Archive | July, 2018

Cosentino Hosts ISFA Pre-IWF Networking Event

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Cosentino Hosts ISFA Pre-IWF Networking Event

Posted on 31 July 2018 by cradmin

Attendees of the ISFA Countertops & Architectural Surfaces Symposium, as well as anyone interested in surfacing fabrication, are invited to attend a Pre-IWF Networking Event hosted by Cosentino from 5-7 p.m. on Tuesday August 21.

Interested parties will gather at the CNN Building, just across the street from the Atlanta Congress Center, at approximately 4:15 p.m. and Cosentino will provide transportation to and from its Atlanta Cosentino Center. Cocktails and appetizers will be served, and a tour of the facility will be provided.

There is no cost to attend.

To RSVP or for more information CLICK HERE

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IWF 2018 Offers a Variety of Educational Opportunities

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IWF 2018 Offers a Variety of Educational Opportunities

Posted on 30 July 2018 by cradmin

The 2018 International Woodworking Fair (IWF) is scheduled to run August 22 through August 25 at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.

The IWF Education Conference offers a broad spectrum of industry related topics throughout the duration of IWF.  IWF 2018 will host 11 all-day symposiums focused on several industry related topics that will take place on August 21, which is the day before the show officially opens. Topics of this year’s symposiums include: Closets, CNC, Countertops & Architectural Surfaces, Digital Printing; Expanding Your Business to the U.S., Finishing; Powder Coating Wood, Quantum Lean – “Easier, Better Faster, Cheaper”, Techniques and Time-Savers for Engineered Surfacing Products, Wood Flooring and Woodworking Network Leadership Forum.

The Countertops & Architectural Surfaces Symposium, presented by ISFA (International Surface Fabricators Association) is a full day educational event focused on the countertop and surfacing needs of the woodworking industry.  Speakers will present on a variety of topics ranging from Project Estimating and Bidding, to New Material and Tooling for Fabrication, to Logistics, and Labor Resourcing.  Each Speaker will provide interactive content, resources to take home and a Q&A session.

In addition, IWF will also be offering a wide variety of Education Sessions that will take place from Wednesday, August 22nd through Friday, August 24th during IWF 2018. Educations Sessions by Track include Business Management, Manufacturing & Design, Marketing & Business Development and New Business Sectors.

To help make planning your show experience easier IWF offers the My IWF Show Planner. You can use the free My IWF Show Planner tool to research and contact exhibitors before the show, browse virtual floor plans, organize personal events and browse conference sessions.

For further information, visit the IWF Atlanta website

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Registration Now Open for Safe + Sound Week

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Registration Now Open for Safe + Sound Week

Posted on 27 July 2018 by cradmin

Safe + Sound Week is a nationwide event held by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) from August 13 to 19, 2018. The purpose of the event is “to raise awareness and understanding of the value of safety and health programs that include management leadership, worker participation and a systematic approach to finding and fixing hazards in workplaces.”

OSHA stands by the premise that safe workplaces are sound businesses, and a proactive approach improves sustainability and the bottom line by helping to identify and mitigate hazards before they cause injuries or illnesses.

Organizations of all sizes and in all industries are encouraged to participate. This will show that the company has made a strong commitment to worker safety, which has been shown to raise morale and productivity.

Getting started is simple. All that has to be done is to select activities from the Safe + Sound Week schedule, provided by OSHA. The schedule is divided into three sections: an hour, a half day and a full day. After the activities have been completed, the employer will be awarded a downloadable certificate and a Web badge that will let others know about your commitment to safety.

For inspiration, a webinar is available to help organizations get ideas from past participants. Employers may also register online to put their business on a map of the USA with other registrants. Several promotional tools are also available to help make your event a success, including event agendas, checklists, invitations, flyers, logos, posters, banners, decals, press releases, emails and social media shareables.

For further information, registration and access to materials, visit OSHA’s Safe + Sound Week Webpage.

