Staged implementation works for Crown Cabinets

In February 2009, Frank Trichilo from Crown Cabinets and Design in Balcatta, Western Australia was extremely worried that he had made the wrong decision. It was the middle of a “recession” and Frank had decided to embrace Nested Based Manufacturing. He had spent the previous year researching all the various CNC and software options and after an exhaustive evaluation process he had selected the machine he wanted and the software to operate it.

He chose Planit’s Cabinet Vision for his software. Whilst there were certainly cheaper (and more expensive) options out there, the fact that he could get local support from a company that had been providing quality software solutions to cabinet makers in WA for more than 25 years and he had received huge recommendations from other
companies using Planit products (Darren from D&A Cabinets, Campbell from Silvestri Cabinets and Jason from Kitchen Kreations) convinced Frank that Planit was the best option. The CNC machine that Frank had ordered would not be available for some months so he decided to use that time to completely “master” his Planit software.

The software was implemented in two stages.

Stage 1 involved integrating the software with his existing machinery (panel saw and edge bander). Frank specialises in mid to high end kitchens (including curved cabinets) and he attended a four day fundamentals course at Planit’s  WA Woodbridge training centre (near Midland) where he learnt all the basics. Planit followed this up by spending four days in

Frank’s factory customising the software to suit his requirements. Frank immediately started winning jobs using the software as a sales/presentation tool and production efficiencies had improved markedly. Now all the cutting lists were being produced by Cabinet Vision and the saw optimiser helped reduce waste. By the time the CNC machine had arrived, the order book was full; Frank was extremely comfortable using the software and there were a heap of jobs waiting on his computer ready to go.

Stage 2 was the integration to the CNC. This was all up and running on the first day and because Frank already knew how to use Cabinet Vision, he only had to click a couple of extra buttons to get the programs from Cabinet Vision down to the CNC. The bulk of the stage 2 integration was spent fine tuning procedure and improving the work flow. By the end stage 2 Frank was ready to go.

Doing it in stages certainly had its advantages according to Frank. He really applied himself and mastered the software first. It was hard work, but it was worth it. When the machine arrived he just had to concentrate on learning how to use the new CNC – the software side of things was “nailed”.

Frank is now producing more work in less time with no compromise in quality – in fact there has been an improvement. Using Planit’s Mortise & Tenon construction method, the CNC produces parts that are accurate to within 0.1mm, perfectly square and his drawer systems go together with a minimum of adjustment and run much smoother. Frank does a few things differently to suit his market and he wasn’t sure if he would have to change his ways when automating his processes. He was delighted to discover that during the integration process, his Planit integrator was able set the software up to accommodate his ideas. Frank was amazed how easy that was.
12 Months later and in the seven years since Frank started, he has never been busier. “What Recession”?

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