Couch Frames – Not All Are Created Equally
When you go couch shopping, whether in person or online, it is very easy to get wrapped up in the looks of a piece. Two couches that look completely alike can actually be miles apart in quality and price, and many people will not have the foggiest idea why. Sometimes it is because of fabric or name brand, but most of the time it is because of the frame. Frames are the skeleton of the couch, and go a very long ways towards determining the final quality rating of a piece. Without a solid, sturdy base, the couch will not last and is usually a poor value for your money. This is true in virtually every type of couch, from sleeper sofas to RTA (ready to assemble) furniture pieces.
So, how do you know when you have a solid, sturdy frame on a couch? Here are some tips:
One of the first things to look at in a frame is the joints. Are they glued? Do they use dowells? Are they stapled in place? Are they screwed? The best couch and sofa frames will use some combination of all of these, and not only one. Additionally, a solid sofa frame should be reinforced with additional blocks to ensure that they are sturdy and ready for the long haul.
What the sofa frame is made of is another vital thing to look at when you are furniture shopping. Buying hardwoods such as oak and ash are your best options as a rule, and they will ensure that the frame will last a very long time. Having the wood dried in a kiln is a good idea as well, because this takes out the majority of the natural wetness in the wood. This will prevent the wood from changing shape in the future as the wood ages. It is not unusual for a poorly made couch frame to crack or split over time, so you want to be sure that the wood is of the best quality. Also, check to make sure you have no knots in the wood, as this can put undue stress on the couch frame as well. Interestingly, there are some custom made RTA furniture companies that are using oak and ash wood now, making this type of furniture much higher in quality than what the standard was in previous years.
One of the knocks on RTA furniture over the years is that they use particle board, plywood and chip core in the construction of their furniture. This also stretches into the standard furniture market, and makes for a very cheaply made product. Avoid these cheaper alternatives if you are hoping to keep your furniture for an extended period. Otherwise, you will find it falling apart in short order. Kiln-dried wood such as mentioned above will last a lifetime, and is usually guaranteed to do so. The extra money is well worth the cost for your peace of mind and beautiful couch.
If you follow these general guidelines, you will quickly see that finding a quality frame is not that difficult. Make sure that you ask plenty of questions and try to stick with the custom made furniture options on the market. When a piece is bench made for your order specifically, your chances of quality go up immediately.