2021/03/24   |   Schenkenzell   |   Germany

Industrial manufacturing for personal bathroom furniture

Duravit AG supplies almost everything that belongs in a bathroom - from sanitary ware ceramics to bathroom furniture. The product range is correspondingly diverse.

Duravit is a leading international manufacturer of designer bathrooms, which acts as a complete supplier on the market. The portfolio from the Hornberg region in Baden-Württemberg ranges from bathroom furniture, shower trays and bath tubs, wellness systems, saunas, sanitary ware and bidets to fittings, installation systems and accessories. The Black Forest-based brand manufacturer’s range offers almost everything anyone would need to equip their bathroom.

To be able to do this, Duravit works together with internationally renowned designers such as Philippe Starck, EOOS, Cecilie Manz, sieger design, Norman Foster, Matteo Thun, Phoenix Design, Christian Werner and Kurt Merki Jr. Thanks to this cooperation, unique bathrooms are created that sustainably improve users’ quality of life.

Founded in Hornberg in the Black Forest in 1817, Duravit now maintains operating facilities in Germany (Hornberg, Schenker, Meißen, Achern), France, Egypt, Turkey, China, Tunisia and India. These 200 years of Duravit also include 40 years of bathroom furniture production – first at the headquarters in Hornberg, and then since 1992 at the Schenkenzell factory. Here, the production includes seven bathroom furniture programs, each of which is designed to suit a special bathroom series. Six other programs can be flexibly combined with a number of ceramic series. In general, the furniture is manufactured according to customers’ requirements. With 46 different surfaces made of decor, veneer or varnish, there is a particularly wide variety of variants.

Fully interlinked, flexible production

Large parts of the production are automated in the industrially organized production in Schenkenzell. Variable production down to batch size 1 is carried out at a fully interlinked HOMAG plant networked via the ControllerMES control system. To do this, ControllerMES takes the customer and production orders from the Duravit planning system and relays the data to the individual processing machines. The starting point for the highly flexible production process is a storage system in which panel materials are stored in a computer-controlled manner. Storage that corresponds to a STORETEQ S-500 in today’s generation supplies two SAWTEQ B-320 flexTec saws with the unprocessed panels. The storage system thus takes over the storage and sorting as well as the removal from storage at the saws, which are designed as dividing cells for the individual cutting of individual panels and the order-related production. The production control bundles the customer orders according to material type in order to generate as little waste as possible. After processing the associated cutting patterns on the SAWTEQ B-320 flexTec, the parts that do not need to be edged run directly to stacking. Components that are to receive an edge are buffered in a SORTEQ H-600 layer storage, which acts as a decoupling buffer, and arefed to an EDGETEQ S-800 edge processing machine as required via intermediate transport. Designed for commissioned production, the machine works independently of width and can therefore be used flexibly. With a LOOPTEQ C-500 edge circulation unit, the edge line is designed as an O-line, in which the components are finally coated over two rounds. After edging, the components go into a TLB 210 4-bin sorter or directly for stacking. The stack station with robot stacking ensures that the components of a sorting batch are removed from storage in the specified sequence.

Hand in hand

Depending on the functionality, the components are also fed to machining centers, which perform component-specific milling, drilling and sawing work. A part of the workpieces also goes into the coating, where they are ground, painted and, if necessary, polished. The final assembly of the furniture is carried out in several steps according to the order. For example, individual holes are drilled, furniture fittings are attached or drawers are mounted at separate production islands. In this way, automated production works hand in hand with manual activities to meet Duravit’s high quality standards. Consoles or products in “c-bonded” technology, which require the millimeter-precise connection of the washbasin and the base, are consequently manually finalized in separate operations. Finally, the bathroom furniture is supplied as standard with high-quality fittings and front and hanging systems; an optional interior is offered that is tailored to user requirements.

Quality and sustainability

With the HOMAG line in Schenkenzell, Duravit is able to economically manufacture components in batch size 1. At the same time, variable series production is possible, so the bathroom furniture manufacturer can flexibly bring new or modified product lines in different quantities into production. The furniture is delivered within 21 days after the order has been processed. Strict internal quality controls guarantee a consistently high product quality and allow Duravit to offer a five-year guarantee on every bathroom furniture. But it is not only the finished furniture that is subject to continuous testing of quality and functionality, extensive tests are already performed during development, too. For example, climate tests ensure that the furniture meets extreme requirements when it comes to humidity and temperature. The use of exclusively PEFC-certified wood – processed on a fully interlinked, networked, highly flexible production line from HOMAG – demonstrates that Duravit has aligned its bathroom furniture production in Schenkenzell to at least the current standards in environmental technology and energy efficiency.

Read more about Duravit in our HOMAG Magazine.

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More about Duravit

Founded in Hornberg in the Black Forest in 1817, Duravit now maintains operating facilities in Germany (Hornberg, Schenker, Meißen, Achern), France, Egypt, Turkey, China, Tunisia and India. These 200 years of Duravit also include 40 years of bathroom furniture production – first at the headquarters in Hornberg, and then since 1992 at the Schenkenzell factory. 

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