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View CWWoodworking's profile

Serious upgrades needed

by CWWoodworking
posted 10-05-2018 02:24 AM


25 replies so far

View JAAune's profile

JAAune

1864 posts in 2735 days


#1 posted 10-05-2018 02:49 AM

New equipment is nice but I find I get the most payback from the $50 upgrades that take half a day to complete. Yesterday I setup the cyclone and the shop vacs (connected to Dust Deputies) to be compatible with plastic bags. I also created dust shrouds for the stationary belt sanders to collect almost 100% of the dust. Now it’s much easier to clean up at the end of a workday.

A $20 stopwatch is a good tool.

What I’ve been doing lately is making a whole bunch of small upgrades that either eliminate certain tasks or cut the time to do them by at least 50%. Repeat over and over again and after a year, the payback is phenomenal.

That being said, given the type of work you do, it might not hurt to investigate the Minimax sliding table saws. I picked up an older model for $500 on Ebay and it makes a lot of difficult tasks easy. It did take some getting used to at first.

-- See my work at http://remmertstudios.com and http://altaredesign.com

View Woodknack's profile

Woodknack

12842 posts in 2798 days


#2 posted 10-05-2018 03:42 AM

How good is business? The Grizzly is a good saw and a big upgrade but is not going to drastically improve efficiency. If this is business I want more than ‘better’, I want ‘better & faster’.

-- Rick M, http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#3 posted 10-05-2018 10:44 AM



How good is business? The Grizzly is a good saw and a big upgrade but is not going to drastically improve efficiency. If this is business I want more than better , I want better & faster .

- Woodknack

This is the reason I really want the sander. Currently that is my biggest problem. RO everything sucks. The furniture is the fastest growing area too.

But there are some added costs with install with the sander. On top of being the most expensive.

View splintergroup's profile

splintergroup

2728 posts in 1640 days


#4 posted 10-05-2018 02:13 PM

Sanders are expensive, but in my opinion it is one of the biggest time savers there is. You won’t eliminate the RO, not even close (unless you opt for an expensive oscillating drum model), but the ability to get perfectly flat surfaces and perfect dimensions is what sold me. Be aware you will need to pay for the sander support systems as well (dust collection, floor space, supplies, etc.).

A table saw will make many things easier, but not really let you do more than you can’t already do. Keep your eyes open for a good used TS to save some cash.

Spraying is a great time saver, invest in a good setup and a food place to spray. If your projects are small, a smaller gun will make everything easier.

View GoingUp's profile

GoingUp

37 posts in 665 days


#5 posted 10-05-2018 02:53 PM


3. Drum sander. This is on the upper end(over) what I was wanting to spend. Right now I am taking all my panels to my wood supplier who sands them for me, no charge. This is a luxury and a hassle at the same time.

My day job is at a small business surveying equipment and producing reports and efficiency is everything. How much time do you lose going to your wood supplier? Will he do this for free indefinitely? This seems like the obvious choice to me to avoid relying on the good will and work capabilities of others.

On the other hand, I don’t know your business. Maybe the sprayer would be the way to go, if it truly saves you time, but I don’t know how one sprayer would save considerable amounts of time over another (I’m not familiar with spraying, might be missing something). Like has been said before, take that money you have saved and pay yourself the half day to make things more efficient around the shop so your life is less stressful and more productive each day.

View PPK's profile

PPK

1433 posts in 1228 days


#6 posted 10-05-2018 03:35 PM

Heck yeah! It I was you, first priority would definitely be a good table saw. I’m very happy with my Grizzly, I’ve got the G0691 model. Drum sanders do indeed speed things up, but don’t eliminate RO sanding. My experience with drum sanders is that you have to pay a fair amount of money, else they are a royal pain. Even then, keeping sand paper from tearing up/burning is a chore…

I also agree w/ the others: Think about efficiency. Whatever will help you to spend less time. Don’t know what that means exactly for you.

