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Thread: Maietta Cycles

  1. #141
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    The spring issue of the WPI (Worcester Polytechnic Institute) alumni magazine came in the mail yesterday. Its a NAHBS late and I no longer work for Simonds as my career with Tiffany & Co. begins Monday, but its a nice blurb nonetheless. The racing pic is me at a cross race in Warwick, Rhode Island.

    Last edited by anthonymaietta; 04-27-2011 at 08:23 AM.
    Anthony Maietta
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    "The person who says it can not be done, should not interrupt the person doing it."
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  2. #142
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Now you've got my attention-
    What are you going to be doing at Tiffany?
    AND- are you going to be able to get wholesale jewels for NAHBS 2012?
    -m
    mickey.denoncourt
    Product Manager- Commonwealth Cycles
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  3. #143
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    Quote Originally Posted by suspectdevice View Post
    Now you've got my attention-
    What are you going to be doing at Tiffany?
    AND- are you going to be able to get wholesale jewels for NAHBS 2012?
    -m
    Mickey,

    I will be a New Product Manufacturing Engineer for Tiffany & Co. in their Cumberland, Rhode Island manufacturing facility. Nearly half of what they make is only available for sale 18 months and less, so they are always developing manufacturing processes for the new products. Items such as their iconic 6 pronged engagement rings have been made for 150 years, and there are enhancements made to those processes, but the bulk of my work will be with the new items. My first day is this Monday (May 2nd) and I have had the last 4 weeks off to work full time in my shop and spend a lot of time with my wife. The time off has been incredibly productive; I have built, painted and delivered 6 bicycles and 2 S&S retrofits. 4 of the 5 eBay frames guaranteed for a June 21st delivery are already in the hands of their excited new owners (or on a UPS truck heading their way).

    I am very excited about my new job. Tiffany & Co. is an industry leader, not only in the quality of their product, but also in their vigilance to procure their metal and stones ethically (something that was very important to me). Their manufacturing facility is very modern and clean; which will give me the opportunity to learn many many new things. Over the past 4 weeks I have had a lot of time to think about my framebuilding and where it sits in my 5, 10, 20 year plan. While my time in the shop is some of the most enjoyable I have, I feel at peace with my decision to put a full-time framebuilding career on hold for a few more years. My business travel will be significantly less; possibly none at all...which I am very pleased with. Everything in my shop has been paid for in cash and all I am required to generate is enough profit to pay my rent and utilities. I still plan to hold liability insurance, operate as a legit business entity, and exhibit at NAHBS; which means nothing will change from the last 5 years except the location of where I spend 40-50 hours of my week.

    That's probably more than you were asking, but thanks for the chance to tell the story!

    Tony
    Anthony Maietta
    Web Site | Blog | Flickr
    "The person who says it can not be done, should not interrupt the person doing it."
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  4. #144
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Tony,
    What prompted you to the decision NOT to go into full time building yet, more to do with financial security than anything else?
    Bill
     
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  5. #145
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Tony; since you are interested in the ethical harvesting of precious stones, I suggest you read "Diamonds, DeBeers, and the World" by Stefan Kanfer. Fascinating history of the diamond industry in Africa.

    And for the Jewish members of our forum, Stefan Kanfer also wrote a lengthy history of he Catskill NY resort area, which is steeped in Jewish culture. I picked this up because the book mentioned above was so engaging.
     
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  6. #146
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    So,
    No pro-form on Jade eh?

    How much does the logistics of the shop move make you want to stab yourself in the eye?
    mickey.denoncourt
    Product Manager- Commonwealth Cycles
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  7. #147
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    tony atmo - i have been wondering about this a lot, especially lately...

    with a full plate at the day job as well as having clients in the queue, how do you budget your time and/or transition from the work day to the, er - work day for filling orders? what does the routine look like for someone who makes frames at nights and on weekends? this must make free time very expensive. can you map it out so we have a better picture? others here also have careers that come before their frame making; i'll post to them too.
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  8. #148
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    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    tony atmo - i have been wondering about this a lot, especially lately...

    with a full plate at the day job as well as having clients in the queue, how do you budget your time and/or transition from the work day to the, er - work day for filling orders? what does the routine look like for someone who makes frames at nights and on weekends? this must make free time very expensive. can you map it out so we have a better picture? others here also have careers that come before their frame making; i'll post to them too.
    In a word, its tough.

    The one pact I made with myself from the beginning was that building bicycle frames would not adversely affect my marriage. As the child of divorced parents (and married to a child of divorced parents) I am acutely aware of how certain behaviors can impact the sense of equality in a relationship. Having a healthy marriage, a career, a business building bikes, some semblance of my fitness, and having a social life with friends is almost impossible...and thats with no kids. Invariably something suffers. Unfortunately it seems to be the last two of my list that always seem to lag first.

