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Wood-Mizer Products, Inc.
Indianapolis, Indiana
Make the most of your energy
SM
Schneider Electric Case Study
Wood-Mizer i...
Schneider Electric Case Study > Wood-Mizer Products, Inc.
The Background
For the past few years, the demand for lumber has...
Schneider Electric Case Study  Wood-Mizer Products, Inc.
The Magelis HMI and Modicon 258 controller feature remote access ...
Schneider Electric Case Study  Wood-Mizer Products, Inc.
Schneider Electric USA
8001 Knightdale Boulevard
Knightdale, NC 2...
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Industrial sawmill solution Wood Mizer

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Wood-Mizer in Indianapolis, IN, one of the world’s
leading industrial sawmill manufacturers, has developed
the next generation of industrial sawmills by combining
a thin-kerf blade and advanced automation technology
for maximum log yield and profitability.

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Industrial sawmill solution Wood Mizer

  1. 1. Wood-Mizer Products, Inc. Indianapolis, Indiana Make the most of your energy SM Schneider Electric Case Study Wood-Mizer in Indianapolis, IN, one of the world’s leading industrial sawmill manufacturers, has developed the next generation of industrial sawmills by combining a thin-kerf blade and advanced automation technology for maximum log yield and profitability.
  2. 2. Schneider Electric Case Study > Wood-Mizer Products, Inc. The Background For the past few years, the demand for lumber has been steadily increasing around the world, causing industrial wood processors to seek ways to increase production. To keep up with higher demands, state-of-the-art sawing equipment helps improve throughput without compromising quality or labor costs. The Challenge In 2011, Wood-Mizer set out to create an industrial sawmill that appealed to existing or new sawing operations growing their businesses and new ones about to launch. The sawmill needed to be heavy duty and highly productive but affordable for sawyers of any size, from pallet makers to graded wood flooring manufacturers. Building upon the basic design of the company’s existing WM3500 sawmill, the WM4000 thin-kerf sawmill was designed to have more automated features that would speed the sawing process and simplify controls for the operator. The WM4000 now commands the flagship status as Wood-Mizer’s most productive thin-kerf sawmill on the market. The Solution To enhance functionality and productivity while keeping costs low, Wood-Mizer turned to Schneider ElectricTM for ModiconTM M258 logic controllers, MagelisTM XBT GT advanced touch-screen HMIs, LexiumTM 32i servo drives, AltivarTM 312 variable speed drives, and remote I/O modular systems. The Modicon M258 controller and Magelis HMI feature onboard USB technology and Ethernet connectivity for easy upgrades. “We really like the USB ports, so as we find software issues or make improvements, it’s very easy to upgrade software and keep everyone up to date,” said John Frost, senior electrical engineer at Wood-Mizer. Wood-Mizer chose the 7.5-in. Magelis XBT touch-screen HMI for the WM4000 sawmill because it displays more information and eliminates pushbuttons. Competitive sawmills have small displays that provide limited text information. The HMI on the WM4000, which is mounted on a moveable arm for operator comfort, displays board and cant sizes, current head height, feed position, and blade power. An integrated joystick allows the operator to be more productive by providing all sawing and log-handling functions at one’s fingertips. Easier Troubleshooting The Schneider Electric components communicate through SoMachineTM , a unique single software suite that provides seamless communication within the system. Technicians checking on a WM4000 can plug into the network and have access to information on all components, which simplifies troubleshooting. SoMachine connects the system so that if an application is updated on one component, it will load to the other components as well, providing one software for a single point of connection. With past machines, Wood-Mizer sent technicians to customer sites to fix problems or make updates. With the comprehensive information provided on the Magelis HMI, customers can easily identify where a fault is located and get instruction on a repair without waiting for a technician to arrive, saving on downtime for the customer and warranty costs for Wood-Mizer. The diagnostics on the Magelis HMI allow a technician to see what is going wrong with the entire system. Communication with CANopen to all the drives allows all drive faults to show up on the screen. “In the past, if a drive faulted there would be a general fault message. Then a technician would need to physically go into a dangerous high-voltage panel to see what was wrong,” Frost said. “The information provided on the HMI helps get the machine back up and running faster because it points to the problem sooner. In some cases, customers can do their own diagnostics.” 