October 14, 2013
The Marriage of High Tech and Old World
Back in the day, Grove co-founders Joe Mansfield and Ken Tomita combined their expertise. They collaborated to innovate how we can use high tech machinery in combination with old school woodworking techniques to make objects that are both beautiful and precise. We think it’s this combination of using machinery to mill our parts with exact measurements along with the use of the hand finishing (and the human touch) that gives our products that special something.
Who are these robots anyway?
In our woodshop we have a small fleet of high tech machinery that we have happily anthropomorphized (just because it’s fun). These machines are our day to day workhorses, churning out everything from Skatecases to Bamboo Backs. Sometimes they work with us... other times the machines act as if they have a mind of their own, possibly just to keep us on our toes. If nothing else, they have taught us how to adapt with a quickness to what they need in order to perform!
Everything we do, from all of the computer programs that direct these high tech robotics, to the jigs that hold the material stable while it is being milled, is all custom made. It’s a lot of work, but we love it!
CNC Mills: Our computer controlled mills are essentially large scale robotic drills mounted on a metal backbone of cast iron/steel. They have a precise moving table/bed which the fixtures are attached to. The computer orchestrates the drill and the bed together in unison and holds a precision to .001 inch.
Meet the Fleet!
Rusty - A reliable behemoth of a CNC Machine that has a will of it’s own.
Falcon - A true hero among Woodshop CNC Mills, Falcon has saved the day with its consistency many times.
HAL - Named after computer that controls the spaceship in one of our favorite films, Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). HAL laser cuts everything from Bamboo Backs to buttons for our iPhones.
Mr. Jones - Mr. Jones is the name of our fancy new printer who is tasked with all of the ink printing on our WoodPrint cases! He was named after Grove’s laser master Mike D’s favorite Counting Crows song. (Sometimes he puts it on repeat… and we secretly love it.)
Not unlike some sci-fi fantasy future, here at Grove we work among robots that do our bidding. Will they eventually turn against us to take over the world? We hope not! Until then, we’ll live in harmony with the machines, making cases to our heart’s content.