We Moved!

October 2, 2016

Dear 5S Supply Fans,

We moved! Our blog is now located at www.5Ssupply.com. Come by for a visit!

5S Supply Blog - We moved - new site

This is the third tip in a series of five to help select the correct tool board.

#3 Tool Board Size

Mobile_Tool_WorksHaving the right size board at point-of-use is critical to making a tool board that employees will actually use. In Tip #1 Tool Board Type, I mentioned the types of boards (wood, plastic or steel) along with typical sizes. Wood and plastic boards are the easiest to cut to the size you need. Steel boards are usually not cut to size because of their construction. The easiest piece of advice is to not go too small or go too big. You might be tempted to go small because of cost. Consider the cost of having to get another board if you are wrong. On the other hand, many people think “I’ll get the biggest one they make” which too could be a mistake. Getting a board that is way larger than your needs and growing into it can cause undue confusion, clutter and additional waste. Stick the size you need, where you need it. Consider going mobile to make it easier to have it at point-of-use or to clean (“shine” – the third “S” in 5S) around it.

Check out one of our more popular blog post: “Finally! A Tool Shadow Board that Works

Coming up next, Tip #4 Hooks

You might ask yourself “What’s there to know about tool boards?” Having the right tool board that is useful is the key to having the right place to hang your tools. In this series, I will give you five tips for choosing the proper tool board. The first thing to do is to determine if a tool board is really needed. If you can get away with a single tool at a location, just use that. If the tools have to be covered or protected, consider a tool drawer or cabinet. Making a large tool board just so that things look nice might just be a waste. The essential element of a useful tool board is that people use it and put the tools back when they are done.

The five sections in this series are:

  1. Select the Tool Board Type
  2. Location
  3. Size
  4. Hooks
  5. Labeling and Color-coding

Let’s dive in to the first tip.

Tool Board Selection Tip # 1 Select the Tool Board Type

There are three main types of tool board materials: 1) wood, 2) plastic, and 3) steel. Each has its pros and cons.ToolBoardTypes


Wood pegboard are those familiar ones you see at the home building centers. These are usually sold in sheets (2’ x 2’ or 2’ x 4’) and can easily be cut to size on a table saw or with a circular saw. Mostly they come in two colors: white or brown. These tool boards have a lower load rating than plastic or steel, but are also cheaper. Wood pegboards are not resistant to oil, grease or other liquids so they aren’t used in a food grade or clean room environment. If you need something for occasional or light-duty use, this could be your answer.


Plastic pegboards offer the flexibility of the wood tool boards that they can be cut to any size. The load rating is higher than the wood boards and they are resistant to many liquids. These are great for medium-duty situations.


Steel tool board have the highest load ratings and with that they also cost more. The boards cannot be cut to size because of the box construction. The steel boards are usually powered coated and resistant to oil, grease and other liquids. You can also find stainless steel boards and hooks that are great for food grade or clean room applications. If your tools are heavy or if you have a rough environment, steel tools boards are the way to go.

I will cover theses other tips in the upcoming posts.

  • #2 Location
  • #3 Size
  • #4 Hooks
  • #5 Labeling and Color-coding

Please help us with this quick, one questions poll Time Wasted Searching for Tools. We will share the results.

Please share the poll with your friends!

Click on the image below or http://survey.constantcontact.com/poll/a07eaev2r7ti4wwzagn/start.html



5S and Lean in 2015!

Five Tips to Make Your Resolutions Stick!

It’s been estimated that 40 percent of people make New Year’s resolutions. It also has been noted that most people average about ten days trying to achieve their new goal before they give up. How can we do better? Here are five Quick Tips that might help.

1. Limit the number of things you set goals for. A smaller list will allow you to focus. Try only a few, perhaps three or less.
2. Think long-term. Most people give up on their goals by January 10th, so hang in there.
3. Keep track of your progress. Celebrate little victories and recover quickly from setbacks.
4. Start with small steps. Use Kaizen as a guide. Many Small improvements will lead to BIG improvements!
5. Ask for help. Talk to a friend if you need a little support. Their encouraging words or advice may be all you need to keep going!

