Amish?

eire6678November 14, 2013

Anyone in the PA/NJ area ever use Amish for framing, trim, anything! Looking for recommendations... I heard the savings can be incredible!

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Sophie Wheeler

They don't have any special dispensation of honesty or craftsmanship just because of their religious status. To think that is being blinded by a type of bigotry. They use the idea that outsiders have of themselves as the old fashioned honest craftsmen into taking advantage of people who don't think that someone "like that" can lie, cheat, or steal. They are just as honest or dishonest as the public at large, only with buggies instead of cars. (For the most part)

Some, actually, are a good deal worse than the average public. You may not know it, but it's widely known in animal rescue circles that the Amish are the worst offenders at "farming" pets. Saving money at the cost of abuse of animals isn't my idea of spending money wisely.

Here is a link that might be useful: Amish Puppy Mills

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 10:20AM
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LuAnn_in_PA

Wow... quite the diatribe there!

The OP wants recommendations to save money... that's all. And the Amish usually DO come in under other bids.
The post asks nothing of of honesty, craftsmanship, etc at all! Yet alone bigotry and puppy mills.

Having a bad day, hollysprings?

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 11:20AM
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xc60

I have to agree with Holly. The Amish are one of largest contributors of puppy mill puppies.

I hate how lately they seem to be the "in" thing from TV shows to so many products. Last week I walked through BB & Beyond and saw at least 6 products with the word Amish on it.

I guess it's better they make a living doing woodwork instead of their puppy mills but still too many do both. I personally would never ever use them for anything until they stop milling.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 2:43PM
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rwiegand

My experience working with Amish carpenters in Ohio suggests they have a low to middling range of skills as compared to non-Amish carpenters. Many have a "good enough" attitude about their work quality that results in lower prices, but at a lower quality level. If you have enforced building codes then you may also have some headaches, as what is "good enough" in the opinion of the carpenter may not match up with what your building official expects. Don't expect plan details to be followed exactly. There are, of course, a few folks who are superb at what they do, however they also tend to charge commensurately. For most building is a sideline and you are unlikely to get someone who is interested in using advanced framing methods or modern energy detailing, despite what you draw on the plan. I wouldn't hire any of the guys I know to do stain-grade trim work.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 2:49PM
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Ibewye

I'm using an Amish family to frame my home and couldn't be happier. It's their first home they've built from beginning to end after years of doing barns and roofs. Its a father and his 3 sons and the boys really wanted a chance to breakout into bigger and better things. We drove out to meet them and we agreed on a price that beat all the other framers, it worked out well because my family owns a local lumber business and I was able to provide materials lists and schedule deliveries. He was very up front about not being educated on how to read and use a full set of prints to find all the info he needed, I bought him an engineering ruler and briefed him on the basics. That was 4 weeks ago, and they're going to be setting trusses for the roof this week.
It was a pleasure seeing the boys so enthusiastic about doing a good job in hopes of shedding their reputation of building "doghouses" as they put it. They're respectful and keep the place clean and safe. Within 2 weeks the father had studied the prints meticulously and it was fun to watch him figure out that everything he needed to know was in there somewhere. After about 3 weeks we passed the point where I knew more than he did about my house and how it was to be built.
As far as their culture playing a role-they did provide a driver ( who they also rented power tools from as they're not perimeter to own) at their own expense. We talked about taking pictures as they're religion shuns photos of themselves, they were fine with us taking a photo with them in it but that they weren't allowed to smile and say cheese. They asked if they could take all the wood scraps for kindling wood and spend their lunchtime fishing in our pond. Their community has a mill and a cabinet maker if I need and hardwood flooring or kitchen cabinets made. They've taught me alot about their way of life and how they view ours-my favorite being how strange they think the trends in barnboard and distressed wood has become.
I can't say their all as genuine and take pride in their quality work as the guys we used are but given their strict adherence to their religion, deceiving people isn't exactly good practice. I'm sorry to hear about the puppy mills and only hope its not an accepted practice in their society. Hope any info helps and here's a picture.

    Bookmark   November 18, 2013 at 10:48PM
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millworkman

Not that is has anything really to do with building houses but not only is it an "accepted practice in their society" from what I understand it is embraced as the cash cow business it is for them. They run far and away the largest and most puppymills in the country from what I understand and with the blessing of the FDA (our government) with barely any standards that normal people would consider acceptable. Apparently to them dogs and probably animals in general are just a necessity and a way to make money.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 7:54AM
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Ibewye

Millworkman..... I always take issue when someone tries to speak for a an entire population without having any sort of facts. If I did it would mean that the next biggest group to facilitate puppy-mills (amongst other heinous acts of cruelty for commercial purposes) would be the non-Amish, a group we both belong to and while personally it sickens me I wouldn't want someone to label me as "accepting" of it.
My next issue is if that these mills are as large and so well known as what's being claimed then its because they are making money running them. Unless you have an "Amish" Petco in your town I would think its the corporate run pet stores buying them and American consumers purchasing them If that's the case then it makes just as responsible and accepting. End Rant.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 12:09PM
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dekeoboe

Unless you have an "Amish" Petco in your town I would think its the corporate run pet stores buying them and American consumers purchasing them If that's the case then it makes just as responsible and accepting.

None of the top (based on sales) four pet stores (PetSmart, Petco, Pet Valu and Pet Supplies "Plus") sell puppies. (I am sure a number of smaller, national chains don't either, but I was not going to look them all up.) They all support adoption from shelters and rescue organizations. A number of us will not shop at pet stores that do sell puppies because very often they are from puppy mills. Also, consumers can unknowingly buy puppy mill dogs because they don't know the puppy they just bought came from a puppy mill.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 2:23PM
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eire6678

Thanks for the information & educational lesson ðÂÂÂ. A friend has recommended a cabinet comoany in Lancaster they have used many times. Beautiful craftsmenship & the cost savings insane!

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 4:38PM
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dekeoboe

Beautiful craftsmenship & the cost savings insane!

That is great news - it is what we all try to get.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 4:47PM
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zone4newby

Amish people are people like the rest of us. Generalizing about the quality of work of a large group of people spread over many states because they belong to same religious/cultural group is not the way to choose contractors.

To boycott all Amish products because some Amish people run puppy mills is ridiculous and discriminatory. Would you boycott all Jewish businesses if there were a single Jewish businessperson in your town who broke the law? How is this different?

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 11:09PM
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