower transfer to the drive system for improved tractive effort.
“Tigercat uses larger crane pumps to produce the required flow at lower engine rpm. This saves fuel and improves crane performance. All valves are centralized for quick and easy access in a single location at work bench height on the side of the wagon frame. “Tigercat forwarders have unsurpassed service access to all electrical, mechanical and hydraulic systems. Access to the engine, driveline and pumps is through the tilt-out hood enclosure and tilting cab. All the hydraulic valves and computer control modules are located in one compartment in the wagon frame. Easily accessed from ground level, hydraulic adjustments are simple to perform. Electrical reliability is excellent due to short wire runs between the control modules and valves located immediately beside them. Further enhancing reliability, all electrical grounding is done through protected and sealed wires and connections that run from each component to the battery ground terminals.”
Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 23
Damping system takes stress out of work ... and the pocket! By Reymund Kell
T’S ALWAYS a fine line between smooth operation and the pace required for high production when it comes to wear and tear on a forwarder’s crane. Hultdins patented damping system is a modular solution, simply connecting to the crane lift and swing hydraulics to dampen vibrations and pressure peaks in the system that contribute to stress and eventual failure of crane components. Damping is provided by accumulators, which are joined by a valve block and plumbed close to the lift or slew cylinders. To provide effective damping without jeopardizing control precision, Hultdins carefully select the correct size and quantity of accumulators with pre-set staggered pressure levels that can react in sequence to varying forces from empty through to fully loaded operation. The concept is straightforward, however, it helps to understand the forces that are at play and for most, simply ‘out of sight, out of mind’. While the machine is working there are varying wave movements in the hydraulic system. These wave movements form sine curves of a particular amplitude and frequency, and in practice a large number of amplitudes and frequencies can occur at the same time. All of these vibrations can either reinforce each or other or even cancel each other out. When several wave peaks form closely together, though, they combine to form a brief and highly intense peak in system pressure. During testing pressure peaks such as this have been measured far above relief valve settings. These types of pressure peaks are much more common and intense than most people would believe and they cause heavy wear on crane components such as pin joints, cylinders, slew racks and pinions. Contractors who have had the unfortunate experience of a surprise crane failure know all too well just how painful and
costly repairs of this nature can be. Smoothing out these waves of hydraulic pressure can lower stress and material fatigue by as much as 50%, effectively increase the working life of the crane. We would hope that reducing stress on the crane and chassis ultimately reduces stress on the owner’s back pocket! There is also potential for productivity gains as operation speed can be increased with less need to feather the controls for smooth stopping and starting. This system is being used with great success internationally as special option equipment so we are very keen to see Aussie loggers share in the potential benefits. Soon we will be extending an invitation to try-before-you-buy in selected areas, and are looking forward to obtaining feedback specific to our part of the world. Hultdins damping systems are available either as kits complete with hoses ready to bolt on in the case of Komatsu forwarders (and even harvesters) or built up to suit other makes and models. When it comes to equipment hanging from the crane tip, Hultdins has long been one of the first names that come to mind. It is little wonder, when Hultdins SuperGrip are the best selling professional timber grapple in the world, and fitted to more than 50% of all forwarders manufactured worldwide today. With this sort of market prevalence nearly everyone is familiar with our heavy duty 0.36 sq. metre (model 360S) bunching grapple. Not all forwarder jobs are the same however so we need to be able to cater accordingly to variations in equipment needs. There are already many hundreds of Hultdins 360S grapples in Australia, but in some thinning jobs for example this model can be a little cumbersome. To fill this gap we now have the 300S -part of the new SuperGrip II family, the only fully robotic welded log grapple range in the world. At 0.30 sq metre grab volume and weighing only 205kg it is the
perfect go-between for its older siblings, the 260S and 360S. On the other end of the spectrum, there are applications where slightly larger grab capacity is needed. Rottne, for example, demonstrated their largest capacity forwarder at this year’s Elmia Wood expo with Hultdins SuperGrip II 420S. This model has a larger 0.42 sq. metre grab volume and weighs only 370kg, the same as the original 360S. Other features in the Hultdins SGII family include angled grapple arm tips on SGII-A models providing both improved handling of individual logs and less debris pick-up, and a new single cast iron link arm (or push rod) on all grapples with the Supergrip II badge. These new one-piece cast iron link arms can now also be fitted to all earlier 360 and 360S model grapples as a drop-in replacement for the welded box section steel tube type. We can also deliver new 360S grapples with cast iron link arms pre-installed as a super heavy duty “Aussie spec” option. More information on both the Hultdins damping systems and the entire SuperGrip grapple range can be found on our new website forestcentre.com.au.
