Carroll Enterprises Ltd. Continues Longstanding History with Log Max

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Canadian logging company has relied on Log Max since 1992.


CARROLLS CROSSING, New Brunswick, Canada – Don’t change horses in midstream. Good advice that applies long after most equine-pulled rigs have become history.

It’s about staying with what works and improving on it; it’s also about commitment to seeing things through to the finish. Carroll Enterprises Ltd. knows a great deal about both.

When TimberLine spoke with Keith Carroll, foreman at the eponymous company, for a January 2001 article, he told us about the Votec Hornet 825 delimber that had just gone into service. “[It’s] still being used,” said Donnie Carroll, supervisor at the forestry business.

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Brothers Donnie and Keith work with their father Edison Carroll, the president and founder of Carroll Enterprises. Edison established the business in 1986 and went cut-to-length eight years later.

In 1992, Edison made a decision to purchase a Log Max head, explained Donnie. In doing so, Carroll Enterprises bought one of the first Log Max 650 heads that was introduced to North America that year.

Across the years, Carroll Enterprises has had a series of ever-more-powerful Log Max heads, including the Log Max 750, Log Max 6000B and Log Max 7000XT. The two newest purchases are a Log Max 7000C and a Log Max 7000TWIN.

In fact, the Log Max 7000C is still in the process of being configured. “This is a new purchase and will be on a Tigercat 845 for the upcoming season,” said Donnie. A Tigercat 845 track carrier is also the choice for the Log Max 7000TWIN.

Both the Log Max 7000C and the Log Max 7000 TWIN have the Log Mate 500 computer system installed. The Log Mate 500, which is Windows based, is designed to be user friendly and to speed up processing at the stump.

Carroll Enterprises has relied on the Log Max Forestry, Inc. dealer in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada for its Log Max purchases. Rob Moran, sales representative in Moncton, has been an important expert contact in that regard.

One reason Donnie cites for the 24-year relationship between his company and Log Max equipment is the level of service that comes with a quality machine. Log Max understands the intimate tie between quality and service. “They have been a dependable head that hold up to the often times extreme conditions we work them under – and excellent service from Log Max,” said Donnie.

“The Moncton dealer is always reliable,” said Donnie. “They always have parts in stock and go out of their way to make sure we have any parts we need no matter what day of the week [or] weekend or holiday it might be. They truly care about their customers.”

As for those extreme conditions, the New Brunswick, Canada home to Carroll Enterprises is a maritime province in the eastern part of the country. Rain, wind, snow and harsh temperatures can be challenging for both crews and equipment.

Equipment also meets some dense and large hardwood species. The Log Max heads perform well with any type of wood, which is important. “They cut spruce, hardwood, aspen and cedar,” said Donnie. The two newest Log Max heads “will be used to cut to length.”

The topography of New Brunswick is rather gentle. Mt. Carleton, the highest peak in the province, has an elevation of 2,690 feet. With large trees, however, the stability of carrier and head pairings is a high priority. The Log Max head and Tigercat track carrier are an exceptional match for meeting the priority.

Carrolls Crossing, a small community in the center of New Brunswick, is home to Carroll Enterprises. “Most jobs will be within a 100 to 150 kilometers,” said Donnie.

Working within that 100-mile radius from its home base, Carroll Enterprises tackles two different sorts of jobs. “Currently we cut private woodlots and also subcontract under JDI Doaktown Woodlands,” explained Donnie. “All the raw product is currently being trucked to mills around the province.”

To forward lengths, the loggers rely on two Fabtek porters and one John Deere. “We do our own trucking and floating,” said Donnie. “There is one Sterling, two Western Stars and three Peterbilt tucks in the fleet. Two trucks are dedicated to floating and the others are logging trucks.”

Being part of the wood products industry is simply a natural fit for him, his brother Keith and his father Edison, explained Donnie. “It is all we have ever done, it is what we know.”

Know and know well, to be sure, in this the 30th year of business for Carrol Enterprises. For instance, when Donnie talks about the ready availability of parts from the Log Max dealer in the town of Moncton, New Brunswick, he alludes to the strenuous schedule of harvesting that is met.

It’s not unusual for Carroll Enterprises to work at night in order to get in a full year’s harvesting that includes a pause for a spring thaw. Keith was working nights on a loader in early April.

Getting the right mix of equipment and personnel and coupling it with expertise is the essence of the operation at Carroll Enterprises. The principals rely not only on deep experience, but also on availing themselves of opportunities to improve on methods with certification and other courses.

The forward-looking nature of Carroll Enterprises is exemplified in their embrace of Log Max heads. As the Log Max heads have changed across the years, being designed to more exactingly match the needs of loggers in North America, the principals have embraced them. “[They] were never afraid to try something new or new model,” said Rob Moran of Log Max, given of course they were confident it would be an improvement.

The Log Max 7000 series machines provide loggers that work in both hardwood and softwood species the capability of meeting both with the same head – and of handling large diameter trees. In the single-grip harvester/processor head line from Log Max, the Log Max 7000C is designed to be a match for heavy timber, but it is also designed to work well when a tree has a branchy trunk.

When the Log Max 7000C meets a tree that has many tough limbs, it can respond automatically with more power. If the head is working in smaller wood, however, its variable displacement feed roller motors provide a faster speed.

The Log Max 7000 incorporates high-performance saw hydraulics, which further enhances the machine’s ability to cut all sizes of timber. The configuration of the saw hydraulics allows full flow to the bottom saw for fast cutting. To protect internal components and hoses from damage, Log Max has fitted its heads with well-placed guards and heavy-duty covers.

Carroll Enterprises works with between 20 and 30 employees, said Donnie. The arrival of the new Log Max 7000TWIN on the Tigercat track carrier will bolster the efforts of those working in low-branched trees, such as spruce.

Engineered specifically for low-branched trees, the Log Max 7000TWIN derives its name from its twin bottom delimbing knives. Other features of the Log Max 7000TWIN are a cast felling link suited to large track carriers and a head with wiring optimized for the Log Mate 500 computer system.

Donnie looks forward to using the Log Mate 500 system. “I haven’t had a chance to try [it] out yet,” he explained. The two newest Log Max purchases at Carroll Enterprises are the first bought with the Log Mate.

Not only does the Log Mate 500 system speed calculations for bucking, but it also stores data. The repository of data for each species, size of tree, etcetera, can later be analyzed by the system (algorithmically) to optimize processing. Loggers also have the option of sharing data. They can easily relay data to mills or other interested entities, such as foresters.

The sophistication of the Log Max Log Mate 500 computer system improves communication among all those with an interest in wood products and forests. It provides a real assist to professionals, such as government foresters, aiming to assist loggers with sustainable choices in timber harvesting.

When French settlers arrived in New Brunswick around 1670, the forest had already sustained indigenous people for centuries. Probably no more than two percent of the land area represented virgin forest even then. Yet the region had extremely large trees, such as white pine that towered to 200 feet and as many as seven feet in diameter. The trees were a favorite source of wood for ship builders.

Things change, however. Adaptation is a must. Preplanning – no impulse adjustments, is always a good idea.

As the operation at Carroll Enterprises demonstrates, knowing when to change “horses” – or upgrade equipment – takes a genuine understanding of equipment. The Carrolls have that.

It happens that the Carrolls also have a deep understanding of draft horses of the Percheron variety. Named for the Perche region in northern France where they originated, the Percherons are sleek, sturdy and beautiful – hard workers that make it look easy.

The Percherons have a lot in common with a well-designed harvesting head. The Carrolls breed and show Percherons.