Luxury furniture relies on 3D printing


CATEGORY: Architecture and Art BRAND: BigRep

With 3D printing and artisan finishing techniques, RH-Engineering and manoFigura create 100% custom furnishings that create a personalized ambiance in a room.


In the East-German town of Schwarzenberg, a comfortable mountain town near the Czech border, a local duo has come together to create truly unique home furnishings and features for decerning customers with an eye for the unique. With their BigRep large-format 3D printer and artisan post-processing techniques, the pair is disrupting the luxury furnishing industry with end-use 3D printed products.


RH Engineering’s brand-new office and showroom, a former clean room to manufacture vehicle batteries in Schwarzenberg’s industrial area, has the scrappy vibrance of a fresh new startup. In operation for just four months, René Helmreich, the company’s founder and CEO, is using every available resource for their new endeavor. Even their BigRep ONE’s wooden shipping container has been immediately repurposed, serving as an improvised wall to divide the large room and pinned with ongoing design projects. From here he and his partner Enrico Klemmer, an accomplished designer and proprietor of manoFigura, design and manufacture the core of their 3D printed luxury home features.


With their BigRep ONE, a large-format additive manufacturing system with a cubic-meter build volume, Helmrich and Klemmer 3D print end-use, consumer-bound luxury home furnishings. Their goal is to create 100% custom pieces that lend a personalized ambiance to a room. They’ve started with bathroom features – a demanding application that necessitates complete water resistance – and have already sold several units in their short time. Their latest design, a minimalist sink with an industrial rust finishing, showcases their talent for 3D printing functional end-use furnishings.



“It’s real rust,” says Helmreich. “We can control the moisture and grow it to the level our customers want before sealing.”


Klemmer is regularly employed to design the interiors of multi-million-dollar yachts, homes, and other extravagant abodes. His studio – not far from Helmreich’s new office – is filled with prototypes, concepts, and experiments. Finished experimental designs are strewn around his workshop, each mimicking stone or showcasing their more unorthodox finishings.

 The team uses two techniques to create their on-demand personalized products: large-format additive manufacturing and a yet to be named finishing process the team describes as “living veneers.”


“Our coating is highly durable and waterproof,” says Klemmer. “Of course, it takes craftsmanship to replicate different looks like slate, rust, granite, or sandstone. So, we create an entirely individual piece.”



The same rust finishing technique used for their latest bathroom feature was also used to create manoFigura’s new signage, another service the two are offering in their burgeoning enterprise. The embossed company name convincingly mimics a painstakingly cut metal part but was actually quickly and easily 3D printed on their BigRep ONE. RH Engineering also showcases the team’s ability to quickly construct unique signage with a smoothly finished and brightly lit sign in three pieces – inspired by BigRep’s own sign-making process.

Klemmer’s proprietary post-processing technique isn’t unique to 3D printed parts. The technique can be applied to any surface, but the two consider additively manufactured parts a must to deliver such completely personalized products of the complexity, and at the scale, they plan.


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