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24 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
Fight fire with forestry By Ross Hampton Chief Executive Officer Australian Forest Products Association
S HUNDREDS of orange-clad Rural Fire Service volunteers wearily fight some of the 70 fires currently burning across NSW, they will be grimly shaking their heads. After all, bushfire season hasn’t even officially started and already several thousand hectares, including people’s houses and sheds, have gone up in flames. Everyone is saying that after a mild winter there is going to be much more of the same before Autumn comes around again and news sources are reporting that thick undergrowth makes firefighting harder. It was very sound policy work when Tony Abbott announced during the election campaign, to little fanfare, that $15 million of additional funding would be directed into a ‘National Bushfire Mitigation Program’. The money is assured but the detail is hazy. What should be in such a program? Should it be more controlled ‘cool’ burns? More money for fire trucks
and equipment for rural firefighters? The big question surely is ‘what will make the most difference?’ Too often policy makers have grabbed for the most obvious answer on the shelf - hazard reduction burns during winter and early spring. Certainly ‘cool’ fires are a vital weapon in the armoury, but what about fighting fire with forestry? As I type, there is a truly massive fire burning itself out in the United States. The Californian ‘Rim’ fire around famous Yosemite National Park has kept 5000 American firefighters busy for a month and came close to contaminating the water supply of the whole of San Francisco. That fire, coming after the terrible tragedy of the Arizona fire which claimed 19 lives just three months ago, has sparked an angry explosion of opinion. The tenor can be gleaned from this comment from John Buckley, the executive director of the Central Sierra Environmental Resource Centre. He told Reuters that had tree-thinning efforts been allowed and encouraged over previous years it, “would have inarguably made the Rim Fire far easier to contain, far less expensive
and possibly not even a major disaster”. This is the truth we need to hear. We can’t go on pretending the answer is a choice between ‘lock it up and hope for the best’ and ‘set it on fire in winter and pray the wind doesn’t pick up’. We must somehow reduce the ‘fuel’ load so that when bushfires happen, they don’t become the raging infernos that we see too often. Hazard reduction burns are part of the solution but best practice sees these combined with mechanical fuel reduction - literally taking the fuel away from the living forest. The clear answer is to add careful forestry to the management regime. Forest operations would help us in three ways. Thinning of the trees – particularly in strategic areas such as the forest areas bordering our cities – would mean less fuel and therefore less intense summer fires. This material could also be used for renewable energy and other useful purposes rather than simply go up in smoke in the next hot fire. Air quality will also be improved by reducing the amount of material needed to be burned as part of hazard reduction activities.
Use it or lose it is the right approach for our forests Forestry roads winding through the bush and maintained by forestry operators act as firebreaks (if the fire is not a roaring inferno) and provide access for fire crews. Thirdly our big forestry operations actually run some of the most professional and best-equipped rural fire brigades in the nation. Foresters know how to fight fires in forests. The Rural Fire Service orange army does an amazing job but this a largely volunteer force made up of committed people with day jobs. I am one of them myself. Despite bundles of enthusiasm and as much training as can be squeezed in, we also need the forestry operators full time fire force who do the job day in day out. In the United States they have realised that forestry offers part of the answer to the bushfire threat - which is growing with a more variable climate. Some American States are now running dramatic vision of bushfires with the caption ‘use it or lose it.’ We will be hoping to persuade Tony Abbott, himself an orange-clad firefighter at times, that ‘use it or lose it’ is the right approach for our forests as well.
Forestry vehicle operators urged to consider fire protection WHEN OPERATING heavy forestry vehicles firstclass safety systems and procedures are essential. Improper fire protection can, in the case of a fire, expose workers to dangers, lead to potential loss of life, equipment and assets, and cause extensive downtime. Fire protection specialist Wormald is urging forestry vehicle operators to be aware of the risks and to ensure fire suppression systems are installed on all vehicles. Steve Oxley Wormald’s National Product Manager for Vehicle Fire Suppression Systems says, “Due to the size, fuel carrying capacity and cost of forestry vehicles and machinery, it is essential that they are fitted with a fire suppression solution that is best suited to their fire risk. “Any vehicle fire suppression system installed should be compliant to Australian Standards. Fire extinguishers suitable for smaller fires, or fires that may occur outside the risk area should also be provided. Furthermore, heavy vehicle operators must understand the risks involved in their role and how to ensure their safety should a fire break out in or on the vehicle they are operating,” said Oxley. Wormald offers a range of vehicle fire suppression systems (VFSS) that are suited to different types of forestry vehicles. In the event of a fire, the principle aim of the Wormald systems is to provide early detection and warning to allow extra time for the driver to safely evacuate, while at the same time quickly suppressing the fire to help minimise damage to the vehicle. The Wormald Foam Water Spray VFSS consists of high pressure, small droplet nozzles which discharge a continuous stream of foam water spray at high risk areas, such as engine and transmission compartments, and hydraulic areas. The system utilises the fire suppressing and containment features of Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF). The ANSUL™ A-101 Dry Chemical Vehicle Fire Suppression System discharges a multipurpose dry chemical agent known as Foray® into the risk area to suppress the fire. These systems can be designed to flood entire volumes with dry chemical agent or aim at specific high-hazard areas.
