Gladstone High School students fabricate parts for Lower Michigan company

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GLADSTONE, Mich. (WLUC) — Gladstone High School’s carpentry shop is working on a project for a Lower Michigan company.

Using a CNC machine, students at Gladstone High School’s carpentry shop fabricate 1,000 parts for Engine Power Components in Muskegon.

“I do it more to help. I like knowing that I’m helping the shop here even though I won’t be here next year. I’m just doing my part,” said Michael Brazeau, a senior from Gladstone High School.

Students create camshaft spacers using two different patterns. Spacers are used to transport camshafts around the Muskegon production facility. The spacer blocks are cut on a miter saw and table saw in the high school carpentry shop, then they are brought to the CNC router.

“You put the wood inside the cutter and you have to clamp it, then press a few buttons to start it. It starts, cuts and takes three minutes and 37 seconds,” said Avery Hanson, a freshman at Gladstone High School.

Once the wood comes out of the CNC router, it is sanded before and then packaged. Senior Aaron Steinhoff says sanding is his favorite part.

“This is the best game ever. It’s the most fun, instead of watching the machine do all the cuts and stuff,” he said.

The carpentry teacher will bring the spacer blocks to Muskegon this weekend.

“It’s just a great opportunity for students to get involved in a real, real-world manufacturing project,” said Mark Cousineau, carpentry shop teacher at Gladstone Secondary School.

The students say they learned important skills that go beyond the carpentry shop.

“I’m learning to work as a team with everyone. I do my part and figure out how many pieces I need in a day, then I start cutting them,” Brazeau said.

Engine Power Components pays the school for the parts and all proceeds will help improve the wood shop.

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