January 19, 2018, 11:01:38 PM

Author Topic: Child's desk  (Read 1896 times)

ag2

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Child's desk
« on: March 19, 2012, 04:32:04 PM »
I have design that is 100% unique and it's been in the family for 50 years.  The marketing potential for this product is certainly there.

To make this work, I need to find someone to draw this in auto cad (or whatever) for CNC work.  Then I need to find someone who can accommodate small orders.  Each desk will require a full 4x8 sheet of 5/8 inch plywood.  Of course, I hope to grow this to some volume orders.  If the price point can be kept reasonable, I think there's some real potential, but what I think doesn't really matter.

In order to avoid mistakes and fingerpointing, the woodshop must be able to program the CNC drawings.  These drawings/dimensions can vary based on the thickness of the wood.

How can I go about finding some wood working shops that might be interested (and have the time) in working on the development of this?
Let me clarify.  Development is simply doing the CNC drawing and cutting out a prototype.  I still have the original desk built by my grandfather in the 1950s.  I just need another one or several built for pictures, marketing, etc.  And of course, a woodshop interested and capable of producing should I land some orders.  (Marketing to daycares, moms, preschools, etc.)


Does anyone here run a wood shop?

I know Jack's ideal model is not to produce/manufacture, but it's what I've got in my head right now.  At this point, I'm only exploring the feasibility of this right now.  I don't want to dismiss this idea without asking all the right questions.  And I don't want to invest tons of time and money, unless it has potential.  (I think this had more $ potential in the 1990's during a better ecomony. But this is a product that will last at least 50 years (think grandchildren).  Also, it requires no tools to assemble.)

Ultimately, I'd like a business model in which I can handle the orders and transactions, while a US-based shop does the manufacturing and shipping of the product.  Of course, if there's a better model, I'm open to feedback.

Pirate96

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2012, 07:40:57 PM »
Certainly do not have access to a CNC woodshop, but we still turn out nice stuff. Would be interested in learning more about it.

May not be able to sell the desk but why not the plans for it? A lot of people would buy the plans and that could be done via auto-subscription.

Scott

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2012, 08:09:44 PM »
You may want to check out large format printers or sign shops in your area too. They use many similar tools and create cad type files using drawing programs for the signs. The design programs can export .dxf file which are cad compatible.

it could be a starting point, not necessarily a large run supplier.
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ag2

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #3 on: March 19, 2012, 10:21:05 PM »
Very good ideas both of you.  I still need one or two made simply for the marketing, pictures, videos, etc.

Perhaps I should just build one by hand.  Make a jig, to make a template to make the part.  Time comsuming when you don't do it every day.

Pirate, do you have a site for your workshop?

SPayne

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2012, 09:31:20 AM »
I am very proficient in Autocad, but mainly work on a 2d scale. I am in construction so most of my autocad is floor plans for structured cabling installations. I have done some 3d drawings for home projects but have no experience with CNC machines or how they need to be laid out or drawn. I do know services that will draw your design into Autocad can be quite expensive, which is why we started doing our own shop and record drawings a long time ago.

I know some folks draw plans in programs like Visio and converted to cad drawings in programs like Canvas. If you are wanting to try and do this yourself there are free cad programs out there like BRL-CAD http://brlcad.org/ (3D) and Qcad (2D) that you can try to get it drawn in also.

Not sure how complex your design is, but if it's just plywood I don't see the need for a CNC machine. A few tools and you should be good to go. If nothing else just create the plan with instructions and sell a PDF version of it, follow your own plan and build one to verify you have not left anything out of the instructions and use that one to market it with or to sell as a precut version.

I built my own tv stand out of MDF board with a skill saw, cordless drill and 4' T square, clamping the square down to use as a guide for the skill saw using the drawing below. Used a handmade jig for the wooden dowel placement so there were no external screws visible and no tools required for assembly. 4 years of use and no problems so far either.

larger view - http://www.prepstead.com/uploads/Stand.png


ag2

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2012, 03:31:43 PM »
The drawings for all the parts were actually done in a CAD program of some sort.  I'm sure that they can be converted to the appropriate program.  My bro-in-law had one of his students do it as a little pet project.

Some of the joints are mortise and tenon.  These joint sizes will vary based on the thickness of the plywood used.  I think the best thickness will be 5/8", but I'm not the expert doing the construction.  (I will do some weight testing, but I'm sure it will be fine as I believe plywood is probably better/stronger today than 50 years ago.)

So, the basic drawings (rather I should say dimensions and shapes) are done in some sort of freeware.  But, my own common sense tells me that when this is loaded in a CNC machine, there should be some intelligence that tells the machine which pieces will be kept and which pieces will be discarded.  In my mind, this is a MUST in order for the CNC machine to cut the parts out and accurately account for the kerf (thickness) of the blade to produce exact dimensions.  So I say all that to say that, yes, some of the freeware out there might be good enough to produce shapes, but I would imagine that there's a little more info that gets loaded into the computer of a CNC computer.  But I do not know, I'm only guessing and hoping that someone can set me straight.

Regarding the pieces. 2D should suffice, although as an improvement, I'd like to dovetail the edges of four pieces.  I suppose this doesn't need to be reflected in the CNC drawings.

Pirate96

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2012, 09:49:50 PM »
Pirate, do you have a site for your workshop?
One of these days I am going to just do it for free for my friend. It's his shop and tools and I guess you could consider me the apprentice.

So far I have posted three of the projects we have done that came out of the shop.
http://wokokon.com/category/woodworking/
The Stickley table is very similar to your desk with the mortise and tenon. My friend is very skilled at woodworking and has been gifted an even better gift of ability to make templates to shorten the work cycle.

Jesse2004

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Re: Child's desk
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2012, 10:02:07 PM »
I've been off the forum for a while and just found this post, but wanted to make a suggestion.  Check out your local college / university and the surrounding area. 

I found a very cool place (http://nextfabstudio.com/about) that if I lived closer and wanted to do projects like yours, I would have joined in a heartbeat.  Very nice people run the shop, very supportive and encouraging for folks who want to do special projects like this.  Also, they offer classes and assistance with all the tools. 

For a very reasonable price, you can have access to crazy expensive gear - just as much as you need.
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