I hear it said increasingly often in the last couple years as I meet people during my travels “Who will be the next generation of tradesmen? Who is going to work on our cars, boats and homes?” This is a serious lament posed by today’s tradesmen, potential employers who have a very hard time finding apprentices and workers to learn their trade. The U.S. is in dire need of men and women willing to work with their hands and develop the skills necessary to build and repair all our…stuff. Continue reading →
Aircraft designer and builder Jon’s Staudacher’s newest project is an enclosed wood trailer for his new race car. Jon designed a trailer to be suitable for hauling his race car and living in over a weekend at the race track. The trailer was built by scarfing and gluing together individual pieces of wood to form a beautiful natural wood finished race car trailer. Jon always surprises me with how innovative he is with projects. After Jon built an open wheel race car he had a design in mind for a new plywood trailer. Continue reading →
A while back, as I was waiting in the reception lobby of a major American corporation, I had the chance to admire the curved reception desk and other oak furniture in the room. However, when I examined the reception desk more closely, I could see facets in the oak veneer instead of a nice, smooth curve. I immediately realized that the cabinet builders had sawn closely spaced saw kerfs in the back of the panel so they could bend it to shape. I thought there must be a better way.
The following is a description of “the better way” — the methods of building expert Jon Staudacher, to create curved walls and curved face cabinets. Jon’s boat and airplane building background, coupled with the unique properties of WEST SYSTEM® epoxy, have combined to create very elegant solutions to difficult construction problems. Continue reading →
WEST SYSTEM 105 Resin-based epoxy is a very versatile system. For years, experienced users have been blending the various products in countless ways. For example, users may blend 205 Fast Hardener and 206 Slow Hardener to make a hardener with a modified cure speed. Different uses of 410 Microlight® Filler provide a further example. Many customers assume that the only use of 410 is to make a fairing compound—it is added to thicken epoxy to a peanut butter consistency to create a light, easily-sanded filler. However, 410 Microlight can be used in other ways. Jon Staudacher in Epoxyworks 22 described how he applied a “runny” mixture of epoxy and 410 to fill the weave on a composite part and reduce the Continue reading →
Jon Staudacher, of Staudacher Hydroplanes and Aircraft, has been using a long, very flat, work table/strongback that is mounted on casters. The table was originally 32′ long, but because of space considerations, Jon has since shortened it to 20′ (Photo 1). Four rubber casters support it, one at each corner (Photo 2). Continue reading →
Over the years, we have featured some of Jon Staudacher’s more innovative projects and ideas. From his extreme house, to race boats, to aerobatic airplanes, to a gate at the end of his driveway, to something as simple as a paint roller brake, Jon has always sought the simplest method to build his projects. Jon’s latest project is no exception.
Faced with the expense of having several custom round windows built for his new house, Jon Staudacher figured it would be cost effective to build the frames himself. He used his back ground as a boat builder and some of the characteristics of WEST SYSTEM® epoxy to help him along. Here’s how he approached the project. It’s a neat technique that you could use for a variety of projects. Continue reading →
Jon Staudacher, renowned boat and airplane builder, and his wife Kathy recently designed and installed a unique floor in their house in Bay City, Michigan. Their extensive collection of house pets were more than the existing carpet could take, so they decided a wooden floor would be more wear-resistant and easier to maintain. The resulting floor is easy to keep up, while maintaining the contemporary look of their house. Continue reading →