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Fabricator Spotlight:  Creatacor – Fabricating the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall with Avonite® Solid Surface

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Fabricator Spotlight: Creatacor – Fabricating the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall with Avonite® Solid Surface

Posted on 26 July 2018 by cradmin

Guest Blog by

Full Display of The Wall That Heals by Creatacor (2018)

Featured Project: The Wall That Heals – Vietnam Veterans Memorial Replica – a Look Behind the Scenes

After nearly 10 years, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund (VVMF) knew it was time to replace the Vietnam Veterans Memorial mobile exhibit of the replica wall, The Wall That Heals. They sent out a request for proposal (RFP) to contractors they thought might be able to handle the project. Creatacor, a full turnkey exhibit display house based in Clifton Park, New York, having completed several smaller projects previously for the VVMF, jumped at the chance to submit their bid and was selected to build the new Wall. Their build included a unique mobile design using Avonite® Eclipse solid surface. The selection process was completed at the end of December of 2017, leaving Creatacor only 7-8 weeks to complete this exciting project.

The Creaticor Team

Creatacor, which employs between 50-55 people just 20 minutes north of Albany, New York, is known by many in the display industry for its state-of-the-art custom fabrication techniques. These techniques have resulted in unforgettable exhibits and inline displays in corporate and retail environments, in interactive kiosks and sets for both television and stage. In essence, Creatacor believes in using the talents of their creative, problem-solving team to come up with just the right solution for every unique situation.

Laying the Groundwork for Teamwork

Creatacor received the RFP early in December and immediately began sourcing the materials for a sturdy frame, for the walls and for the actual engraving in anticipation of the possibility of being awarded the contract. Once Creatacor was awarded the project, everyone lit on fire! Dave West was selected as Project Manager, laying the groundwork for what they needed. Julian Colbert, in charge of procurement, had already reached out to vendors just in case the project came through. Each vendor contacted was equally excited about the possibility of being part of this historic project.  The vendors were even required to sign a non-disclosure agreement, so word of the project would not get out.

Avonite Eclipse Solid Surface Panels in The Wall That Heals by Creatacor

Because this special project meant so much to many of the executives, managers and employees of Creatacor, everyone wanted to be a part of it. Creatacor is a close-knit company with a family-style atmosphere where they all “see a need and fill a need,” according to the Project Lead, Cathy Miller. This project touched so many people within the company who were linked to The Wall one way or another through family members who had served, both those that lost their lives and those that came home.

Project Specs

The specs for this unique project were provided by the VVMF and were very detailed. It was to be an exact replica of The Wall in Washington, DC, scaled to three-quarters of the original Wall. The new mobile Wall would need to accommodate the more than 58,000 names of the men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice. The panels could not exceed 75 pounds each to keep it mobile. Creatacor developed a mathematical template for each sectioned panel. Each panel contained a list of names (section 1). In the margin there was a counter dot for every 10 lines (section 2). At the bottom was the panel number (section 3). The VVMF also sent over a Word file with all of the names to be engraved on the Wall. The Word file then had to be transferred to another program in order to be read by the CNC machine.

Building frames for the solid surface panels in The Wall That Heals by Creatacor

The Right Materials

Each of the materials Creatacor selected for this project was chosen very carefully. An aluminum framework was crafted to hold each of the panels.  Heavier steel was used for the support legs. Creatacor’s Fabrication/Engineering Manager, Brandon Verdu, designed the frames so that the panels could be removed from the frames and fit into the trailer for travel. The frames are bolted together and set up so that four panels slide into one section of the frame, making it easier to setup and teardown at each destination.

Avonite Eclipse chosen for its reflective qualities in The Wall That Heals by Creatacor

When it came to the selection of actual materials to build the wall panels, Creatacor looked for the most durable, shiniest and blackest material they could find so that it would be reflective, just like the original Wall. Natural materials such as granite or quartz were ruled out immediately as they would be far too heavy to move conveniently. With these parameters in mind, Creatacor made the easy decision to use Avonite® Eclipse solid surface material.

Brandon was also tasked with figuring out exactly how much of the Avonite® Eclipse solid surface was needed. With The Wall being a chevron shape, 8’ sheets of solid surface material would be required for the bigger walls. The smaller walls would only require ½ sheets of material. The material then had to be cut accordingly to create the 144 individual panels.

