High Gravity Millworks
A story To Tell
If your coffee table could talk, what would it say? We’d like to think ours would tell you its story, starting in the heart of Virginia’s Blue Ridge mountains. It’d tell you about the care and craftsmanship that went into every step of the way, from milling, to drying, to finishing. Then it might ask you to use a coaster.
At High Gravity Millworks, our products have rich stories. That’s because they’re made to last a while—generations, to be exact.
We’re High Gravity Millworks, founded by two friends raised just outside of Baltimore, Maryland. In 2017, we had the opportunity to build a small lumber camp in central Virginia’s Blue Ridge mountains. It all started with milling lumber for our own barn, followed by a second barn, a kiln, and, most recently, a woodshop.
For us, it’s always been about honoring the land and our materials while creating the best finished pieces nature can provide. That might mean taking time to search for the right tree for a specific beam to avoid waste, or going out of the way to use a tree that’s already down instead of cutting one. It’s not always the easiest way, but we believe it’s the right way.
We stay true to these values as we source our raw materials and while we work with the unique resources provided to us.
Info about the mill
We currently operate a bandsaw mill with a 30-inch cut capacity. This is where most of our pieces come from. Every once in a blue moon, we have to break out the chainsaw mill. It offers a larger cut capacity of 56 inches, but is much slower and more wasteful. This is why slabs this wide are rarely available.
After milling, the slabs move about 100 feet to our air drying barn where they live for the next 60-120 days. This step is slower, but helps reduce electricity consumption. It also gives the wood time to ease into its new life as a slab. This means less warping, twisting, and splitting. All of that means less waste in sawdust when it comes time to finish.
After air drying, the slabs move into the solar kiln for a short stint. This is the last step before the woodshop. It brings the moisture level in the wood down to approximately 7%, which is perfect for a home with modern HVAC. This step takes a few weeks, but ensures a quality, long-lasting product. It’s also completely electric free—one less resource we have to tap into.
Next, the real magic happens. We carefully craft the slabs into the finished pieces you’ll find in our collection. We work with the natural process of the wood. If there is a split, we’ll save that piece and try to incorporate the split rather than wasting it. We feel that it gives the finished product more character, and just another story to tell.