In 2002, Sam Koch fulfilled his longtime dream of opening a skate shop and Life Skateboards was born. But sustaining a dream against the harsh realities of economic challenges led to his reluctantly closing the shop in 2008.
Feeling the influence of God’s providence on his life would lead him to follow his passion for woodworking. In 2009, he opened Sam’s Custom Woodworking, where he applied his skills to specializing in quality handcrafted furniture and cabinetry. He realized there was potential in combining his interests. His love of skateboarding and woodworking merged to inspire the rebirth of Life Skateboards as a new creative concept. Sam specializes in handcrafted, artful skateboards that are pressed, designed, and hand-shaped in Muncie, Indiana.
“Ben Blakeley, a family friend who grew up with my son, has done most of the artwork for the boards,” Sam explains. “I would like to do more of the art myself- I’ve designed the logo, and have done a few other small things, but it is hard to find time to do that in addition to creating and producing the boards themselves, Fortunately, I also have three other people working on graphics right now.”
The question of time is an important aspect of what goes into creating the boards, as production time is what constitutes the labor in this particular labor of love.
“I have to leave the boards in the press for over four hours, and then the ‘uncuts’ have to ‘cure’ for more than four days before I can even start drilling, shaping, and finishing them. And once the cycle is going, I always have several boards ready in different stages so that production is always moving forward. The total hands-on time per board ends up being 30- 45 minutes depending on the complexity.”
His dream revived, Sam Koch can appreciate the value of inspiration and patience in seeing it happen, but when you are committed to a unique product that is crafted with love, success just seems inevitable.