The finished solid surface exhibit of The Wall That Heals is 375 feet long and stands 7.5 feet high at the tallest point. It is scaled at three-quarters of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial located north of the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

Avonite Eclipse solid surface panels in The Wall That Heals by Creatacor

Aristech Solid Surface

Sourcing the solid surface material proved to be more difficult than anticipated. Cathy Miller said that when Creatacor initially contacted Timothy A. Maiuri, the Territory Sales Manager at Aristech Surfaces LLC, he told them it would take 11 to 12 weeks to provide Avonite™ Eclipse solid surface material that was needed for the project. By the time Creatacor got news that they had been selected to design the project, there were only 8 weeks remaining until the deadline. When Timothy became aware of the tighter deadline and was told this was for The Wall That Heals, he took immediate action. Having had two cousins and a brother whose names were on The Wall, he knew the importance of this project. Aristech stopped work on other productions for a few days to ensure Creatacor would have the Avonite in time.

Engraving the Solid Surface

The longest part of the project was the routing or engraving of the names and symbols which was scheduled to take 5 weeks or about 500 hours. Before this could happen, there were many hours spent checking and rechecking details against the original Wall in Washington, DC.

Once the buffing, cleaning and routing out of each sheet of Avonite® was completed and approval was given, Creatacor set up the files, put these into elevations, and loaded this information into a different program. Because of the crunched timeline, they enlisted the help of H. Loeb to do the engraving of the names since they had more than one CNC machine.

The Significance of the Symbols

Few people realize that The Wall in Washington, DC, changes yearly. There are symbols–diamonds and crosses–on The Wall indicating a service member’s status. Diamonds signify that the service member is confirmed dead or KIA. Crosses indicate MIA – missing in action.  When a service member’s remains are accounted for, the diamond is superimposed over the cross.

Symbols engraved in The Wall That Heals

Names are listed in chronological order by date of death, so each panel represents a period of time. Inside each day, names are listed in alphabetical order. When a name is added, it is added to the end of a line as close as possible to the service member’s casualty date. To find the location of a name on The Wall, one can search on VVMF’s website on the Wall of Faces at or through “The Wall” app available through the App Store or Google Play.

It is anticipated the new Avonite® solid surface wall will be in circulation for at least 10 years. During that time, names may be added to the exhibit by Creatacor.  If status changes need to be made, Creatacor has trained VVMF staff to be able to make status changes.

Commemorating a visit to The Wall That Heals, Courtesy of DLG Photography

The engraving is one of the highlights that make the mobile version of The Wall That Heals a little more like visiting the actual Wall. People will now be able to take a piece of paper and a pencil and rub over the name of their loved one, making their own personal remembrance to take home with them.

The Lighting

Creatacor sourced out the lighting based on the specs given to them by the client, Tim Tetz of the VVMF. The lighting had to be soft, yet able to cast light far enough. It also had to be light enough in design so that people would not be tempted to hang on it (as happened with the previous wall). They chose LED lighting and used Hartranft Lighting Design to supply the lighting materials. Dave, the Project Manager, who also happens to have an electrician background, was able to put it all together at the Creatacor facility. The lights were designed to clip onto each panel and cast just the right amount of light back onto the shiny black solid surface wall panels.

The Mobile Education Center

Under a separate RFP, Creatacor was once again awarded the contract to outfit the brand new 53-foot trailer. For the vignettes, Creatacor built the windows and graphics. The VVMF supplied the artifacts and memorabilia. Real letters and images of actual documents were reproduced for the exhibit.

Mobile Education Center, Courtesy of DLG Photography

Window Vignettes, Mobile Education Center, Courtesy of DLG Photography

Lighted Vignettes, Mobile Education Center, Courtesy of DLG Photography

The Education Center provides teachable moments in each of the communities along the way for the younger generations to learn about honoring those in uniform who served and sacrificed so much.

Making the Deadline

Though the project timeline was incredibly tight, Creatacor managed to complete it with only minutes to spare. The Wall That Heals was scheduled to leave on February 23, 2018, at 4:00 p.m. The Creatacor team shut the doors to the trailer at 3:50 p.m.

