In 1997, Chuck Frysinger, working as a machinist in a GE lighting factory, decided he wanted to follow his dream to start his own business. Starting out with a CNC machine and a laser from Universal Laser Systems in a garage behind his house, took the leap and started CWFProducts.
Being in Lexington, Kentucky, the home of the great Kentucky Wildcats Basketball program, Chuck obtained a royalty license to produce Kentucky University products, initially many forms of Kentucky Wildcat license plates.
From that the business has expanded his products into many areas, making many styles of plaques, signs, and personalize products,
By 2005 the business grew so fast that he left his job, incorporated C.W.F Products, and has been growing ever since. He became an authorized dealer for Universal Laser Systems and both sells and services lasers cutting and engraving machines.
Unfortunately in February 2013 a fire burned down the garage. Without hesitation he moved past that and bought a old historic building near his home in Paris, Kentucky. The buiding started life between 1850 and 1870 as a blacksmith shop; wishing to keep the ambience of the historical nature of the building he began to restore it.
"We started mid-April (2013) gutting the inside. The outer brick work didn't start until first of June and took mid-August before we finished the front. We were then able to begin the inside."
The brick façade was ravished by water and time. The four large windows on the second floor had been bricked over. He wanted them back, so we ended up taking every brick out of the front except about ten percent. We chipped off the old mortar: and: put the natural brick back three layers deep just like it was originally.
Because of the way old bricks are fired, some are very soft, so three large pallets of bricks from a house built in the 1800's near Harrodsburg, we were able to finish the
building with bricks from the the original era. .
The front wall was taken loose from the roof and top rebuilt, retaining a strip of decorative brickwork running the entire length of the façade.
The first floor originally of dirt, later converted to concrete and was one large, open auto repair area within crumbling walls of blackened plaster. "It was black and sooty, from all the forging that was done in the old days. It was falling to pieces and we couldn't clean it. So after gutting the inside, the interior bricks were exposed and a wall was installed to have a storefront and shop.
It's likely the building was erected in the 1850's as a blacksmith shop, though few such shops were of brick. Two iron rings remain in the walls where horses were tied while being shod. Now exposed brick walls and enormous "charred-like " (from all the smoke of the blacksmith shop) ceiling and beams create a charming, rustic atmosphere.