Informational and Analytical Report Sample


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Sample informational and analytical report using the yardstick approach to select, compare and offer recommendations for a power miter saw.

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Informational and Analytical Report Sample

  1. 1. Yardstick 1Running head: SLIDING COMPOUND MITER SAW Sliding Compound Miter Saw for Crowne Molding, Inc. Yardstick Assignment Theodore V.G. Wolfs July 26, 2011 Walsh College
  2. 2. Yardstick 2DATE: MAY 18, 2008TO: JOHN CROWNE, OWNERFROM: THEODORE V.G. WOLFS, SHOP SUPERVISORSUBJECT: CHOICE OF SLIDING COMPOUND MITER SAW Purpose StatementHere is the report you requested May 5, 2008 for examining and recommending a solution tooutfit each of our eight mobile installation units with a miter saw to satisfy their on-site needs.This report discusses the best options available to Crowne Moldings for the specific criterianeeded. It then evaluates three miter saw models and presents a recommendation based on thatevaluation. Problem: Appropriate Miter SawIn an effort to reduce costs and to improve the quality, efficiency, and the customer satisfactionof our custom installations, Crowne Moldings will need to change the process of how our custominstallations are done. Currently, our operation sends a technician to measure all molding andtrim work on-site and returns to the warehouse with a list to pre-cut the molding and trim. Theinstallation crew returns to the site to install the pre-cut molding and trim. When installing themolding and trim the miters at the inside or outside corners may not align properly, due toimproper lengths, incorrect miter or bevel angles, or pre-cuts made in error. This increases theinstallation time, the number of trips back and forth to the warehouse for new molding or trim to
  3. 3. Yardstick 3correct mistakes, and contributes to the dissatisfaction of our customers with the less thanprofessional performance of our workmanship. Solutions and Alternatives: Sliding Compound Miter SawOutfitting our mobile units each with a rugged, accurate, and portable sliding compound mitersaw will allow for quick custom cuts for precision fits and will speed up the installation processon-site. As the Home Depot buying guide states, “Whether you choose a standard miter saw forbasic cutting or a sliding compound model for more advanced functionality, the right saw cansubstantially reduce the time it takes you to complete simple things like cutting molding…”(Home Depot, 2008, p. 1). A point further supported by the Lowe’s buying guide, “SlidingCompound Miter Saws have all the versatility of compound miter saws and a sliding feature,similar to a radial arm saw. The major advantage of the sliding feature is the increased length ofcut it provides. Some sliding saws can make crosscuts in excess of 11”” (Lowe’s, 2008, p.1). Thewarehouse may still pre-cut the pieces but now will allow stock for fitting on-site. The on-sitecustom cuts will increase our installation accuracy and contribute to the overall professionalfinished appearance of the molding and trim work.In selecting the miter saw, we should look for rugged durability, versatility, and portability.These saws will be subjected to the wear and tear of transporting in the cargo area of our worktrucks. The weight of the miter saw should be kept to a minimum to allow easy lifting by theinstallers as they set-up the saw on-site. There is a concern for back-injuries due to lifting. Themiter saw should offer versatility to handle all of our molding and trim sizes to eliminate theneed to return to the warehouse to make a cut. To improve on the miss-aligned miter problems,
  4. 4. Yardstick 4the miter saw should have an increased capacity of range for the bevel and miter settings. Thisshould allow for greater customization to fit for problem corners and the proper fitting ofmoldings and trim. To speed up the installation process, the miter saw should be a dual-bevel asthe Home Depot buying guide suggests, “While single-bevel compound saws tilt to one side,dual-bevel saws tilt left and right, allowing you to make bevel cuts in either direction withoutflipping your work. Dual-bevel miter saws are best suited for applications requiring you to cutlarge materials or make frequent bevel cuts” (Home Depot, 2008, p.1).Since Crowne Moldings will be purchasing eight of these saws to outfit the mobile installationunits, I found it prudent to shop at Lowe’s Home Improvement to take advantage of ourcorporate account which entitles us to 15% discount on all corporate purchases. Lowe’s offersthree sliding compound miter saws brands in stock and have each model available for display.The 12” sliding compound miter saw brands offered at Lowe’s are: Hitachi model #C12LSH,Bosch model #5412L, and the Dewalt model #DW718 Figure 1. Establishing Criteria for Selecting Sliding Compound Miter SawAs Kit Camp writes in his article comparing the various brands of miter sawsavailable in Fine Homebuilding: Twelve-inch sliding compound miter saws are the go-to tool for carpenters who want it all in one package. These saws have the precision and accuracy to cut miles of trim one day, and the power to tackle a stack of framing lumber the next. This versatility makes them
