Hard to top

Article by Martina Nöstler (adapted for holzkurier.com; translated by Eva Guzely) | 22.12.2017 - 11:54

Machines and systems supplier Ledinek from Hoce/SI is convinced that 2017 is a year which will be hard to top. This year, cross-laminated timber has become a worldwide bestseller. Demand on the global market confirmed the trend of developing CLT products which meet the requirements of the residential construction sector. “We recognized the market requirements early enough and focused on CLT technology”, proudly comments senior managing director Pavel Ledinek. “We receive requests for CLT systems from all over the world which indicates that timber constructions are on the advance on an international level”, adds head of sales Robert Mlinaric. Numerous active projects are about to be finished. The CLT market will thus continue to grow considerably.

One-stop shop – CLT hype

Ledinek sees one clear trend: Investors increasingly opt for complete solutions provided by one supplier. For example, the Slovenian machine manufacturer’s first complete CLT project (from the infeed of the raw laminations to the finished and polished CLT element which is cut with a CNC system) was put into operation in Latvia in 2015. Since then, more CLT systems and individual machines have been sold. For an Austrian client, Ledinek delivered the first complete sorting and planing line with the accompanying mechanization – from the formation of the packages to the bundling, including the transfer of package data to the warehouse management program.

Furthermore, a complete Ledinek system is currently being put into operation in Australia. The next one will soon be in use in Japan. Big, complete CLT production lines will follow in France, Norway and Sweden. Ledinek also delivers more X-Presses for the production of CLT to the US and Finland.

Many other projects

A lot is going on at Ledinek apart from the CLT hype. The various models of the new Multiplan are selling well. According to Ledinek, the Stratoplan VA, with its active floating spindles and wood-saving thickness-thickness planing system, also arouses interest among customers who want to save raw material. The centerpiece of every high-performance glue-laminated timber production line, however, is the finger-jointing machine. In this area, Ledinek set new standards with the Kontizink M/L. “Right now, no comparable system is available on the market”, confirms Mlinaric. The Kontizink makes it possible to mill up to 150 single-pieces per minute with lengths from 0.5 to 4 meters, and is also equipped with a continuously working chain press with the patented Kontizink pressure buildup system. A flying high-performance cross-cut saw with vises on both sides and a continuous support of the fresh finger joints guarantees high quality and a precise cutting of the desired laminations. The new Kontizink generation is available as model M for panel widths of up to 160 mm and as model L for widths of up to 250 mm. Ledinek builds both machines with vertical and horizontal finger-jointing. The performance reaches, in gradations, up to 180 meters per minute.

Prototype put into operation successfully

This year, Ledinek was also very active on the German market. Again, the Slovenian company delivered a few systems for the production of special glulam and CLT construction elements. The system at Schneider Holzwerk in Eberhardzell is being put into operation. “Here, we were able to set new standards with the prototype of a continuously working cold edge gluing machine”, explains Mlinaric. The Unipress 16 is a novelty on the market. It can press up to 20 boards per minute in continuous through-feed. The result is an endless glue-laminated panel which can be cut to the desired width after leaving the machine, thereby reducing waste to a minimum during the production of CLT ceiling elements. The Unipress’s design allows for an easy and loss-free change of lengths according to the requirements of the following production steps. At Schneider Holzwerke, a Kontizink M with a production capacity of 180 meters per minute is being put into operation as well.

Other projects are in the process of being delivered. Examples listed by Mlinaric include the deliveries to Schmelter in the Sauerland region and to Asta Holzwerk in Ziemetshausen, a new major customer of Ledinek.
“Interest in our globally patented Rotoles machines is growing as well”, says Mlinaric with delight. Ledinek also sold a Rotoplast 1300 D to India.

Following the market expansion and the continuous development, Ledinek had to opt for a new investment. Next to the existing production sites in Hoce, a new modern development and production hall with a roof made of glulam elements is being built. These elements are produced by Hasslacher with a Ledinek system. “At the time of the inauguration of the new hall we also celebrate 50 years of machine construction and the 25-year anniversary of Ledinek Engineering’s foundation”, says managing director Gregor Ledinek.