Join us on Twitter and share your best ideas for 5S and Lean – Use #5SandLean2015

Follow us @ www.twitter.com/5Ssupply

Here are my Top Five (five for 5S Supply) highlights from the AME Conference in Toronto last week (drum roll please – no, not drumbeat as in takt time).

5. I was fortunate to be able to teach a one-day Hoshin Kanri Workshop on Monday. We covered the history of Hoshin, pre-work, the X-matrix and more (for another perspective visit my blog post “Thank You Very Much Dr. Yoji Akao”).

4. Had fun while teaching a half-day Quick Changeover Workshop on Friday. The participants watched as I played the role of the operator trying to do a setup on my machine – the “Stamp-O-Matic”. We simulated a kaizen event and tried several experiments for improvement.

3. The City of Toronto – What a great city to explore. The subway was easy to navigate. The city was clean and neat. The people were very friendly. I almost made it onto a local morning television show as a reporter was asking people to participate in a question. I could have been famous, but I had to decline because it was a local issue that I couldn’t speak to.

2. Karen Martin and friends – Karen Martin (The Karen Martin Group), hosted a dinner at a fantastic little restaurant John & Sons – great food, great service, great conversation and great friends!

1. The soft-launch of our very own BesTape – The Best Darn Floor Tape – Ever! We also unveiled our new 5Ssymbols. My favorite question was “Will this stand up to forklifts?” My reply was “Let’s find out, you can try with our free sample!” If you would like to try a sample of our BesTape, just drop us a line and we’d be glad to send it to you. We think it is the best darn premium floor tape out there, so give it a try!

Tony manning the booth at the AME Conference Toronto 2013

Tony manning the booth at the AME Conference Toronto 2013

And a bonus one – Here’s to everyone that stopped by our booth to say hello, to see what was new and to play the Passport Game. We appreciate your commitment to Lean and 5S Supply.

Check out the pictures on our flickr photostream or Facebook (don’t forget to Like us!) I look forward to seeing everyone at the AME Conference next year in Jacksonville, FL USA November 10-14, 2014. Put it on your calendar now!

5S Supply is pleased to announce our 7th Anniversary Celebration!

5S Supply Team

Tony, Jennifer, Maggie and Buster

We have been lucky to serve the Lean community for the past seven years and want show our gratitude with a ‘Lucky 7’ celebration. We started 5S Supply because we knew how hard it was to find items for kaizen events. We thought – there has to be a better way, so we created 5S Supply. To help recognize this milestone 5S Supply will have special offers, new products and even a free webinar series by a Shingo Publication Award Winner, Beau Keyte during the month of August. Stop by our website to see all the happenings www.5Ssupply.com.

Our Story

5S Supply Warehouse Frankfort, IL

5S Supply Warehouse Frankfort, IL

It all began as the proverbial garage start-up except we were in a large conference room in an office building. As we grew, we then moved to the basement of my sister’s house. Because of our loyal customers and ongoing success, while striving to bring products that help Lean implementations, we had to move to a larger facility in our current location and warehouse in Frankfort, IL. Over the years we have continued to bring more value added content for our customers. In 2009, we revamped the website to make it more appealing and easier to navigate. From our humble beginnings of showcasing 5S related items we have expanded to offer anything Lean – as we say “from A3 to Value Stream Mapping.” With over 1,000 items I’m confident that we can help you find what you need. Many of our products that we developed came out of our experience helping organizations on their Lean journey – from creating 5S Red Tag Stations, inventing the 5S Sticky Tag, our very popular Gauge Range marking system, to more recent Kanban Posts and Hourly Production Boards. We continually look for items that we wished we had in our earlier days of implementing Lean. We promise to remain the leader in product innovations related to Lean.


We understand that there are many ways you can obtain supplies for your Lean implementation and we want to earn your business with every transaction. Our goal was to make a “one stop shop” for all your Lean needs. You don’t have to waste time going to several websites, sending people out to local stores or even sending multiple purchase orders – we have made it simple and easy to find what you need.


Thank you again for all your support over the years, we couldn’t have done it without you. We are blessed to be part of such a supportive Lean community and we will continue to find ways to give back.

All the best!

Tony Manos

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