Our Story

The JoeScan story is a classic example of an innovator applying brains and technology to improve upon an existing product. The company Joey Nelson founded when he decided to build a better basic laser scanner now makes a range of scanners that improve recovery in many different aspects of mill operations.


As Joey was growing up, he was exposed to the sawmill industry through a family business. In college he took an even stronger interest in the sawmill industry, and laser scanning in particular. A few years after working on a project to develop the L-51 laser scanner for Nelson Brothers Engineering, he decided to take the plunge and start his own company, dedicated to designing and building better laser scanners. And his experience around the sawmill industry made him confident there was a market for affordable and reliable scanning – if an integrator could offer an optimization system that included a proven scanning component, mills could increase their efficiency and boost their bottom line.

So he formed JoeScan and built the first JoeScan® JS-20 scanner in 2002. Since then, JoeScan has made a concerted effort to keep up with the technology and performance curve. Subsequent models have increased maximum scan rate, become easier to install and calibrate, and offer multiple-laser models. The latest JoeScan innovation is the JS-25 X-Series, which includes five different models – standard and extended-range, wide-angle, and two- or three-laser configurations – to provide even more solutions to specific sawmill scanning needs.

Today JoeScan has 9 employees and is carving out a niche with integrators and sawmills as a resource for fast, accurate and reliable scanning that delivers maximum performance – and return on investment.


1999: JoeScan is founded by Joey Nelson to provide electronics for Nelson Bros. Engineering

2001: Design efforts begin for next-generation scan head

2002: Initial JS-20 scan head introduced to market

2003: JS-20 SR and XR models introduced

2003: JoeScan moves to Vancouver, Wash.

2005: JS-20DL dual-laser model introduced

2006: JS-20WA wide-angle model introduced

2007: JoeScan announces 5- year warranty

2008: JS-20 X-Series and JS-20X3 triple-laser models introduced

2009: JS-20MX100 outdoor edition introduced

2011: JoeScan expands to a larger location

2014: JS-25 X-Series introduced

2016: JS-25 X6B carriage scanner introduced

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