-- Pete

View BroncoBrian's profile

BroncoBrian

875 posts in 2377 days


#7 posted 10-05-2018 04:00 PM

Sounds to me like a great condition Unisaw or SawStop would be wise. 3HP, extension, and a good Dado set you are comfortable with and can change out easily. I can change the Dado on my saw in 3-5 minutes with a couple of adjustments. That will be easier once I get 2 or 3 standard thicknesses and stick with them.

The Grizz you mentioned looks like a great value. But I know how nice the SS is and if it was using any saw as much as you expect to, I would not hesitate to get the safer option. You won’t buy another saw for a very long time, if ever.

I too want a drum sander. That would save me a lot of time and allow me to standardize some processes.

Have you built a really good crosscut sled? That is a huge time saver and increases accuracy.

-- A severed foot is the ultimate stocking stuffer.

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#8 posted 10-05-2018 04:35 PM


How much time do you lose going to your wood supplier? Will he do this for free indefinitely? This seems like the obvious choice to me to avoid relying on the good will and work capabilities of others.

- GoingUp

Its not that far, but the bigger problem is they do it on their schedule. Which pretty much never lines up with my production. Having it in house would make production much easier.

New spray equipment would not save any time. Just material.


Sounds to me like a great condition Unisaw or SawStop would be wise. 3HP, extension, and a good Dado set you are comfortable with and can change out easily. I can change the Dado on my saw in 3-5 minutes with a couple of adjustments. That will be easier once I get 2 or 3 standard thicknesses and stick with them.

The Grizz you mentioned looks like a great value. But I know how nice the SS is and if it was using any saw as much as you expect to, I would not hesitate to get the safer option. You won t buy another saw for a very long time, if ever.

I too want a drum sander. That would save me a lot of time and allow me to standardize some processes.

Have you built a really good crosscut sled? That is a huge time saver and increases accuracy.

- BroncoBrian

I only use my table saw for ripping. nothing else. That is why I thought the grizzly would work perfect for the price. I have a vertical panel saw also, so no sled needed.

What scares me is I get the sander, and 3 months down the road my TS goes out. My hardwoods bill this month is $1800 so you can image what kind of strain all that ripping is on a contractor saw.

View BroncoBrian's profile

BroncoBrian

875 posts in 2377 days


#9 posted 10-05-2018 05:43 PM

I have a vertical panel saw also, so no sled needed.

A crosscut sled is not the same as a vertical panel saw. It is for repeat cuts, usually 16” or less, and with near perfect precision. I thought a panel saw was a rough cutting tool.

The Grizz would be great as an upgrade. I understood the volume you are working with and the use on the saw, that is why I suggested a better or safer tool.

Either way, good luck! sounds like you are making something out of your hobby. I am happy for you.

-- A severed foot is the ultimate stocking stuffer.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

874 posts in 3740 days


#10 posted 10-05-2018 06:17 PM

A business requires an entirely different view than a hobby shop when upgrading, as a hobbyist all I have to do to justify a $5K bandsaw is want it for a business anything not making money is costing money.

Frankly, if you are only ripping then you should be looking at straight line rip saws which are safer and more efficient than a table saw.

You should be considering skipping the drum sander and moving to a widebelt again for efficiency. You may also want to look at the ROS you are using, there may be some efficiency and quality to be had there with higher end ROS like Mirka and Surfprep.

A Fuji or Apollo HVLP system with PPS may save time both in prep/cleaning time and finish sanding depending on what you shoot.

In general, the key is to identify the least efficient operation and work on that first, this is assuming that the quality of the finished product is where you want it.

Capital investments are always a risk but without them rewards will die off. That said you also need to have a reserve of cash or quick/easy credit to cover unforeseen issues like your most expensive piece of equipment dying.

