Bishop Travels to Hardwood Flooring Mill in Nashville, TN
Feb 23, 2017

Our Homecrest American Artisan and Homecrest American Heirloom hardwood floors are produced on the campus of the Turney Center Industrial Complex in Only, TN. To get a first hand look at this American manufacturing process we traveled to Nashville and met the people that produce some of our best flooring products.  The facility provides work opportunities for inmates as well as civilians. You might not expect such a state-of-the-art operation housed within a correctional facility, as we learned, the production of this American Made hardwood flooring is as sophisticated as it gets!

Homecrest American Artisan – True 8′ planks. Truly handscraped. The scrapes accentuate imperfections and subtleties in the hardwood creating a genuine, unique work of art.

Homecrest American Heirloom – TRULY HANDCRAFTED IN THE USA This sliced face hardwood is distinctly textured to create generations of character in each plank.

Why buy American made hardwood flooring?

  • Absolute quality – ALL hardwood construction, ALL US sourced
  • Lasting performance – Scratch resistant UV cured aluminum oxide finish
  • Leading design – Long lengths and wide widths, style and design uniquely chosen for the Midwestern market
  • Verified Sustainable – Made from responsibly sourced U.S. hardwood, CARB exempt and Indoor Advantage Gold Certified
  • Socially Responsible – All American workforce provides opportunities and a great societal benefit
  • Competitively Priced – The best value in hardwood!

American Artisan Barnwood

State of the Art Manufacturing Process

It begins with the raw materials, hardwood, adhesives and stains sourced within the US. The timber basket is comprised of mainly northern grown hardwoods from states like Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. This lumber grows more slowly and consistently with a tighter grain pattern. Southern grown lumber often contains mineral streaks and a complex natural stain from the soil. Homecrest American Artisan all comes together in the ply assembly. The same species is used on the top and bottom surface for a balanced 5-ply construction. The material is transferred through a pre-press and hot oil press which sets the adhesive very evenly.

The panels are cut to planks, only at this point is the face side actually chosen, aiming for the most character and beauty in the finished product. At 7.5″ wide by 8 feet long, that’s 5 square feet going down for each plank set in place. You can imagine how quickly the product installs!

At 7.5″ wide by 8 feet long, that’s 5 square feet going down for each plank set in place.
You can imagine how quickly the product installs!

As high-tech as the facility is, it’s important to remember that each plank is actually being hand textured. Whether it’s a heavy scrape or sanding around knots and bevels, each character mark is made BY HAND! No two workers will make the same decision about texturing a certain grain pattern or knot. These flooring planks are like unique fingerprints and it’s this true hand textured process that gives the flooring it’s character. There is real pride and craftsmanship that you can see and feel in these products.

Homecrest American Artisan Hand Scraping

One of the most impressive technologies in the plant is the computer integrated stain system. Every SKU has a unique stain formula, created from just four pigments. Stain can be mixed on site in “made to order” batches, just enough to complete the current run of material. It’s a highly efficient and waste conscious system. Between coats of stain the product is rolled with denibbing brushes, removing imperfections and texturing the surface and improving the adhesion of additional coats including the top layers of UV cured aluminum oxide.

The proprietary coating process involves applying urethane with aluminum oxide particles, specifically formulated to offer the most scratch resistant and durable finish. The facilities unique UV curing process allows precise control of gloss level while using less flateners, allowing for an ultra clear finish and an ultra hard surface. Quality checkpoints are established at each step in the manufacturing process. Material is checked against master boards for character, texture, stain, gloss and board to board variation.

Indoor Air Advantage Gold Certified

Indoor Advantage Gold

Homecrest American Artisan and Homecrest American Heirloom have achieved Indoor Advantage Gold Certification for hardwood flooring products. One of the built environment’s most trusted assurances of indoor environmental quality, Indoor Advantage Gold certification assures that building material products support a healthy indoor environment by meeting strict indoor air quality (IAQ) chemical emission limits for volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

“Given that most of us spend the majority of our time inside, we know indoor air quality is an important concern for both residential and commercial end-users, and we are committed to meeting or exceeding some of the built environment’s most rigorous standards for VOC’s and overall environmental performance as a result,” said American OEM Executive Vice President Allie Finkell.

“We are delighted to have achieved Indoor Advantage Gold for all our products and hope that this additional third-party verification will give our customers the opportunity to breathe easier knowing that the flooring they purchase from us supports a healthy indoor environment,” Finkell added.

Indoor Advantage Gold helps contribute to the LEED V4 standard in the Indoor Environmental Quality category, as well as several other building schemes including BREEAM, WELL Building, and Living Building Challenge. The certification also aligns with both ANSI/BIFMA M7.1 and CA 01350. Products must be tested by independent labs for compliance with CDPH/EHLB Standard Method V1-1 for VOC emissions in order to achieve certification.

View more information on Indoor Advantage GOLD →

American Artisan and American Heirloom have also achieved the California Air Resources Board CARB ULEF Exempt status based on the manufacturer’s rigorous VOC testing for all its hardwood products.

View the CARB Exemption Certificate.pdf →

Prison Industry Enterprise

The manufacturer of these Homecrest products uses a socially responsible business model to employ incarcerated individuals to manufacture this hardwood flooring. Located on the campus of the Turney Center Industrial Complex in Only, Tennessee, our operations provide work opportunities for inmates as well as civilians.

Workers are paid a fair local prevailing wage, right off the top they are paying taxes, room & board, child support and alimony.  25% of their pay goes into a victims restitution fund and at least 10% is deposited into a savings account. What is left is most often sent home to their families, children at home and single parent families are too often the indirect victims of crimes. This program allows inmates to help support their families at home and provide a great benefit to society.

Inmates employed by this program also acquire vital work skills and experience, taking pride in their craftsmanship and the products they create. After their release, inmates who have worked in our program have critical work skills and experience, and are better equipped to transition back into family life, society and work. Nationally, most inmates leaving prison have a 50% chance of returning. For individuals employed in this type of program the recidivism rate drops to 7%.

This program is truly a unique and valuable opportunity for inmates, and a compelling story that resonates with consumers.

American Heirloom Steadfast

About American OEM Wood Floors

Dedicated to carrying forward a legacy of creating beautiful, responsible, enduring wood flooring, American OEM Wood Floors is reinventing the great American tradition of small, family-owned hardwood manufacturing for future generations. Headquartered in Burns, Tennessee, American OEM Wood Floors embraces both traditional craftsmanship and cutting edge technology to create floors designed for today – and tomorrow. Using a sustainable, responsible business model that employs both civilian and inmate labor, the company focuses on producing design-leading, cost-effective and durable American-made alternatives to imported OEM flooring. American OEM Wood Flooring products feature 8-foot board designs in a variety of North American species, including hickory and oak. For more information, visit homecrestflooring.com.