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Below are our guides in the Designing your own Door Furniture category

Door Furniture made to your own specification.

Door furniture can be specially designed and manufactured to your own specification. Typical applications could be as follows:

• To match an existing design that may have been discontinued.
• To incorporate branding into door furniture such as a Coat of Arms or Company Logo.
• To have your own exclusive design (e.g. door knobs in the style of a football or a musical instrument).
• To retain an original style in a special or listed building where original handles have broken or worn out.

Stage One – Obtaining a Quotation

To begin with you will want to know the cost of producing your design so that you can decide whether your project is economically viable.
To do this we will need a pattern of the style required. Ideally this should be a physical object, even an old damaged original. If you are looking for a style based on an item then we need the physical item. For example, if you wanted a door knob based on a football then we would need to see the football, even though it would obviously be the wrong size.
We would also need to know the dimensions of the proposed item e.g. what diameter the knob is to be and what diameter the rose will be. A centre door knob on an entrance door would obviously be larger than an internal door handle but we can give guidance on this if required. Unfortunately photographs do not help at this stage as pictures do not generally show the fine detail of the object and this detail can be important in working out the cost of the item. For example a football may have a sponsor’s logo which needs to be incorporated. It is helpful at this stage to have an idea of the quantity of handles that are being considered as this will affect the type of material that any pattern is produced from. If you require a special finish we would also need to know this. The base metal will be Brass and the majority of items can be supplied in the following finishes:

Polished Lacquered Brass; Polished Unlacquered Brass; Satin Brass; Satin Chrome; Satin Nickel; Polished Chrome; Polished Nickel; French Lacquered Gilt; Bronze Metal Antique; Antique; Dawn Gold; Hard Gold, Weathered Brass.

Your item will of course be returned to you but needs to be sent to an appropriate designer for pricing. This will involve insured carriage costs and possibly special packaging. Typically you will therefore incur a charge of £25 to obtain your costing if you live on the UK mainland.

Stage Two – Reviewing Your Quotation

You will receive a fixed price quotation. The quotation will consist of two parts. The cost of producing a pattern(s) to cast your design and also the cost of producing each item or set of handles.

These costs can vary considerably but referring to our football style door knobs, then typical costs would be as follows:

To produce the pattern: £700
To produce the handles from the pattern: £200 per set

The whole process is very labour intensive and large quantities will probably have no effect on the costs although the more that are produced will obviously make the pattern cost more viable. If you do not wish to proceed at this stage then we will promptly return your sample.

Stage Three – Obtaining a Pattern

If you are happy with the costs involved then the next stage is for an appropriate pattern maker to produce your pattern. The pattern may be made from wood, resin or brass (depending on possible batch quantity required) and will represent the size of your item but will not be a working model. Sometimes the pattern is made up of two or more separate parts e.g. the knob and rose but these will not fit together at this stage. It is worth noting that when the item is cast from the pattern there will be shrinkage, this is typically 5%. Once the pattern is made it will be sent to you for final design approval. If you wish to make changes to the design at this stage this will incur further cost. You will need to pay for the cost of producing this pattern in advance and as this has been made to your own specification, we are unable to refund this cost if you subsequently decide not to proceed with the design. In our example of a football door knob, such a pattern could cost up to £700 but design costs will vary item by item.

Producing the pattern generally takes around four weeks and once this has been completed it will be sent to you together with the return of any sample supplied. You must take care with this pattern. It will be the actual pattern used to cast your handles and if it is damaged or marked in any way, then it may become unusable to produce your design. You need to decide at this stage if you are entirely happy with the design and wish to proceed with production.

Stage Four – Manufacturing Your Article

You will already have a cost for producing the handles from your pattern and you will now need to decide how many you wish to order. The price is unlikely to change with quantity so you may decide to have just one made to ensure that you are entirely happy with the finished product. Please remember that the product is produced to your own specification and we are therefore unable to refund the cost if you subsequently decide not to use your design. It will typically take four weeks (per order) to produce your requirements. Your design will be individually hand made throughout the whole process by skilled British craftsmen.

Summary

You can therefore have you own exclusive handles designed and made in around eight weeks. You will have your own pattern to keep and this can be used to produce more of your design in the future.

There are circumstances where this service can save money and preserve the original style of a building but sometimes it is more economic to replace all the handles to a currently produced design. In these circumstances we can assist in trying to match your style with an appropriate alternative in keeping with the building’s design.

Alternatively you may wish to simply have a special exclusive design in keeping with you family’s history, profession or corporate image. The above service will enable you to add that finishing touch to your property with an item that is likely to be appreciated for many years and handled regularly by occupiers and visitors.

Stage One – Obtain a Quotation

Obtain a pattern
Decide on dimensions
Consider the quantity required
Decide on the finish
Contact us for a price to obtain a quotation (typically £25)
Send your sample to us together with a cheque for the agreed quotation fee
(Insure your parcel if the sample is valuable!)

Stage Two – Reviewing your Quotation

Consider the costs
If declined we will promptly return your pattern (you will have incurred your quotation fee).
If accepted forward a cheque for the pattern cost to have your pattern produced
Please also confirm the estimated quantity of items required at this stage

Stage Three – Obtain a Pattern

Pattern production will typically take around four weeks
One produced it will be sent to you for final design approval
Design changes may incur further cost
If declined you may keep your pattern (you will have incurred quotation and pattern fees)
If accepted please carefully pack and return the pattern (suitably insured!)

Stage Four – Manufacturing Your Article

You will already have a quotation to produce your item
Manufacturing will typically take four weeks
Consider the initial quantity required
Advise on the quantity required and send an appropriate cheque for the manufacturing cost
If you require more handles we can retain the pattern for further instructions
We will alternatively return the pattern for you to retain together with your items.

Congratulations! You have just produced your own special exclusive design which will be handled and appreciated by occupiers and visitors to your property for many years.

Robert Bernard & Son Ltd Part of Robert Bernard & Son Ltd
26/30 Oxton Road, Birkenhead, Merseyside, England CH41 2QJ
Tel: +44(0)151 652 3136 / 0325
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