For a little while now a small group of volunteers led by my friend John Degreef, an Air Force Vet and local small business owner, have been working to set up a woodworking shop for the Falcon Children’s Home and Falcon Children’s Academy in Falcon, NC. This is a home and school for foster care and under privileged children. I was introduced to John through a mutual friend and as soon as I heard what John had been working towards I was immediately on board.
We have been blessed by several donations from individuals, local businesses and grants from the United Way which has enabled us to put together a proper place to teach these young men and woman some skills and attributes that will hopefully serve them both now and in the future. What started as John bringing up some tools in the back of his truck was quickly turning into a fully functional wood shop. Once we had most of the major tools in place we started putting together the plan for a dust collection system. There were a few of us that recommended we contact Nordfab Ducting so we could not only get an estimate for a ducting that would be needed to provide dust collection to all the major tools but also make sure it was the appropriate layout and size of ducting.
Since all of us volunteers were all woodworkers who had each set up only our own small shops and none of us had really any experience with setting up a shop this size we wanted someone who knew what they were talking about. I requested to be contacted by a Nordfab Dealer by visiting Nordfab Ducting’s website. This is where the magic of this story begins. I was contacted by David Bubb, a local licensed dealer, and we began emailing each other with the details of the project. It wasn’t but a day or two later that David reached out to me by phone and volunteered his personal time to come out and help us plan out what all we needed as far as ducting for the dust collection system. He even drew up the layout that we would need and then prepared the bill of materials we would need to order.
David Bubb didn’t just stop at submitting the estimate but he also contacted Nordfab Ducting and asked if they wanted to be part of the project. I have contacted many of the more well-known companies that provide woodworking tools and accessories and more often than not just get pasted around from one voice mail to another in an attempt to try and solicit some help or even an educational discount on their products. You can see why when David contacted me next I was a little in shock that not only were they going to provide the materials but that David had put together a small group of people to include David Jones, another independent Nordfab dealer, and Lynda a representative from Nordfab Ducting to help us install the ducting.
The installation was a pretty straight forward process but greatly improved by the fact that we had a couple guys that not only sold and were very familiar with the product but were involved in the installation of it. It was pretty amazing seeing how each of the parts that were delivered on a large pallet started to come together just as it was on the layout diagram that Dave had drawn.
This was my first time working with the Nordfab Quick-Fit Ducting system and I am really impressed by not only the fit and finish of the materials but how easily it goes together and because of the quick-fit clamping system you could just as easily disassemble and readjust your ducting layout to meet the needs of an increase in tools connected to the system or just a change in the layout of your shop. The rolled edges and laser welded seams really creates an efficient and strong ducting system.
Before you knew it we had installed all the ducting that would provide dust collection to the Table Saw, Jointer, Planer, two band saws, several benchtop tools, and a couple floor sweeps. We sometimes over look things like proper dust collection in our personal or small business shop because it only effects us. We knew that regardless of any external requirements we needed to make sure we did everything possible to create a safe environment for these kids to learn and build. I know that my next shop will definitely be equipped with Nordfab ducting and after this experience of working with their product but also because of the kind of people this company finds value in keeping around both as employees and also as their licensed dealers.
I can not put into words how grateful we are for everything Nordfab Ducting has done for the kids at the Falcon Children’s Home Wood Shop. A big thank you to the rest of the install crew for all the help! If you are in the market for a dust collection system then I encourage you to head over to their website and check out all they have to offer. You can also read more about the installation and see more pictures over at their blog at:
Pictures of installation are courtesy of Nordfab Ducting