Morrisville, NC – Thursday night, January 8, 2015 the Morrisville Innovation Foundation hosted their Morrisville Startup Networking event at the Hardware Store by Bi-Link. The Hardware store is open to anyone to stop by and is full of really cool maker tools to prototype parts.
Bi-Link is famous for manufacturing hard to make parts that can be produced in volume at low cost. As the Bi-Link designers and engineers work with you on your project they will be looking at how best to make the part looking toward the ultimate production and service requirements. They really can make anything, but if it cannot be produced in the quantity and cost required then your prototype will not be very useful…
Stefan Stalgren gave us a tour of the facility. They have 2, 3-D printers, a small retail quality printer and a large extremely accurate printer (Stefan showed a part with 16 micron holes they had made). In the back shop they have a multi-axis CNC machine, a vacuum molding setup, and a very small plastic injection machine where individual parts can be molded. If they do not have the capability to produce your part in Morrisville, then the design can be sent to the main facility in Chicago and parts will arrive by FedEx in a few days. I’m sure I missed a few pieces of equipment, but you can visit and see everything for yourself.
Stefan mentioned that this is the first of the Hardware Stores in the world. Bi-Link located the store here since they have quite a lot of customers in the NC area. A second Hardware Store will open soon in San Diego.
The Hardware Store is an authentic workspace, outside Bi-Link’s headquarters, to create a technology-driven “home away from work” for product engineers — an open atmosphere with all the tools and resources necessary to push the boundaries on design projects.
Stephan stated that there was no ultimate plan for the Hardware Store and it would grow and evolve to fit the needs of the people that come and use the store.
The Hardware Store is a great resource for entrepreneurs and the local maker community. Everyone is invited to stop by and see the many samples of parts they have made and to get a tour of the facility. If you are looking at a new product you will definitely want to consider talking to them about assisting you with the design and producing some prototypes. You will want to call ahead since Stefan is not at the facility at all times and does travel frequently.
Hardware Store Info
The Hardware Store by Bi-Link
200 Trans Air Drive, Suite 800
Morrisville, NC 27560