Well put, Robert. My Royce-Ayr rep drops off these cool catalogues
with all kinds of industrial tooling devices. Some of the tools
designed for flooring companies are serious, and I mean serious money.
Those kind of customers don't buy tools because they are black and
green and are reviewed by toolophiles in niche-market magazines.
It happens often enough that the "I can do that" syndrome rears its
ugly little head, and little thought goes into the fact that a $ 30.00
Freud profile routerbit CAN make a similar edge like a $4500.00 head
on a 30 HP moulder/sticker.. it just won't make more than 50 feet of
I have seen a 12' foot slab of oak with a nice profile on one end of
the board and a major burn on the other end.
You can haul garbage with a SmartForTwo, just not very much of it.
Reminds me of an experience I had many years ago. I used to make custom
waterbeds. This was at a time when they were quite popular, so there was a
lot of different models available. There was this one model that had lots
of curved edges with some fancy moulding types profiles on all the edges.
And it all fit together with slots and became a giant planter, greenhouse
type of thing. You hung plants all over it.
I got a client who wanted me to duplicate that monster with some
modifications. I also happened to get a tour of the factory that made these
things. What an eye opening, sobering experience that was for me.
They had all these machines that did a single function. You needed a big
slot, this machine did it. They used numerous machine to make this one bed.
Each machine cost from $21,000 to $45,000. And this was over 35 years ago!
So those were pretty cheap prices compared to now.
They literally walked around and fed their big 2 X 12 stock to these
machines. They could manufacture the whole bed in less than an hour. And
most of that time was carring the board around to the various machines. I
figured it would take me at least three weeks, busting my ass from morning
till night, to duplicate this task. And that was an optimistic estimate.
So you had a well financed and equipped factory dedicated to making one
model of this bed. And then you had my very modest basement shop. I
quickly decided that I would find something that I could do well and leave
the big fancy stuff to the factories.
And if I worked for minimum wage, that bed would have costed at least three
times what they were selling for. Needless to say, that deal did not