My 40 years at Raute

Timo Reinikainen has one of the longest careers in Raute: he has been employed by the company over six decades. In June 2020, Timo will start his well-earned retirement after forty years of work. For the past twenty, he has been the head of the South America market area in Chile. Once retired, Timo plans to renovate his home, go boating and continue with golf, a hobby he picked up while in Chile.

Timo retires from RauteLet’s go back in time forty years to 1979 when the young man, soon to be a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering, came to Raute to do his thesis on veneer lathes. He had to find a new thesis subject only after having written a couple of pages, because he had already solved the problem at hand. “I proposed a solution to my research problem, and it proved feasible”, Timo reminisces the start of his career, and continues, “We had to slightly adjust the research plan, but I still continued with the veneer machines.”

Timo started work as the head of a R&D team after having completed the thesis. R&D was in the process of planning a new series of veneer lathes. A couple of years later, Timo started to lead the veneer machine design team. He stayed in this position for several years.

“At first, there were two full-time R&D employees managed by Matti Paakki, who had a great impact on my career. One of the most memorable moments during that time is when Matti motivated us by saying, ‘We are here, the best veneer lathe designers in the world, and if that is not what we are, then that is what we must become.’ As a young design engineer, this offered me motivation and a direction to follow.”

First assignment abroad

Timo started his first assignment in Germany in 1988. This turned out to be a very important period of time for the young Raute employee.

“I didn’t think for long about whether to embark on my first assignment abroad when Pekka Holma invited me to his corner office. In fact, I thought that I would be sent to South America, because Raute was already planning to establish a subsidiary there. It was a surprise when I was asked to go to Germany instead, but I was happy to go!”

A new sales unit was established in Germany in the late 1980s, and Timo worked as the unit’s technical support person for three years. During the assignment, he got plenty of hands-on experience from sales work, which led the hardworking and capable man to an international career in sales.

Timo’s technical background assisted him in seeing how important it is to understand the customers’ problems, propose solutions based on facts and justify the cost-effectiveness of investments. This experience has taken Timo from Europe to Canada and all the way to Chile.

From Germany to Finland and back abroad

Timo returned from Germany to Raute’s head office in Nastola, Finland, in the early 1990s, at which time the economic depression was at its deepest, because trade with Eastern Europe had died out. The determined professional worked first in Asian sales and then as the head of the plywood team.

During the 1990s, Timo’s specialisation in sales grew even deeper and he obtained even more professional skills when working as Raute’s sales manager for the next six years, until he was asked to go to Canada in 1998. There was a period of transition going on in Canada at that time, and Timo was asked to assist in the transition and manage Raute’s business in North America.

He spent two years in Canada before moving on again, this time to South America, more specifically Chile. This assignment was somewhat unexpected. Timo and his family had originally planned to move from Canada back to Finland, but the north was replaced with the mountainous scenery of the Pacific coast in 2000.

From north to south, all the way to Chile

Timo and his family moved to Chile in 2000 after the family had come to the decision that they could stay there for three years. “The children were of the upper secondary school age and my wife’s job also allowed us to go there. That is not always the case.”

As is fitting for Timo’s story, they spent a little longer in Chile than three years: they passed the two-decade mark this year. This means that Timo has been a Raute employee during six different decades, which is a respectable achievement!

“Now all of the family’s belongings have been packed into containers and shipped home, and we will be heading back to Finland soon, too. Naturally, Chile has become a second home for us – me and the wife have been here, just the two of us, for a total of 17 years. The children are so old that they moved out long time ago; to study in Finland, for example.”

Timo will have fond memories of Chile – many long-term customers and cooperation partners have stayed with him throughout his journey. Several major deals with Chilean partners over the course of the years are some of the highlights of Timo’s career. “This proves that our team succeeded in what we were trying to do: we earned the customers’ trust with our excellent work in the past. These were truly great moments.”

Employer’s support is important

Timo has not had to cope in the world alone; he has always felt supported. Timo praises the team in Nastola for the way they support people who work abroad and cooperate with them.

"I have never felt alone, even though I have not been in the same country. Sales is teamwork, and the technological support we have received from Finland has been extremely valuable. Teamwork with the best professionals has assisted me in learning and staying up to date with the latest developments, which is very important in this line of work.”

Timo retires from RauteChanges in plywood technology and plywood manufacture have been visible

Timo’s career is interesting, because there have been major changes over the course of his long career. Timo says that Raute has clearly changed from an engineering workshop to a technology company.

The basic plywood manufacturing machines and processes have remained the same, but the development of automation has allowed huge leaps forward.

“Automation was first introduced to replace manual work done by people. As it became more advanced, it started to optimise the entire work process to achieve the optimal value from the wood material. This has allowed us to develop our operations towards the best possible final result for all of us. In the past ten years, computer vision technology has raised automation to a whole new level.”

The wood material has also changed over the course of the years. Nowadays, almost all of the plywood is made from planted trees. Previously known for its expertise in birch plywood, Raute has developed efficient processes where a variety of wood types are changed into high-class wood products.

Raute has also changed, renewing and developing itself. “In addition to our own development work, successful corporate acquisitions have assisted us in achieving our leading position as a plywood and LVL technology supplier. For example, modern camera technology is far superior to the human eye in quality control and the sorting of veneer. This way, we can obtain as high a final product value as possible in the case of each sheet.”

Importance of teamwork is especially pronounced abroad

The world has changed a great deal over the six decades, and teamwork has become even more significant. “Not that it has ever been a problem for us Finns,” Timo says. “People in Raute are efficient team players and can take on responsibilities if they wish. There is no need to ask for a permission for everything you do, which is a major difference when compared to Chile, for example.”

The trust and teamwork make the work flexible and fast. Timo says that it’s better if decisions can be made by the people who have the necessary information. Sales work is supported by technical expertise and proper project management at an early stage to make the large team committed to the customer. This, in turn, stimulates trust among the customers, which can be seen as long-term customer relations and successful investments.

Ways of working have changed through the years, but a lot has remained the same

The technological development in sales work has been wild, but the foundation has not changed. Even though the sales work is now supported by loads of tools and computers, project sales is still an interpersonal affair. “Sales work has changed in the sense that the customers can find much more information online before even being in contact with the salesperson. Raute has noticed this and been able to adapt to this way of working and care for its customers also in this way.”

Technology will never eradicate the basic core of sales work, personal relations. Despite there being plenty of information and studies available online, Timo is still of the opinion that a system designed together with the customer and resolving problems together is the best way to sell products – both for the customer and for Raute.

During Timo’s career, technoloy has also changed Raute’s machines. “Our devices are connected to the internet so that we can monitor them anywhere in the world. If there is a problem with a machine, we can quickly resolve it. This means that technology has made much more than just sales work easier.”

Timo believes that the future will bring with it even more technology and constant changes. The entry of new generations both in Raute’s workforce and in the customer organisations means that the adoption of technology has become more natural.

All’s well that ends well, the machines will stay in operation

The future belongs to younger people. Timo will fly back to Finland in early summer and start his retirement in July at the latest. Timo has seen plenty of changes and different cultures over the six decades, but there has been one constant – Raute.

“Now I’m eager to get close to the water and have the chance to tinker around a bit. I don’t think I’ll get bored in retirement: I’ll have plenty to do.”

Timo retired at the beginning of July 2020.


  • Timo Reinikainen, 64
  • Master of Science in Engineering graduated from Tampere University of Technology
  • Vice President, LAM
  • Native of Vehmersalmi, a town on the shore of Lake Kallavesi that is now part of Kuopio
  • Family: wife and two adult daughters, two grandchildren
  • With Raute since 1979

Hobbies: renovation, DIY and golf

Timo Reinikainen on yksi pitkäikäisimmistä rautelaisista – hän on työskennellyt Rauten palveluksessa kuudella vuosikymmenellä. Kesäkuussa 2020 Timolle koittaa ansaitut eläkepäivät 40 vuoden työuran jälkeen, joista viimeiset 20 vuotta hän on viettänyt Chilessä Etelä-Amerikan markkina-alueen johtajana. Eläkkeellä Timo aikoo tehdä remonttia, veneillä ja jatkaa Chilessä alkanutta golfharrastusta.

Palataan tarinassa neljänkymmenen vuoden päähän, vuoteen 1979, jolloin nuori tuleva konetekniikan diplomi-insinööri tuli Rautelle viilusorvien suunnitteluun tekemään diplomityötään. Diplomityölle jouduttiin etsimään uusi aihe jo muutaman ensimmäisen sivun jälkeen, kun Timo oli ratkaissut ongelman. – Tulin ehdottaneeksi tutkimusaiheen ongelmaan ratkaisua ja se osoittautui toimivaksi, Timo muistelee alkutaivaltaan. – Jouduttiin hieman muuttamaan tutkimussuuntaa, mutta viilukoneiden parissa pysyin.

Diplomityön valmistuttua Timo siirtyi tuotekehitysryhmän vetäjäksi. Tuotekehityksessä suunniteltiin uutta viilusorvisarjaa, mistä parin vuoden päästä Timo siirtyi vetämään viilukoneiden suunnitteluryhmää muutamaksi vuodeksi.

– Aluksi tuotekehityksessä oli täyspäiväisesti kaksi henkilöä johtajanaan Matti Paakki, kenellä on ollut uraani suuri vaikutus. Yksi mieleenpainuvimmista muistoista tuolta ajalta onkin se, kun Matti kannusti meitä sanomalla ”Me ollaan tässä, maailman parhaat viilusorvin suunnittelijat, ja jos me ei sellaisia olla, niin sellaisiksi meidän pitää tulla.”. Tämä antoi nuorelle suunnittelijalle intoa ja suunnan tulevaisuuteen.

Ensimmäinen työkomennus ulkomaille

Vuonna 1988 Timo lähti Saksaan ensimmäiselle työkomennukselle, mistä tuli nuorelle rautelaiselle uran kannalta erittäin merkittävä ajanjakso.

– Ensimmäistä ulkomaankomennusta ei tarvinnut kauaa miettiä, kun Pekka Holma kutsui käymään kulmahuoneeseen. Oikeastaan luulin jo silloin, että komennus käy Etelä-Amerikkaan, johon jo silloin suunniteltiin omaa firmaa, mutta oli yllätys, että pyydettiin lähtemään Saksaan. Sinne lähdettiin oikein hyvillä mielin!

Saksaan perustettiin 1980-luvun lopulla uusi myyntiyksikkö, minkä teknisenä tukena Timo toimi kolme vuotta. Komennuksen aikana hän tutustui läheisesti myyntityöhön, mistä muodostui uutteralle ja aikaansaavalle Timolle kansainvälinen ura myyntihommissa.

Teknisen taustansa takia Timo huomasi, kuinka tärkeää on ymmärtää asiakkaiden ongelmia ja pystyä ehdottamaan ratkaisuja perustuen faktoihin sekä perustella investointien kannattavuutta. Tämä kokemus on vienyt Timoa Euroopasta Kanadaan ja aina Chileen asti.

Saksasta Nastolaan ja takaisin maailmalle

Saksasta Timo palasi takaisin Rauten pääkonttorille Nastolaan 1990-luvun alussa, milloin lama oli syvimmillään idän kaupan loppumisen seurauksena. Määrätietoinen ammattilainen toimi Aasian myynnissä ja sitten vaneriryhmän päällikkönä.

1990-luvun aikana myyntiin erikoistuminen syventyi ja ammattitaito kasvoi entisestään, kun Timo toimi Rauten myyntijohtajana seuraavat kuusi vuotta, kunnes vuonna 1998 häntä pyydettiin lähtemään Kanadaan. Kanadassa käynnissä oli siirtymäkausi. Timoa pyydettiin auttamaan ylimenossa ja toimimaan Rauten Pohjois-Amerikan päällikkönä.

Kahden Kanadassa vietetyn vuoden jälkeen matka jatkui taas. Tällä kertaa Etelä-Amerikkaan Chileen, minne komennus tuli hieman yllättäen. Alun perin Timon ja perheen suunnitelmissa oli muuttaa Kanadasta takaisin Suomeen, mutta pohjola vaihtui Tyynenmeren rannikolle vuoristomaisemiin vuonna 2000.

Pohjoisesta etelään, aina Chileen asti

Timo muutti perheineen Chileen vuonna 2000, perheen yhteisesti päättäessä, että kolmeksi vuodeksi voidaan mennä. – Lapset olivat lukioikäisiä ja vaimonkin työtilanne mahdollisti sen, että voitiin lähteä. Aina näin ei ole.

Chilessä vierähti, kuten Timon tarinaan hyvin sopii, kolmen vuoden sijasta hieman pidempi aika, kun kaksi vuosikymmentä tuli täyteen tänä vuonna. Tämä tarkoittaa, että Timo on viihtynyt rautelaisena kunnioitettavasti kuudella vuosikymmenellä!

– Nyt meidän perheemme tavarat on pakattu kontteihin ja lähetetty kotiin, kohta mekin lähdemme takaisin Suomeen. Chilestä on luonnollisesti tullut meille toinen koti, vaimon kanssa olemme olleet kahdestaan 17 vuotta täällä. Lapset ovat jo sen verran vanhoja, että ovat olleet maailmalla jo pitkään, muun muassa Suomessa opiskelemassa.

Chilestä jää elämään lämpimät muistot – monta pitkäaikaista asiakasta ja yhteistyökumppania on pysynyt matkan varrella matkassa mukana. Vuosien aikana saadut useat isot kaupat chileläisiltä ovat Timon työuran mieleenpainuvimpia kohokohtia. – Tämä osoittaa, että koko tämä meidän tiimimme on onnistunut tavoitteissa ja olemme saaneet asiakkaan luottamuksen hyvällä aikaisemmalla toiminnalla. Nämä ovat olleet todella hyviä hetkiä.

Työnantajan tuki ja tsemppi tärkeää

Yksin ei ole tarvinnut maailmalla pyöriä ja aina on tuntunut siltä, että tukea saa. Nastolan porukka saa Timolta kiitosta toiminnastaan ulkomailla työskentelevien tukemisessa ja yhteistyössä.

– Yksin ei ole tarvinnut olla, vaikka ollaankin ulkomailla. Myynti on tiimityötä ja saamamme teknologiatuki Suomesta on ollut arvokasta. Tiimityö parhaiden ammattilaisten kanssa on auttanut itseäni oppimaan ja pysymään kehityksessä mukana, mikä on näissä hommissa erittäin tärkeää.

Muutos vaneriteknologiassa ja vanerin valmistuksessa ollut näkyvää

Timon työura on myös siinä mielessä erittäin mielenkiintoinen, että pitkän uran aikana muutosta on tapahtunut huomattavasti. Raute on Timon mukaan muuttunut selkeästi konepajasta teknologiayritykseksi.

Vanerin valmistuksessa peruskoneet ja -prosessit ovat pysyneet samankaltaisina, mutta automaation kehittyminen on tuonut suuria harppauksia eteenpäin.

– Automaatio tuli ensin mukaan korvaamaan ihmistyötä ja edistyessään optimoimaan koko työprosessia, jotta saadaan puumateriaalille paras mahdollinen arvo. Näin olemme saaneet kehitettyä toimintaamme kohti parasta mahdollista lopputulosta kaikkien kannalta. Viimeisen 10 vuoden aikana automaatio on noussut aivan uudelle tasolle konenäkötekniikan avulla.

Vuosien saatossa myös puumateriaali on muuttunut. Nykyään lähes kaikki vaneri tehdään istutuspuusta. Aikaisemmin koivuvanerin osaamisesta tunnettu Raute on kehittänyt tehokkaat prosessit, missä monista erilaisista puulajeista saadaan tehtyä korkealaatuisia puutuotteita.

Myös Raute on muuttunut, uudistunut ja kehittynyt. – Oman kehitystyön lisäksi myös onnistuneet yritysostot ovat auttaneet johtavan aseman saavuttamiseen vaneri- ja LVL-teknologian toimittajana. Esimerkiksi moderni kamerateknologia päihittää ihmissilmän laadunvalvonnassa ja viilun lajittelussa ja näin saadaan jokaiselle arkille mahdollisimman korkea arvo lopputuotteessa.

Tiimityön tärkeys korostuu ulkomailla

Kuuden vuosikymmenen aikana maailma on muuttunut paljon ja tiimityöskentelyn merkitys on korostunut entistä enemmän. – Vaikkei se nyt meille suomalaisille mikään ongelma ole ollutkaan, Timo toteaa. Rautessa toimitaan tehokkaasti tiiminä ja ihmiset saavat ottaa vastuuta niin halutessaan. Toiminnalleen ei tarvitse joka kerta kysellä lupia, missä on esimerkiksi Chileen verrattuna huomattava eroavaisuus.

Luottamus ja tiimityö tuovat joustavuutta ja nopeutta. Timo toteaakin, että on parempi, että asioista voidaan päättää siellä, missä tieto on. Myyntityön tueksi otetaan aikaisessa vaiheessa tekninen osaaminen ja kunnollinen projektijohto, millä sitoutetaan iso tiimi asiakkaaseen. Tämä puolestaan herättää asiakkaissa luottamusta, mikä näkyy pitkissä asiakassuhteissa ja onnistuneissa investoinneissa.

– Myynti ei ole pelkästään myyjän työtä. Kaikki ovat mukana, tehdään tiiminä ja tämä on ymmärretty Rautessa todella hyvin.

Vuodet ovat muokanneet työntekoa, mutta paljon on samaakin

Teknologian kehitys myös myyntityössä on ollut huimaa, mutta perustat ovat pysyneet samoina. Vaikka myynnin tueksi on tullut paljon erilaisia työkaluja ja tietotekniikkaa, on projektimyynti pysynyt henkilökohtaisena. – Myyntityö on sinänsä muuttunut, että nyt asiakkaat etsivät ja haluavat löytää paljon enemmän tietoa internetistä ennen kontaktia myyjään. Tämä on huomattu myös Rautessa ja pystytään vastaamaan tähän toimintamalliin ja pitämään asiakkaistamme huolta myös tällä tavoin.

Teknologia ei kuitenkaan vie myyntityön perusydintä, henkilökohtaisia suhteita, pois milloinkaan. Vaikka internetistä on saatavilla paljon tietoa ja tutkimuksia, silti Timo näkee, että yhdessä asiakkaiden kanssa suunniteltu kokonaisuus ja ongelmien ratkominen on kaikista paras tapa tehdä myyntiä – sekä asiakkaalle että Rautelle.

Teknologia on siirtynyt Timon aikana myös Rauten koneisiin. – Laitteemme on liitetty internetiin, niin me pystymme seuraamaan niiden toimintaa mistä päin maailmaa tahansa. Jos koneeseen tulee jokin ongelma, niin se pystytään ratkaisemaan nopeasti. Teknologia on siis helpottanut paljon muutakin kuin myyntityötä.

Tulevaisuuden Timo näkee entistä teknologisempana ja jatkuvana muutoksena. Uusien sukupolvien tuleminen sekä Rautelle että asiakkaille tarkoittaa sitä, että myös teknologian omaksuminen on luonnollisempaa.

Lopussa kiitos seisoo, koneet jatkavat käymistään

Tulevaisuus on nuorempien. Timo lentää takaisin Suomeen alkukesän aikana ja eläkekahveja nautitaan viimeistään heinäkuussa. Kuuden vuosikymmenen matkaan Timo on nähnyt paljon muutosta, erilaisia kulttuureja, mutta yksi on pysynyt aina matkassa samana – Raute.

– Nyt odotan veden äärelle pääsyä ja sitä, että pääsen näpräilemään omilla käsillä kaikennäköistä. Uskon, ettei aika käy pitkäksi eläkkeellä, puuhaa riittää kyllä.

Timo on jäänyt eläkkeelle heinäkuussa 2020.


  • Timo Reinikainen, 64
  • Koulutukseltaan diplomi-insinööri Tampereen teknillisestä korkeakoulusta
  • Vice President, LAM
  • Kotoisin Vehmersalmelta, Kallaveden rannalta
  • Perheessä vaimo ja kaksi aikuista tytärtä, kaksi lastenlasta
  • Rautella vuodesta 1979 alkaen

Harrastaa remontoimista, rakentelua ja golfia

International Panel & Lumber (IPL) Modernizes Lathe

International Panel & Lumber (IPL) in New Zealand produces wood panel and plywood products from renewable plantation-grown pine trees. They recently decided to modernize the charger and lathe on their peeling line to ensure reliability and improve productivity. After careful consideration, they decided that Raute solutions would meet their goals best.

