Name: Mark M. Fill, Manager
Address: 2334 Glenmoor Drive, West Dundee, IL 60118
Company: MMF Leathercraft, LLC
Website: "mmfleather.com" NOTE: Our website is not ready as of this writing. We expect that it will launch sometime next month (July 2014).
Tell us a little bit about your company, MMF Leathercraft, LLC:
MMF Leathercraft, LLC was founded in West Dundee as an Illinois company in 2011 with myself, Mark M. Fill, as manager. The expansion of my childhood love of leather crafting combined with determination and a design talent developed over the years made it possible. The company is a cottage industry shop that designs, creates, and sells custom hand-made quality products made of leather. We purchase the best domestically produced materials available for use in our products. We are proud to say that our products are "Made In America." You may notice some designs are influenced by the ambiance of the North-woods, one of my favorite places. The prominent retail sale outlet is the company web site presence on the internet. Other outlets are company outings to selective craft fairs and trade shows where Betsy, my wife, helps me set-up as a vendor. As Betsy and I approach our senior years we pray that this business will be productive and keep us active for many years to come.
How did you first get started in leather crafting?
Earning the leather craft merit badge in Boy Scouts was my first exposure to leather crafting. I liked doing it and still have the little booklet that explained the process, activities, and required crafts.
What are some of your stories on leather crafting?
During Basic Training at Fort Polk, I found something interesting. They had a craft shop there staffed with an elderly guy who was a leather crafter. I would spend my spare time standing in line for an hour or two at the pay phone (cell phones didn't exist yet) to call my wife Betsy, and then go to the craft shop to work with leather. Three months later Boot Camp was completed, a soldier I was, but I also learned a lot more about leather crafting thanks to the old crafter in the shop.
How long have you had your Tippmann Machines BOSS, Clicker & Embosser?
I've had the BOSS, 7 Ton Clicker, and Embosser for almost three years.
What made you decide to purchase these machines?
First, I did some research to find out what the market had available. Second, I gave some careful consideration to the size of my operation, amount of automation desired, and available budget. Third, after narrowing my choices, Tippmann Industrial seemed to have the best price, selection, and design durability of machines and accessories to accommodate my needs. Fourth, a conversation with Jim Miller convinced me that I should have ordered these machines yesterday. In reality, the Tippmann support and customer service has been there whenever I need it.
Do you recommend any accessories?
For the BOSS the flip-up guide, and light kit are nice. Also I bought the cobblers bench to mount the machine on. I had to cut a few inches off the legs of the bench (because I have short legs) and I was able to take care of that myself. It's comfortable and working fine. For the Embosser I have quite a few embossing/creasing rolls which give me flexibility in designing my work. For the 7 Ton Clicker the stand with the work surface and wheels is great especially if you're not planning to leave this heavy machine in the same place for a long time.
On the BOSS: Plenty of light helps the operator see much better and do regular lubrication of moving parts.
On the Embosser: A couple extra 3/16" square keys in ¼ and ¾" length. Every once in a while I tend to misplace those things and it's nice to have a spare on hand.
On the 7 Ton Clicker: I use a small 3 gal 125 psi compressor which I had before I bought my Clicker. The small compressor works OK but has to refill too frequently to maintain the specified pressure that the Clicker needs (minimal reserve). I think my next tool purchase will be a larger shop size (say 20 gal) compressor to improve available air supply for the Clicker. Even with the small compressor I'm able to easily cut through ¼" thick sole bend leather with a 4" diameter die that I use for coasters.
Calling All Leathercrafters!
We are always interested to see new projects made with our machinery. If you or someone you know would be interested in being one of our future featured customers, let us know and we would be happy to interview you.
Thank you for joining us today! We hope you stop by again soon!