FABRICATOR CASE STUDIES: Doubling Capacity in Under Two Years
Although M and M Granite Inc. of Mount Airy, NC, has only been in business since April 2004, the company is already producing an average of 18 to 20 kitchens a week. The early success of the company has lead partners Mike Fulk and Mark Hiatt to the recent purchase of a shop twice the size of its current facility.
The 6,000-square-foot leased space is equipped with a 515C diamond gantry bridge saw from Sawing Systems of Knoxville, TN, as well as an Achilli TFM bridge saw from Braxton-Bragg Corp., also of Knoxville. In addition, equipment includes two Ghines Sector portable routers for grinding profiles - an EV1 and an EV3 model from GranQuartz of Tucker, GA. Employees at the shop also utilize a Flex LW1503 hand grinder from GranQuartz and a PGS 60 Jig saw for sink cutouts, which is manufactured by Galeski and distributed by High-Tech Stone of Elberton, GA. Additionally, a TCM FG 30 forklift from TCM Manufacturing USA, Inc. of West Columbia, SC, is in place at the shop to assist with material handling.
According to Fulk, after employees are hired, they are taught the company's way of polishing the stone, and they learn how to use the machinery by practicing on pieces of material.
Principle markets include cabinet manufacturers, general contractors and everyday homeowners. The company's production comprises 85% residential - including remodels and new construction - and 15% commercial work, including jobs for several McDonald's locations and a government building in Washington, DC, for which the company fabricated 42 vanities. In addition, M and M Granite Inc. recently completed work for country clubs in Charlotte, NC, and Yorktown, VA. Work included the fabrication of granite countertops in the hospitality areas, as well as fireplace surrounds and wet bars.
M and M granite Inc. purchases its slabs through a variety of distributors, including OHM International, Dente Stone Trading, G & L, Stone Connection, Marquitec and Marva Marble and Granite.
Fulk and Hiatt recently purchased 11_ acres of land, on which they plan to build a 12,000-square-foot shop. â€œWe are going to build a whole new facility with overhead cranes and the whole nine yards,â€ said Fulk, adding that the partners hope to have the shop in full production by November 1 of this year.
The men are also planning to purchase a CNC machine for the new facility. â€œThere are so many out there, and they all have so much cost difference and production difference,â€ said Fulk. â€œI am talking to other fabricators who own various CNCs and getting their input on the differences before purchasing one for the new shop.â€
M and M Granite Inc.Mount Airy, NC
Type of work: kitchen countertops, bathroom vanities, fireplace surrounds
Machinery: 515C diamond gantry bridge saw from Sawing Systems of Knoxville, TN; Achilli TFM bridge saw from Braxton-Bragg Corp. of Knoxville, TN; EV1 and EV3 Ghines Sector portable routers from GranQuartz of Tucker, GA; a Flex LW1503 hand grinder from GranQuartz; a PGS 60 Jig saw manufactured by Galeski and distributed by High-Tech Stone of Elberton, GA; polishing pads from Salem Stone of Winston-Salem, NC; core bits from Diamond Tech International of Tampa, FL; saw blades and router bits from GranQuartz; jig saw blades from High-Tech Stone; a TCM FG 30 fork lift from TCM Manufacturing USA, Inc. of West Columbia, SC
Number of employees: 15
Production rate: 18 to 20 kitchens a week