TORONTO – Two busloads of woodworkers, geared up for attending the 2011 Woodworking Machinery & Supply Expo, took part in a Technology Tour of area woodworking plants and showrooms organized by CNC Automation today.

The Wednesday tour afforded participants an opportunity to see firsthand, the inner workings of three well-equipped, yet distinctly different Toronto-area woodworking operations, including Olympic Kitchens, White Oak Custom Woodworking Ltd. and Bamco Custom Woodworking. The buses also made stops at Royce//Ayr’s cutting tool facility and Hettich Canada’s hardware showroom.

CNC Automation, Royce//Ayr and Hettich Canada are all exhibiting at WMS, which kicks off at 10 a.m. Thursday, October 27 at the Direct Energy Centre in downtown Toronto. Canada’s premier woodworking event continues through Saturday, October 29.

Olympic Kitchens operates out of 50,000-square-foot facility in Scarborough.  Founded by the Katsis brothers in 1973, Olympic Kitchens designs and manufactures custom wood kitchen and bath cabinets, plus home entertainment units and built-ins.

The company takes pride that it has continually invested in new equipment to allow it to handle virtually any kitchen renovation project, including producing all of its own wood components.

The facility also includes a 3,000-square-foot showroom that highlights Olympic’s capabilities, plus value-adds like hardware, appliances and countertops.

White Oak Custom Woodworking of Concord specializes in the manufacture of custom cabinet doors that are made to measure one kitchen at a time. In addition to white and red oak, the company produces doors using ash, birch, cherry, hickory/pecan, Honduras mahogany, hard maple, pine and walnut.

Guelph-based Bamco Custom Woodworking was awarded a $2.77 million loan from the Ontario government in October 2009 for implementing a “green” finishing system. The loan was made under the province’s Advanced Manufacturing Strategy (AMIS) program.

At the time of the loan announcement, an excited Bamco President Bill Van De Ven said, “We proposed a project to the Ontario government whereby we would bring in some very high-end finishing equipment from Italy to help us create a 100% water-based finishing system. This equipment that we bought is so advanced [the product] will come out with a glass or mirror finish without the hands-on buffing."

Royce//Ayr resulted from the 1997 merger of Royce Carbide Tools with Ayr Saw & Tool. The company's 40,000-square-foot facility in Cambridge is ISO 9001 certified, recognizing that the company has a quality system in place  throughout its entire operations, including product design, engineering, manufacturing, purchasing and shipping. Royce//Ayr's extensive product line includes: saw blades; insert, diamond and solid carbide router bits; carbide-tipped drill bits; cutterheads and knives. (See accompanying video of saw blade manufacturing at Royce//Ayr.)

CNC Automation Plant Tour Preludes WMSThe final stop of the tour was to Hettich Canada's showroom in Concord. Hettich, one of the better known European-based manufacturers of hardware, offers a wide assortment of hinges, slide, fittings and more for furniture, cabinetry, fixtures and other home and commercial wood products.

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