Panels & Furniture Asia Nov/Dec 2018

PANELS & FURNITURE ASIA • Issue 6 • November / December 2018 MARKET REPORT 15 single block. “Veneer peeling lathe is the heart of the mill and the most critical work,” explained Bykov. “Only the most skilled and highly qualified employees work here.” The veneer exits the peeling lathe in wet condition (100-130 per cent of moisture content) due to the soak in the pools, and requires to be dried to 2-6 per cent. And so, the veneer is fed to the dryer in the first workshop where it is equipped with steam dryers (40m 3 of one-time load each) and a Raute gas dryer (140m 3 of one-time load). "We plan to replace the old gas dryers and have already ordered a new dryer by Fezer Indústrias Mecânicas, S.A. (Brazil) which is fuelled by thermal oil. The new equipment allows us to reduce the number of staffs engaged at the production line. If the four dryers are now serviced by eight people, then the new dryer will require only two people. “Historically, the capacity of the existing dryers were insufficient to cater to the increasing volume of production,” said Bykov. “This new equipment will allow us to expand the “weak” place of the production line — drying, and will give a capacity gain of approximately 20,000m 3 per year.” Along with the new dryer, the company purchased a boiler plant by Polytechnik (Austria), which is fuelled by bark waster. It will be mounted together with the new dryer and will completely cover the requirements in heat. This allow the company to reduce the expenditure on power by 10 per cent with the economic benefit of about 200 million roubles. The second workshop is equipped with the Uroko dryer that has six levels and a capacity of 100m 3 per shift (12 hrs). The dryer is equipped with moisture analyzers by Elliott Bay Industries (USA), which determine the moisture content of the veneer. In fact, the sheets with elevated moisture levels are marked with paint. These veneers with substandard moisture content are placed aside and used as packing material for plywood transportation. Meccano scanners are used to sort the veneers in the gas dryer of the first workshop. The scanners identify the veneer type and distribute them into trays, according to grade. Human element here is excluded. Wrong sized sheets of veneer are forwarded to the edge splicing machines by Hashimoto (Japan). There, the sheets are assembled into specific format veneer sheets. In addition, the production line is equipped with special sensors that detect defects in the veneer sheets. For instance, knots are clipped out and replaced with a piece of good veneer to raise the grade of veneer. Ready veneer sheets are laid-up and forwarded to the rollers for stacking, and then to a cold press where an initial glue polymerization is performed under pressure. The ready stacks are then forwarded to hot pressing, after which the sheet of veneer is done. The mill’s first workshop is equipped with five hot presses — one eight-feet press and four square presses for production of 5x5 format sheets —while the new workshop has two hot presses. Phenolic glue is used for gluing the sheets of veneer together. All the plywood produced by the mill meets the E1 standard for release of phenol- formaldehyde. Ready plywood is fed to the trimming section. After trimming, the operator identifies the plywood grade and check if it meets the client’s requirements. About 60per cent of theplywoodproduced in the new workshop is laminated — coated with phenolic film. As highlighted by Gennady Sokolov, laminated plywood is the most marginal mill’s product. Its cost value is higher due to application of the facing film. “However, recently Sveza has been taking a profound interest in specialised products custommade to client’s requirements,” he said. “Now, this is not a standard product. Of course, production of such plywood is associated with additional costs, but they are compensated by the price. So far, we have a small volume of such works, about one per cent of the cumulative production. “Specifically for the flooringmanufacturers, we have developed a newproduct – a Sveza Parquet plywood with reduced moisture content — maximum nine per cent. This type of plywood is used in manufacturing of parquet that is mainly supplied to Canada and Germany. The regular plywood standard moisture content reaches 14 per cent,” said Sokolov. All the plywood production wastes are burned in two 30 MW steam boiler plants, and the sanding dust is used for fuel briquette manufacturing. In 2010, the company commissioned two RUF briquetting lines. “This company is known for reliable equipment," said Bykov. “As compared to Nestro, whom we experienced problems with.” The annual briquette production volume by the first workshop is 350 tonnes and 200 tonnes by the second workshop. Szeza placed the briquetting to outsourcing and a similar approach was accepted at the company’s another mill — Sveza Novator. Over 58 per cent of the produced plywood is supplied to the CIS, Europe, USA, China. According to Sokolov, the logistical support in the USA is more costly than in Europe. Despite this, the mill gets a good margin from this area and intends to pursue it. ℗