The heft and feel of a well-worn handle,
The sight of shavings that curl from a blade;
The logs in the wood pile, the sentiment of huge beams in an old-fashioned house;
The smell of fresh cut timber and the pungent fragrance of burning leaves;
The crackle of kindling and the hiss of burning logs.
Abundant to all the needs of man, how poor the world would be
Without wood.

Everard Hinrichs, quoted by Eric Sloane in A Reverence for Wood


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Woodworking in 2012 - Holzindustrie Schweighofer

In contrast to the old-time woodworking of the last couple of posts, I thought you might enjoy seeing what state-of-the-art wood manufacturing is like these days. If you're not familiar with modern, profitable operations, you might be surprised. They're not:

  • dirty
  • wasteful
  • exploitative of the resource
  • manual labor intensive
  • or politically incorrect
as those old movies seem to portray. Rather, the best companies these days build on a foundation of sustainable harvest, efficient processing, and responsive marketing.

You'll see all three in the following corporate video by Holzindustrie Schweighofer, a great and profitable Austrian company that owns and operates several businesses in Europe. This is what a wood company should look like in this day and age. Be sure to notice that they are sorting logs by diameter prior to sending them into the sawmill...this increases efficiency and speed of processing, all the way through to final shipment of the lumber product.


This type of management yields results and spins off great ideas. The Schweighofer family initiated the Schweighofer Prize in 2002, an annual prize awarded to leading innovators in the European wood community. It is this kind of commitment that makes the heart of every kind of woodsman proud to Go Wood.

Thanks to my friend John Krier for the tip on this great company, and to the folks at Holzindustrie Schweighofer for sharing their excellent video.

No comments: