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Predicting knottiness of Pinus sylvestris for use in tree bucking procedures

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The quality and accompanying value of Scots pine ( Pinus sylvestris L.) lumber varies markedly in the Nordic countries. Consequently, tree bucking has a great impact on the economic result. The objectives of this study were (1) to analyse which knot characteristics usually reduce pine lumber sawn from the butt-logs to the next quality grade, (2) to determine the most appropriate characteristics that could be used in predicting lumber quality, and (3) to develop models that could be used in practice for predicting the probability of certain quality grades. The study was based on field experiments and test sawing data on 100 Scots pine stems from south-western Finland. Since the results showed that the maximum dead knot is the most crucial knot characteristic when the first cross-cutting point is determined, models were created that predict the height of the first dead knot that lowers grade A to B (B-grade dead knot). Both early growth rate and dead branch height should be measured to predict pine butt-log quality. Early growth rate seems to be appropriate in predicting between-stand variation, while dead branch height is appropriate for predicting within-stand variation.

Keywords: Harvesting; Scots pine; lumber quality

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Finnish Forest Research Institute (METLA), Parkano, Finland 2: Department of Mathematics, Statistics and Philosophy, Statistics Unit, University of Tampere, Finland

Publication date: December 1, 2005

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