Warren Evans love making beds and they love making customers happy. On the company’s Facebook page it states, “We aim to make and deliver high quality, beautiful and comfortable beds and mattresses - always with the environment and customer in mind.”
The award-winning organisation was set up by Warren Evans in 1979 who, at just 17 years old, borrowed £200 form his sister to start the handcrafted bed business in his Clerkenwell workshop. For the last 35 years, the company has created beautiful wooden beds from FSC-certified wood and now manufactures matching bedroom furniture as well.
True to its roots, every single one of its beds is handmade in its ethical workshop in London. There, craftsmen marry cutting-edge production techniques with traditional joints to make beds and furniture that are built to last.
Quality with a fast, reliable service
“When our customers make a decision to buy a new bed we know they want it as quickly as possible,” explains Jed Pattinson, general and new product development director at Warren Evans. He continues: “That’s why we’ve invested in cutting edge woodworking machinery from Weeke.
“It enables our team to quickly and consistently manufacture first class quality products and deliver them to customers within days. More importantly, because there are no middle men involved, we can offer them great prices.
“But it’s not just beds we are passionate about; at Warren Evans we care about the world around us. In 2006 we launched the ‘Big Bed Campaign’, helping re-housed Big Issue vendors by giving them a bed and mattress. We also support Shelter and Trees for Cities amongst other local charities.
“As a result, we’ve won a host of awards, including the Sunday Times Best Green Company Award four years in a row. So it is vital for us that any machinery we invest in is also very efficient and eco-friendly.”
Partnering with the best
“When we first decided to invest in CNC nesting machines we had no idea which machine we wanted, but we were very clear that we needed to increase our just-in-time manufacturing capabilities and improve our efficiency.
“We felt the investment would open up opportunities to create some beautifully-engineered pieces of furniture with the kind of precision computer controlled equipment brings. We believed it would also enable us to continue to give our customers great products that last.
“After thorough market research, a visit to Homag UK’s Castle Donington showroom and seeing the machines in action at a Homag customer site, what swayed it for me was the Weeke machines are very robust.
“To put it simply, German engineering is the finest in the world and that’s why we opted to invest in the Weeke Vantage 43M and 200M machines. Since then, we have established a good working relationship with Homag UK; all the staff members are enthusiastic, reliable and knowledgeable. Following the initial purchase, we have made further investments and now have three of each of the Weeke machines.”
Weeke Vantage nesting CNCs
The Weeke nesting CNCs are powerful processing centres. The Vantage 200M is the fastest and heaviest machine in its class. Weighing in at over 16,000lbs and with processing speeds of 130 m/min, it is an industrial CNC gantry-style processing centre.
Designed for the highest precision over the total working width, the entire working field is reachable with all processing tools, so you can nest parts utilising the full panel size.
Depending on your manufacturing needs, the Vantage 200 is available in various table sizes from 5 x10 to 7x14. The flexible matrix table system includes a powerful multifunctional clamping system for part hold down. It also offers many additional enhancements such as automatic labelling and off-loading.
Packed with features, the Vantage 43M is a nested based router with 4ft x 10ft aluminium matrix flat table. It has two eight position tool changers and a moving gantry supported at the front and back to ensure optimum precision when drilling, grooving or routing.
With a potent vacuum clamping system, 18 high-speed drilling spindles (12 vertical and six horizontal), a high-speed grooving saw and a 9kW HSK routing spindle it is a compact powerhouse. Both the 43M and the 200M are controlled using the market-leading woodWOP software, a simple to use and truly versatile software package
Handmade, just-in-time manufacturing
“Using nesting machines was new to us,” continues Jed Pattinson, “but it has not taken away from our method of handmade just-in-time manufacturing. We still use, and will continue to use, traditional mortise and tenon joints on all our beds. It is the traditional way of manufacturing and remains at the heart of what we do.
“From a manufacturing point, the machines are very easy to use. Of course, like any machinery there is always a learning curve that you have to work through if you want to get the absolute best from the machines. From our point of view, however, it was well worth the effort because what we can make now is far better than we could have imagined.
“With this type of machinery, if you approach it in the right way, the sky really is the limit. You have to start with a blank canvas and apply outside the box thinking and then it is amazing what can be accomplished. In the long run, the machines have achieved far more than we expected thanks to the hard work our team has put into getting the best out of the equipment.
“We also invested quite heavily in training to make sure all our staff in the nesting department understood the opportunities the Weeke CNCs would bring to our manufacturing processes.”
A fruitful and fulfilling investment
“The machinery we purchased from Homag UK has paid for itself rather quickly and surpassed our expectations in terms of opening up our capabilities, managing our work flow and maximising our yields. So it’s become a very fruitful and fulfilling investment for us.
“Our products speak for themselves. They are well-made, built to last and, best of all, offer great value that we pass on to our customers. All our furniture comes with a 100% ten year no quibbles guarantee – we couldn’t offer that if our woodworking machinery didn’t consistently produce precision made parts with first class quality,” concludes Jed Pattinson.
For more information or a demonstration of Homag Group machinery including the Weeke Vantage range of nesting machines, contact Adele Dixon on 01332 856424.