IPL modernizes lathe and charger

International Panel and Lumber (West Coast) Ltd., IPL for short, is a well-established company and they have been operating for over 50 years on the west coast of New Zealand’s South Island. They have been using renewable plantation grown radiata pine in their production since the 1980s. One of the essential parts of their operation is their peeling and drying line, which produces 1.5, 2.4 and 3mm veneer for the production of 1200mm x 2400mm panels. IPL manufactures a range of products that covers industrial to appearance grade applications, including everything from signs and flooring to concrete forming.

Although their peeling line was producing a high-quality veneer, IPL knew that it was time to modernize some of the key equipment. They were running a COE (today part of USNR) M760 charger, as well as a COE M249 lathe, which dated from about 1976. The most urgent need was to replace the lathe spindles because they were damaged and cracked, however the charger also had scope for improvement because it relied on a mechanical yoke assembly to optimize and center the logs. As a result, IPL contacted Raute to ask about the most suitable options for modernization.

IPL modernizes lathe and chargerUPDATE, OPTIMIZE AND IMPROVE

During their discussions, Raute demonstrated that the old COE charger and yoke system resulted in the loss of a large amount of veneer to waste or random veneer. The business case for upgrading was so clear that IPL decided to replace their charging system too. Raute upgraded the old M760 charger with a Smart Scan HD XY scanning system, a hydraulic XY correction system and new Allen Bradley PLC controls. Raute also took care of the old lathe, and replaced the damaged spindles with new Raute dual spindles, complete with new hydraulics, lubrication and controls.


Raute carefully planned the project together with IPL so that it had minimum effect on their production. The installation took place during the annual boiler compliance shut down, and the accompanying work was performed during the dayshift over 2 weeks. This was followed by one week of production commissioning. Combined with good communication, carefully managed staff schedules and staggered production stoppages, this prevented any disruptions to IPL’s sales.

"The upgrades improved recovery, conversion and productivity,”

Robert Dumelow

General Manager, International Panel and Lumber.

IPL modernizes charger and latheGOOD CUSTOMER UNDERSTANDING

One of the reasons that IPL selected Raute was that they showed a good understanding of their business. For example, Raute understood the importance of not over capitalizing with a small production plant like IPL. In addition, Raute was also flexible enough to move the schedule forward by a month to ensure that installation coincided with the boiler shut down.

IPL is happy to say that they are pleased with the finished installation, and that it met their timeline and budgeted costs. Overall, good communication, planning and understanding between Raute and IPL made the project a success.


IPL’s main target for the modernization was to improve the reliability of their peeling and drying line. Upgrading the charger as well as the lathe ensured that they could also improve their efficiency and productivity. Together, the modernized systems resulted in better recovery and conversion from the block to peeled veneer, and better veneer presentation and usage at the dryer, with less random and fish-tail veneer. This means that the line can produce more full sheets

at the dryer with less waste. And because they can keep the dryer full, their line has higher capacity, increasing their productivity.

IPL modernizes lathe and charger to increase efficiencyBENEFITING THE BUSINESS AND THE REGION

Since the installation and commissioning, the modernized systems have met IPL’s expectations, with both improved capacity and yield. In addition, they have also achieved 10% smaller core peeled than they had with the older spindles, providing another unexpected but welcome benefit from the project.

IPL’s shareholders are also pleased because they see it as an investment in the future of IPL and its staff, and the West Coast region of New Zealand. It can be difficult to raise large amounts of capital for larger projects, so cost-effective modernizations are an attractive option. Such investments are important to smaller regions, so it is especially important that the projects like this one are a success.

Ready to modernize your lathe or charger to increase capacity and yield? Contact us, we would love to hear from you.

Garnica Group upgraded to Smart Scan HD with autocalibration

The Garnica Group is the biggest poplar plywood producer in Europe and they have been using Raute solutions for many years, including a Raute peeling line at their Valencia de Don Juan mill. Installed in 2003, the block centering technology at the Valencia de Don Juan mill was finally in need of an update. Garnica selected Raute’s Smart Scan HD as the best option.

