CutList meets Shaker2go

CutList meets…

‘CutList meets’ is a friendly feature where we interview a craftsman or business to see what they are up to and how they like to do things. If you know a woodworker, you will know they love to share their knowledge and skills with like-minded people and when it comes to tools, we could talk all day! Today we feature the work of Shaker door manufacturers Shaker2go ltd from Ashford in Kent. If you use CutList for your panels, you may just find Shaker2go the perfect place to buy your door fronts for any project as they send their doors all over the country. 

CutList meets Shaker2go

CutList meets Shaker2go

Who are you?

My name is Phil Temple and I am the director of a company called Shaker2go, bespoke shaker door manufacturers.

When and where did it all start?

About 15 years ago, I had my first workshop, a small outbuilding on a farm in East Sussex.  It was a struggle to survive during the downturn but I was persistent and didn’t pay much attention to that. I believe success is dependent on motivation and persistence. I was making high-end chicken and hen arks, with slate roofs and scolloped lead-work. From there I moved into 3 increasingly larger workshops until the present day. Most of the work I produced was cabinetry. One day I decided to start making a product to minimise time away from the workshop, stress and to concentrate on a business with some kind of resale value/monetary worth. I think it stemmed from seeing a red faced, tired 50yr old man, still on the tools in his van, and thinking that that wasn’t the life for me. I hate to sit still, and love the feeling of progression. Being a 50 year old chippy is not something I would look forward to, by 50 I would like to be dust free!

What is your business set-up?

As above, we moved several times, from the countryside in E.Sussex to the town of Ashford in Kent. Our workshop is modest, I would say around the 2100 sq.ft mark. We have a compact machine floor downstairs, with large spray booth and tiny office. Upstairs is the assembly floor which sits on top of the booth and the offices. I made sure we only have the bare minimum that we need. Space is a premium here and the rental prices for bigger units are extortionate to say the least. CutList meets shaker2go

Do you still get time on the tools or are you an office dweller?

I am on the tools constantly. I lost a valuable member of staff in Sept 2016 and have been searching for a new suitable candidate since then, however I made sure to time the introduction of a new Sandya wide belt machine to take some of the strain off.  My wonderful wife also comes in to help with packaging etc. when she can. 

Your ‘must have’ tool or machine? 

The SCM Sandya is the lifesaver of the workshop.  Since investing in this kit, the finishing and prep times have been reduced by 75% approx.  A worthy investment for the business.  Obviously there had to be a dedicated extractor for this machine to run, so I opted for a NOS P&J cabinet extractor with the largest bin I could find.  It is much better than the Felder AF22 we have on the table saw.

How is your work designed?

All normal orders are done without drawing aid.  Usual method of producing is a cutting list with a few handy repeating formulas in my head.  When we have more complex requests, I use AutoCAD, something that has also been invaluable since the cabinet making days.  I would urge anyone to take a course in CAD, it really added value to my work. 

Where does your work come from?

Work is all from the web as  Shaker2go is an online business.  Google is a huge part but social media is also very important. That said, publicity is expensive.  Google bills are high and social media is free, so I try to balance this as best as I can. 

Social media: which is good for you?

Instagram sees the most response. I think people like to see a good photo. Text is boring and often ignored. A well-placed/timed/executed photo is always going to draw the eye. CutList meets Shaker2go

What are your future plans?

Bigger workshop, new delivery van, more machines, more staff, more products, new website.  I could not list all of the aims and goals, there is no end to my aspirations. If I think there is an end goal then there is no excitement once it is reached.  A sense of perspective helps though, nothing happens overnight.

What advice would you give your 20 year-old self starting out?

Don’t be afraid.  Get a good accountant.  I use Rift Accounting in Ashford and they have been invaluable.  They have offered advice, time, and meetings well above and beyond what I expected from accountants.  Most accountants I have met are boring but these accountants are a real modern, down to earth, refreshing and knowledgeable bunch. Remember, buy the minimum that you need and don’t buy stuff that you just want. You can’t live the dream of having all of the best tools, vans, company cars, high salary without falling flat on your face.  Work up to those things, achieve them and deserve them.  Be patient and constructive and most of all, plan ahead.

Give us your likes for CutList.

CutList is totally suitable for any cabinetmaker, on site chippy, fitter.  Much like ourselves, you could literally just draw up your design, send cutting lists to CutList and door sizes to us and earn a great living fitting a couple of wardrobes a week.  Pricing is on point too, and delivery is a great service.  I would see it as an opportunity to be able to subcontract panel work to CutList, and not have the need for a huge workshop.  CutList meets shaker door manufacturers Shaker2go

Get in touch with Shaker2go

We would like to thank Shaker2go for their time in talking to us. They love to share their work on social media, you can find them on Twitter, Instgram and Facebook among other places. Visit their website to get a quote   Facebooktwittergoogle_pluspinterestlinkedinmail
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