Silver Quandong peeling demonstration a success and prospects for future production
A review of the Salisbury Research Facility Silver Quandong Peeling Demonstration and Facility Tour
In order to fulfill Quality Timber Traders’ obligation to the Farming Together program, growers and merchants alike met at the Queensland Government’s Department of Agricultural and Fisheries (www.daf.qld.gov.au) Salisbury Research Facility to look at how cabinet timber species Silver Quandong (elaeocarpus grandis) peels off a spindleless lathe.
Facility manager Rob McGavin spoke of the benefits of the pale fine-grained timber that can be applicable to various end uses that traditional patterned timbers are not suitable for. Veneer being a serious contender.
Sawing vs Peeling
Rob walked us through the process of debarking and shaping the billet in preparation for the lathe. He stipulated that the more cylindrical the shape the higher the recovery. This can be as high as 75% compared to 35 – 60% with bandsaw or Lucas portable mills. The potential is also there for growers to sell billets from younger plantations with smaller diameter logs.
The peeling process itself was very quick and efficient, leaving a 50mm central core of heartwood.
Further investigation is expected to be undertaken into the viability of Silver Quandong veneer production for special application in the construction industry. Attendees were treated to a tour of the facility where they were given insight into the developmental work and machinery that has been designed for various types of engineered wood.
Solar Kiln Drying
The tour ended at one of the solar kilns. This was pertinent to the current research being undertaken by Southern Cross University (SCU). Like Salisbury, SCU is designing a similar but portable solar kiln that is designed for future commercial application by QTT members. As members of QTT you will be eligible for access to structures such as the kiln for individual use.