Smart Scan HD with AutocalibrationThe Garnica Group is headquartered in Logroño, La Rioja, Spain. Altogether, they have six mills, with five in Spain: Baños I, Baños II, Fuenmayor, Valencia de Don Juan and Maderas de Llodio (a softwood mill), as well as the Samazan mill in the south of France. In total, Garnica Group employs around 1.200 people and their mills produce 300.000 m3/y poplar PLW and 50.000 m3/y softwood PLW. They export more than 90% of their production.


The Garnica Group has had good experience with Raute solutions over the years, and they operate 4 Raute veneer peeling lines, as well as other Raute equipment for processes including roller- and screen drying and grading, lay-up with gluing, pressing, composing, and scarfing.

Their Valencia de Don Juan mill was the first Garnica mill to install a Raute peeling line, back in 2003. This included a Raute PCLH 800×1400 XY-charger with SLS 6000-single point laser, which served the mill well for many years. However, by the beginning of 2019, the 16-year-old block centering technology clearly needed to be modernized. The laser sensors and control PC were no longer available, and the system needed to be calibrated several times a month, which required too much maintenance time.

When the mill decided on the replacement technology, their main targets were to improve the centering performance and the veneer recovery and to eliminate end of life components. They also wanted to improve the adjustment and calibration procedure, to ensure the values were consistently correct.

After discussing the advantages of the new Smart Scan HD system with Raute, it was obvious that it was the right choice to modernize the line.


Garnica ordered the Smart Scan HD with autocalibration from Raute in January 2019. The system was delivered and installed in May 2019 during a scheduled production stop over a long weekend. With the help of Raute specialists during the start-up, the line was running at full capacity within a few days.

“Smart Scan HD with autocalibration drastically decreased maintenance hours,”

José Augusto Huerga

Technical Director of Garnica’s Valencia don Juan mill

Smart Scan HD with Autocalibration at Garnica MillSUCCESS WITH SMART SCAN HD

Since the start-up, the Valencia de Don Juan mill has had very good results with the new Smart Scan HD system. The log centering is better, and the length and diameter measurements are more accurate. The Smart Scan HD system reads every log much better than the old laser system, all along the length, and it also detects dark/black zones and bark better. And, thanks to the autocalibration, they have drastically decreased their maintenance hours. Overall, it’s clear that the peeling line performance has been improved.



The mill is also particularly pleased with the autocalibration system because they don’t have to worry about centering offset adjustments or sensor calibration. In fact, they have only spent a few maintenance hours in the last 6 months at the XY charger. The system automatically calibrates itself, measuring and comparing continuously to correct the axis home position. The autocalibration system also provides data which can be used to track performance and predict mechanical failure.

Together, Smart Scan HD and the autocalibration system have improved production and reduced maintenance time, adding value and profitability to the whole peeling line.

Smart Scan HD with Autocalibration in Valencia de Don Juan, SpainPROPER MAINTENANCE FOR CONTINUOUS PRODUCTION

Proper maintenance is important for Valencia mill to maintain high performance. A Service Agreement with Raute ensures production lines to be always well maintained and crucial parts changed before possible problems. That ensures predictable production and mill operations.

Find out more about how the Smart Scan HD can improve recovery at your mill by emailing us today.

Seppo, Coordinator, Quotations, has witnessed business development for 35 years

“I came to Raute in 1984 almost straight after graduation. My Raute career started as Electrical Design Engineer at Lahti. I didn’t have much experience in design engineering that time but by doing and with the support of more experienced design engineers we got things started. My tasks included line electricity documentation and programming control logics for lines and line commissioning. At that time, Raute machines were controlled with RIC 85 logic which was Raute’s (Lahden Vaaka) own product."

Raute operated in Lahti until 1988. That time my work tasks included design engineering, programming and line commissioning. Five to six years went fast in that field of tasks. I would dare to say that I have visited and worked in every plywood mill in Finland, some of them aren’t, however, running anymore.

When my family started to grow I expressed my wish to give up traveling abroad on business. Year was 1990 and there became an open position in Raute’s Quotations team. The task was quite new and there weren’t actual tools for line cost accounting. That was something we had to do ourselves.”

Working as part of bigger picture

Ahonen Seppo

I cooperate a lot with automation engineering but also with procurement and production. Tasks vary based on what else is happening at the office. I participate in quotation preparations by pricing automation parts for the line. In addition, I purchase switchboards and cases for projects. In my opinion, these functions complement each other very well.

