For JD Woodcraft, CNC Router Keeps Costs Low
By Wade Vonasek | Posted: 08/16/2013 2:40PM
Riverside, CA-based JD Woodcraft designs and manufactures customized woodwork, including cabinets, carpentry and millwork. When the company was contemplating buying a Laguna CNC machine, owner Juan Duran used his experience with a former company to help him make the decision.
Benefits of CNC machines are clearly evident for woodworking companies that adopt them - once they are in the shop and runnning. A CNC router can sometimes do in a matter of hours what would take a day or days for a human to accomplish.
But the actual decision-making process that goes into buying one can be difficult.
• Does a company finance the CNC machine or pay cash?
• Which model will be best for the company, both financially and in terms of production?
• Is it better to buy the machine or hire more employees? What about return on investment?
All of these questions are vital to analyze when diving into the world of CNC machines.
Duran’s former company purchased two CNC machines while he was an employee. After his former company bought the first CNC, they ended up letting go of 15 employees while still being able to handle the same amount of work they were already accomplishing.
When business picked up even further, the company decided purchasing another CNC machine was in order. His former company still kept the same amount of employees this time, but they also watched their production double. Duran went through the entire process with this company and says this proved to him the value of a CNC machine and how having them could make a business more successful.
“The main reason JD Woodcraft wanted to purchase a CNC is because we had a previous CNC background, and we were used to the production speed and the quality of the products,” says Duran. “As far as any specific jobs that pushed us towards buying the CNC, there were many due to the fact that 90% of our products are custom store fixtures, and so in order to compete with other businesses, we decided to purchase the CNC.”
Before the recent purchase, JD Woodcraft had also weighed whether to hire more employees or invest in more productive machines. They quickly found the machine to be much less costly than hiring more employees.
“Apples to apples, you can’t compete with the machine,” says Duran. “It does the work of nearly seven employees, and the machine takes less than an hour to do what would take an employee an entire day.” This has allowed JD Woodcraft to redistribute employees to other jobs in the shop and made the company more productive as a whole.
About the Author
Wade VonasekWade Vonasek is a freelance writer and editor, with nearly 10 years experience writing about the woodworking industry. He lives and works in Bristol, WI, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org