One Log Scaler’s Heroic Tale – And One Tough Handheld!

Log scalingFor Joe Lange, the morning of July 9th began as usual, and he went about his work expecting it to be a perfectly ordinary day. Joe is a log scaler for Wright Scaling of Bayview, ID, and is contracted by one of Elecdata’s (one of Juniper’s partners) customers, Vaagen Brothers Lumber Co., which utilizes the Allegro CX rugged handheld, an older version of the Allegro MX, with Elecdata’s log scaling software to record their data. Joe had been scaling logs for about 3 ½ years, the last year of which had been spent at the company’s Usk, WA operation.

Around noon on July 9th, Joe’s uneventful day took an unexpected turn. A semi-truck and a small pickup collided at the intersection of Flowery Trail Road and Washington State Highway 20, just yards away from Vaagen Brothers’ log scale yard. Hearing the crash of metal and glass, Joe looked up to see the semi-truck tip over on its side, and the pickup burst into flame.

Over-turned semi-truck
Over-turned semi-truck

At once, Joe rushed out toward the highway as the driver pulled his young son out of the burning vehicle. Tossing his Allegro CX and his scaling stick on the shoulder of the road, Joe grabbed a hatchet, broke out the window of the truck, and pulled the driver’s wife, now unconscious, from the back of the vehicle. Once she was safe, Joe ran back again to get the couple’s baby, who was still strapped in the back seat. Amazingly, the family, from British Columbia, is expected to make a full recovery.

The remains of the pickup truck
The remains of the pickup truck

After the Incident – One Tough Handheld!

The flames from the pickup were so hot that 25 feet away on the highway’s shoulder, Joe’s scaling stick was scorched to the point that it was mostly unreadable.

Joe's burnt scale stick
Joe’s burnt scaling stick

His cell phone, which he tossed to the side of the road after calling 911, was partially melted, and his Allegro CX and shoulder strap were also partly melted. Astoundingly, Vaagen Brothers reports that the Allegro still works! Of course, the melted components will need to be replaced, but even after a significant amount of heat, the handheld survived.

Allegro CX
Joe’s partially melted Allegro CX actually still works!

“Pretty tough machine that can take a beating like that and still work,” said Scott Dodson, Vaagen Brothers’ Head Log Scaler. “Vaagen Brothers is proud to have Joe scaling for us and thank him for a job well done.”

Joe Lange
Joe Lange

We thought this was an amazing story and wanted to share it with you all. Here’s a little more about the products Vaagen Brothers uses for log scaling:

Allegro MXAbout Juniper Systems’ Allegro MX

Juniper Systems’ Allegro MX, the current model of its Allegro line, is an ultra-rugged handheld with a full alphanumeric keyboard, which makes it a preferred handheld for log scaling and other data-intensive applications. The Allegro MX is dustproof and waterproof, has excellent battery life, and is designed to military standards 810F. To learn more about Juniper Systems’ Allegro handhelds, please contact us online or by phone at 435.753.1881.

About Elecdata’s Log Scaling Software:

Electronic Data Solutions offers several software solutions that can be customized to your needs throughout many industries. Elecdata’s log scaling program suite is featured around CE Scale, a Windows CE/Windows Mobile log scaling program designed for ease of use while still having intensive low level data validation.

Whether a small mill with only one location or a large operation with multiple mills, your data can be easily accessible when and where you need it. CE Scale is designed to work on Juniper Systems’ field PCs like the Allegro MX. For more information on software solutions, contact Elecdata by email or visit their website.


  1. Bill Fannin says:

    I am interested in your log scaler can you tell me price of 2 hand held units an the software

  2. Norman Shetler says:

    I am interested in a hand held computer would like price for 2 -1 to scale logs and 1- to cruise timber!! Also would like to talk to somebody in my area that is use Is using one now??
    My address is 106 Quinn Circle Millersburg Ohio 44654
    Quantum Hardwoods LLC. Norman Shetler

  3. Angela Potter says:

    I am interested in the hand held computer and would like a quote on 3 hand held–looking for not only scaling logs but also having the ability to forward log purchase to company computer in order to maintain inventory and then having the ability to print out sales invoices to our customers

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