Special award for contribution to fire fighting Both systems are installed with automatic detection and actuation systems as well as cabin and ground level manual actuators. These manual actuators allow the operator to activate the fire suppression system if required. Wormald’s VFS systems are ActivFire listed to be compliant to Australian Standard, AS 5062-2006: Fire Protection for Mobile and Transportable Equipment. In accordance with AS 5062, Wormald provides a fire risk assessment process which assists in determining the most appropriate system to use for each vehicle application. Another major component of AS 5062 is the regular inspection, testing and preventative maintenance and survey activities for the VFSS, to help ensure a system is fully functional and will perform as designed if a fire occurs. Wormald is Australasia’s leading provider of fire protection solutions and has been protecting people and property since 1889. Operating in nearly 40 locations throughout Australia, Wormald designs, manufactures, installs and services fire detection and protection equipment to a wide variety of industries.
FORESTRY TASMANIA has received a special award from Tasmania Fire Service Chief Officer Mike Brown for its contribution to fire fighting, community protection and fire management. The Chief Officer’s Special Award recognises FT’s continued support in fire protection, incident management, skills development, research and the interagency protocol. General Manager Operations Nigel Foss accepted the award on behalf of FT at the State fire conference. The award acknowledges in particular ‘outstanding support to the TFS and community protection over the challenging 2012-2013 Tasmanian Bushfire Emergency’. “It recognises the strong and ongoing working relationship and collaboration between the two agencies,” Nigel said. “The interagency protocol and multi-agency cooperation in terms of fire management here in Tasmania is the envy of the other States and Territories. “During this year’s ‘summer of flames’, the hallmark from FT’s perspective was again the fantastic cooperation and support between all three fire fighting services – TFS, Parks and Forestry - as well as other forest companies, Police, SES and Ambulance. “While the challenge was enormous, and at times we were tested and stretched to our limits, the fact that we could always rely on the support of our colleagues in all these agencies meant a great deal.”
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26 – November 2013, Australian Forests & Timber News
$15 million for bushfire mitigation T
HE RECENT Coalition Policy for a ‘Strong and Sustainable Forestry Industry’ contains an important commitment to provide an additional $15 million to establish a National Bushfire Mitigation Program. This program aims to implement both long term bushfire mitigation strategies, and better fuel reduction activities over the next three years. The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) has strongly endorsed this program, noting the critical importance of effective fuel reduction to protect natural assets and property and to contribute to public safety. Importantly, AFPA recommends that the fuel reduction targets of the state land management agencies be increased to ensure effective fuel reduction based on priority zones. Compared with the previous decade (1990-1999), there has been a 27% decline in the annual area of prescribed burns while at the same
time the average area burned from wildfires has doubled to over 1 million hectares per year. AFPA Strategic Policy Manager Mick Stephens, recently returned from a three-week study tour, funded by a Gottstein fellowship, to study forest management strategies to reduce fire risk in the United States and Canada. “A major shift has occurred in US fire management policy since the introduction of the Healthy Forests Initiative in 2003, which streamlined planning requirements for fuel reduction activities on US federal lands. A significant funding program is also helping to restore forest lands to more fire-resistant ecological conditions through the use of combined biomass harvesting and prescribed burns,” Stephens said. “Many of these projects promote the harvesting of excess trees and biomass, in order to reduce fuel loads, promote renewable bioenergy and contribute to local
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AFPA Strategic Policy Manager Mick Stephens.
