Cornhole Board Update

An update on the progress of my “cradle to cradle” sustainable aluminum cornhole board construction:

I talked with the people a The Crucible in Oakland and despite being a member and having experience with the machines I want to use, they won’t let me access the machine shop as part of their “create” program without taking a bunch of machine shop classes there first. Taking the machine shop classes and joining the “crate”program for 90 days would add $930 and 4 months to the cornhole board project. Considering I could buy a brand new drill press and band saw (the only two machine shop tools I need to build the board) for less than $930, and have this thing built in a week, that’s a terrible deal.

So I’m going to send out a “request for quotes” to various machine shops in Oakland and Berkeley to see who will manufacture my parts for the least amount of money.

The shops I’m going to send RFQs to are:

Estimating the machine setup and manufacturing time for each part, I’m worried that this could get pretty expensive:

  • Upper and lower bars:  2 angle cuts (10 minutes each), 11 large straight holes (2 minutes each), 3 small straight holes (2 minutes each), 4 small angled holes (5 minutes each), 4 angled recess holes (5 minutes each): 2*(2*10+11*2+3*2+4*5+4*5)=176 minutes
  • Side bars: 2 angle cuts (10 minutes each), 11 large straight holes (2 minutes each), 4 small straight holes (2 minutes each), 4 small angled holes (5 minutes each), 4 angled recess holes (5 minutes each): 2*(2*10+11*2+4*2+4*5+4*5)=180 minutes
  • Cross bars: cut to length (5 minutes ), 14 large straight holes (2 minutes each), 4 small straight holes (2 minutes each): 2*(5+14*2+4*2)=82 minutes
  • Legs: 1 angle cut (5 minutes), 1 small straight hole (2 minutes), 4 large straight holes (2 minutes each): 2*(5+2+4*2)=30 minutes
  • Total manufacturing time: 7.8 hours

Even at California minimum wage ($8/hour), the board would cost $62.4 in labor. At a more realistic $50/hour, manufacturing would be $390.

So as a test of our globalized manufacturing system, I’m also going to upload the RFQ to MFG.com to see how much it would cost to get it manufactured in a Malaysian sweat shop (which would completely go against the entire sustainability ethos of the project).

 

Cornhole4

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Will Martin is an energy analyst and expert on peak oil and alternative currencies. He is an MBA graduate of Cornell University, where he was a Roy H. Park Leadership Fellow and concentrated on studying sustainability in business through the school’s Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise. Prior to his MBA, Will worked in the energy industry, living in Singapore, Houston and Dubai. Will is a recipient of the 2012 “Pioneer Award” from the Association for the Study of Peak Oil and Gas (ASPO-USA). He currently works as a carbon trading commercial adviser in the San Francisco Bay Area. Will is a bitcoin enthusiast and in 2014 published the book “Anonymous Cryptocurrencies,” which became a #1 best seller in 3 Amazon categories and was the first book to be sold on a decentralized marketplace.

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