Downtime happens—especially in the winter when it’s too cold to work outside and homeowners are reluctant to tackle interior renovation projects. Fortunately, there’s a lot that a construction company can do with that time, like getting ahead on the millwork that you know will be in high demand in the coming days. For that, you’re going to need some lumber and some tools—like either the FASCO® (a member of BECK) F20A Bradder or the F30AT Bradder. Both are useful for a variety of jobs including custom millwork!
What is Millwork?
Custom millwork refers to a variety of things. Namely, these products are any type of woodwork that was historically produced in a mill (even though today, many construction companies produce their own millwork, sans the mill). Mostly decorative pieces, millwork includes trim, mantels, window boxes, banisters, and balusters—whatever is needed to put the finishing touches on a home.
Millwork: A Brief History
Wood has always been one of the primary building materials used around the world—but the concept of millwork is a relatively new one that hit a peak in the 19th century. This coincided with the development of things like waterpower, steam power, and even foot-driven machinery. Machinery made it possible to build mills capable of producing cost-effective decorative millwork with which to decorate Victorian homes.
Making Your Own Millwork
Today, millwork is just as popular as it was back in Victorian times. Many of the same motifs are still popular, and modern influences have given rise to new types of millworks. Today’s technology means that these products don’t necessarily have to be created in a mill. With a few tools—an electric planer, jointer, saws, routers, and fasteners—it’s relatively easy to create custom millwork that your clients will love.
If you’re creating millwork during downtime, the big question is, what types are most in-demand right now? Here are some ideas.
- Reclaimed Walls and Floors: The sustainability movement is on the rise, and with that, the demand for reclaimed lumber is growing, too. This type of lumber is recycled from existing buildings that are under demolition—think old barns and outbuildings, homes, and even industrial and commercial facilities. In some cases, you’ll want to preserve the lumber’s historic patina while in other cases, you’ll need to mill it down into workable sizes for creating hardwood floors and walls.
- Make Your Own Moldings: From base moldings to crowns, window casing and more, this is an essential that every building project needs. What’s more, there are lots of common profiles that you’re certain to use, which means many types of trim are a safe bet that won’t end up taking up space in a warehouse for an excessive amount of time. Make your own quarter round, cove crown, beaded trim, reeded trim, or something else that you use commonly.
- Make Balusters: Anywhere you’ll be installing stairs will require some type of baluster. Popular styles include plain round balusters to beautifully scrolled ones—and you can make your own to have in stock whenever you have downtime.
If you can source inexpensive lumber, then creating millwork is a great way to save your company some money and give people something to do when you don’t have contracts to work on. Even better, with so many people looking to purchase locally produced goods, making your own custom millwork is a fantastic selling point. With a minimal investment in tools, it is possible to create all kinds of millwork to suit a variety of different needs.
Just make sure those tools include either the FASCO® F20A Bradder or the F30AT Bradder. These lightweight tools have excellent balance, which makes it the perfect choice for a variety of jobs—including hanging millwork and shooting brads. They offer an adjustable safety and depth regulation, allowing you to drive brads to the correct depth even when working with thinner pieces of trim. They both also hold 100+ brads at a time, which means less time wasted on reloading. Click below to learn more about these tools to help make your millwork projects efficient and accurate.