Saturday, July 18, 2009

Repurposing continued ...Earth Stone Products

3/26/2011 Post script updated: has nice video on "Made In The Triad: Earth Stone Products"

In my February 11 Blog, I discussed Re-purposing Buildings, at the end I mentioned Earth Stone Products. I had an opportunity to visit their facility and get a first hand view of how they were taking waste land field materials and re-purposing them to elegant materials for use inside and outside.

This facility gives me an opportunity to discuss one of the M21C metaphors that views the 3 dimensional concept of producing products.

This cartoon illustrates the concept of a three dimensional product example. In the "Y" dimension there are several different components that can be modified or combined in the "X" dimension into various products for the "Z" dimension. For Earth Stone Products the "Y" is waste land field materials, specifically discarded granite counter tops. The "Z" is the products that are produced at their facility in Greensboro, NC. Within the Earth Stone facility there are equipment that process the discarded materials into a wide variety of pattern shapes as shown on their website.

The photo essay shows their facility and equipment which is performing the functions of "X" by using presses and dies that take the various shapes from discarded materials and producing various pattern shapes depending on the die used.

Looking at the photo essay the top row shows the entrance sign, shipping and receiving area and interior staging area. Row 2 shows the operator placing a material discard onto the press and the resulting stamped curved product. On the third row is the conveyer belt sending the cut products into a machine that uses steel shot to perform the abrasive processing, the last image shows the metal shot that the machine uses. From this photo essay you have a real live example of the "X" that was illustrated above in the cartoon.

It was interesting to also see how they were re-purposing liquid containers as containers for shipment of the processed products; the top of the container and structural members were removed to allow open access to the container. It is my understanding that this is a safer way to ship the heavy products instead of shrink wrap.

Another aspect of the "X" processing is the Intelligent Property where the process has world wide patent protection (pending).

Hopefully this will add insight into the concepts of Metaphors for 21st Century, new ways of thinking inside and outside the box.

Thanks to Rosemarie Williams, Owner Earth Stone Products and John Tesh for the excellent tour and agreement to use their company as an example of how M21C "X,Y,Z" metaphor applies.

No comments: