Stimson Lumber Company Announced $50 million Investment at its 95-year-old Forest Grove Oregon Sawmill

Stimson Lumber Company’s Chief Executive Officer Andrew Miller on Wednesday (6-26-24), announced that the wood product company will invest $50 million into a new, highspeed sawmill line at its Forest Grove, Oregon facility.

According to the press release, the investment at the 95-year-old sawmill marks a significant upgrade and commitment to future operations at the facility and increased potential for private timber owners seeking new market opportunities for smaller-dimension timber, Miller said.

Starting later this year, Stimson will begin preparing the Forest Grove mill for a 350-foot-long HewSaw line made by Veisto-Oy based in Finland. Miller said he expects the new saw line will be operational in early 2026 and that the existing line will continue operating without a lapse in production.

“We are excited about the investment in this new technology for multiple reasons,” Miller said. “On one hand, we are committing to long-term operations at Stimson’s oldest mill site, and the economic and workforce impacts the mill brings to the community.”

Miller added that “This technology also represents an opportunity for Stimson and other timberland owners to efficiently process smaller diameter timber that previously would have been sold for pulp rather than be cut into dimensional lumber, or timber that would have to grow for another eight years before becoming marketable. We think this will be a real win for landowners.

When operational, the new saw line will process logs between 4-inch and 16-inches in diameter at a rate of 70, eight-foot blocks per minute, making it the highest speed saw line in North America, Miller said. With its current saw line and 300 million board-feet of kiln capacity, the mill produces about 100 million feet of two-by-four and two-by-six studs annually. Still, Miller anticipates production will triple when the new mill is fully operational. The current mill employs 90 people, but Miller anticipates the new technology will ultimately require fewer employees once operational.

“The new mill will be one of the most efficient and productive sawmills in North America, which is Stimson’s goal with the investment,” Miller says.

The investment in the HewSaw technology also leverages Stimson’s 175,000 acres of adjacent timberlands, which will account for more than half of the mill’s timber supply.

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