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Quality
When people ask: 'How do I get a sense of quality?', they are often referring to material or craft quality. But this is only one aspect of creating true quality in your home.

There are 6 factors that determine quality, each of which must be maximized - and closely linked together - to create the kind of results you see on this website.
1. Product Design Quality

The design quality of a premium-quality kitchen is just beginning to catch up to the sophistication of other products we use every day: smartphones, automobiles, bicycles... Most of the industry still approaches this as a 'cabinetmaking' process based on architectural drawings. That is no longer enough.
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Today's top quality kitchens require a refined system of integrated components, developed through a sustained industrial design effort, focused on continually improving the experience of living and working with the end result. Here, a member of our design team is putting our test kitchen to use.
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A product design effort based on direct experience using the product, listening to clients, and continually improving, results in superior quality core elements that perform better, last longer, and feel better to use.
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Combined with innovation this approach also creates unique high-function, inter-related, components that improve the experience of living in your home.
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2. Project Design Quality

When people say to us, "I love your cabinets," what they are actually responding to is the whole integrated design. The combination of elements -- how they are arranged in the space, how they relate to each other, and how it feels to move through the space. This is achieved with the specialized skills and experience of Henrybuilt's Design Group.
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In every kitchen there are many questions to tackle from big (where should the kitchen be located?) to medium, but large in impact (should there be a walk-in pantry?), to technical (how to merge appliances into a functional layout and making it feel elegant).
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Specialized design skills are necessary to control all the factors at play while producing an outcome that is high performance, visually elegant and architecturally resolved. The Henrybuilt Design Group brings their experience and design expertise to every project.
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3. Material Quality

We select materials based on what's best for you, not on minimizing cost, or maximizing production efficiency. Most of the industry is surface-focused, and cost-driven, which means that many of the materials that show up in the kitchens, bathrooms and wardrobes of even the most expensive homes are much lower quality than they should be, a fact that is often unclear to the homeowner until too late.
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We ask questions like: How will specific combinations of materials feel to live with - over time? How will they age? Will they support our lifetime guarantee against defects? Then we go out and find these materials, or find companies that will work with us to create them.
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It starts at the core. We do not use materials like fiberboard. To get the strength of plywood and the precision of CNC milling, we use a high grade core manufactured by one of the longest standing, family-owned mills in the country. Panels are selected for flatness and calibrated to within 5-8 thousandths so that we can use them on a CNC router. This gives us old-school material quality, and new technology precision.
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We purchase veneer from regional mills to get just the right color and grain type, then specify the characteristics of the panel. This 'plank' style layup is laid up by hand, and requires a skilled and aesthetically tuned eye.
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We design and manufacture our pulls, to achieve maximum integration into the product line. Made of solid - not plated - stainless steel or brass, they get better with age and will never wear out.
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4. Craft Quality

As with an automobile or a watch, craft quality at Henrybuilt requires mastering more than one category of skill. It requires a team of people and a set of shared standards and processes that continuously improve.
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There are three quality standard levels set by the American Woodworking Institute: economy, custom, and premium. Our products exceed the premium standard.
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The premium standard for wood finishing in North America is an expertly applied catalyzed conversion varnish - formerly our finish.

In the spring of 2015, we installed state-of-the-art equipment designed to apply a far superior finish called 2K Polyurethane, a finish primarily used in industries like aerospace that require heat and chemical protection not normally considered 'necessary' in our industry.
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2K Polyurethane has superior stain, heat, moisture and solvent resistance. This has a big impact, particularly in the kitchen. Excessive steam from a dishwasher or the inevitable waterworks from a sink don't affect the finish. And, no coasters required.

It's also 100% formaldehyde free, and results in an extremely refined, minimal buildup on the surface, which adds a unique beauty and longevity to your home.
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One of the pitfalls of modern manufacturing is an over-reliance on automation. To enable this, manufacturers favor uniform materials, optimized for computer-controlled machines. These materials are inexpensive and easy to machine, but lack structural strength and longevity, and almost always feel 'processed' or unnatural.

We don't use those materials.
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We carefully balance the use of the hand and the use of automation. We are less automated than other operations our size in part because of the nature of the materials we use. Most importantly, it changes the way the end result feels to live with.
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5. Installation Quality

Quality installation starts with the design of the product. We engineer our components to maximize the success of each installation. All units ship fully assembled, with pulls in place. We minimize cutting and craft skill required on site, reducing risk and allowing more focus on the location of elements in the space.
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We prepare your team for success

Preparing for success is a lot more effective than 'making it work at the end'. Our Field Operations team provides guidance early in the process to prepare your contractor for a successful installation. A Henrybuilt field operations manager is assigned to each project.
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Your field operations manager will stay in touch with the installer and contractor and provide support during installation. In addition to providing a full installation drawing set, we use simple graphics, located on the actual units, to provide visual direction.
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Our private client site provides additional support, including care information.
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6. Operational Quality
We serve clients all over North America, but our manufacturing base is in Seattle, Washington. In 2015, we were selected by Seattle Business Magazine as the top building industry manufacturer in the state.

Without a set of tools to assure operational execution across a company, even the best people will produce uneven performance. We use our own version of the Toyota Production System to focus on eliminating wastes of all types in the process of creating a product, improving flow and quality.
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In mid 2013, we began using our modular, returnable container system, made of interlocking panels. Since then, we have shipped over 650 projects to locations throughout North America, most of them by train. Over 2500 containers have been shipped. The average container panel has been reused 4.8 times, and is still going strong.
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The quality of Henrybuilt starts on the inside and ends with the way it works. It's this holistic approach to design and manufacturing that determines how it feels to live with and creates true quality in your home.
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