Benchtop manufacturer gains strong
competitive edge from complete CDK Stone solution
A 3-day turnaround in kitchen bench production through a complete CDK Stone solution has given Tim Banks of Banks Benchtops a very strong competitive advantage in his Queensland market.
His business has grown rapidly, with three factories and 65 staff after just three-and-a-half years. Producing benchtops for an average of 85 kitchens a week, the company’s turnaround from measure to install is generally three days, compared to competitors’ five to eight days.
“That’s the biggest thing for us in our market,” Tim says. “The automation and speed of our system is a real competitive advantage. If we measure a benchtop at 8am, we could be cutting it at 11am.”
Banks Benchtops are located in Arundel, Archerfield and Brendale, and each factory is fitted with a full CDK Stone system comprising SeKON CAD/CAM software, LT-2D3D laser templator, bridge saw, CNC-milling machine and line polisher.
Fast onsite measurement with LT-2D3D laser templator
Speed of onsite measurement is delivered by the LT-2D3D laser templator. It helps with digital measurements including dimensions and edge profiles, adds photographs and notes, and makes drawings available instantly. Measurements are millimetre-perfect, angles wall-to-wall and recesses are captured accurately, and specifications can be recorded on the LT-2D3D tablet.
The LT-2D3D site measurement file is imported into SeKON software’s SeCAD drawing program, which converts measurements automatically into workpieces, cutouts, drill and tap holes and other drawing objects.
Next steps in the workflow are nesting and programming of the slab cutting machines, such as CNC-bridge saws and waterjets, followed by generating instructions for CNC-milling centres.
As the SeKON CAD/CAM system is an integrated system across all machinery, jobs are fully prepared and programmed in the office before the first cut is even done.
“The software talks to the different roles and machines we use, it saves time and prevents mistakes. It’s a really professional system, and if we opened more branches I would use it again,” Tim says.
As the SeKON system moves tasks from the factory floor to an automated office function, it reduces labour costs, removes repetitive work and improves scheduling.
It overcomes one of the biggest challenges faced by companies using traditional CNC-machine operations: the recruitment and remuneration of skilled operators.
SeKON CAD/CAM software means machine operations require less specialised knowledge and can be done by a broader staff base.
When setting up the business from scratch, Tim looked at two suppliers. After meeting CDK Stone representatives and inspecting a factory that had installed a CDK Stone system, he chose the company because he felt the software and support was superior.