Taylor-Made Lumber owner partners for success

Published 1:35 pm Tuesday, December 7, 2021

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By JOYANNA LOVE/ Managing Editor

Taylor-Made Lumber has been in Maplesville for nearly 40 years.

Since the company was purchased by long-time employee Philip Kelley two years ago, new partnerships have developed to keep operations going.

One partnership, the creation of Coosa River Freight seven months ago, was to address an immediate need.

“When the lumber market went haywire, we were having trouble getting trucks to get the lumber to get the products out,” Jim Petrey, operations with Taylor Made Lumber and co-owner at Coosa River Freight, said.

Coosa River Freight has three employees, and Petrey said there are plans to expand this in the future.

“It has helped us to move freight on time to our customers,” Kelley said. “It has helped us to include the freight with the sale.”

He said packaging freight services with the lumber service can give customers a lower cost than having to hire someone separately or picking it up.

“It is a lot of times more attractive to a customer when they can just buy it and have it delivered and be through with it,” Kelley said. “… The biggest thing is it just saves a lot of time because once we have the lumber ready we can put it on our own truck and have it delivered rather than them spending two or three days trying to find a truck.”

Petrey said he thinks the partnership “will carry us well into the future.”

“The market for lumber is not going to go anywhere,” Petrey said.

Taylor-Made has about 30 employees.

“We are continuing operation that Mike Reynolds started,” Kelley said.

Kelley said he worked for Reynolds for nearly 25 years.

“I am proud to continue the operation that he started,” Kelley said.

The companies have separate owners, but support each other.

“We ship throughout the southeast United States,” Petrey said.

Petrey said the lumber company is primarily a wholesaler and had not been impacted by recent supply concerns because the lumber is brought to the company and then manufactured for that customer.

“The supply has not really effected Taylor-Made … and now we have the facilities to get it (the product) back out to them if need be,” Petrey said.

Kelley said Southern Yellow Pine is the lumber the company works with the most.

“Our biggest products are 1×4 and 2×6 tongue and groove,” Kelley said.

The 1×4 boards are used mostly for construction and industrial purposes, while many of the 2×6 boards are used for barn construction and seawalls.

“We do a lot of remanufactured work by the truck load, stud cuts, precision and trim, tongue and groove, high quality wood products for interior application,” Petrey said.

They also do some boards.

Kelley attributed the success of the company to being able to offer freight services and sees it as important to the future.

“It became successful because the product and the freight were under one room, it used to be with Taylor-Made Transportation, since we have purchased the lumber company we have added Coosa River Freight to do the same thing for the new company,” Kelley said.

He said having it as two companies is helpful because not every customer needs the freight services.

Kelley said probably half of the costumers pick up their products themselves.

Coosa River Freight is also researching running freight for other nearby companies that would be looking for someone.