CombiCut – our best single investment

Located in the central Swedish community of Ovanåker, the sawmill Östanåsågen AB was founded in 1895, being one of the oldest companies in the area. In 2008, it invested in a new saw line from Söderhamn Eriksson, replacing its old frame saw by bandsaws. And in 2011, it replaced its reducer discs by the CombiCut. “Our best single investment”, confirms Ingemar Lundin, one of the owners.

In 1895, some 200 forest owners and farmers had started the sawmill that today is owned by Ove Lindgård and Ingemar Lundin. They have 25 employees and process 50,000 m3 spruce and pine a year. A minor portion of their production consists of customer-specific qualities, lengths and dimensions, and the rather small size of the mill is experienced as a competitive advantage:
– “We’re struggling like everybody else, but for a small sawmill it’s easier to adapt and find new markets than for large ones. Now that North Africa has slowed down, we have increased our sales to Sweden and Norway, and we still haven’t had to lay off anybody. Our aim is to optimize the utilization of our mill,” explains Ingemar.

In 2008 the sawmillers had come to a crossroads. Their old frame saw had had its day and it was getting harder to find spare parts. So they decided to invest some EUR 3 million in a merry-go-round saw line from Söderhamn Eriksson.
– “We doubled our production with the same number of employees, so it obviously was a good investment.”

Chips are an important by-product, but the spiral discs they had didn’t give them the desired chip quality. When they opted for the CombiCut from Söderhamn Eriksson, it paid off right away:
– ”We obtained a much higher chip quality with a higher proportion of accept chips. After one year we already broke even. This is our best single investment ever”, says Ingemar.

One of the requirements was that the discs should be equipped with an intermediary sawing center to minimize sawdust, which happened. In addition to getting more money for better chip quality, Östanåsågen also saves costs for chipping knives and saw blades:
– ”We need less grinding, which cuts tool costs, and the knives are also easier to access for knife change”.

About CombiCut
The CombiCut combines two technologies – step chipping and spiral chipping. This increases profitability thanks to
• higher chip quality
• better surface finish
• lower energy consumption
• better processing properties such as smoother and more silent operation
• lower maintenance cost
• lower grinding cost
• the ability to process frozen wood

The CombiCut features four knives arranged on three spirals and has a max. speed of 120 m/min.