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SIA "Rīgas meži" (LLC "Riga Forests") is a commercial enterprise owned by Riga City municipality. It manages forest properties, parks and gardens owned by Riga City. In 2013, in order to obtain additional value from timber resources owned by Riga, SIA „Rīgas meži” has started timber processing by launching its own sawmill. Its processing capacity is 50 000 m3 of round timber per year. The sawmill is processing small-dimension logs of coniferous species (Scots pine and Norway spruce) with diameter at the small end 12-24 cm.

The raw timber is harvested in forest properties managed by SIA Rīgas meži. Because of this, a predictable, regular and stable raw material flow is guaranteed.

At present, sawmill Norupe can process about 1/3 of the annual timber volume harvested in Riga city forests. These forest properties are located in the centre of Latvia, within 50 km from Riga, close to roads and ports. It lowers the transportation costs of raw materials and sawn timber.

The main advantage of the sawmill is processing small-dimension logs of coniferous species. Their knots are small-sized, live, intergrown, not rotten and not loose. By using modern timber processing technologies, high quality sawn timber can be produced – furniture blanks and finishing boards. There are very few such sawmills in Latvia. The sawmill can provide fast and effective response to clients’ needs, including non-standard product making.

A large part of the sawmill production is sold in the local market, but export volumes grow as the export market expands both in European Union and beyond its borders.




Sawmill production markets


Sawmill technologies

Round timber sorting line

Round timber is sorted in Arhlesmash Sorti (Russia) automatic timber sorting line, which includes metal detector and scanner for timber measuring and detecting the degree of curvature. Every round timber cargo is stored and sorted separately, in order to measure the exact raw material volume this cargo contains.


Incoming round timber

 


Metal detector

 


After scanning and measuring, the round timber is sorted

 

 

Sawing line

Round timber is debarked in MS Maschinenbau und Vertriebs GmbH (Germany) debarking machine with very low level of noise and vibrations. The barked timber goes to Arhlesmash Lesovik (Russia) canting and board sawing line, which uses multiple circular saw machines. Slabs and cut-offs are used for chip production. It ensures a high level of production output and effective timber use.   

Dimensions of the produced sawn timber – from 16x75 mm to 50x150 mm. Non-standard dimensions are possible on clients’ request.

 


Timber preparation for debarking

 


Sawing line

 

Kiln drying

Sawn timber is dried in HB Krako (Czech Republic) drying chambers with total capacity of 800 m3. The chambers have the latest generation control system which ensures a high quality of production drying process. The automated drying process is controlled and adjusted by a qualified drying chamber operator.  

- Four drying chambers with capacity of 100 m3

- Two drying chambers with capacity of 200 m3

Heat energy for the drying chambers is supplied by a heating system with power of 3 MW. For fuel, this system uses both sawmill by-products (bark, chips and sawdust) and fuel chips obtained in logging process. The main advantage of Agro Forst & Energietechnik GmbH (Austria) heating plant is the capability to burn green biomass with very high moisture content (up to 70 %).

Both kiln-dried and non-dried production is sold. Moisture content in the dried sawn timber – down to 8 %.


Heating plant

 


Kiln drying chambers

 

Planing

The dried sawn timber is processed by Weinig AG (Germany) square planing and moulding machine with the fifth axle for timber profile cutting. This is the most advanced equipment in its class, which ensures maximum precision and the highest quality of timber surface.

Production profiles – on clients’ request.

 

Production grading and packaging

The production grading and packaging process is based on clients’ request. As a guideline, European standard LVS EN 1611-1:2000/A1:2003 is used (Sawn timber – Appearance grading of softwoods).

The grading process is done by hand, considering the visual quality of the production. The main appearance grades of sawn timber quality are A, B, C and D. The grade of quality is mainly determined by timber knotliness (knot number, size and quality). Also, the quality is determined by timber defects, such as cracks, wanes, resin pockets, insect damage, wood decay, dimensional defects etc. Considering the client’s requirements and quality requests, sawn timber length or packaging conditions can change significantly.

 


Production grading and packaging

 

Maximum effectiveness of timber processing cycle

 During the processing cycle, the following by-products are obtained – package boards, pulpwood chips, fuel chips, sawdust and bark. Most by-products are sold, including bark and sawdust for bark mulch and sawdust granule production. The remaining part is used in the heating plant, producing heat energy for kiln drying chambers. The ashes created in the burning process are used as a fertilizer for young forest stands and seed plantations.

 

Certification

Since 2012, forest management of SIA Rīgas meži is certified according to PEFC Forest Management certification standard (certificate No. TT-PEFC-FM005, valid until 13.11.2017.).

Tracking the timber supply chain is ensured by PEFC Chain of Custody certification standard (certificate No. TT-PEFC-COC009, valid until 03.10.2017.).