I strive to make one-of-a-kind, unique pieces for clients. But in the near future I will tackle something new; as a result, I must learn how to approach an assembly line mind set.
I will be making multiples of the same item — seven jewelry boxes, for seven granddaughters. I have reached that point. It is now, or never. I have the wood (gorgeous curly maple), the tools, and the desire to change my ways. Most importantly, I feel it is imperative I make these now. It’s now or never… (wonderful song!)
It will be a brand-new way of thinking for me. Planning will be rigorous; making setups to get all the machining done is easy. But the assembly-line arrangement requires cutting multiple of each side, each bottom, each groove, each top panel, etc. And making extra(s) will require careful thinking, lest one box ends up orphan of a needed component.
I cannot remember one single instance of making more than one item with one form. I have always made adjustments from the original design, when construction called for a change. But identical boxes, identical shapes, even if they use different woods or wood combinations? I have never attempted this.
No pun intended – I have plans. I bought the plans, and later learned I had the magazine that showed construction of the box, and all the joinery details. I may make some modifications to the box, which may result in a different look. But that is something I always do – I always tinker with a design, until I am happy with the look, the form. Except in this case I may bypass this step, as this is the box I want to make. Maybe it is time to reach a final decision, and just do it.
What do you normally do? Do you ever make more than one of the same? Do you follow a plan rigidly, or do you change something along the way? Or do you make the changes in the design stage?
— Al Navas