Anyone else for the stripped down version of Ecabinets?

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Would you have a need for the stripped down version of Ecabs?

Yes
27
73%
No
9
24%
Not sure
1
3%
 
Total votes: 37

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Paul Ford
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Anyone else for the stripped down version of Ecabinets?

Postby Paul Ford » Thu, Jan 12 2006, 1:44PM

Ken Susnjara replied to the post on this link http://www.thermwood.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=1596
Please take a look at it and see what you all think!
This is what he said.
One idea we have thrown around is supplying Members with a stripped down version of the software that they could give to their customers or even to retail outlets. This software would contain your library, your customer could modify it but you could restrict the things they can modify. This system would alow your customer to then order their design electronically through our server which sends it directly to you. We could probaly do a stripped down version of this right now using Catalog Cabinets. Any thoughts?

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Denis L'Heureux
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Postby Denis L'Heureux » Thu, Jan 12 2006, 2:13PM

Great idea. I have a number of repeat customer who would love to do this. What a concept!!! Talk about custom kitchens. Then all we'd have to do is bring their design in to the full version, touch up some of the details for our shop use and voila!!

I like...

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Michael Kowalczyk
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Postby Michael Kowalczyk » Fri, Jan 13 2006, 12:33PM

I agree that this would be a great asset for all of us and it will be AWESOME if Version 5 had it setup for a furniture package :wink:
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Mike Bowers
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Postby Mike Bowers » Fri, Jan 13 2006, 9:37PM

I have a concerns with this; Posted by Ken S.: Yesterday at 4:19PM

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

\"We actually saw this as a way to work with distributors or retailers. Some of the big retailers such as Lowes and Home Depot are looking for a way to offer custom cabinets through local cabinet shops. This would be a way to design the cabinets and then transmit that design to the shop. The only output would be an electronic file to our server which we could make sure only went to the correct shop. I don't think this can work on the web because each shop will offer different designs and different ability to customize. There is a market emerging through major retailers and who knows, other retailers with access to consumers may also help us sell cabinets. \"

Great Idea, but please define correct shop Ken. How would this work? What if the client were to get the file & look for shops that use eCab. Wouldn't it be like taking a shop drawing from company & pricing it out with others. There would have to be some sort of membership or something that defined the \"correct shop\". Just my 2 cents.....Mike



PS: I was the not sure vote in case anyone was wondering :lol:
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Postby Forrest Chapman » Fri, Jan 13 2006, 10:11PM

Mike,

I think there would need to be a limit to what the client can get from the software. For example we only give out pretty pictures unless the client wants to pay for complete drawings. This limits the amount of job theft. Each clients
version could have a code that will send the full file to the correct person only. If the client wishes to go elsewhere they will have to use another shops library. I think there are going to be many other issues as well but this thing has great potential.

Forrest

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Mike Bowers
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Postby Mike Bowers » Fri, Jan 13 2006, 10:24PM

I agree about great potential & I think it would be helpful at times. Who would show the people how to design thier job? Would we as the shop owners have to teach the vendor/client on the use of the program? As a former vendor to both \"Home Centers\" another issue arises. Two words come to mind \"Slow Pay\". Who would be the one cutting checks? Client or home center?
Mike

PS That makes 4 cents now :lol:
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Postby Forrest Chapman » Fri, Jan 13 2006, 10:46PM

Mike,

I definitly agree with the slow pay of big home improvement stores. I personaly am not looking into working for them althought it may be someone elses perogative. But this could apply to the guy down the street who has a design center and wants to offer something more unique and keep the money
in the local economy. I'm currently working with a few regional lumber companies who already sell my mantels, and radius trim and would like to get into closets and cabinets. I have also been able to help revive one persons business by producing parts for him but I'm having to design for him also. He is old school and doesn't want to spend alot of time learning a program so this would work well for him.

Forrest

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Grady Pinckard
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Postby Grady Pinckard » Sat, Jan 14 2006, 8:53AM

No

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Postby Jeff Norris » Sat, Jan 14 2006, 12:34PM

i cant even get a proper door and drawer cutlist out of the current version, how about we just let thermwood work on ecabinets for us cabinetmakers!

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Postby Paul Huff » Sat, Jan 14 2006, 8:34PM

I think a lot of customers would love the chance to choose their own cabinet schemes with an easy way to change colors, grain patterns, doors and drawers. (Plus 3-D models of appliances in the correct color supplied by the manufacturer. :lol: ) This might be possible if the program could generate enough interest. I think an easy to use program that can create rendered 3d pictures of the users design could create a mass appeal. It would be a great way for customers to get their ideals across to their cabinet maker which would probably get more carpenters looking into eCabinets.

