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Increased problems of hardwood timber availability have caused many sawmiller, industry analysts, and planners to recognize the importance of sawmill conversion efficiency. Conversion efficiency not only affects sawmill profits, but is also important on a much broader level. Timber supply issues have caused resource planners and policy makers to consider the effects of conversion efficiency on the utilization and depletion of the timber resource. Improvements in sawmill conversion efficiency would favorably impact sawmill profits, and would be equivalent in effect to extending existing supplies of standing timber. An equation was developed to estimate lumber recovery factor for hardwood sawmills based on the characteristics of sawing machines and log resources. Variables included in the model were headrig type, headrig kerf, average log diameter and length, and the influence of total sawing variation. The estimated coefficients significantly influenced lumber recovery factor. The model should be helpful in assessing conversion efficiency trends and potential benefits from gains in sawmill efficiency.


Wade, M.W., S.H. Bullard, P.H. Steele, and P.A. Araman. 1992. Estimating hardwood sawmill conversion efficiency based on sawing machine and log characteristics. Forest Products Journal 42(11/12):21-26.



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