Procession for The Wall That Heals on its journey to its first destination, Portland, Texas

The team was truly afraid they were not going to make the deadline. The deep meaning of the project itself kept everyone constantly motivated – they were in it to win it – it was very emotional and an extremely exciting project to be a part of. VVMF members Patrick O’Neill (Site Manager) and Tim Tetz (Director of Outreach) were awesome to work with. They kept saying if you want it done on time, you need to take the emotion out of it. Everyone at Creatacor was in it with their hearts making sure everything was perfect. The message from the top, coming from COO Will Farmer, was “this is not just a business, this is not just a project–these are our people, we can do this for them.” Everyone was each other’s cheerleader, always cheering each other on to the finish.

Night view with lights of The Wall That Heals by Creatacor

Unveiling the Finished Product

So many of the people who worked on the project had ties to it one way or another. The feeling of respect everyone at Creatacor has for those who put on a uniform was abundantly evident throughout the project. Everyone there held this project close to their chest, to honor the service members because they deserve it.

The Patriot Guard was called in to escort The Wall That Heals on its journey to its first destination which was Portland, Texas. It had to be there and set up by March 1, 2018. Employees of Creatacor and local veterans in New York were given the opportunity for a private preview of 20 feet of the new Wall. There was even a veteran from WWII there to appreciate the experience along with them.

A Gold Star Mother offers a prayer to begin the journey for The Wall That Heals

The weather was stormy, playing right into the solemn anticipation of the spectators. The Sheriff and state and local police and fire departments were there to see the trailer off properly. A Gold Star Mother offered up a prayer just before the trailer left. It was very emotional for everyone.

A true appreciation for the amazing teamwork and eventual scope of the project became even more evident to the team at Creatacor when they watched a lone Vietnam Veteran walk quietly to The Wall, place both hands on it and stood to remember as his eyes filled with tears.

The Wall That Heals, Courtesy of DLG Photography

Learn more about The Wall That Heals at

Wreath at The Wall That Heals

For more information about The Wall that Heals and Creatacor:

The Wall That Heals Schedule

Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund

Creatacor Inc.

Creatacor Press Release for The Wall That Heals

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Alpha Professional Tools Offers Lightweight Variable Speed Polisher

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Alpha Professional Tools Offers Lightweight Variable Speed Polisher

Posted on 25 July 2018 by cradmin

In order to reduce the fatigue of the polishing professional, Alpha Professional Tools ergonomically designed the VDP-700. According to the company this lightweight polisher is comfortable to hold and easy to control during the entire operation. This is done with one of two handle designs that come with the unit (C-Handle & Side Handle). The VDP-700 offers the variable speed range from 700 to 3,500 rpm.

The unit was built with a 1250w (Rated) and 1900w (Maximum) motor along with heavy-duty precision gear system for the most demanding polishing tasks, to ensure reliability and high performance. With a 25-ft, 14 AWG electrical power cord, large work areas can be covered without connecting to an extension cord. This feature assures maximum power from the electrical circuit and avoids overheating of the motor.

A variety of accessories for this polisher such as a rotary back pads, diamond face foam pads, wool pads, microfiber pads, and other abrasive products are also available.

You may also be interested in this article about Dynabrade’s Dynorbital Extreme Sander.

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ASID Announces New Vice President, Government & Public Affairs

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ASID Announces New Vice President, Government & Public Affairs

Posted on 24 July 2018 by cradmin

The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) has added Bryan J. Soukup, Esq. to the team as Vice President, Government and Public Affairs. Soukup will focus on ASID’s efforts to advocate for the interior design profession from a policy and legislative standpoint at the federal and state levels.

“This role is crucial for furthering the ASID ‘Design Impacts Lives’ mission,” stated ASID CEO Randy Fiser, Hon. FASID. “Having a person of Bryan’s caliber and level of expertise in place to influence policy and legislation that may affect interior design professionals is an ongoing priority initiative for the Association. Bryan’s history of both developing policy and lobbying make him an ideal person to lead the ASID efforts on educating elected officials and stakeholders about the interior design profession.”

Soukup most recently served as Director of Resilience Initiatives and as a registered federal and state lobbyist for the International Code Council (ICC). Prior to joining the ICC, Soukup worked in law, politics and government relations including a period of time at AIA as their Manager of State and Local Government Relations.

You may also be interested in this article about changes in leadership at Gemstone.

