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FORMATH
Vol. 14 (2015) p. 53-59

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http://doi.org/10.15684/formath.14.006

Original Article

This study investigated the commercial thinning operation with normal bucking at the Takahara Forest Owners' Cooperative, near the Nakagawa sawmill, Tochigi prefecture, Japan. The productivity and net profit of 3-m bucking were estimated based on investigations of normal bucking, to examine the possibility of extending 3-m bucking and fixed-price business to all logs. The recovery rate with 3-m bucking was estimated at 85%―a significant increase over that with normal bucking (38%); therefore, recovered volumes with 3-m bucking were also significantly higher, at 148 m3/ha, compared to that with normal bucking (67 m3/ha). Productivity regarding strip-road construction, felling, and processing with 3-m bucking were higher, in line with higher recovered volumes, whereas productivity regarding bunching, forwarding, and transportation with 3-m bucking were assumed to be identical to those with normal bucking. The total costs per cubic meter with 3-m bucking were lower, whereas total costs per hectare with 3-m bucking were higher, in line with higher recovered volumes. Recovered volumes of grade-A, B, and C wood with normal bucking were estimated at 40, 20, and 7 m3/ha; revenues were estimated at JPY10,000/m3. With 3-m bucking, recovered volumes of grade-A, B, and C wood were estimated at 59, 44, and 44 m3/ha; revenues per cubic meter were lower, at JPY8,400/m3. Generally, net profit per cubic meter with 3-m bucking was lower, in line with higher volumes of lower-quality logs, whereas net profit per hectare with 3-m bucking was twice as high, in line with higher recovered volumes.

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