A Summer Job... Delta Millwork Style!

Cas in front of saw small

What do you do when your 11 year old daughter walks into your office looking for a job because she wants to buy a Picachu jacket with ears? Yea, mom refused to buy her the jacket, so she comes to dad. I’m sure she thought all she had to do was flash her baby blues, promise to pick up trash and she’d walk out with some money. But when I offered to teach her to use our big saw and let her make spice racks for a few days, she got really excited about the job.

Within two hours, the 4’10” worker, normally known for her hip hop skills on the dance floor, churned out over 1,000 parts from our CNC (computer controlled) saw.

Before you call the labor department on us, let’s take a look at today’s modern saws to see how my little eighty pound kid did all that work.

The first lesson was showing my pint-sized employee how to input the measurements into the computer and what buttons to push. (this will serve as her summer math lesson) There are buttons for clamping, sawing and moving the wood through the machine. But how does a little girl maneuver a 90 pound sheet of wood onto the machine in the first place?

MDF on lift smallWell, there’s a hydraulic lift on the machine to help muscle up the heavy wood sheets each weighing about 90lbs. And once the sheets of wood are on the platform, it works like an air hockey table. The air does all the work as the tiny employee merely guides it through. The machine also holds multiple sheets at the same time, so she could cut 5 pieces at a time.

Not too long after working at the shop I heard Cazzy telling her friends about her summer job. “The machine works like magic once you know what buttons to push” I heard her explain. “There were these guards that flipped down when the machine started cutting and then they’d flip up and push out the wood for me,” said Cazzy with a somewhat superior attitude toward the group of girls sitting around the table in awe. “There was some math involved but I used a calculator for that” she went on to say.
Cas stacking parts small

 “The hardest part was having to carry the parts and stack them on the floor,” she told everyone. “It was really hard and it took the whole day. I was sweating like a dog ‘cause the shop doesn’t have air condition.”

Cas moving parts small
She later told me “Dad, all those girls did this summer was like, do their nails, like, while I worked my butt off.” She rolled her eyes and walked off. Like, OMG, I thought. 

 

In spite of the heat, Cazzy says she plans to apply for work every summer. 

 

“It’s giving me something to do… having the satisfaction of actually working and doing something,” she said.

 

In the meantime, the junior carpenter with the colorful braces can be seen haunting the locals malls in search of the perfect Pikachu jacket.

 Pokemon jacket

 

  

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