Take a few moments and see why GEM baled shavings are the industry standard for quality. It starts with with the shaving but carries all the way through to the bag.
Shavings Acquisition and Storage
With our dry shavings, we only bale planer shavings that come from kiln-dried lumber. GEM never bales green shavings that have been dried. Rough-cut lumber from the kiln is exceptionally dry and absorbent because of the long, slow drying process and the mill’s ability to accurately determine moisture content. We buy only the shavings generated by planing the dried lumber down to finished size.
GEM never cuts down trees to make its shavings. All of our shavings are byproducts of lumber production, thus helping to maximize the use of our natural resources.
GEM transports the vast majority of our purchased shavings directly from our supplier mills. The acquired shavings are then carefully segregated by type and stored indoors.
Many shavings companies acquire green shavings from lumber that has not been kiln dried because of their lower cost. Some chop up a whole tree into shavings. They then dry those shavings in a gas-fired dryer. This process results in a larger, harder flake that is not as dry as shavings from kiln-dried wood, nor are they as absorbent. A gas-fired dryer simply can’t remove as much moisture as the long-drying times of kilns. It also results in "case hardening" of the flakes.
We operate three state-of-the-art Verville balers. The process begins with loading a large receiving hopper. From that hopper, the shavings are conveyed to a large two deck gyratory screen. Virtually all fines below 1/16th of an inch are removed. In the course of one day’s baling activity, we remove over 200 cubic yards (5,400 cu. ft.) of sawdust and fines. These dusty, irritating substances can make up to 20% of the contents of some other companies’ bales.
The shavings are then sent to one of the baling presses where they proceed through a measuring station, a compression station, and a bag sealing station. We try to fill and compress each bale to obtain a finished product that is nearly 4 cu. ft. Somewhere between 10 and 12 cu. ft. material are used in the production of one bale. However, based on the density and size of the shavings and our need to stack the bales on pallets, finished size may vary minimally.
We use 3.5mil white plastic bags with ultraviolet (UV) light protection and distinctive graphics. The bags provide eye-appeal and protection from the sun and weather for the store and the customer. Although more expensive than clear, thinner bags, GEM bags offer a much higher level of sun, weather and tear protection.
Both our loose shavings and our bale inventories are stored indoors to protect them from moisture and UV degeneration. This ensures the bale you get from GEM will be the highest quality available.