A quick tour through the HOMEWOOD factory, illustrating the life cycle of crafted furniture. Note the extent of human handling and crafting. This is what gives our furniture its soul. (Please note the sequence number of images. It would be nice if Pinterest allowed us to arrange pins in our own order, but they don't).
Wood is passed through a four head moulder to ensure it is sized correctly and is true and square. A good quality start here ensures a good quality finish all the way down the line! This is our most 'machined' operation.
A load of timber is delivered to our factory in Lidgetton West in the Midlands. Within weeks we will have converted this to crafted luxury - will it be for you? All our timber is kiln dried and comes from sustainably managed forest concessions.
Our timber store - wood is stored in stacks by type: kiaat, African mahogany, oak, and Rhodesian Teak. It's amazing how quickly it goes down ! As critical material this is one area of inventory our production manager will check daily.
Timber is drawn from the store according to sizes requested on each work order. We have a cutting list for every product detailing the timber requirements, specifying the length, width and thickness of every piece.
Pieces are rough cut to size for further processing. our trained workers skilfully draw pieces as close as possible to the sizes they will need to cut to minimise wastage, a factor we watch closely throughout manufacturing.
Final cutting is the length trimming of planks and glued components. Each component is by now identified by chalk markings with its order number to facilitate 'kit' checking when all components come together for final assembly.
Our larger panels and many components are created using the strength of F joints. Many makers today use dominoes or biscuit joints, we like the strength of this technique, and have never had a failed top in all our years.
8. After routing F joint profiles into the length edges of panel and table top planks they move to 'glue ups' where they are laid in sequence, glued and clamped to become more recognisable as the final components they will be.
A panel saw trims tops to finished sizes, also applying any angled cuts, chamfers and mitring. Even at this early stage of production it is possible to recognise some of the key elements of specific designs.
A critical area of production is joints marking - one mistake here has serious implications for quality down the line. Only our best and most experienced operators are deployed in this important work station.
Joints drilling and shaping prepares components for sub and final assembling. All shaping is hand done to standard templates, and the small imperfections found are evidence of the human touch on HOMEWOOD crafted furniture.
Large panels and table tops move on to the stroke sander where surfaces are machined to smooth level finish. We prefer the crafted feel stroke sanding achieves to the clinical perfection of drum sanders used by other makers.
In 'double-ups" top panels are glued with lower edge laminate strips to give the look of a more solid top to lighter pieces; saving you mass, saving you money, and creating that familiar HOMEWOOD look of great value.
Composite components and glued assemblies pass through the second gluing (or re-gluing) centre. While we extensively use mechanical joints in our work, there are some items where traditional glue joins are necessary.
Smaller pieces, shaped components and glued assemblies like this Savannah table cross beam may be partly finished on hand held belt sanders. The process is quick, the skill is acquired through hard experience.
In surface finishing, attention is paid to any small joint gaps and blemishes. We use a special mix of sawdust from the original species of timber, and an epoxy base to ensure an exact colour match to the main item.