Who is Concept Seating?
Concept Seating was founded on the idea of a police officer that wanted to create a seat in their car that would be designed to alleviate back problems that arose from such long hours driving. With the help of Brooks Stevens Design Firm, the seat was brought to reality. The car seat was eventually converted into a 24/7 Intensive Use Chair to be used by police officers and employees while in the office environment.
The subtle design choices by a law enforcement officer can still be seen with features like the cut-out back rest on the 3142r1. This cut-out shape toward the bottom of the backrest is specifically designed so that users with utility belts can sit down in the chair instantly, without removing their belt. All Concept Seating chairs are made in the USA with the entire manufacturing process taking place in Brookfield Wisconsin. Concept stands behind their build quality with a strong 10 year warranty on the chair frame and 6 year warranty on all other parts for round the clock use by users up to 550 pounds!
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What makes a good furniture company?
When sitting down to write about Concept Seating, the first questions that I ultimately had to answer were, “What makes a good office furniture company?”, “Why do some furniture companies stand out while others seem to just fall in line with all the others?” and “Is Concept Seating a company that stands out?” I have been selling office furniture for a long time now and it is not very often that I take the time to reflect on questions like these. But, in the end, I think it is quite simple. A good furniture company is one that strives to make a quality product to benefit the consumer at a fair price with a strong guarantee of quality, represented by a warranty. Now, this sounds easy enough and you are probably thinking “Well, don’t most furniture companies follow this simple logic?” And to that I answer, “No.”
There is and probably always will be this ever pervasive idea that trying to have the lowest prices and sell the most volume is the only way to be competitive in the furniture industry. This often means sacrificing on the quality of product, the guarantee of the product or both. This creates a market saturated with inexpensive items with a low build quality and short term warranty periods.
Concept Seating stands out among this crowd. Concept has recognized that many consumers still prefer high quality items, with top notch functions and materials that they know will last for many years to come and they are willing to pay the extra cost associated with such quality. For this reason, Concept has dedicated themselves to providing a very small selection of operator chairs that are specifically designed to handle any 24/7 intensive use application while still being able to accommodate the body sizes and shapes of over 95% of the population. Their product offering is small and efficient, making it easy to select the correct model for your given application.
But, it doesn’t just stop there. There are many companies out there that have gone the route of manufacturing in the US and selling high quality items at a premium price. In my opinion, Concept Seating separates itself from other Made in the USA manufacturers as well because of their attention to detail and the thought process that goes into the shape and design of their chairs.
Concept Seating Goes Above Typical Standards
The term “24/7 Chair” is synonymous with “Round-the-Clock Chair”, “Intensive Use Chair”, “Call Center Chair”, “Dispatch Chair”, etc. People call them many different things because there is no law or legal precedent to determine what the definition of a 24/7 chair actually is. Almost all 24/7 chairs will have added durability as compared to a standard office chair in areas like the pneumatic cylinder, chair base, casters and armrests, but in the end, it is up to the manufacturer of the chair to determine whether a chair can handle 24/7 usage. This creates a bit of a gray area in the industry because often times a chair is walking a fine line as to whether it is intensive use or not. There is really only one way to prove the workload that your chair is capable of handling and that is through standardized testing by agencies like ANSI/BIFMA.
ANSI is the American National Standards Institute and BIFMA is the Business Institutional Furniture Manufacturers Association. BIFMA is an accredited institution that provides standardized testing on a wide range of furniture items in areas of comfort, safety and durability. The ANSI/BIFMA tests are the standard for office furniture and therefore instantly give a product credibility and most chairs labeled with 24/7 usage will have passed these tests. The problem with the ANSI/BIFMA standards is they are based on a 40 hour work week of 8 hours per day, 5 days per week.
For a true test of a chair’s 24/7 capability it must pass the standards testing by the FNEW in the US and FIRA in the UK. The specific tests are FNEW 83-269 and FIRA 055:2005: These tests are much more rigorous than ANSI/BIFMA and every single piece of hardware and chair section is tested tens of thousands of times. As quoted from the FNEW: “This test method describes procedures for evaluating performance characteristics of intensive use chairs. Intensive use chairs are designed to be used 24 hours per day in a severe use environment.” Concept Seating has passed all ANSI/BIFMA testing standards as well as passing the intensive use testing standards done by FNEW and FIRA.
