Tisfoon Lumber Defect Scanner

Detects Defects and Grade in Lumber

The Tisfoon Lumber Defect Scanner automatically detects defects and grade in lumber using computer vision and lasers. The system grades and defects the lumber in order to make optimal decisions for cross cutting or sorting. Lumber waste is minimized and line marking operators are eliminated leading to increased profits and production. The affordable system has a quick payback which sets it apart from the competition. One scanner can serve one saw which eliminates complex material handling, and out of queue headaches. With multiple lines running independent from one another, there are no single points of failure, thus giving you peace of mind.

In most cases, the system may be retrofitted into your existing layout without the need for expensive material handling. We will work with any brand cut-off saw optimizer you may have. If your existing cut-off saw is not scanner ready, we can retrofit your optimizing saw with SmartSaws™ software and controls. We also offer a new state of the art fast and accurate optimizing cutoff saw. With all these options available to you, you are never pushed into buying more than you need.

Our defect scanners are currently serving the following industries:

In addition to the typical defects like knots, wane, cracks, and splits, we can also identify sap in cherry, brown in maple, blue stain in pine, and purple in poplar. Furthermore, the scanner software understands the nuances of cutting hardwood flooring. The flooring sizes and grades are taken into account based on the price value of each grade with additional regard for the nesting process.

The defect and grade identification engine is based on statistical analysis and is therefore immune to ambient lighting and even lumber species. In some of our installations the scanner is fed a mixture of species at the same time using the same recipe! This makes the scanner robust and not requiring constant calibration.


We never use proprietary hardware. All the hardware is available "off the shelf". This keeps your spare parts costs low. The differentiating feature of the product is our software. The algorithms used in detecting defects and grade are highly intelligent and as mentioned earlier, based on statistical analysis. Entering parameters for defect identification is via touch screen and very intuitive. With free software updates, you will instantly benefit from any future improvements.

It used to be that scanners were very expensive and only a select group of manufacturers could either afford or justify them. Added to the expenses were the additional material handling costs. With the introduction of the Tisfoon scanner, more manufacturers can afford a scanner. We are dedicated to making manufacturing in North America affordable and profitable.

Unlike our competition, we do not need air conditioners for our computers. This means that the computers stay in a dust tight electrical panel free of dust! This electrical panel is cooled by induction through aluminum. This is just one example of our design philosophy: "Keep it Simple!" Why buy over complicated, over engineered, power hungry, and over-priced products? Why pay for over priced spare parts?

In the application below, there are two independent lines with the Tisfoon Lumber Defect Scanner and Grader. They are grading lumber for a finger joint operation. The various grades are then reconstructed through finger jointing. The Tisfoon Scanner is feeding two Barr-Mullin Brute saws that we retrofitted. These saws also have our Servo cam saw stroke retrofit

In the application below, the Tisfoon Lumber Defect Scanner is feeding a Turbo Wonder Saw that was retrofitted by Tisfoon with SmartSaws controls. The conveyors in this video were also provided by Tisfoon.

In the application below, the existing in-feed conveyor was cut to accommodate the scanner. A timing belt now connects the two parts of the original conveyor. No additional material handling was needed! The old Dimter saw was retrofitted with SmartSaws™ software and controls, thus breathing new life to an old, but reliable and already paid for saw.

As an option, the system may be retrofitted directly inside an existing cut-off saw. Vibration has no effect on our software algorithm! The Tisfoon Scanner is fast enough to defect, grade and optimize as the saw cuts the lumber and imposes no limitations on the production speed of the saw. The video below is a demonstration of this application.

In the video below, an old Barr-Mullin Brute saw was retrofitted with SmartSaws™ software and controls. Then simple conveyors were used for material handling to and from the scanner. The conveyor speed is controlled such that the boards keep the saw full with little gap. There was minimal change to the existing production line. Simple and quick installation with quick payback!

In the video below, an OptiCut 450 from Weinig was retrofitted with Tisfoon's SmartSaws control and software. A WoodEye used to feed the OptiCut. That WoodEye was replaced with the Tisfoon defect scanner. The result was better scanning of the lumber and better sorting of the parts resulting in higher yields.

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