The rough edges seem to be construction methods, pricing, the availability of materials and design. Maybe they could start from a collection of well made designs to keep them on the right path.

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Mike Bowers
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Postby Mike Bowers » Sat, Jan 14 2006, 9:07PM

OK, Thermwood gives us a stripped down eCab. Will there be a brief training cd with it? Putting cabinets & ovens in the room will be easy, but what about the walls, doors, windows. How stripped down will it be? If they do release that ver. Please only put a LIMITED (maybe 50) wall papers. That is just way to much info, all the colors, flooring & woods could be streamlined. I feel this would save a lot for the average customer. Food for thought people....
Mike
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Re:

Postby Mike Bowers » Sat, Jan 14 2006, 9:12PM

Jeff Norris wrote:i cant even get a proper door and drawer cutlist out of the current version, how about we just let thermwood work on ecabinets for us cabinetmakers!

Please define "Proper List". Some sort features would help 100% if that's what your talking about. To much paper and ink.
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Postby Jeff Norris » Sun, Jan 15 2006, 1:00PM

currently ecabinets only gives us overall dimensions for our doors and drawers, i know that there are alot of shops that dont make their own doors and drawers, but we do and i have to take all those dimensions and run them through a spread sheet to get our cutlist to go to the tigerstop, i belive this to be very fundemental to cabinetmakeing software, for ecabinets to truley be a one source solution these features must be implemented along with a way to define diffrent stile and rail configurations. one other very fundemental feature that is missing in ecabinets is the ability to split the back panel for large cabients, i hate to beat a dead horse here but i would like to keep the focus on the basic things that i and most cabinet makers need to accomplish daily, yes it would be very cool to let the customers design their own kitchens, this would save me alot of time, but i doubt highly that many of them would produce anything very useful anyway, lets face it how many of us have heard \"i can get that at lowes for less\" from some customer who dident like the price of custom cabinets, my shop employes craftsmen who build fine cabinetry, let us not demean our trade anymore by giving customers the power to think they can do our jobs. and please let thermwood focus on makeing products for manufacturing.

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Postby Michael Kowalczyk » Sun, Jan 15 2006, 3:31PM

I think the the stripped down version should be set up to show the layout in presentation form but NOT a cut list or anything that would allow someone with out the full version of Ecab to extract the info needed to manufacture. One other way would be to have the local shops be the distributor of the CD and have their construction methods, material and prices set up as a master. I personally would like it for Interior Designers to be able to show the Furniture collections with us manufactures being able to set the pricing (hard coded) in an administratrive (password protected) option area.

What do you think about this approach?
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Ken Susnjara
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Postby Ken Susnjara » Sun, Jan 15 2006, 4:29PM

Interesting thread.

I though I might respond to some of the thoughts with some of our own. First, we know there are basic features that are not in the software yet. We hope to address many of these in Version 5 and they continue to have the highest priority. Ideas about the future are just that, the future, but we must start thinking about them now if we plan to stay in business in the future. We need to try to figure out what our world and industry will be like two, three, five years from now. If we plan to compete then, we must start working on it now.

Some basic philosophy about what we call “sales software”. First, full eCabinet Systems Members will be in charge of the software, who gets it and what they can do with it. The only output from the software, except for pretty pictures, will be encoded electronic files to our server which we will translate and send to the Member. Neither the store nor anyone else will be able to use the output to poach. We do not see this as a mass “give away” software because we must pay license fees for every copy. We also don’t see non-trained individuals trying to design their own kitchens, at least until we can get some really effective design wizards.

Instead we see it as a tool used by someone that sells or distributes for our Members. We think the industry is changing with the possible demise of the current furniture industry in its current form and the emerging of a new combined industry that has a strong “custom” theme. In this new industry shops that currently sell direct may very well sell through stores and retail outlets and they will need tools to do this. We think one other software company sees this, 20-20. They pretty well dominate the retail and are rapidly moving into manufacturing by buying other software. They would like to dominate the cabinet software business by controlling a new and large retail market and forcing shops that want access to this new business to buy and use their software. This will probably work if there is no alternative. We are coming at it from the other side, where the individual shops can provide retail software to stores and retail outlets that allows them to price, sell and build custom products. We may be able to provide this to retail shops for free if we get enough purchasing support from our Members. Maybe this won’t happen, maybe it wall take years or decades, but right now this is the most likely direction the industry will take and we need to think about ways to grow and prosper should it come about.


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