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

3214 posts in 2675 days


#11 posted 10-05-2018 09:54 PM

The low-cost producer will be the successful one in the long term. Look at your cost structure and determine where your greatest opportunity lies, most likely that will be labor, aka your time. Which operations require the most of your time? What can you do to significantly increase your efficiency in those tasks? Put your money toward those items which offer the highest/fastest payback. These items might not require any new machinery, e.g. it might be a process change. As an example, would your stock supplier deliver to you rather than you picking it up? I hope these random thoughts help.

-- Art

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#12 posted 10-05-2018 11:12 PM

Thanks guys.

Brian-I have a slider chop saw station for small stuff, bigger stuff goes to panel saw. It’s pretty accurate. Not knocking sleds. I had one before the vertical. If money were no object, I would have a saw stop already. One of my suppliers carries them. I drool on them when I’m there.

I think I’m just gonna keep saving and get the sander when I’m more comfortable with the money. I work in 2 week schedules and this past one was a doozy(60 end tables just to start). So it’s natural to look for quicker options. I have a lighter schedule coming up and will re-evaluate after.

View Jared_S's profile

Jared_S

206 posts in 377 days


#13 posted 10-06-2018 12:38 AM

I’d be looking for a used good condition widebelt, SLR and some way to prep Stock for glueups (shaper/feeder, 4/5 head moulder/s4s moulder) whatever was cheap enough and you could power up.

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#14 posted 10-06-2018 12:50 AM



I d be looking for a used good condition widebelt, SLR and some way to prep Stock for glueups (shaper/feeder, 4/5 head moulder/s4s moulder) whatever was cheap enough and you could power up.

- Jared_S

Wide belt would be my first choice, without all the issues that come with it. In my area, I could probably find one, but it will be 3 phase. And I know this makes me look like an idiot, but I know nothing about machinery. So working on used stuff is just not my thing. Not that I couldn’t learn, but I just don’t have the time to tune old machinery. Not to mention a reasonable used wide belt is almost 3x the drum sander I’m looking at.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

874 posts in 3740 days


#15 posted 10-06-2018 01:51 AM


I d be looking for a used good condition widebelt, SLR and some way to prep Stock for glueups (shaper/feeder, 4/5 head moulder/s4s moulder) whatever was cheap enough and you could power up.

- Jared_S

Wide belt would be my first choice, without all the issues that come with it. In my area, I could probably find one, but it will be 3 phase. And I know this makes me look like an idiot, but I know nothing about machinery. So working on used stuff is just not my thing. Not that I couldn’t learn, but I just don’t have the time to tune old machinery. Not to mention a reasonable used wide belt is almost 3x the drum sander I’m looking at.

- CWWoodworking

You are really going to have to rethink the not wanting to work on machines. If you plan to continue doing this to put food on the table you are going to have to become a machine adjustment and repair person it is just part of the job.

If you want to grow the business you really should be considering how to power 3ph machines. The type of machines you need for efficient production work tend to be 3ph.

In a business environment, it isn’t what the machines cost it is how much they will make/save you. You have to decide if building a better hobby shop or developing a production shop is what you want. Things like giving up on a TS and embracing a SLR when the latter is going to make you more efficient and more profitable when upgrading the former is only going to give you a shiny new toy. Hopefully, you are at least looking at a Woodmaster drum sander but even though they are the best they are painfully slow compared to a widebelt.

In the end find the biggest bottleneck in your full process and attack there but don’t do half measures make sure that bottleneck opens enough that it is unlikely to have to be upgraded until everything else has been upgraded as well.

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#16 posted 10-06-2018 02:06 AM

Ahuxley-when I say I know nothing, that’s what it means. So if I were to go out and look for a SLR, I would ask about hp and phase and that would be it. I honestly couldn’t name you one other feature. If I bought a new machine, I could figure it out. If I bought a 20 yr old saw with no manual and not much support, I’m in trouble.

View WoodenDreams's profile

WoodenDreams

619 posts in 329 days


#17 posted 10-06-2018 07:28 AM

A Grizzly sales rep told me a year ago the G1023 was a favorite for high school shop classes. It’s nicer than the G0771Z that I have……. For a drum sander I like the Supermax 19-38. Rockler has several brands available, in both belt and drum sanders…. I still rub on the stain & brush 4 coats of poly. For a mass production I can see wanting a good sprayer.

