Assess and maintain saw performance

This unit describes the outcomes required to assess, verify, test and rectify cutting problems on chipping and sawing machines, saw blades, knives and associated equipmentGeneral workplace legislative and regulatory requirements apply to this unit; however there are no specific licensing or certification requirements at the time of publicationThis unit replaces FPICOT3216A Assess and maintain saw performance


The unit involves assessing and maintaining saw performance in a forest products factory setting

The skills and knowledge required for competent workplace performance are to be used within the scope of the person's job and authority


Not Applicable

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Inspect and test saw and equipment

1.1. Applicable occupational health and safety (OHS), environmental, legislative and organisational requirements relevant to assessing and maintaining saw performance are identified and followed

1.2. Information relating to current and past performance problems is obtained and reviewed to assess process problems

1.3. Saw and equipment are observed under a range of operating conditions to determine the extent of the problems

1.4. Timber fed through saw is examined to determine potential causes of cutting problem

1.5. Saw and equipment are inspected to identify worn, broken and loose components in line with manufacturer instructions and recommendations

1.6. Equipment lock-out procedures are applied in line with OHS and workplace procedures

1.7. Communication with others is established and maintained in line with OHS requirements

2. Assess technical performance

2.1. Technical performance of sawing operation is assessed to identify future improvements in line with site procedures

2.2. Technical performance is compared against other equipment to determine possible efficiencies

2.3. Options for new equipment are assessed to determine feasibility of improvements in performance

2.4. Endorsement from appropriate personnel of identified improvements is obtained as required

3. Rectify saw problems

3.1. Potential causes are diagnosed through the occurring problem and its characteristics

3.2. Assessed causes are validated by reference to other trades and by operations personnel

3.3. Multiple causes are assessed and action is planned, with alternative courses of action canvassed with relevant personnel to identify and agree on preferred option

3.4. Selected course of action is implemented and cutting results are re-examined and reviewed

3.5. Action and results are communicated to appropriate personnel

3.6. Causes of cutting problems and actions taken are accurately recorded and reported in line with site procedures

Required Skills

This describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level required for this unit

Required skills

Technical skills sufficient to use and maintain relevant tools, machinery and equipment; efficiently and safely assess and maintain saw performance

Communication skills sufficient to use appropriate communication and interpersonal techniques with colleagues and others

Literacy skills sufficient to record and report workplace information; maintain documentation

Numeracy skills sufficient to measure, estimate and calculate time required to complete a task

Problem solving skills sufficient to identify problems and equipment faults; demonstrate appropriate response procedures

Required knowledge

Applicable commonwealth, state or territory legislation, regulations, standards, codes of practice and established safe practices relevant to the full range of processes for assessing and maintaining saw performance

Environmental protection requirements, including the safe disposal of waste material, and the minimisation of carbon emissions

Organisational and site standards, requirements, policies and procedures for assessing and maintaining saw performance

Environmental risks and hazards

Using energy effectively and efficiently

Using material effectively and efficiently

Characteristics of saws and related equipment, and causes of problems and solutions

Assessment and rectification procedures

Established communication channels and protocols

Problem identification and resolution strategies, and common fault finding techniques

Types of tools and equipment, and procedures for their safe use and maintenance

Appropriate mathematical procedures for estimating and measuring, including calculating time to complete tasks

Procedures for recording and reporting workplace information

Evidence Required

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment

A person who demonstrates competency in this unit must be able to provide evidence that they can safely and efficiently assess and maintain saw performance

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit

The evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit must be relevant to, and satisfy, all of the requirements of the elements of this unit and include demonstration of:

following applicable commonwealth, state or territory legislative and regulatory requirements and codes of practice relevant to assessing and maintaining saw performance

following organisational policies and procedures relevant to assessing and maintaining saw performance

assessing saw problems through information gathering, testing and inspecting equipment, and assessing possible causes

selecting and implementing the correct course of action to rectify saw problems

Context of and specific resources for assessment

Competency is to be assessed in the workplace or realistically simulated workplace

Assessment is to occur under standard and authorised work practices, safety requirements and environmental constraints

Assessment of required knowledge, other than confirmatory questions, will usually be conducted in an off-site context

Assessment is to follow relevant regulatory or Australian Standards requirements

The following resources should be made available:

workplace location or simulated workplace

materials and equipment relevant to undertaking work applicable to this unit

specifications and work instructions

Method of assessment

Assessment must satisfy the endorsed Assessment Guidelines of the FPI11 Training Package

Assessment methods must confirm consistency and accuracy of performance (over time and in a range of workplace relevant contexts) together with application of required knowledge

Assessment must be by direct observation of tasks, with questioning on required knowledge and it must also reinforce the integration of employability skills

Assessment methods must confirm the ability to access and correctly interpret and apply the required knowledge

Assessment may be applied under project-related conditions (real or simulated) and require evidence of process

Assessment must confirm a reasonable inference that competency is able not only to be satisfied under the particular circumstance, but is able to be transferred to other circumstances

Assessment may be in conjunction with assessment of other units of competency

The assessment environment should not disadvantage the candidate

Assessment practices should take into account any relevant language or cultural issues related to Aboriginality, gender or language backgrounds other than English

Where the participant has a disability, reasonable adjustment may be applied during assessment

Language and literacy demands of the assessment task should not be higher than those of the work role

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

OHS requirements:

are to be in line with applicable commonwealth, state or territory legislation and regulations, and organisational safety policies and procedures, and may include:

personal protective equipment and clothing

safety equipment

first aid equipment

fire fighting equipment

hazard and risk control

fatigue management

elimination of hazardous materials and substances

safe forest practices, including required actions relating to forest fire

manual handling including shifting, lifting and carrying

Environmental requirements may include:


organisational policies and procedures

workplace practices

Legislative requirements:

are to be in line with applicable commonwealth, state or territory legislation, regulations, certification requirements and codes of practice and may include:

award and enterprise agreements

industrial relations

Australian Standards

confidentiality and privacy


the environment

equal opportunity


relevant industry codes of practice

duty of care

Organisational requirements may include:


organisational and site guidelines

policies and procedures relating to own role and responsibility

quality assurance

procedural manuals

quality and continuous improvement processes and standards

OHS, emergency and evacuation procedures

ethical standards

recording and reporting requirements

equipment use, maintenance and storage requirements

environmental management requirements (waste minimisation and disposal, recycling and re-use guidelines)

Saws may include:

individual items of wood cutting machinery, including:

band saws

circular saws

gang saws



Timber may include:




imported species

Equipment lock-out procedures are to include:

protecting operators and co-workers from accidental injury by isolating the equipment from the power source

Communication may include:

verbal and non-verbal language

constructive feedback

active listening

questioning to clarify and confirm understanding

use of positive, confident and cooperative language

use of language and concepts appropriate to individual social and cultural differences

control of tone of voice

Technical performance may relate to:

rectification methods to solve sawing problems

methods to improve saw performance

comparison against other equipment to identify efficiencies

potential application to other machinery

Causes may include:

forcing timber through the equipment

damage from foreign matter

incorrect operating speeds

oversized material removal

incorrect setting of equipment

poor sharpening or setting of saw blades

Action usually includes:


education relating to the causes or development of alternative strategies

Appropriate personnel may include:






Records and reports may include:

equipment type


inspection information

maintenance outcomes

common and recurring faults

malfunctions and damage

hazards and incidents

and may be:


using a computer-based system

other appropriate organisational communication system


Not Applicable

Competency Field

Common Technical

Employability Skills

This unit contains employability skills

Licensing Information

Refer to Unit Descriptor