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Furniture and cabinet making

A cabinet maker is an expert in making furniture from timber to very high specifications.

Cabinet makers make or repair furniture from solid timber or timber based products. Cabinet makers may specialise in particular areas such as bespoke design and make re-production of antique furniture, fittings furniture, office furniture, shop fittings and production furniture. Cabinet makers will operate a variety of hand tools and woodworking machines, such as power saws, jointers, and mortisers to surface, cut, or shape timber or timber based products to manufacture furniture.

This competition has been designed to reflect the role of a cabinet maker and the standards that are expected within the construction industry.


Competition overview:

Competitors will be marked throughout the competition:

  • Competitors will be able to work to within 0.9mm on dimensions and closer on the fit of joints
  • Competitors will gain marks for arcuate marking out to recognised standards, the clean and crisp cutting of joint and fit, shaping of timber using a range of planes and preparing the timber to receive a finish
  • Competitors will lose marks for loosely fitting joints, rough surfaces on joints, poor planning and finishing skills
  • Competitors have to work in a safe manner and will lose marks if this is not adhered to

General instructions:

  • The maximum working time for the task is 6 hours at the Regional Qualifiers
  • The maximum working time for the task is 18 hours at the UK National Final
  • SkillBuild UK National Final competitors could progress onto EuroSkills and WorldSkills competitions if all the relevant criteria have been met

Core competencies

To take part in this competition you should be able to:

  • Interpret drawings
  • Accurately mark out timber before working on it
  • Cut wood with saws and chisels
  • Cut and shape materials with hand and machine tools
  • Assemble finished products
  • Work to within 0.9mm on dimensions, and closer on the fit of joints
  • Keep the work area clean and tidy
  • Work in a safe manner
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