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I own a small custom cabinet shop and we primarily build frame style cabinets, we do the occasional frameless for commercial applications, but 95% is residential frame cabinetry. We have just started to talk about the possibility of moving to cnc. The benefits a cnc brings to the frameless world are clear, but I am unsure if those same benefits apply for our work. Our cabinets are ganged together, its not unusual to have an 8 or 10 foot cab with 4 or 6 dividers that need machining on both sides. and both 1/2" and 3/4" ply is used in each job. My thought is a 5x12 machine where any panels that need work on the back side can be flipped and moved to the opposite end. I'm interested in any feedback from someone who builds a similar cab and uses cnc. All that said if we make the jump we would definitely try to take on more frameless work, but since I am in the northeast I can't envision moving away from frame cabs. And please at this point I'm not thinking at all about ROI
We do the same type of work and have had a 5x10 cnc for 8 years and I would never look back. I would say before cnc you need to know your software. This is critical. We use Cabinet Vision and have used it since 1995. We machine blind dado, all hardware and tongue on the face of the panels for the face frame. This causes two sided machining CV has 6th faced nesting which allows the panels to be cut on the back side then a reference cut then the panel is flipped and the face is cut. It is a great and fast system and you once you buy into it and learn you will love it. So get the software first learn it then move to cnc if you do it all at once it may be a bit much. If you have software already then purchase a machine that works well with the software and you will be very happy.
We cut parts on a Thermwood C-43 5X10. The Thermwood Control Nesting allows you to cut the back side of a sheet then flip the whole sheet and perform the front operations. This makes flip operations a breeze. The Thermwood will also place Assembly Marks on all your parts which makes assembly of a cabinet with multiple partitions easy to assemble. Just match the assembly marks on the two parts. All parts are labeled with color coding so sorting parts is as easy and fool proof. No need to look at cabinet numbers. A label is printed for your off fall which can be scanned for the next job and parts will be nested on this cutting down on waste. The eCabinet Systems software included with the Thermwood can design anything you can dream up.
Thank you to both of you, I am just now starting to explore and learn as much about cnc, the software, and the capability of both. I currently use kcd, and have for 10 years or so. And though it was very easy to learn and I do like it a lot, it does have some limitations, whether those limitations are enough to force me to plunk down many many thousands more to move to CV, time will tell. First things first, educate myself on these machines. I met with an Onsrude rep last week, over time I would like to sit down with others, thermwood is at the top along with biesse, holtzer, multicam etc etc. Since judging by the phone calls i have received since i first posted, other sales reps will be calling which I welcome. But be forewarned, my plan is to have a machine in the next 12-18 months, this is not an imminent plenty of time for me to learn as much as i can and make a decision that best suits my company