Quality Custom Cabinetry Inc. (QCCI) didn’t cannonball into the world of automation. The shop was discerning, dipping its toes into the water one by one before making the final plunge. The cabinet shop opted to improve raw material yield by first automating its double miter saw in the early 1990s. Today, the shop is fully outfitted with material positioners, optimizing software, Cut List software, and a plethora of machines to reduce the deadly wastes evident in lean manufacturing. Investing in machinery and companies that have been able to grow with its operation has proven invaluable for QCCI. Learn how you too can begin automating your cabinetry shop with precise manufacturing.
Quality is a byword for large custom cabinetmaker Quality Custom Cabinetry Inc. Based in New Holland, PA, QCCI has made a name for itself producing “furniture-like” cabinets with a luxurious look and feel.
Known for its craftsmanship, QCCI has grown significantly since Martin Weaver founded the cabinet firm in 1968. Today, 118 employees work at the 126,000-square-foot facility, producing high-end cabinetry for every room in the home.
QCCI uses a combination of technology and old-world craftsmanship in the production process while creating a diverse range of cabinetry styles, including traditional, transitional, and even historically correct period pieces. A sustainable manufacturer, the company’s products are certified under the KCMA’s Environmental Stewardship Program.
“The thing that sets QCCI apart is that we truly are a custom manufacturer, making anything our dealers and designers dream,” says John Fischer, QCCI door assembly supervisor. “We work closely with our suppliers to have the finest raw materials to make our cabinetry from nearly any species of wood.”
QCCI’s ability to optimize raw material usage and increase efficiency with precise manufacturing has been the key to their productivity and profitability. Aiding QCCI in this endeavor has been the longtime use of TigerStop equipment in the plant.
QCCI purchased its first TigerStop in 1994 after seeing it at a woodworking show. Once installed on an Omega double miter saw, “We immediately saw improved accuracy in our cutting and an increase in production,” Fischer says.
The company now has eight TigerStops in use in the facility. “Since all parts for the door and moulding are cut using a TigerStop, all pieces are exact. When making a multi-panel wainscot with center stile and rails, all parts must be exact for a proper fit.” Also, Fischer adds, “By being accurate we have less rework, which leads to less waste.”
“Now our cut lists are computer generated thanks to TigerStop’s Cut List Downloading software,” he continues. “When we are done cutting, only a minimal amount of small length material is left.”
Three of the TigerStop’s are programmed to interface for linear positioning and cutting of inset moulding which allows for the precise setting of the gauge requirements, positioning of the wood, and cutting, all in one sequence. “The time it takes us to apply moulding to the doors or fit to an interior opening has been cut in half,” Fischer.
“We also use the TigerStop with the ProPanel to fit mullions in our mullion doors to ensure a tight fit,” Fischer said. “Other areas in our shop that use the TigerStop include our Front Department for making face frames.”
“Using the exact measurements in the shop, to a thousandth of an inch versus 1/16th of an inch with a tape measure, makes the overall cabinet much more accurate,” he continues. “It also allows spacing for door openings to be tighter, minimizing rework.”
Along with TigerStop, the machinery in QCCI’s shop includes a Busellato CNC router, Holz-Her edgebander, Kundig and Timesavers sanders, a Voorwood shape/sand machine, Unique stile and rail machines, and a Martin sliding table saw.
QCCI sells its cabinetry through more than 100 dealers in the continental United States and even one in Bermuda. “TigerStop has been a key component in our efficiency, and in helping us create the most beautiful homes in the world,” Fischer adds.