Becoming Unhinged: The Engineering Behind Furniture Hardware
Sana Kazilbash posted on August 04, 2020 |
Turkey’s SAMET designs furniture accessories for the global market.
Dassault Systèmes has sponsored this post.
(Image courtesy of DS SOLIDWORKS.)
(Image courtesy of DS SOLIDWORKS.)

Furniture hardware and accessories may make you think of giant blue and yellow stores belonging to a certain company from Sweden. But much further to the south, in a country associated more with carpets than the furniture that rests on them, we find SAMET—perhaps one of the most innovative furniture hardware companies on the planet. A pioneer of mechanisms for soft-closing cabinets that can be assembled without tools, SAMET allows you the luxury of fixing the garbage disposal unit without waking the baby.

Based out of Istanbul, Turkey, SAMET is committed to developing products using the latest technologies and processes. Since its inception in 1973, SAMET has become a luminary in the world of furniture accessories. With a product line comprised of more than 3,000 components, the furniture hardware manufacturer presently has over 500 distribution centers across Turkey and exports its products to more than 100 countries worldwide. SAMET’s modern high-capacity manufacturing plants span a massive area of 80,500m2—including an R&D institute dedicated to innovation and design.

Mechanism Design

Mechanism design, such as that required to create SAMET’s sophisticated hinges, slides and other furniture hardware, can be simulated with SOLIDWORKS Simulation Standard. The parts of the furniture hardware, the springs and dampeners can be modeled. The application of mates at the design stage makes it fairly easy to determine movement and create an animation—certainly easier than adding and removing degrees of freedom during a simulation.

At a joint, where one part is in contact with another, the type of mate automatically determines what degrees of freedom are allowed, such as how it rotates, slides, one or the other, both or neither. For an engineer, the forces and moments that the simulation solves for can be used to determine if the material of the hinge is subject to excessive stresses or if the force transmitted to the fasteners is too great.

A simulation solution leads to true understanding of the mechanism for the product engineer. As doors or drawers attached to SAMET’s hardware can move virtually through their whole range of movement, SOLIDWORKS Simulation graphs show the force and torque variation over time on or in the different components of the furniture.

SAMET’s engineers are not just concerned with their own hardware, but also with what the hardware is attached to. For even if the metal hardware remains intact, the forces in the fasteners may cause them to pull out of the material—usually a much less forgiving material such as wood or a wood product.

The animation that can be created is when the design comes to life for most people. Whereas a static model of an assembly may reveal interferences, a motion study is the money shot. It’s what everyone gathers around to watch. Everyone gets it.

The dynamic study of a mechanism alleviates a lot of physical work done in the model shop where, by tradition, physical prototypes are created and tested.

“Our efficiency in R&D and product development using SOLIDWORKS makes us 30 percent faster in bringing products to market,” Kiran notes. “We also utilize fewer prototypes, which saves money. We used to make three to five prototypes. Now we make one or two.”

What Does SAMET Make?

SAMET produces a collection of furniture components and accessories, from hinges to drawer systems. Each design aims to connect elegant visuals with sophisticated inner workings, while also being produced with long-lasting durability.

A New Generation of Hinges

SAMET specializes in soft-close and self-closing hinges. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
SAMET specializes in soft-close and self-closing hinges. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

SAMET’s soft-close hinges incorporate a new generation of hinge assembly that offers high adjustability in combination with ease of movement and installation, ensuring a more quiet close of cabinet doors. The metallic soft-close hinge blends aesthetically into the body of furniture, while its track lock mechanism conveniently allows for tool-free assembly and disassembly.

The unique adjustment system provides triple axis flexibility, enabling the hinge to be moved upward and downward, forward and backward, left and right, for more practical home installation. The IMPRO model utilizes a five-step braking system, while the INVO model employs a special coating and an elastic hinge cover (ELA) to further enhance its design.

Advanced 3D adjustment in the MASTER series. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
Advanced 3D adjustment in the MASTER series. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

The video below illustrates how some of these elements come together in the MASTER model.

Innovative Drawer Systems

(Image courtesy of SOLIDWORKS.)
(Image courtesy of SOLIDWORKS.)

The Smart Slide model incorporates many of the SAMET hinges’ highlights, along with other innovations. For instance, the drawer system utilizes a synchronization system for smooth movement and supports soft-close push-open technology for non-handle drawer models. Single and full extension options provide variety in design needs, while Lock-Fix and Pin-Fix mechanisms ensure flexible and safe installation.

SAMET doesn’t stop at drawer sliding systems, but also manufactures drawer box systems (such as the highly customizable Flowbox series) as well as internal accessories.

Inner drawer dividing systems. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
Inner drawer dividing systems. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

SMART BOX, for example, transforms the average kitchen drawer into a modern, functional storage area with the use of creative drawer accessories.

Stylish drawer components include wooden plate holders. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
Stylish drawer components include wooden plate holders. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

SAMET also offers lift-up and sliding door systems. The D-Lite Lift model is a hingeless door system that applies many of the innovative concepts discussed earlier.

