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Your Dream Premises

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Mobilewraps

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Post Sat Jun 28, 2003 1:40 pm

Your Dream Premises

I am about to get somewhere to set up a new businesss premises. I have been working from home for the last 8 months and have run out of room.

Can you give me your ideas (-) on what should be included if you were doing it all over again.

Thanks

Scott
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Rodney Gold

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Post Sat Jun 28, 2003 2:37 pm

I suppose one has to look at sizeof premises and your workflow and what processes you use?
Decent lighting , insulation and heating/cooling , the ability to perhaps expand the premises , Air , 3 phase electricity or a decent supply with plenty plug points , the ability to screen off areas (like no routing near assembly or a totally seperate dirty are for spraying , compressors , sandblasters etc), a HUGE layout/work bay , running hot and cold water , decent ventialtion without a "breeze" , a floor/premises that is easy to clean , a few phones or extensions near where you usually work, a drive in door, plenty rack and shelf space , a decent private office and IMHO the MOST important , if customers come in is a showroom or display area
Make this stunning , splurge on it , do decent lighting , top class displays , a small table and chair , perhaps a computer to show designs , make whomsover comes in KNOW that they are going to get the best job around!!!!
It's always good to be near a lot of other businesses , like being in a big industrial area if your thrust of business is to them etc - make it convenient for your customer to find you , park etc and for your suppliers to deliver to you quick.
Our major problems were with electrical supply and wiring and getting air all over the place
We just moved to new premises and it's a nightmare , a million things to organize and prepare prior to moving. Rather pay a months rent and prepare the premises and don't disrupt the workflow than try move and prepare and still service clients all at once.
We also underestimated space requirements and moved into almost triple our old area and when we bought some more equipment , 2 months later , we had to re-rent our old premises (luckily round the corner) so perhaps you should look at more than you require right now , as you are obviously expanding
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Robert Lambie

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Post Sat Jun 28, 2003 2:41 pm

exactly what do you do in house & what does the bulk of your work consist of?

do you make signs or is it all vehicle work you do?
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signworks.se

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Post Sat Jun 28, 2003 3:31 pm

Location of premises is just as important as size.
You have to ask yourself how you are going to get the punters through the door!. Has most of your recent work been through word of mouth, passing trade or shear hard work on your part touting for business?.
Should you be looking for passing trade then a high street shop, or unit on busy road will be the ideal, however, the sort of passing trade a shop sometimes atracts leaves a lot to be desired. We sub let part of a unit from a company that has many people in and out collecting hire equipment, this in itself has given us some good orders. Should you find an industrial estate the route you want to take ask the management office if they have an estate portfolio, as some produce a list of companies on the estate in the hope all tenants will do business with each other.

Anyway good luck and happy hunting!.

Cheers
Danny :)
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keith

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Post Sat Jun 28, 2003 11:15 pm

I agree with Danny. Location is V. important. Being on a quiet industrial estate makes the job harder as business has to be brought in.
Choose one with as many different trades as possible. This way you should be able to attract business most of the year when various cycles finish.
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Mobilewraps

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Post Sun Jun 29, 2003 12:17 am

I should have said what we do :-?
Most of our work is based on digital printing so we will obviously need a suitable are for the printer which is warm, dry, dust free etc.
We do a lot of the large real estate signs with photos, the 3 main sizes are 1200mm x 900mm, 1200mm x 1800mm and 1800mm x 2400mm. These are full digital prints and we apply these in the upright position against the wall (as we do with most of our digital prints) so we don't need huge amounts of bench space for applying these. We do need a bit of space for a racking system to hang our prints while they are drying.
We also need a bit of an area for trimming ie when we print a set of posters etc then we need to trim them to the correct size, so I will need to set aside an area.
I want a drive in area for vehicles as we want this to be the main part of our work in the future and we also want good heating and cooling (especially the heating).
I love Rodneys Idea of a top class showroom, I think there is some great things we can do with our prints in a showroom area.

I already think the size of the couple of premises we are looking at will be too small, they will probably be ok now, but in another 6 months they will not be large enough.

Location, this may sound stupid but I want somewhere quiet where I don't get too many people dropping in. So far, all and I mean ALL of our business has come from us approaching clients.
We are basing our business on dealing with a smaller number of high value clients. We don't have a sign at our current location and we have not done any advertising, our phone number is not even listed in the phone book (now that is stupid and I must change the phone listing :o )
We have "picked" the customers we want to do business with and found it works well so far. Nearly all our customers have also given us repeat orders and referrals too which is great!
At the moment there is just me and we hire casual staff when needed (I have some mates I get to help and I give them a few beers). This means the "office" is not always attended as I am often out, so this is another reason I am not wanting people knocking at my door and getting annoyed that there is no one there.

