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Inside The Factory

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doctor Bob

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I used to work in a similar factory.
It's not woodwork it's a production line. A trained monkey could do it.
All piece work, totally soul destroying. Can you imagine assembling maybe 60 chairs a day, day in day out. nothing else, no making the components, no machining, no finishing etc all you do is assemble. Another fellow just sands, 30 an hour.
I was an assembler for Old Charm furniture, we had a guy stand behind us with a stop watch to assess time v pay. If you made too much money they lowered the time.
It was the job that broke me and made me determined to actually become a cabinet maker.
I found the program interesting though.
 
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bp122

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I enjoyed it, especially the history of the light furniture from the end of ww2

And of course the Chippendale stuff.
 

Distinterior

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That piece of Chippendale furniture/ cabinet was a joy to behold.....Not my cup of tea but I could certainly appreciate the work and detail that had gone into it.
 

kinverkid

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I just had to watch it after seeing it on this post. Never heard of it. Enjoyed it and can see how it educates those who don't work with wood. I agree about the Chippendale segment. Something to aspire to as well as to admire.
Gary
 

Geoff_S

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I recognised the utility furniture. My mum in law had it in her bedroom and it was in almost as new condition, so well made. I hadn't
appreciated that it was all jointed and glued, no fixings.

When she passed, I contacted a local furniture charity to come and pick it up. Well, they arrived, took one look and said all they would do
was take it away and smash it up for recycling! But they were happy to take the knackered Ikea melamine units and repair it.

Apparently the people these days wanted the Ikea, not that old fashioned stuff. A bit heart breaking really :(
 

Noho12C

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Ozi

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I used to work in a similar factory.
It's not woodwork it's a production line. A trained monkey could do it.
All piece work, totally soul destroying. Can you imagine assembling maybe 60 chairs a day, day in day out. nothing else, no making the components, no machining, no finishing etc all you do is assemble. Another fellow just sands, 30 an hour.
I was an assembler for Old Charm furniture, we had a guy stand behind us with a stop watch to assess time v pay. If you made too much money they lowered the time.
It was the job that broke me and made me determined to actually become a cabinet maker.
I found the program interesting though.
The story of British industrial relations in a nut shell. Carp management not treating people as human, if you balance that with a union who don't realize the company needs to make a profit to pay wages you can destroy people and industries double quick. Glad you got out alive.
 

Pedronicus

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I was an assembler for Old Charm furniture, we had a guy stand behind us with a stop watch to assess time v pay. If you made too much money they lowered the time.
Ahh, the old Time & Motion person. The bane of many a manufacturing company sadly.
 

Gary_S

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It was fine. I was not at first impressed with the jokes and general banalities but once I got past that, I found it interesting.
 

D_W

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I used to work in a similar factory.
It's not woodwork it's a production line. A trained monkey could do it.
All piece work, totally soul destroying. Can you imagine assembling maybe 60 chairs a day, day in day out. nothing else, no making the components, no machining, no finishing etc all you do is assemble. Another fellow just sands, 30 an hour.
I was an assembler for Old Charm furniture, we had a guy stand behind us with a stop watch to assess time v pay. If you made too much money they lowered the time.
It was the job that broke me and made me determined to actually become a cabinet maker.
I found the program interesting though.

I worked in a cabinet factory with a similar setup. This weeks bonus based on production rate. Next week bonus target based on this week. If you had great week in assembly, next week it was just about impossible to make target bonus. Difference between good and bad bonus? About $10 a week. People would just about kill themselves to try to make that and then have a couple of hours of overtime disappear because they worked faster than target rate and finished the order list, so the bonus they got for the current week would ultimately cost them money for losing out on the overtime.
 

clogs

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Chipendale prob never worked on anything like like that at all....
most of that style of furniture is OTT, made for morons with more money than brains....
Same as the famous painters, it was just the improvers that did the grunt.....
He was off out on his jollies having fun while the work was done.....
Sounds a lot like modern management.....
 
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TRITON

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I used to work in a similar factory.
It's not woodwork it's a production line. A trained monkey could do it.
All piece work, totally soul destroying. Can you imagine assembling maybe 60 chairs a day, day in day out. nothing else, no making the components, no machining, no finishing etc all you do is assemble. Another fellow just sands, 30 an hour.
I was an assembler for Old Charm furniture, we had a guy stand behind us with a stop watch to assess time v pay. If you made too much money they lowered the time.
It was the job that broke me and made me determined to actually become a cabinet maker.
I found the program interesting though.
Yeah I've heard tales from folk about people timing you. Was about how long it takes to sand a chair and soul destroying things like that. Each leg must take so long. etc etc.
I could never work in that environment myself, I'd explode.
 

Cooper

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I recognised the utility furniture.
That brings back memories, in fact we still have one of the sideboards also from inlaws designed and manufactured by Heals. I believe my inlaws required ration points to get it, as did my parents, though their pieces haven't survived. I just had to look Utility up, this is from the V&A website.

The Utility Furniture Scheme was begun in 1942 by the Board of Trade as a means of rationing the production and consumption of furniture. The Scheme was an historically unprecedented example of government regulation of furniture design and production. It represented what many saw as a practical effort to regulate the use by manufacturers of basic raw materials, wood and petrol especially, that would be in great demand during the war. In terms of consumption it ordered the priority by which members of the public would be allowed to purchase furniture; only those who needed furniture would be allowed to buy. The Scheme evolved into an attempt by members of its Design Panel - especially Gordon Russell - to raise what they saw as the low level of design in Britain. The idea was to produce pieces that were well designed in terms of construction and appearance: solid, durable furniture that would be distinctly modern but appropriate to wartime. Utility furniture production was officially ended in 1952.
 

TomGW

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There were three manufacturers of Utility Furniture in our village. The largest one developed into manufacturing/assembling dining & bedroom furniture and closed up about 20 years ago.
The other two companies are still very much in business - one as a mid-range kitchen company and the other as a very healthy manufacturer of office furniture. The office furniture manufacturer is run by the two great-grandsons and is a slick operation.

Interesting for pricing:
 
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