Editor's Note: This article has been excerpted from an earlier issue of Wood & Wood Products. To read the article in its entirety, click here.

Based in Ellensburg, WA, Wood Products Northwest is a full-service manufacturer of cabinetry, commercial casework, millwork, institutional furniture and countertops.

“Our business is set up in a way that we can quickly adjust and move into or out of different segments of our industry,” says Robert Hamlin, president/general manager. “We will stay with residential work and will hit it hard when it is going strong. And then if that slows, we can move heavier into different types of commercial work, which is still a large part of our business.”

Embracing New Technologies
Hamlin is a strong proponent of technology, including design and engineering software, and says it has made a positive impact on Wood Products Northwest. The company uses Cabinet Vision software from Planit.

Wood Products Northwest changed to nested-based manufacturing in 2000. “I’m a firm believer in nested-based,” Hamlin says. “I am sold on that technology now — the squareness of the part, the safety factor of it. It is nothing like training someone in the past to program parts or having to manually handle sheets and cut all parts on a saw, one piece at a time.

“Because we do run small batches and complex things, you can’t beat it for the routing ability to cut all large and small parts,” he adds. “You can mix easy parts and complex parts all on the same sheet and cut it, mix a curve in with a square, because we have true-shape nesting. Everything has gotten very advanced.”

The company uses a Biesse Rover B 7.4 CNC machining center for its nested-based operations. In addition, Wood Products Northwest’s shop includes a Biesse edgebander, Altendorf sliding table saw and Adwood boring machine.


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