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Hardwood sawmill downtime costs

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Wiedenbeck, Jan; Blackwell, Kyle

Year Published



Southern Lumberman 27-30


How time flies when you don't pay attention to it. With hardwood sawmill operating costs ranging from $4 to $25 per operating minute ($95/MBF to $335/MBF) and gross profit margins ranging from $0.10/BF to $0.35/BF, five extra minutes of downtime per day will cost a sawmill that produces an average of 20,000 BF per day (5 MMBF annually) between $21 and $73 per day in profit. The average is $47, which represents the opportunity cost for the lumber that could have been produced during those 5 minutes.


Wiedenbeck, Jan; Blackwell, Kyle. 2003. Hardwood sawmill downtime costs. Southern Lumberman 27-30

Last updated on: June 17, 2008