Recent Posts

Digital platform for tools and equipment

Milwaukee Tool has introduced One-Key, a digital platform for tracking tools and equipment. By integrating tool electronics with a cloud-based program, the platform will include Inventory Management, the first component available through the web and mobile app, creating a central place for users to manage all of their tools and equipment across … [Read More...]

Awards and recognitions at “The Night of Xylexpo”

Innovation is the common thread at Xylexpo2016, the biennial exhibition of wood and furniture technology and supplies, currently underway at FieraMilano-Rho in Milan, Italy, this month, an edition that promises to be successful according to initial attendance figures. Further evidence came from “The Night of Xylexpo”, an evening when the XIA … [Read More...]


Mastering mass customization

Every kitchen is the same — and different — so how does a cabinet maker profitably satisfy fickle, trend-loving consumers? Easy — through mastering mass customization where production can be accur … Read More

Time Lasting Craftsmanship

Like salmon fighting upstream in the rivers of British Columbia, one shop in Vancouver is bucking the flow of cheap, mass-market products into Lower Mainland homes. By creating hand-crafted … Read More

Solid accomplishment

Profile: Brenlo Custom Mouldings, Mississauga, Ont. As noted in this issue's "From the Editor" department, there is a feeling in the industry that the glory days of solid wood are over. The … Read More

Reader Forums


  • E-letter: Post-customer matrixJohn Gulka" Mr. Knudson In my comment, I referred only to your opinions stated in one sentence... " Apr 20, 2:12 AM
  • E-letter: Post-customer matrixKerry Knudsen" Hi, John, Naturally, I am sorry to hear of your decision. If I may, one... " Apr 19, 11:03 AM
  • E-letter: Post-customer matrixJohn Gulka" Hello, Your generalizations of teachers and youth, things about which I have a passing knowledge,... " Apr 17, 7:18 PM
  • E-letter: Post-customer matrixBrian Wood" Hello Kerry I enjoyed reading the last couple of articles you wrote. I have been... " Apr 13, 12:36 PM
  • E-letter: Post-customer matrixRon Sinclair" Hi: Been retired from the industry for a number of years now but still enjoy... " Apr 13, 11:02 AM

Import costs rise with the loonie’s tumble

Currency exchange rates are like a rising tide that raises — or lowers — all boats. So, for importers in Canada, the precipitous plunge of the loonie over the past year made many wonder just where the bottom may lie. According to Joy Nott, president of the Toronto-based Canadian Importers and Exporters Association, “the assumption generally is that when you’re an exporter and the Canadian dollar falls, this makes you very price attractive on the world market. “That is true, but when you … Read More

Pocket tops for play and pay

Instagram, Facebook, crowdfunding, 3D printing, Pay- Pal, EDC…. Indiegogo, YouTube, Kickstarter, Twitter. It is like getting caught in a Star Trek transponder. Lots of buzz. Lots of potential. No substance. Or is there? Marketing in social media can get huge margins, payment in advance, project funding and branding. And so can the lottery pay you in the tens of millions. It’s just not likely. But it can happen, so let’s take a look. The topic is pocket tops. Not the tops of pockets, but spi … Read More

Line item: Safety — the cost you must afford.

A shop accident can blow up a business launch faster than a visit from a Ministry of Labour inspector. When embarking on creating a new wood shop, or even just keeping the doors open, ignore health and safety issues at your peril. Norm Keith, litigation partner at the Toronto-based legal firm Fasken Marteneau, advises that shop owners ask themselves “what are the direct and indirect costs of making you're sure you're compliant with the health and safety laws.” These costs are important t … Read More

Palm power: Ecommerce and the wood industry

In a vintage cartoon, Bugs Bunny wants to impress Daisy Lou and instantly delivers nylons using animation magic. “Your teeth are like pearls, real ones, no dime-store phonies!” he woos. Similarly, today when Joe Millennial taps a screen on a mobile device, he expects prompt delivery of his desired furniture. Daisy Lou, anxiously awaiting that new RTA armoire, is dutifully impressed when it arrives by delivery truck the next day. It does seem that these days the wood industry business is ope … Read More