Based in central Dorset, TK Joinery (Blandford), founded in 1996 by Chris Owen, specialises in the manufacture of high quality bespoke joinery products including windows, doors, staircases, gates and conservatories.
Since that time, the company has built up an excellent reputation for its craftsmanship and can-do attitude for even the most specialist projects. In order to maintain a high level of quality and flexibility, Chris recognised that he would need to invest in some of the latest manufacturing technology to ensure the company maintains its position as one of the area’s leading joinery manufacturers.
To this end, Chris set out to investigate the various different types of machines available, from stand-alone through to fully-automatic window lines and CNC machining centres. However, after reviewing everything that was available, he concluded that the best solution to provide TK with the maximum flexibility and versatility would be to have individual, quick-setting, programmable machines.
After further research, he identified three different machines that he felt would be key to his plans. These included a Centauro BETA CNC mortiser, Martin T27 Flex fully-programmable tilting spindle moulder and a Saomad Evolution fully-programmable single-end tenoner.
After arranging site demonstrations to see them in operation, Chris was even more convinced this was the right route to follow, and so, he decided to go ahead and purchase all three machines.
The Centauro BETA mortiser is a horizontal, oscillating, swing chisel mortiser, equipped with an additional independent, programmable hollow chisel head that can be used for small glazing bar mortises.
It is fully programmable in three axes and is quickly and easily programmed through a graphic, colour, touch-screen control unit. The advantages of this machine include fully-automatic operation, high level of repeat machining accuracy and eliminating the need for manual marking out.
The Saomad Evolution is a heavy duty single-end tenoner with a classical UK specification of cut-off saw, top and bottom tenon head and vertical scribe shaft. All the main head settings are motorised and programmable through the Siemens Sematic touchpad control unit. Specific job programs can be created and memorised under a customer name or job number and by a press of a single button all machining heads move simultaneously to the pre-programmed positions, thus eliminating time consuming manual setting.
Last, but by no means least, the top of the range Martin T27 Flex tilting spindle (±46°) incorporates the latest graphic colour TFT touch-screen control unit with intuitive software to aid quick and precise set-ups along with the memorisation of tool lists.
This machine was also equipped with quick-change HSK spindles, fully-motorised fence/spindle positioning, set and memorised through the program, and also the comfort arm feeding system with motorised rise/fall with feed unit height, again set through the program.
All the machines have now been installed several months and Chris comments: “They really have transformed the workshop and all the lads enjoy using them. Previously all my machines were manual setting and while they did a good job, they just weren't quick enough to set up, especially given the increasing amount of bespoke joinery work we're getting in.
“With the introduction of the new machines, which are so easy to set up and program, I can now change from making, say, a sash window, to a storm casement in just a couple of minutes. In addition, I am achieving an excellent level of quality and repeat machining that I was unable to achieve on my original manual machines.”
The full range of Martin programmable spindle moulders, together with the Saomad Evolution tenoner and Centauro BETA CNC mortiser will be set up and on full demonstration at JJ Smith's in-house show on the 13, 14 and 15th of November.
Tel 0151 548 9000