Hardwood Timber Specialist invests in Striebig
A leading hardwood timber stockist has increased sawing efficiency and attracted extra business by upgrading to a Striebig Compact vertical panel model.
S.L. Hardwoods, of Croydon, claims to be the largest quality hardwood supplier in South London, with a customer base ranging from hobbyists to designers and small builders across the UK.
It stocks an extensive range of turning and carving blanks in a wide variety of exotic species, as well as sheet material that includes specialist veneered panels. Because of its concern for the environment, it only buys timber from properly managed and sustainable resources.
Unlike most other specialist hardwood timber merchants it also has a joinery that produces purpose-made items such as windows and doors for the building trade.
The Striebig Compact 5207, with a cutting size of 4600 x 2070mm and a cutting depth of 60mm, is used chiefly to size sheet material required for customers and for use in the joinery.
Another task in which the versatile vertical panel saw excels is straightening log sawn lengths of timber board. It even cuts 650mm wide x 50mm thick hardwood kitchen worktops to size, without them having to be moved once they have been placed on the saw’s frame.
The Compact replaced a 15-year-old saw that had accuracy problems plus a heavy beam, which meant that sizing was increasingly taking far longer than necessary.
It features central support and small parts support over the entire length of the saw, making the cutting of small work pieces much easier. It was supplied and installed by T.M. Machinery Sales of Leicester, Striebig’s exclusive UK dealer.
The business’s owner, John Smith, said: “We needed a robust saw that would stand up to daily trade use. I looked closely at four different manufacturers and opted for the Striebig because of its build quality, accuracy, speed of set-up and ease of use.”
Another point in its favour was the highly efficiency integral extraction which meets all EU regulations with dust levels kept to a minimum.
“We are very pleased with it,” said Mr Smith. “It’s around 30 per cent quicker than using the old saw and gives us a clean, crisp and accurate cut every time. We often had to double cut before to get things right.”
Experienced wood machinist Raj Patel is the saw’s operator. As he used the old saw he is well qualified to point out the benefits provided by the Striebig.
“It’s a dream to use. Before, panels were coming off which were not 100% square, which was a problem. The Striebig is also much quicker as there’s no marking out needed anymore.”
He also likes the way you can switch from the standard blade to a scribing blade in seconds, when cutting veneered panels. “All you have to do is push a lever. It used to be a ten minute job to change blades, and the joiners often had to fill in with wax because of the breakout caused.”
The arrival of the saw has prompted the business to go out and actively promote the benefits of its cutting service, something it did not do before.
Mr Smith said: “Because we can now size panels more quickly it has allowed us to increase throughput, and customers don’t have to wait around so long for their orders.”
The forward-looking business is also taking full advantage of the latest advances in communications as well as in machinery.
A staggering 95% of new business now comes from its web site www.slhardwoods.co.uk which features a virtual shop. Local customers can also place their sizing orders by email and collect the material after it has come of the Striebig.
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