Timberworks Toys – High Quality Wood Toy Building Blocks

We recently had the opportunity to visit the Timberworks Toys office and manufacturing location in Columbia, Missouri. While vacationing in Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri, we took a day trip to meet Chris Heston and tour the Timberworks Toy factory. Chris is a master cabinetmaker and at the suggestion of his wife took the idea of the traditional wooden, Lincoln Log style toys and came up with an unique new dimension on the old favorite as a toy for his son. The logs are notched so they interlock, but that is where the similarity ends. Timberworks logs are made of hard maple and the set also includes flat panels, triangles, and widgets, or “donuts” as Chris called them. These widgets fit over the ends of the logs to provide stability and strength to your child’s construction project. Also included in the larger sets are sturdy plastic wheels that enable the child to make cars and planes and anything else they can imagine. All this comes in a bright red duffle bag to store the blocks when not in use.

But this description cannot totally give you the true picture of the toy. The logs are solid; the wood is smooth and has a quality that you can truly feel when you touch the pieces. The shipping weight of the product ranges from 15 pounds for the smaller set to 35 pounds for the King Set which gives you some idea of the sturdiness of the logs. One thing I noticed while we were in the office talking to Chris was that the supports for the countertop holding their computers, printers and other office equipment were made from the logs. These are serious building blocks!

We also toured the production area. Some of the machines were designed specifically by Chris for the first stages of the production. These pieces of precision equipment can make exacting cuts to replicate the logs to keep the pieces consistent so they will always fit together no matter which production batch they came from.

As impressive as the toy is, Chris’ passion for the blocks is also infectious. As I said, he is a master cabinetmaker with twenty years of experience. He has thought this product out with the child in mind. How to make it safe, how the pieces fit so the child will be able to use it without difficulty, the educational value and just plain fun value. His slogan, which is printed on every box, is “made by a father for his son.”

He also is totally committed to this heirloom quality toy to be totally made in the USA. He employs area workers, gets his lumber from suppliers in the US, and even the duffle bag is made in his home state of Missouri. Even when large furniture companies like the one in our home town has closed it’s doors and put so many people on the unemployment lines, this new company is producing a quality product, providing people with jobs. And this Made in America philosophy is not just for the toy business, this is the way Chris looks all aspects of his way of life.

So whether you are looking for a great product to spark your grandchild’s imagination, whether you are a parent who home schools, looking for educational, fun toys for your children, a classroom teacher looking for something special for your students, or just a mom or dad looking for something to share some quality time with your child, like Chris, Timberworks Toys wood toy building blocks will more than fill your needs.

On a side note, soon after our visit we found out that Timberworks Toys received the Parent’s Choice Gold award for Fall of 2010. I doubt it will be their last award. It’s such a great product.