Launch of one-man sawmill

By Katie Holland

Rotorua sawmill exporter Peterson Portable Sawmills has launched its first new product since the recession _ the Junior Peterson (JP).

And to celebrate, they've given the prototype away to one of their most valued customers.

Peterson is about to start manufacturing the first batch of 10 JP sawmills, which are expected to hit the market in mid-January.

Chief executive Kerris Browne said there had been strong interest in the JP from all over the world, as it was cheaper, smaller, easier to move and "less intimidating'' than the traditional sawmill.

It had been designed with the part-time miller in mind and can be operated by just one person.

"It's for part-time farmers, hobbyists, timber workers, furniture makers who want better quality of timber, people that go to craft markets ... the little guys,'' she said.

Ms Browne said most portable sawmills started at about $20,000 but the JP would retail at $12,000.

The prototype had been tested by Ian Abraham of Stratford, an experienced sawyer and regular customer.

"I'm quite impressed with it really. It's not a toy. For what I do which is only part-time for hobby stuff, it will cut the stuff I need and it's more affordable,'' he said.

To thank him for his feedback, which resulted in a few modifications to the design, Peterson staff  presented a delighted Mr Abraham with the gift-wrapped prototype.


- Rotorua Daily Post

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