28th Annual WMI Workshop on Design, Operation and Maintenance of Saws and Knives

2018 WORKSHOP: October 15-16, 2018

Holiday Inn - Portland Airport
8439 NE Columbia Blvd, Portland, OR 97220

Workshop Focus:

The WMI Workshop on Saws and Knives will provide you with up-to-date information necessary to increase your company's profits by improving lumber grade recovery, maximizing sawing accuracy and rate of sawing, and by reducing kerf losses, machine downtime and maintenance costs of the sawing, planing and wood chipping equipment, and how to correct operation hazards before they cause accidents.

Issues to be explored include: current sawing practices; properties of material to be processed; economics of sawing variation and potential gains in lumber value recovery using thin kerf accurate sawing; on-line sawing performance control; impact of steel characteristics on cutting saw blade performance; circular and band saw stiffness and stability; computer software for optimizing saw design, operation and maintenance; advances in saw tensioning and tension evaluation; saw design along with saw lubrication and cooling systems; identifying what you stand to gain and lose by changing saw design; on-line measurement and analysis of sawing performance and sawing accuracy and lumber size control program as a one of the most effective predictive maintenance tools available to the sawmill industry.

Other topics include: economics of advanced cutting tool materials and troubleshooting procedures; solid style chipping heads and disposable knife system for planer heads; survey of recent techniques to improve cutting tool performance; the new RoboSharp ax10l2 Sharpening Center for circular saws; and key maintenance criteria which impact sawing equipment positioning, feeding and scanning accuracy. An understanding of these principles will enable you to analyze and improve cutting tools and machine performance in your operation.

In addition, there will be a special session on safety and ergonomic issues in wood processing and a review of causes of accidents - case histories, and how they can be avoided. This session will also provide information how to reduce exposure to liability and litigation.

The workshop faculty of lecturers from the United States and Canada, each a recognized expert in his field. The faculty will combine lectures, video presentations and demonstrations of computer software, in order to address problems in operating and maintaining circular and band saws, chipper and planer knives, and to suggest possible solutions.

Who Should Attend:

The material presented will benefit:
  •   Filing and Maintenance Personnel
  •   QC and Process Control Technicians
  •   Production Supervisors
  •   Safety Managers
  •   Saw Manufacturers who are seeking to optimize saw design.


A full program extending over two days will be presented by nine experienced speakers.


ENROLLMENT can be made by returning the registration form in PDF (Adobe Acrobat)

WORKSHOP FEE: $695.00 up to October 2, $795 after October 2. Fee includes all instructional materials, lunches and morning and afternoon refreshments.

CONFIRMATION of your registration and workshop details will be sent to you upon receipt of your registration form.

HOTEL Accommodations are not included in the registration fee. A block of rooms has been reserved for workshop participants at the Holiday Inn Portland - Airport at a special rate of $119.00/night for single room, plus 14.5% State and local taxes. Reservations may be made directly with the hotel by calling: 503-256-5000. Be sure to make reservations as soon as possible and ask for the Wood Machining Institute's special rate prior to 10/2/2018.

About Holiday Inn - Portland Airport
8439 NE Columbia Blvd, Portland, OR 97220
Tel: 800-315-2621 or 503-256-5000 direct
The Holiday Inn - Portland Airport is a 3-star hotel conveniently located near the Portland Airport (PDX). The hotel is two minutes from the airport's MAX Light Rail terminal and 10 miles from downtown.

SUBSTITUTIONS may be made at any time.

CANCELLATIONS received up to October 2 will receive a full refund. There will be no refund for cancellations made after October 2.

Lecture notes will be distributed at the start of the workshop. These notes are for participants only and are not otherwise available for sale or unauthorized distribution.

NOTE: Video / Audio recording is prohibited during the workshop.

Workshop Leader and Speaker

Ryszard Szymani, Ph.D., Director of Wood Machining Institute and Editor of the bimonthly international newsletter Wood Machining News. Szymani has been in the wood machining field for forty eight years, conducting research on thin kerf accurate sawing and the wear resistance improvement of saws and knives, theoretical and experimental analysis of circular saw tensioning, veneer peeling, and high energy water jet cutting and on defect detection in lumber. He was instrumental in the development of the Saw Vibration Frequency Analyzer for evaluation of circular saw tensioning and has published over 120 technical papers, reports and conference proceedings and 205 issues of Wood Machining News. Szymani is also editor of a book on Scanning Technology and Process Optimization: Advances in the Wood Industry.

Szymani has been conducting Workshops on Design and Operation of Circular and Band Saws since 1980 in the USA and abroad and organized international conferences on Scanning and Sawing Technology (ScanTech and SawTech 1989-2007). He has been consulting on wood machining problems and investigated accidents with woodworking equipment for over 39 years. He received a Ph.D. degree in Wood Science and Technology and MS degree in Engineering Science/Mechanical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley, MS degree in Wood Science from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, B.C., Canada, and ME degree in Wood Technology from the College of Agriculture, Poznan, Poland.

* Wood Machining Institute, founded in January 1984, has organized WMI Workshops on Saws and Wood Machining and Cutting Tools and ScanTech and SawTech international conferences from 1985 - 2007 and 15th IWMS. Proceedings of ScanTech and SawTech conferences and the 15th International Wood Machining Seminar are still available from WMI.
See www.woodmachining.com/conferences for more information.

Comments from Past Participants

"I just wanted to thank you for putting on an excellent workshop. The speakers were all very good and the presentations were very good as well. It is valuable information we can put to use now or at a later time. I enjoyed it on a personal level as well. Everyone was very professional yet "real people" too. I also appreciate how you have the material available in print as well. I enjoyed it immensely and already looking forward to the next one."
Dick Bernier, Filing Supervisor
Columbia Vista Corp., Vancouver, WA

"I look forward each year to attending the Workshop on the Design, Operation and Maintenance of Circular and Band Saws. The experts in these fields offer the latest technology and methods to obtain better performance from our machines, which helps us get better quality control and less down time. I feel that the information I attain from these workshops helps me to better understand the maintenance and operation of saws and machines in our filing room."
Earl Main, Filing Supervisor
Champion International Corporation, Missoula, Montana

"As owner/operator of a service shop for saws and cutters, I found the workshop quite valuable for our company and customers. Top speakers, relevant topics backed by research - expertly presented."
Kenneth R. Perry, President
Central Saw Works, Inc., Spokane, WA

"I would like to thank you for the opportunity to attend your workshop this week. Listening to some of the top minds in our industry was truly a joy. The years of knowledge and hard work by people such as Warren Bird, Leonard Valadez, Tom Walz, and yourself, made the workshop a tremendous learning experience. Thank you again for making workshops like these available."
Rich Fraser, Quality Control Technician
Potlatch Corporation, Gwinn, MI
906-346-3215 ext. 136


Wood Machining Institute
420 N. Civic Drive, #406
Walnut Creek, CA 94596, USA
Tel & Fax: 1-925-943-5240; Cell: 925-360-4201
e-mail: szymani@woodmachining.com