Acoustic Sounds
Furnace Record Pressing
By: Michael Fremer

September 27th, 2023


Factory Tours

Furnace Record Pressing Opens Up For Tracking Angle

third tour's the charm

Eric Astor, Furnace Record Pressing President and CEO invited me to tour the plant for the second time. The first time was a few years ago when the company was just setting up shop in the Alexandria, Virginia building that formerly housed The Washington Post's printing presses. During that first visit, Furnace was still shaking out the vintage Toolex Alpha presses it had purchased in Mexico plus it had added a few new WarmTone presses.

This new tour shows Furnace—now owned by the band Metallica— to be a mature, smoothly running facility with a dozen all new Phoenix Alpha presses and an impressive infrastructure as well as a team of dedicated employees.

VP of Manufacturing Mark Reiter conducted the tour. The video concludes with a short interview with Eric Astor who'd just returned from a short tour with his band and ends with Mr. Reiter explaining the company's new non-crude oil based "green" PVC records that he and Astor claim sound identical to crude oil based PVC. For now the cost is about $1 higher per record. Hopefully over time the cost will reach parity with crude oil based PVC.

The first time I toured Furnace it was in a much smaller location and the business consisted only of record packaging and shipping. The records were shipped to Furnace from Pallas in Germany with savings realized by shipping unpackaged records. Now Furnace does it all in house: pressing and packaging. It's an impressive operation.