Cabinet Maker Kaihanga Kapata Taonga
Cabinet makers make and repair fittings and furniture for homes, businesses and boats.
Cabinet makers may do some or all of the following:
- use computer-aided design (CAD) programs to design furniture
- select timber and other materials, and cut to size
- screw or glue the pieces together, and attach fittings such as handles
- trim, sand and polish or paint furniture
- repair or replace damaged furniture parts
- program computers to operate machinery
- calculate costs if they have their own cabinet-making business
- supervise other cabinet makers if working in a factory.
Cabinet makers need to have steady hands and good hand-eye co-ordination. People with asthma or other breathing problems need to be able to control these conditions in the workshop.
Useful experience for cabinet makers includes:
- furniture sales work
- work in carpentry or joinery.
Cabinet makers must be:
- quick and neat in their work
- accurate, with an eye for detail
- able to work independently or as part of a furniture factory team.
Cabinet makers need to have:
- knowledge of furniture styles, and timber and cabinet-making materials
- cabinet-making skills, including knowledge of furniture-making and repair methods
- design skills
- technical drawing skills and the ability to read diagrams
- knowledge of production standards
- the ability to operate machinery and use tools correctly.
Self-employed cabinet makers need marketing and business skills.
- usually work regular business hours but may work late or at weekends to complete orders
- work in factories or small workshops
- work in conditions that can be noisy, dusty and may contain fumes.
A minimum of three years of secondary education is recommended. Useful subjects include English, maths, technology, and design & visual communication.
Cabinet makers can progress into supervisor or management roles, or become self-employed.
They may also specialise in making marine cabinets for boats, ships and yachts.
Years Of Training3-4 years of training usually required.
To become a cabinet maker you need to complete an apprenticeship and gain a National Certificate in Furniture Making (Level 4) through Competenz.
Marine cabinet makers can gain a National Certificate in Boatbuilding - Cabinet Making (Level 4) from the New Zealand Marine and Composites Industry Training Organisation.
- Competenz website - career information for furniture and cabinet making
- New Zealand Marine and Composites Industry Training Organisation website - information on training in marine cabinet making