2 | Raleigh, North Carolina “We rely on Schneider Electric because it has a robust and proven track record for its products. We need a partner that will support us worldwide, whether at our headquarters in the United States or in our office in Poland. Our customers are all over the world, and so is Schneider Electric.” - John Frost, senior electrical engineer at Wood-Mizer.
  3. 3. Schneider Electric Case Study Wood-Mizer Products, Inc. The Magelis HMI and Modicon 258 controller feature remote access capabilities, so a technician can gain access to a customer’s network and modify applications or make other changes without leaving the office. Alternatively, application updates can be loaded onto a USB drive and sent to the customer for quick uploading through the USB port on the Magelis HMI. “Previously technicians went into the field to make modifications and changes,” Frost said. “Now we can overnight a thumb drive to make that happen. It saves us a lot of time and money.” The Modicon controller features 64 MB of memory onboard, 128 MB of flash memory, and onboard USB technology to provide the ability to log data and track productivity. All logged data can be retrieved by plugging in the USB to the controller or the Magelis HMI. This technology is unique to Schneider Electric. Increased Production Rates The Schneider Electric components in the WM4000 communicate faster due to the networking and same SoMachine software, so the controller works faster, allowing the sawmill to function faster. In addition, the switch to servo drives has improved speed. “By adding the Lexium 32 servo drive, the WM4000 processes lumber twice as fast as we’ve ever done before,” Frost said. “The head positioning is quicker so we can hit our marks much faster and more accurately.” An Auto-cut feature on the WM4000, which remembers the location of the start and end of the log, prevents the sawyer from overshooting either end of the log. The system tells the saw head how far to cut and where to return so the machine spends more time sawing. “By integrating more automatic functions, we speed up the saw as much as possible and reduce manual handling by the operator,” Frost said. Faster Commissioning with Fewer Cables To reduce time to build the WM4000, the unit uses Schneider Electric remote I/O modules on a CANopen network that connects to the Modicon 258 controller. This replaces 40 cables that would have otherwise been connecting I/O to the controller, which saves approximately 20 percent in commissioning time per machine. “The remote access has significantly shortened my time to develop the controls,” Frost said. “The WM4000 is faster to build because I’m not running discrete wires for direction controls to variable frequency drives. Now I run a single CAN bus cable and I’m done.” Reliability Saves Money By using more reliable components, Wood-Mizer saves on warranty issues and has a better overall reputation as a machine that will last without many service issues. “We rely on Schneider Electric because it has a robust and proven track record for its products,” Frost said. “We need a partner that will support us worldwide, whether at our headquarters in the United States or in our office in Poland. Our customers are all over the world, and so is Schneider Electric.” Raleigh, North Carolina | 3 “The remote access has significantly shortened my time to develop the controls. The WM4000 is faster to build because I’m not running discrete wires for direction controls to variable frequency drives. Now I run a single CAN bus cable and I’m done.” - John Frost, Wood-Mizer.
  4. 4. Schneider Electric Case Study Wood-Mizer Products, Inc. Schneider Electric USA 8001 Knightdale Boulevard Knightdale, NC 27545 Tel: 919-266-3671 www.schneider-electric.com/us Schneider Electric Canada 19 Waterman Avenue Toronto, ON M4B 1Y2 Tel: 800-565-6699 www.schneider-electric.com/ca January 2015 ©2015SchneiderElectric.AllRightsReserved.SchneiderElectric,Modicon,Magelis,Lexium,Altivar,SoMachine,andMakethemostofyourenergyaretrademarksownedby SchneiderElectricIndustriesSASoritsaffiliatedcompanies.Allothertrademarksarethepropertyoftheirrespectiveowners.•www.schneider-electric.com•998-1262403_US To learn more about Schneider Electric Material Working solutions, please visit www.schneider-electric.com/us

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