Production Cabinet Making
Early on in my cabinet making carrier of twenty seven years, I worked in a production plant. This is where I learned the 32 Millimeter manufacturing system for making cupboards. This is the key to mass producing kitchen, office or bathroom vanity cabinetry. In this type of atmosphere various small shops are set up inside of a huge building. Basically they were different specialized divisions in the manufacturing plant.
Inside the plant, once the office sales personnel and design team finished the working plans, they were sent into the shop.
All of the cabinet parts were cut by cabinet mill men. The mill/lumber cutting professionals would cut all of the parts needed for the cabinets, drawers and doors and place the items on carts. There were people who were only responsible for taking these cut parts and placing plastic laminate edges on them and also drilling the cabinet sides for adjustable shelf holes.
The drawer assembly department was responsible for drawer production. The team of people built those things all day long.
In another area of the cabinet production plant was the toe base assembly workman. You got it, all day they would build the cabinet box risers known as to-kick plates.
In one section there would be professional cabinet makers who were very good at assembling cabinets. So, that is what they did all day long.
An area was designated for plastic laminate experts. These men and women all day long would pull the cupboards from the conveyor line. They were received from the assembly department.
Once the boxes were covered with plastic laminate on all required areas, they were then placed back on the conveyor and sent down to the hardware department.
All o the production countertops were built and laminated in one section of the shop.
Inside of the cabinet hardware division were men and women who had a lot of experience in making the mass production process flow smoothly. These folks were responsible for putting all of the hinges, hinge plates and special items on the cupboards. They had to assemble all of the various parts for each cabinet and the job they belonged to and ensure that they were built correctly and stayed together. Once upgrades like, pull-out trash cans and spice racks were mounted in the cabinets, the hardware specialists would mount the drawer-faces and doors on the cabinetry. They were also responsible for wrapping the cupboards with protective materials prior to sending them to the shipping division.
The shipping depart would store the cupboards until they were ready to be sent our by local delivery vehicle or by way of semi-truck.
It was because I had the opportunity to float from one section to the next that I learned how to make cabinets by applying the 32 millimeter cabinet system. This is where all the respective cabinet parts all come together because of the precision set up of the system. All of the machines work on thirty two millimeter increments and can be set so that doors fit perfectly on cabinets once the machines are set correctly.
By working in this mass production cabinet making facility, I learned how to manufacture entire kitchens.