Finishing as an Integral Part of Design

I want to address a dilemma that we all face as woodworkers. The primary material we work with is not homogenous. Okay, we all know that. Its variations include visual elements that are an essential part of its beauty. On the other hand, that same variation can result in what many people see as imperfections.

Read More

Closing the Information Gap

Last month we looked at two different approaches to furniture design and began to explore how custom and semi-custom shops can utilize recent developments in technology to improve efficiency in the design process. This month I’ll continue to explore how this technology can help these shops share design information more effectively. First, let’s look at

Read More

Experiences in Waterborne Finishing

I want to share some experiences I’ve had in adopting the use of waterborne finishes. Hopefully, some of my encounters will help those of you who consider exploring this most challenging aspect of green practices. About five years ago, I was working for an architectural woodworking company that had embarked on a campaign to become

Read More

Profitability in Finishing

How profitable is the finishing process in your business? Unless we analyze finishing as a process separate from the rest of a job, we may not know if we’re making money or losing money on the finishing itself. The profitability of finishing takes considerable effort to analyze accurately, especially if you do customized work, where

Read More

The Final Rub

We don’t see hand rubbed finishes very much nowadays. The trend has been to use a flattening agent to reduce the sheen. While these additives do effectively reduce the sheen, they also cloud the finish. In fact, most finish manufacturers recommend using a flattening agent only on the final coat since adding it to intermediate

Read More

Build ‘green’ with a new hardwood, Lyptus

While the growing trend for architects and builders to use a “green” product continues to rise, and consumers continue to demand more exotic wood species, Weyerhaeuser and Aracruz Produitos De Madeira, S.A., through a partnership, have developed a new hardwood species available in a full spectrum of industrial wood products, including lumber, plywood, veneer, back

Read More

Cost Considerations of LEED Projects

The cost premiums for woodworkers involved in LEED projects as opposed to non-LEED projects varies depending on several factors. On some LEED projects, costs for the woodworker may be relatively modest. Woodworkers may be asked to meet minimal LEED requirements, such as NAUF (no added urea formaldehyde) sheet materials.  Other factors that may impact material costs are

Read More

LEED Compliance

When we think of being green in the context of participating in a construction project, we immediately think of LEED. The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is the originator and developer of the LEED rating systems that have become the dominant rating systems for green building projects in this country. In order to make the

Read More

Waterborne finishes are coming of age

Many of us are still holding back on making waterborne finishing part of our repertoire. This is certainly understandable since waterborne finishing materials have acquired a bad reputation in past years. I resisted as strongly as anyone else when I first saw examples of waterborne finishes. But things have changed.   With the increased popularity of “going green,”

Read More

Going Green — A Blend of AG Materials and Technology

New technology has contributed to continued growth for one manufacturer. As consumers continue to demand more environmentally friendly products and have increased concerns about indoor air quality, manufacturers need to make sure that the products they produce meet these expectations. It’s universal, it’s global, and in some cases, it’s starting to be legislated by the

Read More