  5. 5. Yardstick 5 the standard for many job sites and home shops. But 12-in.sliders are bulkier, heavier, and more expensive than most job-site tools, which makes a side-by-side comparison especially important when choosing between models. (Camp, 2008, p.70).In order to choose among the three models, I established criteria based on professional articles,store buying guides, corporate websites, and personal experience comparing the display modelsand hands-on experience. Here are the four groups of criteria I used in evaluating the threesliding compound miter saw models: 1. Weight – Is the saw lighter in weight compared to the other offerings? Does the lighter weight affect the durability and strength? 2. Durability – Is it perceived that the construction of the saw and its components can endure the wear and tear of transport? 3. Cutting capacity – What is the vertical cutting, 90° cross cut, miter and bevel capacity? (As described in Figure 1.) 4. Costs – Does the saw offer value for the money? Discussion: Evaluating Sliding Compound Miter Saws Hitachi C12LSH Bosch 5412L Dewalt 718
  6. 6. Yardstick 6Each model was evaluated using the four criteria just described. Data comparing the models aresummarized in Table 1.Table 1 A COMPARISON OF SLIDING COMPOUND MITER SAWS AT LOWE’S Brand Hitachi C12LSH Bosch 5412L Dewalt 718 Hitachi, 2008) (Bosch, 2007) (Dewalt, 2008)Amps 15 15 15No Load Speed (RPM) 3,800 3,800 3,600Blade Diameter (Inches) 12” 12” 12”Noise Rating (Decibels) 112 db 99 db 107 dbLaser Guide Yes Yes Optional ($70)*Vertical Capacity (Inches) 4-3/4” 5-1/2” 6-1/2”90° Cross Cut Capacity 4-3/16 x 12-1/4” 4-1/4” x 12-1/2” 2 x 14”(Inches)Miter Capacity (Degrees) 52° L to 60° R 52° L to 60° R 60° L to 51° RBevel Capacity (Degrees) 45° L to 45° R 47° L to 47° R 48° L to 48° RWeight (Pounds) 66.1 lbs 80 lbs 53 lbsPrice $649.00 $727.27 $679.00*Price courtesy of three came in at less than 100 pounds. Dewalt came in at only 53 pounds. Kit Camp rated theDewalt “Best-in-Class: Easiest to carry” (Camp, 2008, p.70). He also stated: “The Dewalt saw is the lightest, most compact of the bunch, and I found it the easiest to carry. This saw is an excellent choice for those who install a lot of tall baseboard and
  7. 7. Yardstick 7 large crown molding, or for just about anyone who has to pack and unpack a saw everyday. (Camp, 2008, p.74).Comparing the other two models in the store, their bases appear to be made of steel which mayhave added weight to their volume. Dewalt, however, with its base made of aluminum makes itlighter.DurabilityAs you may see from the pictures, the Hitachi and Bosch models look less rugged. These modelshave a light attachment which can be broken off and lost during transport. The handles andknobs looked as if they could easily be cracked and broken if they were to suffer a blow. TheLED featured on the Hitachi model as described by Camp, “The most notable is the digitalreadout for the miter and bevel scales, which might point to the future of these tools.” (Camp,2008, p.74). The digital readout may be vulnerable during transport. The Hitachi model alsooffered some disappointment as Camp states,” For instance, the stock blade cuts well, but there ismore play in the slides than I would like (about 3⁄32 in.). Also, this was the only saw that arrivedwith fences out of square” (Camp, 2008, p.74). Accuracy also plagues the Bosch model as Campstates,” Unfortunately, the model I tried out had some problems with accuracy. With the railsfully extended, I could push the head of the saw more than a full blade width either way fromcenter” (Camp, 2008, p.72). The Dewalt has neither of the extra features of a light nor digitalread-out and with its aluminum base it appears to be rugged and durable. Its handles and knobsare made from rugged black neoprene.
  8. 8. Yardstick 8Cutting capacityAccording to Table 1, the Hitachi and Bosch models have a greater height in 90° cross cutcapacity at 4-3/16” and 4-1/4” respectively but the Dewalt model surpasses the others in verticalcutting, miter and bevel capacity. These capacities may offer us some advantages in our customline of work.CostsThe Hitachi, with its additional features, comes in the lowest price of this class at $649. Dewaltcomes in at a close second, only $30 more. Bosch, however, takes third at $727.27. Dewalt isoffering a manufacturer’s sale until the end of May 31, 2008, that offers the DW718 model for$599 at their distributors. Lowe’s is honoring that sale in addition to our 15% discount. Conclusion and RecommendationI visited the local Lowe’s Home Improvement store to see firsthand the models in thiscomparison. I used the above criteria to make my personal evaluation. I have worked with theDewalt model while taking woodworking courses at the Woodcraft store in Sterling Heights. Theunit in the workshop is two years’ old and has been used by numerous students. The saw hasseen some abuse from naïve students but still cuts accurately. I also own a DW718 unit myselfand could not be happier with purchase. I recommend the Dewalt DW718 12” sliding compoundmiter saw to outfit our eight mobile installation units.
  9. 9. Yardstick 9 ReferencesBosch. (2007). 12” Dual-bevel slide miter saw with upfront controls & laser tracking. Retreived May 17, 2008, from aspx?pid=5412lCamp, K., (2008, March 5). Testing 12-in. sliding compound-miter saws, they’re big and expensive, but versatile enough for framing, trim, siding, and cabinetry work. Fine Homebuilding, 194, 70-75. Tauton Press, Inc.Dewalt. (2008). Heavy-duty 12” (305mm) double-bevel sliding compound miter saw – DW718. Retreived May 17, 2008, from productID=9793Hitachi Power Tools Hitachi Koki USA, Ltd. (2008). C12LSH 12” Sliding dual compound miter saw with LCD display and laser marker. Retrieved May 17, 2008, from http://www iID=518&arrPath=1,6,41,p518,&tab=2&tab=1&tab=2#Home Depot Homer TLC, Inc. (2008) Buying guide: Miter saws. Retrieved May 17, 2008, from pn=Mitre_Saws&langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053Lowe’s (2008) Buying guide for miter saws. Retrieved May 17, 2008, from http://www.lowes. com/lowes/lkn?action=howTo&p=BuyGuide/chsmitersaw