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Dimension association responds to industry challenges.

The National Dimension Manufacturers Association implements programs in response to the changing needs of the growing hardwood dimension manufacturing industry.

Today, the members of the National Dimension Manufacturers Association (NDMA) face several major challenges including: increased lumber costs, raw material shortages, environmental pressures; rising costs of doing business, and ever-increasing government regulations. The NDMA is attempting to help its members meet these challenges by conducting educational programs to improve lumber yields, costing procedures and production efficiency; mounting grass-roots efforts to respond to environmental criticism of the forest products industry; joining with other wood product trade associations to promote the use of wood products and to fight unwarranted legislation and government regulations.

A major contribution of the dimension manufacturing industry is that we can use America's abundant supplies of lower grade lumber, and by machining it, produce a useable wood component product, thus better utilizing the raw material resource. As a result, the dimension manufacturing industry will play a key role in the future of America's woodworking industry.

The NDMA was initially organized in 1929 as the Hardwood Dimension Manufacturers Association. The basic goals of the association were to establish and maintain specifications and commercial standards for the hardwood dimension manufacturing industry, and to aid in the development of the industry.

The term "dimension" was originally defined as boards which were sawn and surfaced to specific thicknesses, widths and lengths to meet the specifications of a particular customer. Rough dimension blanks were the primary products produced by most of the early members of the association. The dimension industry has since expanded into the production of a wide range of semi- and fully-machined component parts for the furniture, cabinet, millwork and related industries.


The major objectives of the NDMA are to:

* Promote a friendly exchange of ideas among those engaged in the dimension manufacturing business.

* Develop and promote a general demand for the industry's products and services.

* Collect and distribute useful economic and technical information concerning industry trends and developments.

* Serve as a business referral clearing-house by responding to inquiries from dimension buyers and passing this information on to dimension manufacturers.

* Encourage improvements in woodworking technology and worker productivity by exposing its members to the latest woodworking manufacturing techniques.

* Establish and maintain standard rules and specifications for the dimension manufacturing industry.

* Cooperate and interact with other wood product trade associations and appropriate government agencies to promote and protect the interests of the industry.


The NDMA currently represents about 90 manufacturers of various wood component products made from both hardwoods and softwoods. These companies are located throughout the United States and Canada.

NDMA member companies vary by size and type of products produced. Some can produce a complete line of rough, semi-machined or completely-machined wood component products, while others choose to specialize in the production of a narrower range of dimensioned wood products. Most members produce their products according to specifications set by manufacturers of furniture, kitchen and bath cabinets, building materials and a wide variety of decorative wood products.

Included among the typical dimensioned wood products produced by member companies are: cut-to-size blanks, edge-glued panels, solid and laminated squares, mouldings, turnings, bendings, upholstered frame stock, interior trim, millwork, flooring, staircase parts and a variety of component parts for the kitchen and bath cabinet industry including cabinet doors, face frames, drawer sides and fronts.


The NDMA is a member of the American Hardwood Export Council. This group of leading wood products trade associations and exporters was established to promote the development of growing overseas business opportunities for American wood products.

Hardwood dimension exports have increased dramatically in recent years and are expected to exceed $170 million in 1993, an increase of around 10 percent over 1992. Dimension exports will continue to increase as more overseas furniture, cabinet, millwork and related wood product manufacturers discover the advantages of purchasing their wood components from North American dimension suppliers.

Overseas dimension buyers have realized significant cost savings in transportation, storage, handling and waste disposal. Also, studies have shown that furniture and cabinet manufacturers can achieve a higher return on their investments by having someone else make their component parts while they concentrate on their product design and marketing activities.

The NDMA exhibits with other member associations of the American Hardwood Export Council and the leading international woodworking fairs throughout the world including: Interzum Home Furnishings & Furniture Supply Fair, Cologne, Germany; Interbimall/Sasmil Woodworking Machinery & Supply Fair, Milan, Italy; WoodMac Asia, Singapore; FIMMI/Maderlia, Valencia, Spain; Tokyo International Furniture Fair, Tokyo, Japan; Association of Suppliers to the Furniture Industry (ASFI) and Interbuild Show held in Birmingham, England.


