The Speed Block TechniqueFeb 19, 2021
Every time I start an installation, I look for ways to cut down on unnecessary movements that take extra time. One installation technique I have developed over the years is to use spacers to install shade and angle brackets at the exact same distances.
Instead of wasting time measuring every bracket placement with a tape measure, I carry several spacers of different sizes and thicknesses to provide me with the most appropriate measure for a particular job. It is a similar idea to a measuring cup set for people who cook. Once we create systems, repeat tasks happen faster. That is the whole goal of this technique.
Sometimes, there is a piece of wood trim on the window that must be cleared in order for the blinds and shades to work freely without hitting anything. What I do is select one of my spacers (or speed block as I call them) that provide the necessary thickness to just clear the window obstruction.
Then I will use the same spacer throughout the course of that installation to keep all brackets with the same projection and, consequently, having all my shades mounted the same way.
I also created 2- and 3-inch marks from both edges of my blocks. That way, I save time placing my brackets exactly the same way from the edges of each window. The idea is to create a pattern and follow it.
You can use the thickness, width or height of your block as a measure. As I mentioned above, I have several. The two shown in the photos are the two I use the most. One is 1/2 inch thick and the other is 3/4 inch thick. One is also wider than the other. Depending on the job, I can even combine both spaces to give the exact distance (clearance) I need.
The big-picture takeaway here is to pay attention to your routine as you install your treatments to find out which tasks can be improved upon. In my “bag of tricks” I carry more than 60 tools to help me be more efficient, quicker and, therefore, more profitable at my installations. I hope you will do the same.
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