    I worked for an industrial cutting tool manufacturer for the last 7 years. As it has been well-documented I started my business building on Toby Stanton's jig, using his tools and painting in his booth. Over time I leased my own space, amassed my own equipment, and am now self-sufficient. During my time at Simonds, and my transition from using someone else's tools to having my own I did it all on nights and weekends. My wife is a high school Spanish teacher and is a licensed massage therapist. She started attending nigh school at The Bancroft School for massage therapy right around when my business took off and she was at class 4 hours every Wednesday and 8 hours every Saturday for 18 months. During that time I would coordinate my shop time with her massage classes. When she graduated she secured on-call massage work at a local holistic health center every Tuesday and Thursday nights and every other Saturday. Again, I coordinate my shop schedule around when she's working. Even if she doesn't have a client, those nights are typically the shop nights. In a prior SO response to a question from Tom Palermo, only having a few hours to work at a time I have found it really helpful to have a plan going into shop: tonight I am going to miter, weld and align the front triangle or tonight I am going to basecoat, decal and shoot the first clear. Boiling a couple cups a water is easier to manage than trying to boil the ocean. Having a well-setup shop that is kept clean and organized allows me to make efficient use of my time too.

    I made the decision about 6 months ago that I needed to change career paths and leave Simonds. Without sounding to cliche, there was some soul-searching whether to pursue a full-time framebuilding career or to seek engineering employment at new corporation. I had the opportunity to secure some contract paint work for big box brand X, and I confided in a few close friends in the business who asked me the difficult questions to help me understand the decision fully. At the end of the day my mortgage and private engineering school (read: expensive...NOT "better than your public school") student loans did not create a situation where I could financially make it work at this time. While I believe my process is efficient enough to generate a livable wage I honestly did not feel my build queue was long enough to feel secure that I could make it work. I guess it was a little bit of cold feet. Now I work for the manufacturing division of Tiffany & Co. in Cumberland, RI and will be moving my shop to a new location sometime in the next month.

    For a long time I did not receive very much fulfillment from my engineering job at Simonds, and consequently fantasized more and more about building full time. The allocation of my time was starting to affect things at home and I had to make a change. Things are very different at my new job and I see the scale tipping in my head to a more healthy balance where building bikes is a nice addition to my life and not a necessity to feel a contribution to the "greater good". As it sits right now I forecast juggling the day job with my framebuilding for a few more years and I am at peace with my decision. Those of us in this position seem to fall into a weird limbo between the professionals and hobbyists. While we (those you posed this question to) have day careers, we all operate our businesses as legit entities, hold liability insurance, and exhibit at the shows, it is sometimes hard to find your place in the industry. At the end of the day I try to keep my head down and keep on building one bike at time. Maybe I'll look up later this year, have 30 bikes in the queue and be in the position to make another career decision. Until that point...I gotta go...time to make the jewelry...
    Anthony Maietta
    Web Site | Blog | Flickr
    "The person who says it can not be done, should not interrupt the person doing it."
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  9. #149
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Quote Originally Posted by anthonymaietta View Post
    In a word, its tough.
    <cut>
    interesting reply atmo - thanks.
    any time you wanna chat or waste some precious time in the woods, i'm here for ya'.
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  10. #150
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    Awesome reply, thanks Tony. Reminds me of my life in some ways (only add two kids into the mix). As an owner of one of your bikes, I encourage you to keep after it.
     
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  11. #151
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    Fantastic reply Anthony. Your words I'm sure will ring true with many individuals, including myself, who both have a day job and a 'side project' that one day could possibly grow into something bigger. Finding that balance is the key, and I'm glad you're happy with the position you find yourself currently, good luck with the new job and with finding that balance. I'll be doing the same myself.
    Jon Fischer
    VeloBase.com
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  12. #152
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Welcome back. New shop looks spiffy.
     
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  13. #153
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    tony atmo - i have been wondering about this a lot, especially lately...

    with a full plate at the day job as well as having clients in the queue, how do you budget your time and/or transition from the work day to the, er - work day for filling orders? what does the routine look like for someone who makes frames at nights and on weekends? this must make free time very expensive. can you map it out so we have a better picture? others here also have careers that come before their frame making; i'll post to them too.
    Thanks for asking this question Richard, it's something I wanted to know.