The NDMA also exhibits at the major woodworking shows held in the United States including the International Woodworking Machinery & Furniture Supply Fair (IWF) in Atlanta, Georgia, and the Woodworking Machinery & Furniture Supply Fair, Anaheim, California. The NDMA generates a large number of sales inquiries from interested dimension buyers and users at these trade shows. These sales leads are given to all NDMA members companies for follow-up.


The NDMA conducts several business and market studies to help identify potential new markets and help our members improve their operations. The NDMA's annual wage and benefit survey allow members to compare their costs of doing business with other member companies. Regular monthly dimension shipment reports provide members with an up-to-date sales trend report. An in-depth dimension market study is also conducted every year to define and measure the various market segments for the wood component products industry. The NDMA also publishes a detailed hardwood dimension industry performance review and forecast report.


An NDMA newsletter is published to provide members with useful information concerning industry trends and general business conditions. The newsletter also includes: sales leads from potential customers, a machinery/equipment exchange section, an employment referral section, announcements of important NDMA-sponsored activities and other industry-sponsored seminars and conferences.


The NDMA works closely with its allied associations to protect the wood products industry from unfair or unwarranted legislation or regulations that would have an adverse affect on our industry. For example, the NDMA has been actively involved in the wood dust, timber supply and environmental issues. The association has also supported fair trade laws that have reduced trade barriers and increased international trade. The NDMA keeps its members up-to-date on current legislative issues that may have an effect on their business and industry.


The NDMA conducts two major meetings each year. The Annual Spring Meeting includes an educational program designed to cover several important topics of interest to the dimension manufacturing industry including:

* Rough mill and yield improvement programs

* Cost accounting methods and procedures

* Total Quality Management programs

* Technological advances in production methods and woodworking machinery

* Export market opportunities for dimension manufacturers

* Dimension market trends and forecasts

* Labor productivity improvement programs

* Advanced lumber drying techniques

* Employee training and incentive programs

The next NDMA Annual Spring Meeting will be held at the Embassy Suites International Drive South in Orlando, Florida on March 12-15, 1994.


Every fall, NDMA members tour the production facilities of several dimension and related woodworking companies. These plant tours provide NDMA members with a unique opportunity to observe other dimension manufacturing operations and exchange ideas in a friendly atmosphere. The 1993 Annual Plant Tour Even will be held in Eastern Kentucky on October 4-5.


The NDMA Dimension Purchasing Guide is designed to be a useful reference source for dimension buyers who are looking for dimension manufacturers that can produce the specific type of wood products they need. This guide includes a listing of all NDMA member companies and indicates the type of products they can produce along with their special woodworking capabilities, and available species of wood.

Also included is the contents of the latest edition of the NDMA Rules and Specifications for Dimension and Woodwork along with several articles containing useful information to assist dimension buyers and users in their purchasing guide.

NDMA membership information

The NDMA is very proud of its membership and is always looking for new members to make the association even stronger. The common denominator among NDMA members is that they are experienced and in business to produce and deliver quality wood product to satisfy the specific needs of the diversified wood products industry. To find out more about the association and its membership benefits, return the attached response card on page 142 of this section or contact the NDMA, 1000 Johnson Ferry Road, Suite A-130, Marietta, GA 30068. Phone: (404) 565-6660, FAX: (404) 565-6663.


Sept. 9-12, 1993: Woodworking Machine & Furniture Supply Fair, Anaheim Calif.

Oct. 4-5, 1993: NDMA Annual Plant Tour Event, Eastern Kentucky

Nov. 18-21, 1993: Exhibiting at Tokyo International Furniture Fair, Tokyo, Japan

Nov. 28-Dec. 3, 1993: Exhibiting at the Interbuild '93 Show, Birmingham, England

March 12-15, 1994: NDMA Annual Meeting, Embassy Suites International Drive South, Orlando, Fla.

Aug. 25-28, 1994: Exhibiting at the International Woodworking Machinery & Supply Fair (IWF '94), Atlanta, Ga.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Vance Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Title Annotation:10th Annual Dimension Purchasing Guide
Author:Lawser, Steven V.
Publication:Wood & Wood Products
Date:Jul 1, 1993
Previous Article:Increasing productivity: five profiles in membrane pressing.
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