This is the first industry trade show I have ever visited. I was going in the employ of, where I am a contributing blogger, and would be hosting a few promotional industry interviews. When not working with Bill Esler, the editor of Custom Woodworking Business, and the other Woodworking Network staff, I would run around the trade show’s cavernous halls like the proverbial kid in a candy shop!

I started out the day by picking up my exhibitor badge and promptly got lost. The show is divided into two show halls, Hall A is the “quiet” floor, with all the plywood, veneer, hardware, and finishing exhibitors, and Hall B is the “noisy” floor, complete with the software, tool, and machinery companies.

After I figured out how to get to Hall A, I found the Custom Woodworking Business booth and met up with Bill Esler. We discussed the schedule of events for the day and headed off to the first of his two industry promotional videos. After watching him and the company rep, I felt a little bit more prepared for my promotional video with Hafele.

After my duties with the Woodworking Network were complete, I started on my journey through the maze of exhibitors. In no particular order, here are some of the notes and highlights from the day:

After a tour of the Blum booth, my outlook on what is possible with hinges and slides and drawer boxes is forever changed, which sounds quite nerdy, unless you make your living using that hardware! After seeing their BluMotion soft-close undermount slides, complete with a servo-driven push-to-open mechanism, along with their soft close hinges, which include an on/off switch on each hinge, I was impressed.

I am also going to seriously look into their TandemBox, which is a double-walled metal drawer box with integrated BluMotion slides. I know that Grass and Salice have many of the same offerings, but the Blum demonstration was eye-opening, and they set a pretty high bar for the others to match.

LED lighting for cabinetry has now become as easy as 1-2-3. First, plug the driver into an outlet that is hidden, like in the microwave cabinet or on top of the cabinetry, next, plug in all the different lights that will be run off the driver (up to six ports), and lastly, plug in any of the switches, which include motion detectors, dimmers, and sensors, and you’re done.

The only thing you would need a professional electrician for would be to hard wire the 120V outlets for the drivers. I will be educating myself on the systems offered by Hafele, which is called Loox, and Rev-A-Shelf, through a recently acquired company called Tresco, so I can start selling and integrating these lighting systems into our cabinetry and furniture.

Another installation of Day 1 at IWF 2012 follows>>

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