As soon as Luke Henderson and Clint Hutchinson from Salter Cabinets in Jandakot in Western Australia saw a demonstration of Cabinet Vision they knew it would pay for itself and make the company money. They figured that it would cost the same as paying a fourth apprentice for one year. They had only recently purchased the business from their old boss and they were extremely mindful of their cash flow.
The company was already busy doing private kitchens and commercial shop fit-outs and to meet demand and delivery times they were faced with two choices.
Either (1) Employ more staff or (2) Become more efficient.
The smart choice was to become more efficient. Their work is very specialised. They deal with retail outlets that require detailed cabinetry with all sorts of modifications like special cut-outs for ducting, etc. Timing is critical and the amount of time they can spend onsite is limited (and often in remote country areas). Everything needs to be spot-on when it leaves the factory. After seeing Cabinet Vision, they knew they were on the right track.
They did not plan to implement a CNC into their business for another year or two so they purchased Cabinet Vision Stage 1 which produces production drawings, cutting lists and optimising reports for their panel saw. Within weeks of completing the training, Luke and Clint knew they had made the right decision.
Once they started using Cabinet Vision, they were delighted with how easy it was to make changes to construction methods, materials, material thicknesses, edge banding, cabinet shapes, part shapes, etc. Other software packages they considered as part of their evaluation process proved to be very cumbersome and some systems could not accommodate these changes at all.
Cabinet Vision was paying for itself on material savings alone. Before implementing Cabinet Vision, they tended to over-order so that they were not held up getting the job out. They hoped that any surplus could be used on the next job. With Cabinet Vision, they are confidently ordering only what is needed and they are no longer clogging up the factory with excess inventory or stretching their cash-flow.
This early success was not by chance. The partners made a serious commitment to the task of mastering Cabinet Vision. They allocated time for learning how to get the most out the software. This commitment along with the training videos, classroom courses and on-site integration provided by Planit guaranteed their success.
Suddenly, Luke and Clint decided to re-evaluate the timing of their CNC purchase. They had looked at other companies doing similar work with CNC machines. Some of them were using the software that was shipped with the machine. These systems work on a library of cabinet parts that need to be called up individually and modified for each job. They considered this approach to be only one step up from the old “jig” approach where every part needs to be re-evaluated or on some case re-programmed before going to production. It was time-consuming, tedious and prone to error. Basically, it was 20-year-old technology.
With their Cabinet Vision software, all these processes are automated. Once the job has been designed, all the parts get automatically re-calculated and all the programs are generated instantly.
So they embraced Nested Based Manufacturing and purchased a CNC and Cabinet Vision Stage 2.
The Cabinet Vision Stage 2 installation involved a four-day site visit by the Planit integrator where the software was fully configured to operate with the new CNC Flatbed Router (all up and running on the first day) and additional customisation of construction methods and drawer systems.
Six weeks after installing the CNC, Luke and Clint reported the following:-
- Set-out – takes 25% less time.
- Machining is much quicker – it is all automated. They don’t really have to worry about it too much; they load the sheets on the CNC and press the start button. Usually, the 1st year apprentice operates the machine and some afternoons when they are feeling relaxed, they will share a pizza and some light refreshments while they feed jobs through the machine.
- Nesting saves even more material and the “Grain Matching” function in the latest version of Cabinet Vision is sensational.
- Every part is fully labeled – saves heaps of time sorting through stacks of panels.
- Assembly is at least 50% quicker (all the construction joints are fully machined).
- They are getting much more out of the apprentices. The first year is doing what the fourth year used to do and the fourth year is doing what Luke and Clint used to do.
- Quality has improved. Things go together better and everything is square. Shelves are in the right place and nail guns are virtually a thing of the past.
- Drawer systems are perfect – everything just clicks together (no adjustment is needed).
- On-Site is much faster and fewer headaches – everything fits – the first time.
And now, they make money the first time to do a new shop design. In the old days, they would “take a hit" on the first job because of all the jigs and prototypes they needed to develop. This is no longer necessary – everything fits and works the first time.
To learn more about Cabinet Vision, please Click Here