Hello, let me introduce myself and my business Prairie Workshops.
My name is Chuck Andrews and I’m starting this website to share my projects with you. I have a wide variety of interests and I hope that you enjoy my projects.
I’m a retired chemist. I worked in the pharmaceutical industry for 30 years and for the last several years I have worked as a consultant helping personal care companies formulate and manufacture products like shampoos, body washes and mouthwashes. I have always loved my work. However, I have lots of other interests also. It’s these special interests that I want to share with you in this website.
I have been a lifelong tinkerer and woodworker. For the last twenty years I have volunteered with an organization called Tillers International (http://www.tillersinternational.org) . I love the mission and people at Tillers. I hope I can share some of my enthusiasm with you. For many years I have taught traditional craft classes at Tillers. These include coopering, making wooden pitch forks and hay rakes, wheelwrighting and blacksmithing. During high school I always wanted to be a machinist, why I ended up with the career I did has always been a mystery to me. It’s no wonder that somewhere along the line I also started doing machine work. There are lots of ways to learn new crafts; study it, do it, share it, talk about it, teach it. I do all of these things.
Several years ago I needed a new shop. My shops had always been in the basement and garages of the houses that I lived in. So with a lot (huge amount) of encouragement from my wife we built a timber frame barn (shop). It did not just happen that I chose a timber frame design.
At Tillers International we started a timber framing program and taught this skill. Over the years I worked on a dozen or so buildings and grew to love the processes, materials and most importantly the resulting space that it created. This is where I work now and I have never regretted the huge amount of effort that it took to build the shop. The shop’s foot print is 48’x48” and has a second story that measure about 30’x48’. And, yes, it is full of junk.