Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - 22

Adding automation can prove challenging,
with costs to consider, processes to change
and nervous employees to reckon with.
Still, fabricators who have taken the leap
say there's no other way to go.

O
INT

E
TH

hen Darren Arthur, owner of
Nautilux Custom Canvas LLC
in Hazlet, N.J., purchased
a single-fly Aeronaut cutter eight years
ago-his first foray into automation-most
in the industry felt such technology was
better-suited for large, high-volume shops,
not small operations like his. At the time,
Arthur, who provides custom textile
products to the marine industry, had just
one employee. Although he was looking to
increase production, finding good workers
was a struggle. A cutter, he reasoned,
would allow him to take on more work
despite this challenge.
Even though this acquisition was a
big leap of faith, Arthur knew he could
make it work. His optimism was bolstered
by his engineering and CAD background.
He quickly began seeing benefits.
"We realized a 32 percent overall
reduction in material costs because of less
waste and more accurate ordering," he
recalls. "I was able to order exactly what
I needed rather than having to estimate.
Our shipping costs were reduced as well."
Inspired, he later added several
digitizing devices to his toolbox and
recently purchased an Artec Leo 3D
scanner for outdoor use. Although Arthur
could tell in one month that ordering
the cutter had been a good idea, it took
about two years before ROI was achieved.
However, he anticipates the ROI for the
3D scanner will be realized in just months.
"Technology is going to happen;
you need to embrace it or you'll get left
behind," he says. "There will come a time
when technology has advanced so far
that the industry as we know it today will
no longer exist. If you're going to open a
sail loft shop today, you won't be able to
compete without technology."

22 REVIEW JUNE 2020

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5/14/20 10:42 PM



Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020

Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - Cover1
Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - Cover2
Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - 1
Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - 2
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Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - Cover3
Specialty Fabrics Review June 2020 - Cover4
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