Pieh Tool Company carries on a family legacy in horseshoeing and blacksmithing
By Eric Newman
When Bill Pieh, founder of Centaur Forge Farrier and Blacksmith Supply, passed away in 2000, his youngest daughter, Amy, took it upon herself to continue the family legacy. Though the family sold Burlington, Wisconsin-based Centaur in 2002 – 42 years after its founding in 1960 – she is still a mainstay in the industry.
Amy Pieh opened the second rendition of Pieh Tool Company in Cave Creek in April. The company hosted a grand opening ceremony at the store, located at 29834 N. Cave Creek Road, Suite 134, on October 6. Pieh Tool Company showcased its expansive inventory in the Cave Creek facility, which is nearly 1,000 square-feet larger than the last store, and even hosted a free horseshoeing clinic.
A customer walking into the store will see lines and shelves lined with numerous horseshoe options and the largest selection of related tools in the area, along with blacksmithing materials. The store also hosts regular blacksmithing, knife making and horseshoeing classes for all levels of experience. For Amy, everything Pieh offers is an homage to her father and the family legacy.
“I grew up around this kind of thing. My dad had the first and largest farrier supply business in the world. He was known all over, and he basically made the bible of horseshoeing and taught me just about everything I knew about it,” she says.
“This store is 70 percent farrier sales, and about 30 percent blacksmithing, and that’s growing because blacksmithing is growing,” she adds. “It’s both for work and as a hobby, too.”
Operations manager Randy Elmer says Pieh has immense passion for tools and trades, which manifests itself in participation in numerous farrier and blacksmithing events throughout the country, often sporting the Pieh Tool brand and giving demonstrations.
“Anything industry involved, she tries to be there. She is avid about going to nearly every show she can make it out to, just to offer a presence and opportunity,” Elmer says. “You can tell how much she cares about tools and all of it.”
Because of her regular travel schedule, her namesake and overall quality of products, Pieh is well-known throughout the country, specifically in the farrier business.
She says the trust industry professionals had in her father’s tools and knowledge transfers over to her current store. “A lot of people still remember my father and remember me, so they are willing to support my business and know what we have is good,” she says.
Elmer says horseshoeing is growing in Arizona, specifically in the North Valley, where plenty of seasonal customers will flock to the store. “Right about (October) is when they are starting to come back to Arizona, so we wanted something for them,” he says.
With a loyal customer base and an unsurpassed family legacy, specifically in the farrier industry, Amy Pieh and Pieh Tool Company are in great shape to have success in Cave Creek.
But Pieh says there is still plenty of room to grow. “We’re going to start trying to do more online sales, because that’s growing, and we want to be able to get to people outside of just our little area,” she says. “And we obviously want to be one of the leaders of selling our types of tools in Arizona and the West Coast.”
For more information on Pieh Tool Company, visit piehtoolco.com.
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