Gillespie Commercial Cabinets, Inc., uses Cabinet Vision to drastically increase efficiency and reduce errorWhile Wayne Gillespie is used to taking his work with him wherever he goes, he’s the walking definition of working smarter — not harder.
“I live on the software,” Gillespie, owner of Gillespie’s Commercial Cabinets, Inc., says of the Cabinet Vision Screen-To-Machine™ solution by Vero Software.
Gillespie, who implemented Cabinet Vision in his three-man shop in early 2014, was working weekends and holidays until the solution helped him significantly cut man- hours, reduce error and increase efficiency. “I take Cabinet Vision with me wherever I go — and what I get out of it today is unbelievable.”
Based in Cedartown, Georgia, Gillespie is a former Marine and long-time woodworker who founded his company in 2005. Reared by a carpenter father, Gillespie comes by his talents naturally, and has made a living as a woodworker since 1983.
Having gotten his start with a woodworking company that hired him to draw, Gillespie is no stranger to the days before computer-aided-design (CAD) systems became the norm.
“We would basically take a cabinet and draw every single detail,” he says. “We would have to break down on paper every single teeny, tiny detail. The time savings today is just incredible.”
Prior to the implementation of Cabinet Vision, Gillespie and his staff were investing hours of time organizing data that Cabinet Vision manages automatically.
"It’s taken me from working hours of overtime — and having an extra employee — because I can now do all of that myself. I can take care of the cut lists, the materials order, and everything else. In the last two years, things have changed so drastically in terms of saving time.”
Wayne Gillespie, Owner
“Three years ago, I started looking at software to automate what we were doing,” he explains. “I would give an employee shop drawings, and he would spend hours doing material takeoffs and cut lists — and we were just getting overwhelmed.”
The implementation of Cabinet Vision translated to more free time in Gillespie’s personal life, as well as greater efficiency and productivity at the shop. “There were a lot of Saturdays and evenings involved — and that’s one of the reasons I like Cabinet Vision. I haven’t worked a Saturday in a year. My first comment after I got Cabinet Vision was ‘I love Cabinet Vision, I love Cabinet Vision, I love Cabinet Vision.’”
Prior to Gillespie’s acquisition of the software, he invested in another CAD/CAM woodworking software that caused more problems than it delivered fixes.
“Cabinet Vision is so easy that I think a kid could use it. With the other software, you had to put so much data in yourself. It was causing so many mistakes that I was spending double the time. It was like shoveling gravel into a hole.”
Upon receiving a demonstration of Cabinet Vision, Gillespie knew immediately that he was venturing into new territory.
“I could tell from the get-go, just during the demos, that it was different,” he says. “I was throwing scenarios at them and telling them my problems, and they were able to handle all of it.”
To start a project in Cabinet Vision, Gillespie creates a room and draws the associated cabinets within the software. Once the cabinets are created, he can use the Screen-to-Machine functionality to manage every element of the job.
“It almost takes all of my thinking away. Once you’re in Cabinet Vision and click on the Screen-to-Machine you just generate the code. The cut list is great because it will give me a report of how much hardware and material I need to order.”
Because the cut list is generated by the system, Gillespie’s projects are no longer subject to human error, and so he saves on both time and materials. Cabinet Vision enables woodworkers to create projects using advanced solid-modeling technology that can automatically generate shop drawings, 3D customer renderings, cutting lists, material-requirement information, and job estimates.
“Once you draw it, the program converts the data into everything you need,” he says. “When you compare that to the cost of an employee, you see that the software isn’t making mistakes — or calling in sick.”
Gillespie also appreciates the flexibility of Cabinet Vision, and his ability to easily edit cabinets once they’re drawn. As he produces a great deal of custom commercial cabinetry, the need for software that can accommodate his changing needs is vital.
“If you draw something custom, you’ll have to basically edit that in the solid modeling area,” says Gillespie, who insists that editing designs in Cabinet Vision doesn’t increase the possibility for error.
“The software is so smart that, if you do something it doesn’t like, it will let you know. It almost won’t let you do anything wrong.”
For instance, Gillespie says, when he changes the dimensions of a drawer box, the software automatically changes the location of holes in the adjacent panel so that the construction will fit together.
Gillespie also takes advantage of customizable User Created Standards, or UCSs, available within the solution. Used by woodworkers to create programs tailored to project or shop-specific needs, UCSs streamline and automate specified elements of the programming process.
“For all the countertops that I send out, I want all of my backsplashes to be one inch longer than my countertops,” says Gillespie, who uses a UCS to ensure that the backsplashes are cut to spec.
He uses another UCS to make certain that, if he’s working with a wall cabinet that has a light valance, associated hinges will automatically be moved up if the cabinet is moved.
Gillespie credits Cabinet Vision’s online support team and active online community for helping him to meet challenges when they arrive.
“There are a lot of people out there in the same boat I am,” Gillespie says of the Cabinet Vision peer community. “Support is awesome, and always answers questions quickly.”
For Gillespie, the most significant advantage of using Cabinet Vision is simply having less worry, and more time away from the daily grind to enjoy his life.
“It’s taken me from working hours of overtime — and having an extra employee — because I can now do all of that myself,” he says. “I can take care of the cut lists, the materials order, and everything else. In the last two years, things have changed so drastically in terms of saving time.”
About the Company
Name: Gillespie Commercial Cabinets, Inc
Business: Manufacturing of custom closets
- Increased efficiency, which resulted in elimination of overtime and reduction of staff
- Reduction in project costs due to increased accuracy in material management
- Significant reduction of error in the production process
“It’s taken me from working hours of overtime — and having an extra employee — because I can now do all of that myself. I can take care of the cut lists, the materials order, and everything else. In the last two years, things have changed so drastically in terms of saving time.”
Wayne Gillespie, Owner