tables. A little more than 23 percent do banks and financial institutions. Some 23 percent of shops do store fixtures, and just 21. 8
percent do restaurant and hospitality fixtures.
Institutional work includes 34 percent who do medical offices and hospitals. More than 24 percent do work in schools.
Only 14. 2 percent work on government and military projects.
How is it made?
For cabinet shops in the survey, box construction is evenly
divided between frameless and faceframe with a slight edge
for frameless construction. However, more than half of the
respondents also reported doing inset door construction.
Regardless of the style of construction, the preferred
method of putting the boxes together is blind dadoes with
32. 7 percent of shops saying they use that method. Pocket
screws are the second most popular construction method,
coming in at 25. 5 percent. Dowels ( 17. 6 percent) and Confirmat screws ( 10. 3 percent) came in third and fourth place.
Nearly 14 percent said they use some other method such as
nails, screws, biscuits, or staples.
Automation a factor
About two-thirds of survey respondents use CNC manufacturing in their businesses. About 50 percent say they have been
using CNC for more than two years, and about 6 percent say
they have been using CNC manufacturing for less than two
years. More than 8 percent say they are looking to upgrade
their existing CNC equipment.
While about a third of survey respondents are not using
CNC, more than 9 percent say they are considering automating. If they need any encouraging, they have only to look at
survey responses on how CNC has affected shops. More than
72 percent say CNC manufacturing has added significant
capacity to their operations. About 22 percent report CNC
adding a little to their capacity.
On the financial side, more than 56 percent report they
are much more profitable after adding CNC. Some 38 percent say they are a little more profitable. No one reported
lower profits or regrets for adopting CNC manufacturing.
Panels and finishes
When it comes to the sheet goods shops use, domestic ply wood
is the prime choice of survey respondents. Some 82 percent
say they use plywood, and nearly 92 percent say they buy their
plywood from domestic suppliers. Melamine is the number two
choice, with about 33 percent of shops reporting they use it.
Some 23 percent say they use MDF for their raw material.
While 92 percent say they buy panel products from domestic suppliers and only 8 percent say they buy imported, a quirk
in the survey may be skewing that result. One respondent
noted they buy from both domestic and imported sources,
but they could not report that mix accurately in the survey.
On finishing, the survey follows national trends reported
elsewhere on the rise of paint. More than 72 percent say they
use paint to finish their cabinets. In contrast, less than 56
percent said they use stain finishes. A small but significant
number, 16 percent, say they are selling unfinished cabinets.
Business is good
For the shops in the survey, clearly business is doing well. Some
60 percent report their 2018 sales are better than the business
they did in 2017. Less than a third ( 30 percent) said that business this year is about the same as it was last year. Only about
10 percent reported a decline in business this year.
The biggest segment in the survey ( 40 percent) reported
annual sales in the $1 million to $5 million range. Some 33
percent reported sales in the range of $250,000 to $1 million.
Nearly 5 percent reported sales of more than $10 million.
How did your 2018 YTD
sales compare to 2017?