The D-Lite Lift door system. (Image courtesy of SOLIDWORKS.)
The D-Lite Lift door system. (Image courtesy of SOLIDWORKS.)

Other lift-up door system solutions include the Performa, Gas Spring and Hydraulic Lid Stay models. The Gas Spring series uses four different gas pressure models based on the weight of the door, while the Hydraulic Lid Stay employs oil pressure within its mechanism.

Left to right: Performa, Gas Spring and Hydraulic Lid Stay. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
Left to right: Performa, Gas Spring and Hydraulic Lid Stay. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

As for sliding door systems, SAMET has two types: upper guided and bottom running.

SAMET’s sliding door systems. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
SAMET’s sliding door systems. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

One overhead sliding door model is the SMT 110 Plus, with a load capacity of 80kg and compatibility with door thicknesses of 18–50mm.

SAMET also manufactures fittings for furniture assembly.

SAMET fitting systems. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)
SAMET fitting systems. (Image courtesy of SAMET.)

The Soul of Furniture

Driven by the slogan “The Soul of Furniture,” SAMET maintains its competitive advantage by approaching the creative design process with the target audience in mind. According to Beytullah Kiran, R&D machine design and production manager, SAMET achieves its quality goals through the use of the SOLIDWORKS for product development.

“As our new product development and R&D effort has grown, so has our need for other integrated capabilities,” Kiran asserts. “SOLIDWORKS design software is easy to learn and use, so we’ve decided to standardize on SOLIDWORKS solutions.”

SAMET embraced 3D CAD ahead of its time, replacing its Vector Graphics 2D design software with the SOLIDWORKS 3D mechanical design system as early as 1998. Over the years, SAMET incorporated additional SOLIDWORKS applications for undertaking its design requirements. Today, SAMET utilizes SOLIDWORKS Product Data Management (PDM), SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics, SOLIDWORKS Simulation, SOLIDWORKS Composer and DraftSight 2D design software to advance its furniture accessories business.

SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional has enabled the company to achieve significant productivity gains since its implementation in 2013. The PDM solution allows SAMET clients and colleagues to collaborate effectively on 3D designs from multiple locations, dramatically improving the product development cycle.

SAMET uses SOLIDWORKS Electrical Schematics Professional for the efficient design of embedded electrical systems within its products. The tool provides common reusable 3D component models and automates complex repetitive tasks associated with developing electrical schematics such as contact cross-referencing and terminal drawings, accelerating product development.

SOLIDWORKS Simulation Professional conducts virtual testing for each of SAMET’s CAD models in order to accurately predict their physical behavior in real-world conditions. The structural analysis tool uses finite element analysis (FEA) to optimize the design of every furniture accessory and determine its durability through fatigue simulations. This has helped SAMET to lower physical testing costs and reduce the number of prototypes by 50 to 60 percent.

SOLIDWORKS Composer has been streamlining technical documentation by repurposing 3D models to easily create and update high-quality graphical illustrations. Instead of spending valuable hours in capturing digital pictures and screenshots—often leading to workflow bottlenecks—SAMET engineers work concurrently on design and documentation, drastically reducing product time-to-market. This is especially useful when there are changes to a product, because with Composer the illustrations do not have to be recreated from scratch.

“We receive demands from customers and marketing for new products, and we need to make a determination of what’s feasible,” Kiran explains. “With SOLIDWORKS, we not only can assess the viability of a new concept faster but also can develop the product and associated documentation in less time. Our documentation group, which develops user manuals, catalogs, and product documentation, can produce these items in 40 percent less time by using integrated SOLIDWORKS Composer software.”

SAMET has also been using DraftSight 2D design software to help engineers switch effortlessly between 2D drafting and 3D modeling, further enhancing design flexibility within the Dassault Systèmes suite of products.

“Our experience using integrated SOLIDWORKS solutions, through which we are continually able to save time and money while improving quality and increasing innovation, compels us to look to the SOLIDWORKS family of solutions whenever we need additional capabilities,” expresses Kiran.

SAMET actively maintains its SOLIDWORKS Subscription Services to keep its SOLIDWORKS solutions current and continue its success in 3D feature-based parametric solid modeling.

“We are developing three to five new products, 120 to 150 new mold and die designs, and 50 custom application machines every year,” Kiran stresses. “By keeping our SOLIDWORKS applications up-to-date with SOLIDWORKS Subscription Services, we continue to enjoy time and cost savings, as well as improvements in quality and innovation. With SOLIDWORKS Subscription Services, we know that we’ll have access to the latest SOLIDWORKS capabilities, information and support—all of which make us more productive with SOLIDWORKS.”

SAMET products have been certified by Landesgewerbeanstalt Bayern (LGA), a German certification company that specializes in furniture testing.

For more information on Dassault Systèmes and SOLIDWORKS, visit their website.


For details on SOLIDWORKS Simulation, check out this research report and this eBook.


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