Meet Andy Keith, an expert wood worksman who makes unique products and wooden items to sell. The company, Burl and Badger, is located in Lynchburg Florida, and has become something of a local sensation.
Andy Keith’s Background:
Andy’s interest started with pens after seeing the movie “A Beautiful Mind” when he was in college. It was the scene where they give a pen a for high achievement that put Andy on a mission as a serious pen collector. His obsession ran so deep that he gave pens as gifts to his groomsmen at his 2008 wedding.
It was his new bride who bought him a lathe that got Andy into crafting his own pens out of wood. He has perfected fountain pens but can also make ball points if you ask. Turning his own pens, he realized that he could do so much more. He started turning shaving kits, brushes, and razors. The clean shaven Andy had no need to make extra containers to hold his beeswax-infused beard balm or beard trimmers, but we bet that if he decided to grow one he could craft some of these too.
As his skills grew so did the collection of wooden items. Seam rippers, honey dippers and even a homemade baseball bat filled his shelves. Anything can be made using his simple equipment so long as it is round and wooden.
Keith sources old wood from all over the world including Burma, Honduras, South America and Israel. He is also nice enough to custom craft items out of wood that his customers bring in to him, although he prefers to use wood that has a highly textured grain.
The Burl and Badger has been in operation for a year and half now, with a high number of regular customers coming in from all over the area to see what he has new in store. But this is still just a hobby, Keith earns a living at the local college in the admissions division.
Making his crafts typically takes only a couple of hours, but to do it to absolute perfection is a never ending process. This is a great hobby for anybody to get involved in, especially if you have the time to come up with new and unique products.
Not everyone is going to have the same passion as Keith does, but he is a testament to how an idea, a block of wood and a lathe can make your dreams of wood crafting come true.