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Island Stone Introduces Paragon Hex Tiles

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Island Stone Introduces Paragon Hex Tiles

Posted on 23 July 2018 by cradmin

Island Stone’s artistry and creativity with natural stone is evident with the introduction of Paragon Hex. In this design stones are precision cut and surface sculpted into rhomboids with a tapered, angled relief. Those unique pieces are then placed into a hexagonal layout to create an interlocking tile. The result is a seamless, three-dimensional array.

“Paragon Hex is a truly unique achievement in stone. Typically, a shape this involved would be made out of porcelain or glass,” says Paul Sepulveda, National Sales Manager for Island Stone. “The combination of complexity and sophistication Island Stone has achieved with Paragon Hex is a testament to our unique vision and intimate expertise with the stone medium. It’s one more way we’re expanding our customers’ expectations about how stone can be used in more modern forms while preserving its earthen, natural feel.”

The edges of the Paragon Hex stones are lightly tumbled for a soft, punctuated look. The stone comes in two colors: Sandstone Ocean and Sandstone Mint. Each hexagonal piece measures 5/8-in. deep at its thickest point and covers .38 sq. ft.

Paragon Hex is part of Island Stone’s Profile Series. The line also includes Paragon Chevron, in which the same rhomboid stones are interlocked into a repeating chevron pattern.

You may also be interested in this article about Contourz Concrete Tiles from Lunada Bay.

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Video Custom Glass High Bar with Recycled Glass Countertop

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Video Custom Glass High Bar with Recycled Glass Countertop

Posted on 19 July 2018 by cradmin

This video shared by Jeff Downing shows a unique glass countertop high bar located in Bradention Beach, Fla. The 126-in.-long high bar uses two custom supports and features a swirls reminiscent of pools of water and uses LED lighting to accentuate the features. It sits above a countertop made of varying shades of blue recycled glass, which fits well with the custom glass motif and color. It seems particularly suitable for a home in such a oceanic location as Bradenton Beach.


You may also be interested in this video about fabricating recycled glass countertops.

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Wilsonart Acquires Laminate Works Dallas

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Wilsonart Acquires Laminate Works Dallas

Posted on 18 July 2018 by cradmin

Wilsonart Engineered Surfaces announced that it will acquire Laminate Works Dallas, a division of the Laminate Works Inc., a Kansas City based manufacturer of decorative High Pressure Laminate (HPL) panels. According to Vice President, Sales, Tim Atkinson, “This acquisition supports the continued growth of Wilsonart’s Coordinated Surfaces program with expanded capacity for the manufacture of HPL panels.”

“Our Coordinated Surfaces offering, a suite of best-matched surfacing options in HPL, Thermally Fused Laminate (TFL) panels and Edgeband featuring more than 230 Wilsonart designs and textures, has garnered tremendous support from both specifiers and fabricators,” says Atkinson.

Laminate Works Dallas has 25 employees. The company manufactures HPL decorative panels that are sold to downstream manufactures who cut, shape, and machine them to create finished products for use in multiple industries including:  contract furniture including schools, restaurants and hotels, architectural casework, elevators and store fixtures.

“Now as a part of the Wilsonart organization, we have stronger support for our brand. Customers can continue to count on service from the Laminate Works Dallas team during the transition,” says Geoffrey Athey, General Manager, Laminate Works Dallas.

You may also be interested in this article about Braxton-Bragg’s new product partnerships.

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LPI Releases New Series of LT-2D3D Laser Templator Training Videos

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LPI Releases New Series of LT-2D3D Laser Templator Training Videos

Posted on 17 July 2018 by cradmin

Laser Products Industries (LPI) has introduced a new series of training videos for its popular LT-2D3D Laser Templator. Designed to easily educate customers on digital templating with the unit right out of the carton, these concise, yet informative videos are segmented by application from initial setup and templating to editing and emailing job files.

The new training videos are available on the tablet that comes with each LT-2D3D Laser Templator, as well as online at and the Laser Products Industries YouTube page. LPI encourages not only customers to utilize these enhanced resources for training, but also prospective customers to understand the benefits and ease of use of the LT-2D3D.

In addition to the new training videos, LPI will continue to offer custom online training for its customers. For more information on the LT-2D3D Laser Templator and additional products and services from LPI, please visit to find your regional sales manager.

You may also be interested in this article about Laser Products training center.

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