Metsä Wood Vilppula, Finland

Metsä Wood, Vilppula Sawmill


Large investment at final stage

Metsä Wood Vilppula Sawmill, which belongs to the international Metsä Group, was originally established in 1980. Metsä Wood group now has a turnover of over 900 million euros. It employs nearly 3000 people in 20 countries with a 100 of these working in the Vilppula Sawmill in Finland.

2013 has seen a 30 million euro large investment at Vilppula site and includes a sawmill infeed, debarker, sawline and all related conveyors for by-products as well as a green timber sorting plant.

Previously, there were two saw lines at Vilppula site. The larger log sizes were sawed in a band-sawline and smaller logs in a separate small log line. This new investment sees one sawline replacing two older lines and also adds value and improves cost effectiveness by allowing more diversified cutting patterns and improved product range, it is now possible to saw pine.

The Vilppula site has delivered over 13 million m3 of sawn timber since opening 30 years ago and this investment will see a further 450,000 m3 delivered worldwide each year (capacity in three shifts).


High-production sawmill with modern Finnish technology

The Vilppula sawmill project is one of the biggest ever undertaken in Finland and was accomplished by a partnership of Finnish suppliers to whom the new sawmill will be a significant reference. Tähkä Oy supplied the sawmill infeed, bark handling and lower floor of the sawmill, the new debarker was supplied by Valon Kone Oy and the HewSaw SL250 3.4. sawline by Veisto Oy. Jartek Oy supplied the green timber sorting plant.

The new debarking plant has two lines and both debarkers were supplied by VK. The smaller VK5000-Combi-3R was originally in the small log line and the new VK8000HD-Combi-2R with a bigger frame has been supplied for the larger logs. All logs are turned and accelerated before entering the debarker which ensures that the logs are fed top end first with no gap. This guarantees a maximum debarking speed and minimizes stresses and fibre damage to the log.

Both debarkers are Combi machines for high-speed debarking. They feature an inline reducing rotor for the oversized butts and (an) Air Seal debarking rotor(s) with pneumatically adjustable tool pressure(s). This Air Seal system allows a log to be stopped whilst inside the machine without causing damage to the log. The rotor diameter is 44 cm in the smaller machine of the VK5000 series and 56 cm in the larger VK8000. Both machines feature automatic adjustment of tool and feed roll pressures for each log. The log diameter is measured by a light screen in the VK infeed conveyor.

The VK8000HD-Combi-2R machine has a modular machine frame, 8000HD, which is the largest in the VK product range, and a new generation VK72 centring infeed conveyor. Another feature in the new machine is the use of FibreMax feed rolls which allows easier maintenance and offers better grip on the log in all conditions due to three different profiles being available. A double rotor debarker with one debarking rotor has a maximum feed speed of 120 m/min.

A Finnish debarking technology was chosen by the Vilppula sawmill, as the sawmill had many years of good experience of the Valon Kone Air Seal debarker on the original small log line. Its reliability and wide range of operational adjustments had been a big advantage and according to mill manager Jaakko Vierola, the excellent level of service and spare parts support had been a big influence on their decision to choose a Finnish debarker supplier again.

The Vilppula sawmill started its normal production in Autumn 2013. The official inauguration date for the sawmill was 18th November 2013.