Marshall’s Custom Cabinetry does any kind of custom work, including high-end cabinets and millwork, and some furniture. They specialize in working closely with the customer to make sure the customer’s ideas become a reality, including on site work.
“Overall we do things well, and we get a lot of repeat customers, so (I believe) that says a lot about our product and what we’re putting out there,” says Brian Marshall , owner of the Ancaster, Ontario, company, says. “We’re really proud of our finishing, and we do our own custom finishing.”
After a recommendation from another local shop, Marshall bought an Axyz International 4008 CNC router.
The Axyz 4000 Series routers can process a 4 x 8 foot area (48 x 96 inches) and are capable of handling many tooling and application options. Marshall now uses the router for cutting everything from arched mouldings, inlays and mortises to tenon joints and furniture legs.
“Before we had the Axyz router we had a panel saw,” Marshall says. “We cut parts on the panel saw and it was very labor intensive. All the dadoes were done on the saw. I did the pin holes on a drill press. If you made a mistake, you had to do the whole part again. It cost us a lot in time.”
The new router speeded things up, and was more accurate. Marshall says that the company has had it for a year and a half, and he estimates it has doubled output, and reduced errors and pieces that needed to be redone.
The Ancaster shop space is only about 1,000 square feet on a main floor, with a 400-square foot showroom upstairs. Marshall says they sold their panel saw after the arrival of the CNC router. And, they barely use a table saw any more. “We don’t have a huge floor (space), so we have to utilize that space as much as we can,” he says.
“Basically the piece comes in, the parts are designed for the particular job so we put them on the Axyz, cut them all out, and then edgeband them. That’s basically the flow. “Everything is geared around the CNC now, that’s the thing that starts everything off.” The CNC router itself has been the biggest time saver.”
For software, Marshall says the company uses CAD, and 20-20. “We do all our kitchen and built-in designs on 20-20,” he says. “We design it for clients and sit down and meet with them, go through the design, and tweak it from there. They see what they’re getting, so it’s helpful that way. We can change things and get something they like.” (On Marshall Cabinetry’s web site the slogan is: “Making your ideas a reality.”)
Marshall also provides efficient manufacturing and installation since much of their product is made on the job site. The additional benefit of on-site manufacturing is that the product is correct every step of the way. The majority of their work is for homeowners, and built-ins have been a big part of their business. They do some commercial work, but this isn’t a large market.
The company is also using more green materials. “We’re using more of the low-formaldehyde products, more renewable products, and we’re trying to introduce waterborne finishes.
For the future, Marshall is considering a small automated finishing line, and maybe a new edgebander. “Something that would help me push things out a little faster,” he says.
First, though, he is looking for a larger location. It is just Marshall and one employee. He may add a third person, but is not anxious to grow too large.
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