Dave, Can you describe to me the major pieces of machinery you have in order to manufacture this unit?
I have a 13" planer, 6" jointer, 10" table saw, biscuit jointer, drill press, 1/2" Porter Cable router and table with 3 pc Freud raised panel bit set, 14" band saw, random orbital sanders, several bar clamps, and a few other things. Not high volume equipment but it gets the job done for now. If I ever do this for a living I would upgrade my table saw first and then look at other equipment. Its a part time job / hobby now, mainly for friends and family but I have been thinking of officially starting a business.
The reason I ask, is that I recently sold a large cabinet shop with all the familiar pieces of equip - sliding panel saw, overhead sander, jointers, planers, finishing booth, rip saw, etc. What I am trying to figure out is how I can still produce nice pieces or furniture and cabinets for myself or friends, but from a garage space. What do you do without an overhead sander, for flattening glued up panels, or face frames?
If the raised panels are 13" wide or less, I can plane to about 1/16" over and then glue up and then plane to thickness and sand with random orbital. If panels are over 13" wide, I have to plane to thickness and then glue up being very careful about flatness and alignment. Its not as exact of a flatness as with a wide sander but it can work well if your careful. If there is any ofsets after glue up I will use my portable 3" or 4" belt sander to blend. Same goes for face frames. I was using doll pins for face frames using a simple jig and portable drill or drill press but they are very difficult to get lined up. It is much easier to make face frames with my biscuit jointer and biscuits as they are somewhat forgiving during assembly and are plenty strong for the application.
Great looking entertainment center! You mentioned that if you had to do it again, that you would buy a different type of table saw. I'm just getting into woodworking, what brand, type, size, etc.. table saw would you recommend?
If I was to buy a new saw, it would have a 50" fence, about 3hp, maybe a sliding table and dust collection. My current saw is a 12 yr old 10" craftsman with a 24" fence. Its been a great saw but since I've been doing large cabinetry lately, its table / fence just isnt big enough to handle the large pieces you have to handle when making cabinets and cases. If your just getting into woodworking, you may want to start with a saw about the size of mine, but then I dont' know what you plan to build a lot of either.
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