Thanks for the advice on location, it is definatly improtant that customers are easily able to find us, but I guess I am mostly wanting to know what internal requirements we may need in a new premises.

Scott
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Rodney Gold

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Post Sun Jun 29, 2003 4:15 pm

We are more or less in the same position , we use a soljet and a few Roland PC thermal printers and some epson deskjets to digitally print

On getting the Soljet pro II we realised that we needed a dedicated area for it and the 1.8m wide hot/cold laminator that finishes its output
Depending on material the prints can take up to a day to dry 100%.
We came up with a nice system where we use cheap pulleys and hoist prints to the roof to hang ( same system pulls long prints away from the printer - we cant use take up rolls cos of drying)
You still need space to have the print come out the machine if you dont have that system as well as a lot of space in front and behind the laminator as well as space to trim and stack. we are getting a lot of contract work for the laminator as well which does hot/cold/encapsulation/pouching and mounting so we needed space for those materials too.
Our main concerns were heating , cold materials are hell to work with , so hot/cold aircon was a must and then lighting was important , espcially with digital printing to proof colours , so a natural skylight or lighting that emulates where most of your prints will end up is quite important.
So was a delivery /loading bay. In my case the showroom and offices are elsewhere. We also made up very large working tables to work with large signboards etc , all this translated into space - lots of it
Dust free is also very important , where we are right now has 2 almost seperate rooms , joined by a large arch. In one room we have a spray booth and a our large format overhead routers , cnc engravers , table saws ,sandblasters etc which is very convenenient as it seperates dirty from clean processes which is vital for digital printing. Our roland PC's are extremely dust sensitive , thats why we stress re dust more than most , otherwise it costs us heads.
Air borne dust settles on prints and makes laminating a nightmare so we make sure that we filter incoming air and make sure the whole building is pressurised via this air , we have also used heavy duty builder type plastic to ensure the load bay (in your case the vehicle application area) is sealed off so we dont get cold unfiltered air.
I would imagine in your case you would want your vehicle application area to be super clean and warm as well.

We use broomsticks with clips to hoist prints up , cheap pulleys and thin nylon rope , , you can leave about 30 cm between prints and can hang up tons of them , be careful bout breezes , if the prints wave around you get slip and slides (tho we weight the bottoms to stop this and have "angled" the positions randomly . We used louver blind tracks for these pulleys as you can change angles and move em along with them.
We do the same with some of the rolls of laminating and printing media , we slip em over the broomsticks and hoist em up out the way.
I do a lot of very fine type work , at very high resolution so my customers are fussy re surface finish and we really dont want to handle the media a lot at all , we find it creases , kinks , marks etc , espcially long full width stuff. We laminate most stuff , espcially vehicle graphics - no matter what you print with , vehicle graphics are exposed to terrible stuff , vandals , scratching , high temp extremes , abraisive washing stuff , car washes , polutants , uv etc.
I think your best area would be a central industrial one with a high ceilinged mini warehouse. depending on weather extremes , I would say a Aircon is essental for moisture and temp and dust and comfort and venting.
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Mobilewraps

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Post Mon Jun 30, 2003 11:49 pm

I think we may have found somewhere suitable.
Lots of space, room for vehicles, hot and cold air con, in an industrial area and easy to find!
Will let you know how it goes, we are having a look today.

Scott
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Mobilewraps

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Post Tue Jul 01, 2003 1:43 am

Rodney,

I am also about to buy a trimmer. My printer is 1370mm wide and I am thinking of getting a 1500mm unit.
What size do you have and is it too big/small?
I don't know if I should go a bit larger to 2000mm or 2500mm?
There is not much price difference between the 1500mm and the 2000mm, but the price jumps up quite a bit to the next size (2500mm).

What would you recomend.
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Rodney Gold

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Post Tue Jul 01, 2003 6:54 am

Buy big , bag as you can , We have a rotary trimmer that is 1.6 m wide , also for 1370 printer - problem is , iys difficult to trim long prints down the sides.
The trimmer was cheap and it works damn well , made locally with a salf sharpening blade and real easy to use , about R1800 on a stand (GBP 130 or so )

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