The more you know the big picture, the easier it is to understand your own work’s value in the process. Human relationships are an important part of the success. Having contacts into both directions of the chain will allow you to see things much more widely, which will make it easier to manage your own work. This kind of project work requires team spirit.”

Automation develops fast

“Basic functions in lines, such as peeling or drying, have remained quite the same over the years, but automation has increased and developed very much.  Nowadays lines have variable speed drives, field buses, distributed control systems and safety systems. Increased automation brings for machines and lines more usability, adjustability, safety and diagnostics to monitor line operations. At the same time, we will get much production-related information from the lines which can be collected to data collection and production control systems.

The need for machine and line development results from some new function that is needed and would be useful for the customer’s production. The idea may come from the customer or from our technology experts. Based on the idea we start to create and develop a new machine or functionality for the existing machine. Upgrading automation systems to old machines and lines is one way to boost their efficiency and safety, and to upgrade them to a technology level we need today.

In so called old days, projects tied 1-2 employees from automation. Today, there are easily 4-5 automation players in a project. One is familiar with user interfaces, second with safety logics, third with machine vision system, and the list goes on. Automation is more fractured, and we need diverse competence. It requires continuous training and learning new stuff to keep up with fast developing automation. In addition, we need to learn customer’s values and technology.”


Markku, Maintenance Specialist – Installations and service near the customer for 50 years

“I started to work at Raute straight after finishing the vocational school on June 3. Year was 1969. At the same with me time, many boys came to work for Raute. I started my career as a painting trainee after which I moved to the finishing filing cabinet to work on small parts. In a way, these tasks served as a traineeship for the assembly department. One year passed in the finishing filing cabinet, and then it was my turn to serve in the military. When returned to Raute, I started working in a lathe workshop at Raute’s Lahti factory, where I worked until starting among the service business.

I transferred to the service team around 15 years ago. The alternative was that I could return to assembly if the new task and travel work would be too demanding for me. Well, here I am still after all these years.

In practice, I do inspections at the customer sites and based on the visits also preventive maintenance. In addition, I sometimes work with capital projects, mostly among line installations. Mostly, there have been lathe installation gigs around the world. The work is very customer oriented. It is rewarding to see customer satisfaction. “

Travelling around the world

“Before joining the service team, I worked occasionally among projects. In 1987 I had my first site assignment at Orsev’s plywood mill where we delivered the whole mill.

Later travelling has increased a lot. By now I have travelled in so many countries that I have stopped counting. I can say that I have visited every country where there are plywood machines, such as New Zealand, Australia, China, Indonesia, Russia and Poland, only to mention some. My last trip abroad was to France.

My most memorable trip, in addition to Orsev, was certainly my first visit to Indonesia in 1993, starting on the Boxing Day. I had no earlier experience or knowledge about the country and I was excited to see how it was to work in jungle.”

Work changes but something remains – People

Markku“Fast changing technology has caused many changes to the work. In the old days, we played with faxes while being abroad. It was usually the big boss who had the only telephone and we had to change the calling line between the phone and fax. Communication was much slower and sensitive for distractions. Lines to the jungle were what they were which caused that sometimes the received faxes were unreadable. Also, the time difference caused much more difficulties because messages couldn’t be reached on time.

Today, communication is easier and quicker. It is also easier to get information. Reports can be done and read via mobile and on site you can check out drawings with your phone, for example.

Also, machines develop continuously and modernizations bring many new versions requiring continuous learning and thus makings this work so interesting. You get to learn and develop yourself, too.

Even work and ways to work are changing all the time, one thing hasn’t change: People. This work requires knowledge of the human nature and every customer is different. The customer may be a family business where the entrepreneur him-/herself is closely involved in the business or the customer is a hired employee in some big corporate whose attitude can be very different. However, we always work for the customer. Without customers, there wouldn’t be any business.

This work also requires passion. Sometimes the work can be very dirty and hard, and situations change fast. Still it is all worth it when you solve the problem and the customer is thanking you. That is best feedback for your work.”

On Friday, August 30, 2019 Markku will start well deserved retirement days after 50-year-career at Raute. We want to thank Markku, the true customer service hero, for all these years. Enjoy!