Where the most fantastic grains can often be found…
Established in 1979 by Kate and Dave Muelrath, TradeWinds began with an adventurous spirit and a passion for beautiful lumber. In search of Honduran rosewood, they sent out letters to forest services across Central America, and eventually began an exchange with foresters in Belize. An agreement was reached for a stand of timbers found in the forest north of Punta Gorda, a region that is to this day without roads.
In order to reach the tree stand, the local logging crew, along with Dave, had to ride in dugout canoes along the Belize coast from Punta Gorda, and up the Golden Stream. Riding through the night the crew expected to meet a bulldozer in the jungle and skid the logs to the nearest road. As fate would have it, the bulldozer was lost to a pit of mud, and the only option was to traverse down the winding river on an impromptu barge.The loggers left in canoes, so it was up to Dave and the two tugboad pilots to navigate the river and get the logs to Belize City where they could be loaded on a ship for transport to the U.S.
After 60 hours in torrential rains, with logs and loggers crashing into the banks at every turn of the stream, the crew finally reached port. Weeks later the logs arrived in New York City. They were sold to the now defunct Marshall Lumber Co, and TradeWinds had its first official sale.
The primary mission of TradeWinds is to seek out the most fantastic woods available and to bring them to talented people who will appreciate and respect the beauty and abundance the forest brings us. The offical tagline "Where the most fantastic grains can often be found" was borrowed from a larger qoute by the famous Japanese-American woodworker, George Nakashima.
Today, having established a reputation from woodworkers worldwide, with a fair amount of specially curated stock on hand, TradeWinds hopes to continue its mission through the changing nature of the specialty lumber business with the same vigor and spirit of adventure of that first Belize expedition.
In 1985 TradeWinds moved from Northern California, to Grafton, Vermont. TradeWinds physically exists as a small industrial park tucked into the hills of Route 121 in Southern Vermont. Therein lies the ability to receive, manufacture and sell a wondrous collection of woods. The facilities contain one of each of the following:
- Lumber and turning square display racks.
- Dehumidification kiln
- Woodmizer sawmill with a 4' span.
- Remanufacturing shop.
- 3000 feet of storage.
- Loading dock.
The shop's regular business hours are Monday through Friday 9 to 5PM, but it is advisable to call ahead as we may be busy on a project or away sourcing wood.
For many years TradeWinds has been dealing their woods almost exclusively on the wholesale market, shipping pallets to retailers, furniture builders, catalog companies and architectural clients. Through our online store, we hope to invite everyone who has an interest in woodworking to take a look at the special products that we offer.
So we are now offering these same woods, some specially reserved stock and standard retail stock, manufactured and shipped from Grafton. Because it's such a small operation, there is a $50 minimum on all orders placed through this website. If you have any questions about your order, please feel free to email.