    And Thanks Tony for the great reply.
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  14. #154
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Quote Originally Posted by MarkC View Post
    Welcome back. New shop looks spiffy.
    ... +1
     
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  15. #155
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    Quote Originally Posted by anthonymaietta View Post
    For a long time I did not receive very much fulfillment from my engineering job at Simonds, and consequently fantasized more and more about building full time. The allocation of my time was starting to affect things at home and I had to make a change. Things are very different at my new job and I see the scale tipping in my head to a more healthy balance where building bikes is a nice addition to my life and not a necessity to feel a contribution to the "greater good". As it sits right now I forecast juggling the day job with my framebuilding for a few more years and I am at peace with my decision. Those of us in this position seem to fall into a weird limbo between the professionals and hobbyists. While we (those you posed this question to) have day careers, we all operate our businesses as legit entities, hold liability insurance, and exhibit at the shows, it is sometimes hard to find your place in the industry. At the end of the day I try to keep my head down and keep on building one bike at time. Maybe I'll look up later this year, have 30 bikes in the queue and be in the position to make another career decision. Until that point...I gotta go...time to make the jewelry...
    It's been about 4 months since I posted this and as I type "4 months" is doesn't read like a long time, but mentally it feels like 40 years. While this might seem like an over-dramization, I feel the need to get a few things off my chest and answer a few of the "what the heck happened to you" questions. Thank you for the indulgence. To re-read the text again for the first time since the end of May I am pleased that it was not a point-in-time thought, but is the truth and how I felt and continue to feel. The good news is that I love my job at Tiffany, I enjoy spending time with my co-workers, I respect my manager, and have found an awesome niche within the company. While Tiffany has manufactured THE championship trophies for (among many other sports) the Super Bowl, the World Series, and the NBA Finals, the company is very new into the championship ring business. I am the lead engineer developing the manufacturing process for future sports ring contracts and it is new and exciting every day. Even after 3 weeks (when I posted the above text) I could tell my balance had shifted. No longer did I rush to get to my shop to do something productive with my day. To be truthful, I lost myself in the new job and along the path lost the way with my customers. The lease on my Massachusetts shop ended on June 30th and through the help of a professional rigging company my shop was moved in one day, but from my Tiffany start date of May 2nd, to the end of June I barely spent any time in my old shop. The floor-print of my new Rhode Island shop was so close that the two spaces are virtually carbon copies of each other. Unpacking was 95% complete in the matter of a week, but I had a mental hurdle to cross to complete the last 5% and actually begin to use the space. It was weird, I would go to my shop and just not really get anything done (maybe a tune up of my road bike, but certainly no building or painting); which was such a departure from my previous routine of hitting the doorway sprinting after a day at the old job. My customer service for a 3 month stretch was embarrassingly poor, and to my customers who were affected I am genuinely sorry. While I am very confident person and every frame is only touched by me, I am sure there was some hesitancy that I could "do it". My mentors (Toby and Zank) were always either in the same shop or across the hallway if I screwed something up. Now I am truly on my own. Also, since I actually enjoy my job I'm not always fantasizing and feeling the pressure of building my business to self-sufficiency. I didn't "have to build" to fulfill a career goal, so I didn't build. My queue of customer's was getting more disgruntled and eventually my hand was forced. A few weeks ago I picked up the welding torch again for the first time since April and rediscovered my love of the craft. The rediscovery was immediate. Also, I immediately discovered I am building better than I ever have. The welds were tighter and smoother than before, frames were straighter and I kept finding myself slowing down to do things better. My attitude in the shop is completely different. I am currently making great strides to resolve my customer service lapses and I know that the frames my customers receive will be better than they were before my brief hiatus. I feel at peace with how things are trending now. My shop is one mile from the Tiffany plant and I have a great perspective of where framebuilding fits into my life.

    I hope to see many of you Friday night at the Builder's Ball in Providence. The bike that I will be showing was built last week and represents who I am as a builder now.

    Thank you for reading.

    I look forward to participating in the framebuilding scene again.

    Respectfully,
    Tony Maietta
    Anthony Maietta
    Web Site | Blog | Flickr
    "The person who says it can not be done, should not interrupt the person doing it."
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  16. #156
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    ^ ^
    nice post atmo.
    welcome back, anthony.
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  17. #157
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Tony- I have been a fan of your work as a bike builder, but the insight into your world and what your are doing, the considerations and effort makes me a fan of you.

    Keep it going.
     
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  18. #158
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    What's up? Did you quit Tiffany, or are you filling in the gaps with building, or going full time as a file pusher/metal melder?
    Just wondering - looks like you remember where all the tubes go!
    - Garro.
    Steve Garro, Coconino Cycles.
    Frames & Bicycles built to measure and Custom wheels
    Hecho en Flagstaff, Arizona desde 2003
    www.coconinocycles.com
    www.coconinocycles.blogspot.com
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  19. #159
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    Quote Originally Posted by SkeeterBikes View Post
    How about an update Tony? Your website has nothing new since your last post.
    Yeah - and, are you still selling BB30 facers, Tony?
    - Garro.
    Steve Garro, Coconino Cycles.
    Frames & Bicycles built to measure and Custom wheels
    Hecho en Flagstaff, Arizona desde 2003
    www.coconinocycles.com
    www.coconinocycles.blogspot.com
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  20. #160
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    Default Re: Maietta Cycles

    try emailing tony or using his FB page (where he is active).
    anthony@maiettacycling.com
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