Beasley Flooring Products purchases lumber from various mills throughout the southeast USA, reaching as far west as the Mississippi River than as far north as North Carolina and Tennessee. The wood species we use to make flooring are red oak, white oak, soft maple, longleaf pine, hickory/pecan and elm. Proper care for and drying of lumber starts on the lumber yard as soon as the packs arrive. We treat the lumber with sap stain preventing treatment to insure the lumber stays bright and to stop decay. Packs are inspected within three days to make sure the lumber gets on sticks for proper air flow, preventing discoloration and decay that can start in dead-packed lumber. The Inspection process is the start of making high quality flooring. We inspect every pack of lumber for grade, quality and footage. Our lumber graders are fully trained to grade to NHLA rules. This assures that the correct grade of lumber needed for the flooring mill makes it into the process. The goal for inspection is 100,000 Board Feet in one day so we have an ample supply of raw material to feed the flooring plant.
Inspected lumber, now on sticks, is returned to the yard for several weeks to air dry. Lumber stacked on sticks is now taken to the pre-dryer to accelerate the drying process in a controlled manner. Moderate heat is kept in the large building up to approximately 110°F, resulting in evaporation of free water from the lumber. The pre-dryer not only accelerates the drying process, making it more efficient, but helps minimize lumber damage/degrade from putting the lumber in the kiln at too high of a moisture content. Putting lumber in a kiln at too high moisture content can result in checking and cupping of the lumber. Keeping the lumber protected from outside weather conditions, meaning precipitation, makes the drying process more efficient, providing a more constant flow of lumber to the mill.
The kiln drying process is used to take the lumber down to 6-9% MOISTURE CONTENT necessary for interior use wood products. Lumber must be dried to within 6%-9% moisture content to be within industry standard for interior use wood products. This moisture level is the average range across most al of North America that will insure minimal shrinking and swelling of wood products made for interior use. Wood dried to that range will last for decades, even centuries, if kept dry, inside, and proper care of it has been taken. We run six kilns that hold approximately 90K BF of lumber, and two that hold 45-50K BF of lumber. The lumber is checked every day through the drying schedule for change in moisture content. The drying schedule will sterilize the lumber, bringing the wood to high enough temperature for a long enough period to kill all insects, bacteria and fungi that could be present in the wood.
The rip saw line is used to turn the random width lumber into set widths for flooring manufacture. We rip lumber into wood blanks to make 2 ¼”, 3” (for maple only), 3 ¼”, 4”, 5”, and 5 1/8” (pine only) wide flooring. We also rip blanks into wider widths for engineered flooring. The rip system is completely automated, with an in-line moisture meter that checks every piece of lumber we use in flooring manufacture for proper moisture content. It optimizes the number and width of blanks coming from each piece of lumber so that there are the absolute minimal waste strips remaining. These small waste strips are then ground into either boiler fuel to be used here for the drying process, or to be sold to out sister company, Wood Fiber Technologies, to make wood flour.
We mill flooring on two production lines, with a daily capacity of 80,000 SF in 2 shifts. We also have capabilities of running wider width and other specialty items on our Weinig moulder. We can run widths up to 11.5” wide on the moulder, as well as other specialty profiles. Our standard milling profile is 0.750” thick, tongue and groove flooring, with a 0.290” thick wear layer, tongue at 0.260” thick and groove at 0.248” wide. All our standard products are end matched. We run square edged products for the unfinished market, as well as beveled product for our finishing plant. During our milling process, we have a QC team that constantly checks all dimensions of the product, as well as moisture content and grade. Our graders are trained in standard unfinished flooring grades as set by NOFMA/NWFA. We also do proprietary grades for our beveled products that are to be finished at our finishing plant. We manufacture flooring in red oak, white oak, soft maple, hickory, pine and new heart pine. We have also milled exotics in lyptus and cumaru.
Our distressing department has capabilities in a wide variety of patterns and designs, made to order with established programs. We can do various depths and intensities of channel type scrapes. Characters, such as nail holes, worm holes and chatter marks, can be added during the distressing process to give the product a natural aged look. We can add blackening and shading to the scrape patterns for a weathered look. Wire brushing can be done to either the scraped material or to our flat beveled flooring to increase or change the texture. We can use a two-pass system to change the appearance with an initial coat done after wire brushing, but before the first sanding to highlight grain patterns. We can manufacture sawn face material in both cross face and circle sawn patterns at various degrees of coverage. During the distressing process, the flooring is continually inspected by our QC department for match to the distress program, grade and milling/moisture content.
We have capability of sanding and finishing 40,000 sf per shift. Stain colors can be custom developed to fit or match a flooring program. We use a seven-coat system, including finish layers that incorporate aluminum oxide for durability and scratch resistance. Our finishes are completely UV cured at time of manufacturing and do not have any off-gas chemicals. We can apply some proprietary finishes to meet customer needs or match their existing lines. Grading at the finish line is carried out by four graders capable of grading according to the customer’s program needs, as well as our own proprietary grades. We have standard box set-ups for our product lines, but can package flooring to meet a customer’s program needs. QC checks the flooring as it is being sanded and finished, as well as after manufacture to be certain the desired grade, finish, sanded thickness and quality is met.