View MrRon's profile (online now)

MrRon

5567 posts in 3662 days


#18 posted 10-06-2018 02:25 PM

How good is your dust collection? A production shop creates lots of sawdust. That, I think would be your first priority. A SS would probably be my next priority. Again a production shop is prone to accidents and an accident could shut you down. If you ever decide to get a SS, stock up with cartridges; you don’t want to be down while waiting for a new cartridge to arrive. I’m not a big fan of SS, but in a production environment, it makes a lot of sense.

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

874 posts in 3740 days


#19 posted 10-07-2018 12:17 AM


A SS would probably be my next priority. Again a production shop is prone to accidents and an accident could shut you down.

- MrRon

I’m curious since he says he only rips on the table saw why a Sawstop (or any TS) instead of a SLR. The SLR will be at least as safe and far quicker running lots of rips as well as reducing fatigue all hallmarks of production.

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#20 posted 10-11-2018 03:05 AM

Gonna take a risk and order the sander tomorrow. Gonna be a Woodmaster 24”. This is even above the grizz I was looking at. Meh, screw it, banks make money everyday. At least my elbow won’t hurt as much.

I estimated ROI at about a year with time saved. Pretty solid investment

I will post a review after I get it

View AHuxley's profile

AHuxley

874 posts in 3740 days


#21 posted 10-11-2018 02:18 PM



Gonna take a risk and order the sander tomorrow. Gonna be a Woodmaster 24”.

The Woodmaster drum sanders are without a doubt the best of the breed. I have had their double drum 50” for over a decade and they just work and American made as well.

View AZWoody's profile (online now)

AZWoody

1452 posts in 1642 days


#22 posted 10-11-2018 02:24 PM


Gonna take a risk and order the sander tomorrow. Gonna be a Woodmaster 24”.

The Woodmaster drum sanders are without a doubt the best of the breed. I have had their double drum 50” for over a decade and they just work and American made as well.

- AHuxley

I’m a Woodmaster fan as well and sorry I’m late to this but one thing I’ve noticed with drum sanders,
if you already have a helical head planer and the wood is level and smooth, a drum sander will add more work sanding than if you just do it with an ROS from scratch. The drum sanders will leave lines that can sometimes be a lot of work to get rid of. If the wood is already level and smooth you don’t have to start at 60 or 80 grit. I start at 120 and many times, that’s all I do. The varnish is what makes the piece smooth and pretty. Depending on the wood, maybe I will go to 150 but that’s it.

A drum sander excels when you have to even out the surface and get rid of defects first before sanding.

I’m not sure it will do what you want. If you really want to really reduce the time for finish sanding, you need either a wide belt sander or stroke sander.

View ArtMann's profile

ArtMann

1396 posts in 1234 days


#23 posted 10-11-2018 02:27 PM

I know it is too late now because you committed to a sander but I would say nobody can answer the original question you asked without first knowing more about your products. For example, a 24 inch drum sander is adequate for the kind of stuff I build but I couldn’t say about your stuff?

View CWWoodworking's profile

CWWoodworking

528 posts in 597 days


#24 posted 10-12-2018 11:25 PM

Art, I make a lot of end, sofa, coffee and occasionally dining table. Although, this sander won’t be used for dining blanks.

I honestly think payback is gonna be 6 months. That’s how much I’m hand sanding+travel. Even figuring a year payback, I only have to save 1-2 hrs a week. Thats not much.

View Eric's profile

Eric

79 posts in 291 days


#25 posted 10-12-2018 11:57 PM

Interesting comments here. Gives me something to think about as I plan a future with my workshop. Looking to do this as a retirement, to supplement the income.

Good luck to you, and keep up the work.

-- Eric, Upstate South Carolina

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