Below are some of the unique features Concept has incorporated into their chairs to promote safety for the user and durability for the chair:
- Best in class cylinder: Concept Seating uses a cylinder with a thicker casing wall than other cylinders. The stand pipe has been hardened and thickened. A metal collar travels the length of the cylinder and a specially designed o-ring protects the cylinder from dirt and grime. And most important, the cylinder has an incredible weight rating of 550 pounds.
- 7 Leg Base: A 28” wide, all steel, 7 leg base comes standard on all Concept Chairs. This extra wide base, with 2 extra legs compared to a standard base, is virtually tip proof. It is rated to support an astounding 10,000 pounds.
- Safety Casters: The extra durable, shock absorbing safety casters used by Concept were designed with the safety of larger individuals in mind. The chair only rolls freely when someone is seated in it. This keeps the chair from sliding out from users that need to use the armrests for support.
- Stationary Glides: Concept understands that some applications require a fixed, stable position. Extra strong glides will replicate the height of the standard safety caster with a much more secure positioning without it being permanent. The chair can still be picked up and moved to another location.
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The Most Comfortable and Versatile Tank
It is without question that Concept Seating chairs are tanks. The testing standards, specifications and dimensions prove that these chairs are undoubtedly some of the most durable chairs on the market. But, that is just half of it. These chairs are actually very comfortable too. We have all models in our office here and we love these chairs. The best thing about the Concept Chairs is their ability to fit almost anyone. Often times, chairs that are rated for big and tall, like the Concept Seating line is, simply will not fit smaller users. The user will feel as if they are swimming in the chair. It goes the same way for a big and tall user trying to use a standard sized office chair. They will feel cramped. This can create a huge problem when choosing chairs for a 24/7 workspace with multiple people using one chair throughout the day. You will either be forced to buy more chairs than you need or some people will inevitably not fit correctly in the chair.
Since Concept doesn’t use an unnecessarily large backrest to support its big and tall customers, it is still comfortable for the typical standard office chair user while being supportive for big and tall users. The 3150 model features a sliding seat mechanism, which allows the user to adjust the depth of the seat. Combine the seat depth adjustment with the seat height adjustment and you have 95% of the population covered. Having one chair that can cover all users for a shared area is a huge money and space saver.
Here are some more features to further set Concept apart:
- Inflatable Lumbar Support: Simply squeeze the pump near the bottom of the backrest to inflate the lumbar to any level of support you’d like. Release the air at any time to lessen the lumbar support.
- Dymetrol Suspension: Most chairs use foam as the support or padding for the seat. Foam will often times conform to the user and will eventually condense and provide less support. This can be a problem in 24/7 work areas due to the massive increase in usage of the foam and the uncomfortable feeling of sitting in someone else’s butt shape until the chair remolds to you. Concept has gone in another direction. Their chairs use a suspension system to keep the user suspended on the chair surface, almost giving a feeling of floating. This removes any chance of foam wearing out and also provides a fresh sit to any user since it almost instantly bounces back to its original shape.
- Swing Arms: In addition to the fully adjustable loop arms that come standard, customers can choose to go with a swing armrest system instead. The swing arm is height and width adjustable like the loop arms and it also has the ability to adjust the pad that your arm rests on in 4 directions. But the main selling point of the swing arm is that it allows the user to tilt the armrest from the point near the seat, backwards so that it is aligned horizontally with the seat. This makes ease of entry a breeze for larger people or people with utility belts.
Concept Seating Truly Cares About the Customer
One final thing I’d like to touch on is something that I think really shows that Concept Seating wants these chairs to last and they don’t want you to have to spend a fortune every few years to replace them. Everything on the chair is replaceable, even down to the upholstery covering the chairs. The Concept Seating line has a modular design on purpose so that customers can easily buy and replace parts that may be past warranty, without having to replace entire sections of the chair or the whole chair. They also stock and sell upholstery covers for their chairs so that customers can simply remove the old cover and add a new one to their chair to make it look brand new again.
Additional Office Chair Resources
- Concept Seating Operator 3150HR Chair (Ratings / Reviews / Prices)
- Chairs To Meet Your Around The Clock Needs: 24 Hour Chair Buying Guide
- Before You Buy: Concept Seating 3150HR vs. ERA Henry HEN-2PC
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- 7 Best Big and Tall Office Chairs For 2022