At the end of 2020, Timber Products installed a new 10-foot Meinan Lathe line to manufacture softwood veneer at the Yreka, California Veneer Operation. The crew in Yreka shut down production and immediately begin demolition of the old line on November 15, 2020.
After the demolition was complete at the end of November, the new lathe line was installed. Installation was completed on time at the end of 2020, and production began as scheduled on January 4, 2021.
“The crew worked a lot of long, hard days to complete this project on schedule,” said Chris Chase, General Manager of California Operations.
It was important to Chase and the rest of the company that the project be completed quickly, as it would lead to major improvements in the quality of softwood veneer produced. The Meinan Lathe allows Timber Products to produce the highest quality softwood veneer in multiple lengths and thicknesses.
“This lathe enables us to achieve extremely tight thickness and width tolerances and produce the smoothest and most consistent veneer on the market,” said Chase. “Our customers are seeing the difference and already realizing the benefits of this investment.”
In addition to improved quality, this project aligns Yreka’s production with demand from Timber Products’s plywood mills in Medford and Grants Pass. The new line enables Yreka to compose random width veneers into sheets that can be utilized in the construction of various products at Timber Products plywood mills. Yreka is now able to ship 100% of its veneer to Timber Products plywood mills.
“This investment assures the viability of the Yreka Veneer Division and ensures that our plywood mills have access to the highest quality veneer available anywhere,” said Chase. “This project, and the commitment that it demonstrates, has been great for employee morale.”
The project has created more skilled positions in Yreka and employees have stepped up to the challenge. The crew at Yreka has enjoyed working with the new lathe line, and is extremely proud of the significant quality improvements.