Zac Guy got his start in the recycled antique wood business when he took down a barn while still in high school.
“A local builder asked me if he could buy the wood out of the back of my truck,” he says. “Then he said that if I could find more of that quality, he’d buy that too.”
And so he did, taking down enough barns, mills, fences, bridges, homesteads, log cabins (and the occasional railroad trestle) to put himself through engineering school at N.C. State University. Then came graduate work in management.
He’s developed two companies that work hand in glove to supply the right experience for the architects, builders, interior and interior designers in search of his reclaimed wood. All total he figures he offers about 40 species of woods – oak, pine, hemlock and chestnut among them.
Appalachian Antique Hardwoods specializes in antique wood for floors, beams, timbers, cedar shakes, rain barrels, and antique log cabins from 700 square feet to 10,000 square feet in size.
With each order, customers receive text and photos documenting the wood’s original source and structure. “We like for them to get to know their wood,” he says. “This is not an SKU or a bar code. We want to turn a house into a home.”
Toward that end, he formed a sister company, Legacy Quest Outdoors. With it, he’s built 40 rustic retreats across the nation to familiarize potential clients with the kinds of woods and structures they might want for their own homes.
“We invite them to come and stay for one to three days, to get to know us and the wood for their projects,” he says.
They stay in the retreats, play a round of golf or have dinner, and develop a handshake relationship.
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