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Sawmilling Success Stories

From Sawing Raw Logs to Moulding Finished Flooring in Scotland

From Sawing Raw Logs to Moulding Finished Flooring in Scotland

By Jacob Mooney

Just outside of Edinburgh, Scotland, Sandy Crook has retired from his full time arborist business to spend more time with what he really enjoys, seeing timber turned into final products. With his full complement of Wood-Mizer sawmills and new MP360 planer/moulder, he can do everything in-house.


Sandy Crook arborist business in Edinburgh

For 17 years, Sandy ran a successful arborist business in Scotland. Now he’s ready to settle down, and his version of ‘retirement’ is building his own house among the rolling green hills west of Edinburgh, while investing in more Wood-Mizer equipment.


View of Edinburgh Scotland

Creating unique handmade wood pieces

“I had built up my range of equipment, forestry mulchers, chippers, grinders, stump grinders…but after reaching a certain age, it started to hurt, and bureaucracy kicked in as well.” Sandy laughs, reflecting on his arborist career. “It was just too much and it wasn’t enjoyable anymore. So I sold a lot of my equipment and instead bought sawmills to focus on doing what I enjoy.”


WM1000 Industrial Headrig cutting large log

Wood-Mizer BMS500 Bandsaw Blade Sharpener

Two men planing wood on Wood-Mizer MP360 Planer Moulder

Sandy has a LT40 portable sawmill, plus a WM1000 wide capacity sawmill, which was the first of its kind in Scotland. “The WM1000 is for breaking down large timber to make table tops and furniture,” Sandy shares. “And I have an LT40 that’s mobile to be able to go onsite, whether for contract milling or just milling for myself. And just recently I’ve bought a MP360 Planer/Moulder from Wood-Mizer.”


LT40 Portable Sawmill easily transported

Wood-Mizer WM1000 blade sawing through tough wood

The MP360 planes and moulds boards on all four sides at once - a necessary step in producing finished wood products from rough sawn lumber. This ability to plane and mould timber was previously missing from Sandy’s workshop. “I was starting to make tables, and I had customers looking for tongue-in-groove and such,” Sandy shares. “I looked around and did a lot of research on the internet, and the MP360 covered everything - all the bases I needed.”


Planing wood on Wood-Mizer MP360 Planer Moulder

One of the main reasons that Sandy was attracted to the MP360 was for its ease of use and its flexibility to handle different kinds of moulding projects in large or small quantities. “I don’t want to spend half a day adjusting the machine to do half an hour’s cutting,” Sandy says. “With the MP360, I can be moulding big timber one minute, and then be making tongue-in-groove the next. It’s a ten minute job to switch out a couple of knives. Its ease of use and compactness make it a very user-friendly machine.”


Custom built wooden bird houses using Wood-Mizer equipment

Now with his planer/moulder in place in the workshop, he can handle just about any custom timber projects that come his way. “Customers come into the yard and pick a log,” Sandy says. “I personally felled them all, so I know the history of each one. I put it on the WM1000, and break it down into cants. Then I resaw it on the LT40, and finally I put it through the planer/moulder to their specification. By having it all in-house, the MP360 planer/moulder will help me diversify into a much larger market. I fell trees and I produce a finished product.”


Top view of Wood-Mizer LT40 Portable Sawmill in action

Stack of smooth wood boards

Sandy is planning to build a house next to his current workshop and equipment barn. The MP360 will be put to good use throughout the build.


Wood workshop with handcrafted furniture and small pieces

Simple easy to use control panel for MP360 Planer Moulder

“I’m also going to be building a house on site, so I can do my own design, I can do my own skirting boards [baseboards] and basically the whole interior design,” Sandy shares. “My house is going to be unique inside. Just about everything is going to be wood - tables, skirting boards, railings, staircases. And I have a lot of elm, so probably elm floorboards. Running my tree surgeon [arborist] business I’ve managed to collect some unique hardwoods, which I intend to use the WM1000 to break down, plus using the LT40 and MP360 moulder/planer.”


Sandy Crook and wife posing with WM1000 Industrial Sawmill in Scotland

Landscape view of outdoor space with log piles and LT40 Portable Sawmill

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