Case Study – House of Alexander


Stuart, founder of the House of Alexander, which specialises in high-quality picture framing predominantly to the trade, believes in having a well-equipped workshop with highly productive machines.

Having a 30-year reputation producing frames of the highest quality, the slightest defect in, for example, supplied framing material, results in rejection. His customers know that what he supplies will be first rate.

Stuart has a wide range of customers, mentioning in an amused tone that one is a “floral taxidermist” doing 3-D dried flower displays. Clearly, the frame and backing have to be just right to achieve the required effect and to bring out the full creativity of the design.

When moving to his present workshop, Stuart knew that there would never be space for a table saw for speeding up the cutting of the backing boards, and that he could only consider a vertical panel saw for cutting these precisely to size. With almost no exceptions, all the competitive machines were foreign-built, much too expensive, and far too big to fit into his workshop. On seeing the Sagetech Machinery’s Koolkut KK12 machine at with its 8’ x 4’ capacity, he knew that it was ideal for what he needed, ordering it immediately.

Stuart explained that “when I cut an infill panel, I need to have an even gap all round the inside of the frame, typically of about ½ mm so that I can just insert the frame hangers. One of the things I particularly like is that I can put, as I often do, 4 sheets of 6mm backing boards on the machine and cut them quickly, easily and accurately. One of the tests is what I call the ‘thumbnail test’, where I have a bulk order for a stack of panels, which when aligned are so consistent that I can’t catch my nail between them when running up the stack”.

As Stuart pointed out, once properly set up, this is a great machine. It’s got all the adjustments necessary to give a high precision result.

Stuart’s KK12 is the smallest in Sagetech Machinery’s Koolkut KK range, which extends to machines with a capacity of 3.1 x 2.1 M, so fully capable of handling the larger plastic 3 x 2M sheets and the big “jumbo” timber based panels. Sagetech Machinery offer the KF range with similar sizes in their Koolkut brand, along with the Zapkut ranges for those with lighter cutting requirements. These include their unique lightweight portable saw. This innovative British manufacturer is now extending the capability of their ranges by offering router heads with most of their machines.

As Stuart explained of the machine “I use it to get the results I want in a very exacting industry. I am not prepared to ‘bodge’ it like some do. It’s my reputation that is on the line”.