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About Us

Pacific Northwest roots with a national reach

Proudly located in Idaho's panhandle, Northern Timber Crafters designs and fabricates custom timber features for extraordinary homes throughout the United States.

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Our Story

Starting as a timber mill in Montana over a decade ago, Northern Timber Crafters is dedicated to high-quality craftsmanship and establishing positive relationships with General Contractors, Architects, Engineers, and Homeowners alike. 

Now, under new ownership, and with our operations relocated to Ponderay, Idaho, we proudly partner on extraordinary projects all over the country.

Joey Copper, GC

Owner & Operator

Alicia Copper, CPA, MAcc

Owner & CFO

"Work requires equal parts giddy and grind"

"Nothing done well is insignificant"

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a small giant

Every business owner has to decide how their business will operate in the world. This is more than simply the product or the industry in which they will operate. Customers and industry partners might call it a reputation and employees might call it company values. It requires a bunch of adjectives to describe but is difficult to assign it any nouns.

 

The closest term that I can come up with is the “soul” of the company. How does it make each individual feel that comes into interaction with the company? As owner of Northern Timber Crafters, I have gone though a meandering journey to answer this question for myself and my company.

 

I would describe myself as an ambitious entrepreneur. With the support of my parents I started my first company, Copper Wood Creations, at the age of 14. This initial experience planted the seeds for characteristics critical to all entrepreneurs and I discovered that the world of business ownership might be the perfect vessel for my ambitions. In the subsequent years I read almost any business and finance book that was available, watched all of the documentaries on the “titans of industry”, and pursued a college degree in finance.

 

As young adults, my wife and I gained crucial corporate experience in the finance and accounting industries, and then we were able to start and purchase several small businesses. I became a licensed General Contractor over ten years ago and have managed hundreds of residential and commercial construction projects. These early experiences continued to help grow our real-world education of this game called “business”.

 

Throughout this journey my education and my ambitions continually reinforced the idea that any good business is BIG, fast-growing, capital and human intensive, and marketed so well that anyone would recognize your logo. The most important markers were seemingly how BIG revenue could be, or how many employees a business could employ. When my wife and I purchased Northern Timber Crafters the original vision was not too dissimilar to previous visions. Build a big building, buy the best CNC machine, and crank out sooooo many timber features!

 

…but a funny thing has happened. I think it was brought on by two forces. First, what might be called “the wisdom of wood” and second, a great book written by Bo Burlingham titled “Small Giants”. I’ll talk a bit more about “the wisdom of wood” and just leave “Small Giants” as a personal book recommendation.

 

Throughout our website we talk about the feelings that large timbers evoke. I think this is why people immediately love the look and feel of homes that include timber features. This same feeling that timbers provide homeowners also exists inside our shop. When you are surrounded and constantly touching large timbers there is a connection that is formed.

 

The natural beauty is engaging, the scale and weight demand respect, and the willingness to be transformed into beautiful architectural features evokes gratefulness. These feelings are not compatible with scaling a timber framing company quickly for the sake of having a “good” business. The idea of substituting craftsmanship for CNC machine processing is also not compatible with these feelings.

Since deciding to follow the path of “Small Giants” our ambition has not gone away. This same ambition is just now focused towards different goals:

  • How can we improve our customer experience?

  • How can we make installation easier for the on-site contractors?

  • What shop workflow is most efficient?

  • Are we giving the design process enough time and energy?

  • Are there any technical improvements that would improve our timber features?

  • What work environment ensures that we are working “in the zone”?

 

Our wish for Northern Timber Crafters is that in every interaction, you are able to feel our company soul. I also hope that all customers experience this soul through their timber features. Each time you place your hand on a timber post, each time snow slides off your pent roof, and each time you look up at your timber trusses while sipping your coffee—may your feelings of engagement, respect, and gratefulness for the timbers only be enhanced because of the time they spent in our shop.

I look forward to meeting you,

Joey

J Osborne,

Customer

"Our company recently purchased a large package from Northern Timber Crafters. The order consisted of decorative trusses, hand hewn siding, and also structural beams & timbers. The owner Joey was great to work with from start to finish & the quality of workmanship was very evident! We’ll definitely work with him again on future projects."

G Koenig,

Customer

"Thanks to Northern Timber Crafters for another great project. This is the third set of trusses and beams we have received from them and the workmanship and quality are amazing. Looking forward to designing future projects with more heavy timbers!"

N Swank,

Business Associate

"I’ve worked with the owners of Northern Timber Crafters for 15 years. They are honest, hard-working, and reliable. They have extensive experience in the financial and practical aspects of construction. I highly recommend working with them."
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