Boxing It Up
Things have been going well for us in many regards at Rail Yard Studios.
We’ve gotten better and more efficient by planning and adding some process to the mix – that’s just part of what Rob Humphreys’ experience has brought to the table. He focuses on creating bottlenecks in our process and then figuring out how to eliminate them. That’s led us to add new equipment to the shop among other things.
Here’s a prime example that made our lives easier and made things better for our clients as well:
We had been custom-making each crate as we shipped out. That worked just fine while we were learning and getting up to speed. But as we got more proficient at our design and building process, that became our biggest bottleneck. It was slowing us down getting product out the door to our very patient clients.
So we surveyed our product line. We were able to take our main designs and place them into 4 groups and thus 4 primary crate sizes. So now, 90% of our product will fit into 1 of 4 crate sizes. Trust me, it sure beats building a built from scratch crate each time.
Custom orders still are subject to the one-off crates, but they often times will fit into 1-2 of our standard crate sizes (yeah, like we planned it that way). Suffice to say, it is a huge improvement from where we were.
And just to make it a bit sweeter, we managed to get our branding on the new crates with all the time we saved!
Wrong Side of the Tracks Conference Table
Had the pleasure of making three tables for the new Stacy & Witbeck headquarters on San Francisco Bay. They are THE light rail engineering firm on the West Coast. Fantastic folks to work with all around! Many thanks to Janet at Stacy & Witbeck and to the architects Eric (a fellow OSU grad - Go Buckeyes!) and Callie with FME for the opportunity to do this project!
The concept is based around a railroad trestle bridge and executed using a mixture of oak and hickory timbers.
The planked top is oak crossties cut into 1” thick boards. The rail that supports it is inverted to give the effect that you are looking up at the tracks from below like you would from under a bridge.
In keeping with the bridge theme, we have a trestle running the length of the table and it is attached to the legs using railroad bridge bolts.
And we made it pretty hi-tech, too - a state of the art AV system is integrated with cable runs throughout the table. There are two microphones that will sit in the middle of the glass tops with their wiring completely concealed and ALL wiring runs through the structure and down to the floor.
Had so much fun making this one and got lots of help from Rick Turner (the vegan redneck), Pop, Rob, Zach, Erica and many others who made it happen.
The whole thing asembles in under ten minutes with just two people, and it disassembled for shipping just as quickly. I will post that video later.
And we did another completely different conference table for them as well…oops…sorry to tease. We’ll save that one for a later post.
More Wonderful People from AD
This is the first in the Derailment series. Lots of fun creating this piece and very gratifying to see it finally come together. Got to have some fun with this one using a variety of wood species - white oak, red oak, black locust, hickory, walnut, and beech.
Finished it off with a well-worn rail that has a vertical head split defect so it has a neatly distressed look. Got in the featured spot at the One of a Kind show where we are this week. Come see us!
Final prep work for the One of a Kind Show
Will be in Chicago Dec. 1-4 at the Merchandise Mart for the One of a Kind Show. Excited to be at our first juried show!
Our work is supposed to be featured on Chicago’s WLS ABC7 (Chicago’s local ABC station) and WGN Chicago’s very own TV station so look for us!
Countdown to Chi-town: December 1-4
We’re Getting “Made” in New York: March 22-25
Springtime in New York City - Here We Come!
Just got word that Rail Yard Studios got accepted to the CraftNEWYORK 2012 Show! This is a pretty exclusive juried art show where only 120 artists are accepted to exhibit.
We are SUPER excited about this and flattered to be getting to be in a show that has included the likes of folks like Mark del Guidice, Michael Puryear and Jay Rogers.
Look for us in the Big Apple March 29-April 1.
1 of 5 New Designs Headed for Chattanooga
Headed for Chattanooga today to the Association of Railway Museums National Annual Conference. Been heads down busy getting ready for it and not showing off what we’ve been up to lately.
So here’s a sneak peek. No time to get these to the photog for pretty studio shots, so here’s some informal ones.
This one is a new smaller wine rack design. Cut from a cross-grained piece of walnut (yes, walnut) crosstie and with space for 4 bottles cradled on slices of century-old rail. Beautiful piece for a countertop where it can be seen from all sides.