Once upon a time North Carolina, especially High Point, was a furniture hub. It’s where everybody used to get their furniture. Now, thanks to competition from countries with a cheaper work force, such as China, many of the furniture factories in North Carolina have closed down.
One company, HSM Furniture, thinks the way to put North Carolina back on top is through additive manufacturing. Matt Davis and Kevin Belton are Highpoint based and have been in the furniture business for more than a decade.
They buy closeouts from name brand companies and resell them through their website and local showroom. One of the biggest problems that Davis and Belton face while selling is failed closings because the product isn’t exactly how the customer wants it. In the past, Davis and Belton tried repairing and customizing already made furniture for their clients, but it was too costly.
Then Davis and Belton started to see this common complaint as an opportunity— an opportunity to use technology to change things. That’s why the guys behind HSMFurniture.com have launched a Kickstarter campaign to help create customized 3D-printed pieces. They are trying to raise $12,000.
With the money they raise, they’ll buy a Gigabot printer and printing material to make furniture accent pieces. The company will use a wood resin filament for the printer. The filament that they will use purportedly is just like natural wood and can be sanded, stained and veneered.
When customers place their orders online or locally, HSM Furniture will print the pieces and hire local craftsmen to finish the pieces. The company plans on working with local designers as well. This process will allow for complete customization at a low price.
This campaign offers backers the opportunity to get some quality, custom-made 3D-printed furniture for what they’d pay at their local department store.
Fifty bucks gets you a custom footstool, while $100 will get you a wine rack. If you can pony up $250, you can get a custom end-table. All contributors will be acknowledged on the HSM Furniture website. Backers of this project will get a say in the company’s initial designs. So far, the campaign hasn’t had any real traction, even though it’s a good idea that would bring jobs back to the U.S. since most of the furniture made today can’t be customized. Let’s hear your opinion on this idea. Have you considered backing this project? Let us know in the 3D printed furniture forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the video below where Davis and Belton discuss their plans.
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