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Templates and work process for smaller workshops (updated as and when)
August 25, 2014
10:29 pm
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terry

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Good points Mark. Im not sure Im ready for this job….although the client was clearly struggling to find someone to take it on and the figure I mentioned to him around 5K didn’t scare him off in the slightest (I don’t normally talk money on first visit but he insisted). Sometimes its better to stick to what you know and make sure you do a great job and get paid. I’m hoping that a smaller less risky angled under stair or loft job will come in so I can have a go at it without too much at stake. 3 angled Drobes in a new loft with the builders still on site is enough for me to take a wide berth at this point!!!

Thanks for the advice, may come back to you at some point in the future for further advice if thats ok?

Cheers Mark

 

terryLaugh

August 25, 2014
9:51 pm
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mark nichols


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Hi Terry

They are easy to do with Polyboard obviously.

You must get the angles perfect, any deviation will stick out like a sore thumb.

Doors on an angled unit will need clearance above. Make a quick angled unit in Polyboard, stick a door on it, open the door in 3d and zoom in on the top edge. You’ll see what I mean.

The way round it is to put a flat edge at the top. But not always possible.

Everything else is not really any different from normal robes.

My advice is to get a good digi angle gauge.

If assembling on site I usually make the top panel over passing as it makes it easier to put together. But even so we still dry assemble in the workshop, but we do have much more room obviously.

Mark..

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terry
August 25, 2014
2:37 pm
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terry

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Nice Job Mark

Ive been asked to price up 3 sets of wardrobes in a newly converted loft. All of them will be angled to the pitch of the roof.

To be honest Ive never done any angled work can I just ask you how much is there to learn/consider on this type of work.

Im probably going to decline to quote as Its a pretty big job and I’d rather not take on something quite so big as a first attempt at angled work but im interested in any pointers that you may have.

Cheers

 

Terry

August 25, 2014
1:00 pm
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mark nichols


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Here’s the finished article…

Unpainted as we are never around to get after photos as we dont do the painting on these type of units…

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/19922571/2014-08-25%2013.02.35.jpg

Only a quick piccy as I actually worked on bank holiday monday…

Mark

August 21, 2014
5:41 pm
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mark nichols


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No Problem… Ness

August 21, 2014
5:24 pm
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Ness

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Hi Mark,
thanks very much for posting this, this is really interesting work, and shows how PolyBoard can really help speed up the building of these made-to-measure units.
Would you mind if I put these examples in our template library so that people can download them as example projects?
All the best,
Ness

August 21, 2014
3:01 pm
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mark nichols


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August 21, 2014
7:55 am
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mark nichols


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Understairs Again.

Heres another understairs set. All in MDF.

The polyboard project view.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/19922571/Customer%20visuals%20folder/Understairs_again.png

The actual polyboard project file.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/19922571/Customer%20visuals%20folder/Understairs%20Again.pb-proj

Workshop Visuals

******To Follow ***************

Fitted Visuals

******To Follow ***************

August 17, 2014
6:57 pm
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mark nichols


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Hi All

As Ness requested. I will upload some of the templates that we work on.

We are usually very busy and I will try to post some of the more unusual ones.

As you will know by my posts. I am kind of obsessed with process and we usually have 5 or 6 projects running through our small workshop at any time. Our market for ‘bread and butter’ work is usually the same, built in cabinetry in either MDF, Pine or veneered MDF and this will usually follow the same rules for almost all work.

We do make some unusual hand made stuff in hardwood’s from time to time and while this is enjoyable and why we came into this business, unfortunately it doesn’t pay the bills, in fact it doesn’t pay the wages… Most clients would love to have the artisan pieces, but they really would not pay the prices!

So as a business we do what we do.!

I usually do 8 or 9 designs a week ranging from single doors to whole libraries, all of which I can now produce on Polyboard as most is suited to the software as noted above.

I know people mention that the margins in this business are tight. I don’t find that really, but time is always of the essence and ive tried all manner of design software but polyboard does suit our business as we don’t really need to show high quality visuals (my East End chat will charm most customers), but the manufacturing is the key to speeding the work process up and I would imagine that a 60% profit on a job is easily achievable.

So how do we work.

1) Precise measurements. I now spend much more time taking all relevant measurments. I always did, but I now think in terms of what polyboard will require and make sure I have everything right down to the level of the floor.

2) Polyboard design. I work out the cabinetry precisely on polyboard. I used to do a rough sketch and price it. If the job was acceped I would finalise the plans etc. I dont do this now as it is just as easy for me to do the finished plan complete with the manufacturing methods so that when a job is accepted it can go straight to the workshop. The only thing I dont do is print out the documents until accepted.

3) Cutlist and Optimisation. Send the cutlist to ‘Cutlist Plus’. I dont use opticut as I have worked with cutlist plus from their beginning and it works for me. As with both opticut and cutlist plus, you are able to take the design and get exact material and labour charges for a job and add any markups that you wish.

4) Professional Quoting. Use the cutlisted prices to formulate the quote. I use ‘Freshbooks’, a cloud based quoting and invoicing program that is aimed at the freelance design market, but is perfect for manufacturing as it allows you to give each client a ‘portal’ like amazon etc. and keep all jobs under a clients account. You can monitor what they are asking questions on and it has a basic ‘ticketing’ system that we use to allow the client to aim questions to either the office or the workshop depending upon the department they choose.

5) Speedy Production. An accepted job is passed directly to the workshop with all the manufacturing drawings and cutlists. The workshop has its own connected laptop with polyboard to check any dimensions on the screen.

6) Connected Workshop. Both workshop and office have a dropbox account for visuals, cutlists and drawings in PDF and customer quotes are linked to dropbox for there visuals too.

7) Cost effective manufacture. We don’t run CNC, we do have a beamsaw, but as our work is smaller scale and extremely fast turnaround we usually use our panel saw and normal machines. Yes we use a lot of Festool gear and that is more than speedy enough for us.

So, onto the plans…

Understairs cabinet.

Really a face framed section with a lower door and a frame in place for the customers supplied pine cottage door. (points to note on this design is that if you look at the double backs, you will see that I have added 20mm oversize to the panels material which wont show on the design, but will appear on the cutlists for scribing on site.. Also, it’s sectional, so we can make it all in the workshop and deliver and fit like a kit.)

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/19922571/Poly%20Understairs%20Template.pb-proj

Utility Room. Cabinets designed to hide a boiler as in the utility room post. (points to note are the unboxing on the corner cabinet and the wall sections added to the plan to show the limits of the boilers. Great for getting the fit correct before attending the job.)

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/19922571/Poly%20Utility%20Room%20Template.pb-proj

More to follow…..

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