Lars Bruun, one of the great pioneers in forestry machinery, has left us

Lars Bruun

The sad news have reached us that Lars Bruun, the man behind the Mini-Bruunett and many other inventions, has passed away, 87 years old. He will be remembered as one of the great pioneers in the development of forestry machinery. One of those who took the big steps. 

Lars Bruun 

Lars Bruun was born in 1934, an inventor and industrialist who founded the company Bruun System AB that later became a subsidiary to ÖSA, today’s John Deere Forestry. In the 90’s he started the company Bruun Ecomate AB.

Log Max Harvester Heads

According to many, Lars Bruun was the first to make a modern forwarder, a machine that decided what a forwarder should look like. All forwarders ever since actually look like this role model, with some fine-tuning.

Lars Bruun
The VSA forwarder. Lars Bruun’s first forwarder and the first forest machine with waist steering. The first modern forwarder.
Photo: Skogsforum

The Bruunett enters the stage

In the 60’s he built a forwarder named after himself, the Bruunett (“Bruun one” in Swedish). It was a six-wheeled forwarder based on a Ford tractor, and because it was a Ford, it was blue. Somewhat confusing for the swedes as the word brun (with one “u”) is Swedish for brown.

The “Blue Bruunett” was a success and soon another machine turned up that also was based on a Ford tractor. The rumor has it, that this other manufacturer launched a contest at a fair to find a name for that machine. The winning entry was Blondin (“the Blond”).

In the 70’s Lars Bruun came up with a new forwarder, the first modern 8-wheeled machine. It was launched in two versions: Maxi-Bruunett and Mini-Bruunett. The maxi was soon forgotten but the Mini-Bruunett was a big success and many were sold. The Mini-Bruunett became so popular that the major player in forestry machinery, ÖSA, purchased the company, and the concept to continue the development of the 8-wheeled machines.

The classic Mini-Brunnett. Probably the largest success among Lars Bruuns machines.
Photo: Skogsforum

Lars Bruun went on

Being the entrepreneur he was, Lars Bruun went on inventing and building machines and accessories. Apart from forwarders and harvesters, he invented a leveling system for chairs in forest machines, a chain tensioning system for harvesters, a hydraulic system called Eco-Mate, and many other things.

Eco-Mate was a system for all kinds of working machinery, a system that recycled the energy in the system which reduced the fuel consumption of the machine by 30 %. The Eco-Mate never broke through in the forest machine business and was later sold to Caterpillar who offered it as option on their construction machines.

Up to his last days, Lars Bruun was active. He had a completely new forwarder coming up. We will see if that machines appears on the market.

During his lifetime Lars Bruun got many patents and rewards. He will be missed …

Lars Bruun
A Bruun forwarder that never became a big success. This one was, at an early stage, available in a tracked version.
Photo: Skogsforum
Lars Bruun
One of the later Bruun forwarders.
Photo: Flickr
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