Expansion & new product lines


Derek Jones

Thursday, July 4, 2013

With the next few weekends taken up with shows and exhibitions running pretty much back to back, it’s about time the team and I started planning some time away from tools and projects to keep us fresh and revitalised for the long haul through the autumn issues. Industry-wise we’re hearing news of expansion and new product lines that will make the tail end of the year quite exciting, so there’s a lot to look forward to. What’s interesting is that the investment is across the board taking power tools, machinery and hand tools to a new level in some cases. This all adds up to a growing confidence not only in the crafts, but in the commercial world of furniture production where the concepts and ideas eventually filter through to the amateur.

The exchange of ideas between the two camps is by no means one way. Craft values are as popular now with batch production runs as they have been for decades, and it’s thanks to the work of the smaller workshops that motivate the commercial ones into producing something similar. Presumably in recognition of good old fashioned craft values even the most insensitive customer can appreciate some of the finer points of good cabinetwork. If imitation is the best form of flattery, then we should be mighty proud of doing such a great job. I’ve just spent the best part of a day doing the job that everyone in the workshop likes to avoid: sharpening and setting the knives on the planer thicknesser. This ought to take a couple of hours maximum but I decided to photograph the sequence from start to finish, which is a bit of a nightmare. Still, all done now and it’s running like a dream.