23 January 2014

Challenge Day 40 - New beginnings - a day at Warbases

I am totally exhausted after yesterday, I left the Great hall at 2.40 am and after a 300 mile drive arrived at my good friend and occasional boss Martins abode in Dunfermline around 8.30 am. Having made a couple of stops on the way for breakfasts.

After a nice cup of tea, we headed off to his workshop. This was a real eye opening day for me in many ways. The process of laser cutting bases is not as simple as I had imagined and Martin took the time to explain how the computer programs work to ensure that they cut correctly. I had just assumed that it was a straight forward procedure, but the reality is very different and even a relatively simple program, such as one required for cutting square bases needs very careful planning or bits wont get cut as they would fall away from the main sheet before the laser got to them.

I was allowed to operate one of the lasers, and cut several batches of zombies trays, I stood completely fascinated as the complex cutting guide was loaded and the lasers cut the bases out of solid sheets, the whole program took 6 minutes to run and produced two full trays with each run, so a quick bit of maths in my head worked out that you could cut twenty bases an hour and 140 a day going flat out. It does not take a genius to work out that even with three cutters running all day there is a lot of hours required to maintain the stock levels and that's without all the special orders thrown in as well.

Of course being a family run business, Martin is assisted by his father Donald and son Glenn, in the workshop and the whole operation runs like a well oiled machine. I have maintained a working relationship with Martin since the inception of my own business and he was the sole supplier of all the bases for my own products and as some of you know I occasionally help him out at shows.

So new beginnings, well over the years, Myself and Martin have built a good working relationship. I have designed several products that I have retained the copyright too, and although Martin has produced them for me I retained the sole rights to sale of them. With the change in my life style it was time for me to make some changes, and we made suitable negotiations that worked for us both, I wont say too much here and now but there will be several new products available in the coming months for both 15mm and 28mm scale. All of which will be available in make it yourself form.

Further to this Martin has good plans for Warbases and is planning on expanding not only his ranges, but also adding products to his inventory and expanding in other directions, one of the products that I used to make a lot of was flexible roads, these have always been a very good seller and are one of the few products that with my health I am still able to make as no fumes or dust are created in the making of these.
Martin will be stocking the full range of these in the very near future, initially the 15mm range will be put into production again. I will also be supplying him with other products as the year ahead unfolds.

So whilst I am no longer trading directly, and am unable to produce everything that I used too, I now have plans in place for the year ahead. These should help me and my family through the coming months. I am also going to be helping out at a few more shows this year, as this is the easiest way for us too regularly meet up and discuss things.

So whilst things may have looked very bleak at the end of last year, when I had to close the business as it was running I have been able to effectively retain some of it and breathe new life into it.  Now as you can appreciate this will have an impact on my family life and the time I generally will have available, as it will mean more weekends away from home.

However this is something that has the full backing of my wife. I have to put the hours into making products for Martin to earn the wages to support my family, who's needs must be placed first. So in order to make a fresh start I have severed all ties and ended all other commitments, in order to focus solely on this and not have any further impact on my health or family life. Something I am sure you can agree is the only option in the circumstances.

Today has not been spent on the brushes at all, as I am shattered from the extremely long day yesterday. I have spent it trying to catch up on all the blog posts and challenge entries I have missed. I may not have commented on them all but will have read them by the end of the day.

Regards
Loki




54 comments:

  1. Good news, well done ol' boy!!!

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    1. Its a good start Ray and certainly a brighter prospect than the position I was in

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  2. Thanks for the update - Warbases is a great company.

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    1. They are an excellent company that only works to very high standards

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  3. Well I do wish you the best of luck in this enterprise. I suspect I will be a future customer.

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  4. Good luck with this new enterprise. I hope you (and warbases) go from strength to strength.

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    1. Thanks Lee, at least as a supplier I have opened an outlet for some of my products to be sold.

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  5. This is very interesting, Andrew. Like Clint, I will certainly be a future customer. Pray keep us posted as your plans develop.
    Cheers,
    M

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    1. Thank you Michael, I will post details as they become available

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  6. Greate blog post ! Thanks for sharing.

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  7. Good news indeed, I am happy to hear your roads will be back in circulation.

    John

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    1. Thanks John, yes I too am glad to be able to produce the roads again, and this way will be the most effective solution possible

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  8. I am absolutely delighted for you, about time the Great Hall had some good news.

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    1. I have too agree Michael, the last few months have been a challenge to say the least.

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  9. Great post Loki, warbases are a great little company and I have made many orders with them.
    Good luck with the new enterprise

    Chris

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    1. Thank you Chris, I certainly have made the right choice with Martin and warbases

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  10. This all sounds promising. I look forward to learning more. Good luck with it

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  11. Sounds like a great step forwards and a very positive day

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    1. A really good step in the right direction thanks

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  12. Found this post in one of those follower of a follower moments - will definitely be hitting Martin up for a load of flexible roads :D

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    1. Thanks Mike, I have followed your blog for a long time

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  13. Good news old boy, onwards and upwards!

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    1. Indeed Francis, its about time I had some good fortune come my way

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  14. Sounds a win win for both of you.

    Ian

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    1. I am certainly happy with the arrangements

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  15. Great news bud, and jeeze you sounded knackered earlier today. Hope you get a good nights kip.

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    1. Slept for 12 hours last night almost unheard of!!!

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  16. Great news, enjoy the rest and keep us updated. You could have pop round as I am only 10 minutes along the road from Martin.

    Cheers, Ross

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    1. If I had known Ross I would have there is always next time though fella

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  17. Great to hear you've got a plan and can keep at least some of your business going mate.

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    1. Thanks Michael, yes its good that I can keep a small part going at least.

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  18. Wonderful news there Loki and I wish all the best for you and your partnership with Martin and Warbase

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    1. It is not a partnership PK, I will be a supplier and freelance aide :D

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  19. I really hope it works out for you Andrew.

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    1. I have crossed everything available ;)

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  20. "full backing of my wife"

    Received because of damaged spider guilt? Seriously though, good luck and all the best for the future.

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    1. No Paul, she still owes me for that. This has been bubbling in the background for a while.

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  21. good news hope it all goes well and look forward to hassling you at a few shows :)
    Peace James

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    1. Some thing had to come good in the end, after all the bad news!!

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  22. Good news Andrew! I hope things keep going well for you!

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    1. Thank you Rodger, I look at it this way they could not get much worse than the end of last years position so any thing is an improvement no matter how small it is.

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  23. Hey Andrew,

    that's really good news. I've bought some things from Martin and Diana in the past and I'm glad to hear that they'll expand their range. Especially when I know that they'll sell your stuff. To be honest I'll be in need of some 28mm flexible roads when my Pegasus Bridge board is finished... I'll keep my eyes on your Great Hall and Martin's range.

    All the best to you and your family!
    I really keep my fingers crossed that your plans will come together well!

    Cheers
    Stefan

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  24. Sounds great Andrew and flexible roads sure has my interest!

    Christopher

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  25. Sounds like a positive move and also as a happy customer of Martin and co I'm quite excited to see what fruits come from your joint labours.
    Good stuff!

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  26. I'll look into getting roads from warbases when th are available.

    I didn't know the laser cutting was so complex, I'm even more impressed at warbases' prices

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    1. I too was amazed at the complexity of the process involved in the planning of a product, and the amount of test cuts needed to get the program to cut perfectly.

      They should be available in the next 2 months

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