jobs. “A system of stewardship contracts has been put in place to ensure contractors deliver the desired forest conditions, while the products harvested help offset the net costs of treatment of land management agencies,” he said. AFPA is recommending that a similar pilot scheme be established in Australia, given the potential benefits for improved air quality, reduced fire risks and the valuable use of biomass that would otherwise burn in the forest. Source: AFPA
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Refurbished tower to improve fire response this summer THE 25-metre high fire tower near Whiporie, between Grafton and Casino, has been refurbished and will be a valuable weapon in Forestry Corporation of NSW’s local firefighting arsenal this fire season. Forestry Corporation of NSW’s District Manager, Matthew Pope, said the fire tower in the Gibberagee State Forest had played a vital role in fire detection for half a century, and had been rebuilt to fulfil its role in local bushfire detection for the next 50 years. “The quicker we spot and respond to fires the easier they are to contain and the less damage they do, so fire towers are a vital first line of defence,” Pope said. “Spotting smoke from towers is still the quickest way to detect fires, so during fire season we station trained specialists in fire towers around the State to monitor the landscape for new smoke sightings. “The Gibberagee fire tower allows operators to see over one hundred kilometres, so it plays a key role protecting high valued pine forests, eucalypt plantations and native forest assets as well as the communities of Whiporie, Rapville and large tracts of private property and national parks. “The tower was first built in the 1960s, and tower operators have been stationed there throughout every fire season since. “After half a century of operation, the tower was due for an upgrade, so Forestry Corporation engaged local builder Cambuild to completely rebuild the 25-metre-high tower. The refurbishment involved replacing every bolt in the tower and completely rebuilding the cabin. “Thanks to this upgrade, Gibberagee fire tower is now ready to be put back into service for the next 50 years.” Pope said the tower operators would be supported by up to 20 locals from as far afield
Cameron Wicks and Aaron Simmons at the Gibberagee fire tower.
as Dorrigo and Urbenville, who have been employed as seasonal fire-fighters across the region to bolster fire-fighter numbers over the season. “Forestry Corporation is responsible for more than 2.2 million hectares of native and planted forests – that’s almost three per cent of the State of NSW – and seasonal fire-fighters play an important role helping us prevent, respond to and control fires in State forests,” Pope said. “Our seasonal fire-fighters will assist in hazard reduction and support our 400 trained fire-fighting staff to manage fires on State forest land. “Forestry Corporation fire-fighters also work in partnership with the Rural Fire Service, Fire and Rescue NSW and National Parks and Wildlife Services to help limit the impact of fire across the State.”
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Australian Forests & Timber News, November 2013 – 27
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The NEW Komatsu 895 now working in Australia
he Komatu 895 is a unique forwarder in a class of its own. The first real 20-tonner with every compenent designed for 20 ton capacity; new chassis, new power train with new engine, big 28.5 wheels, new cab, new crane, and new bunks. Bigger than all the others, carrying bigger loads, using less fuel than the efficient previous model. Check out the features below which provide unequalled benefits to the contrator. OPERATOR ENVIRONMENT • New larger cab with even better visibility and operating environment • Low noise level due to, for instance, lower noise level from engine compartment, improved cab isolation with thicker cab fl oor plate, sound-absorbing interior, and variable fan control • New smart radio with Bluetooth and hands free functionality • New driver’s seat with large working area for maximum ergonomics • Larger storage solutions and spaces • Strong structure and higher ROPS weights
BUNK • New gate, FlexGate, with better visibility through it • Knock-protected with patented attachment – fl exes away when in contact with crane
• Movable gate separated from fi rst bunk • Many different bunk confi gurations depending on timber type • LoadFlex with or without scales
CONTROL SYSTEM • New ergonomic hand controls with more functions • New control system, MaxiXplorer 3.0 • New intelligent control for work lights
ENGINE TECHNOLOGY • New engine, E3 Power, with more power and torque • E3 Power technology, which gives the engine high performance, low fuel consumption, and low emissions of NOx gases and particulate matter (soot) • Most effi cient at low engine speeds, which optimize fuel consumption • Integrated DEF tank • Greater cooling capacity
POWER TRAIN • New transmission with high traction that adapts its characteristics to load, slope, and obstacles • New maintenance-free drive shaft system • New robust axle and bogie system with sturdy portal bogie with Comfort Bogie functionality
CHASSIS • Greater load capacity • New robust chassis • Good ground clearance, V-shaped underside for good obstacle clearance • Up to 4 different frame lengths available • Robust front blade with good obstacle clearance • Sturdy articulated joint with sealed bearings • Solution with good machine stability
• New large 28.5” wheels • Higher ground clearance • Larger contact area between tires and rims to allow greater traction • New tire pattern, F2, well suited to bogie tracks • More space between wheels for low ground pressure and chains between wheels
• New stronger crane, Komatsu 165F • Sturdy slewing motor housing • Split hose routing • Perfect parking position • 4-point link with good movement geometry • ProTec as standard
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