Chartiers Valley students producing industry-standard rocking chairs
By Megan Guza
Published: Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014, 9:00 p.m.
Students in Chartiers Valley High School's mass production class are making rocking chairs, but they aren't the style your grandmother used.
“This is not your typical design,” teacher Charles Barber said. “They are all-portable, and each is customized.”
Students in Barber's computer-aided drafting class designed the plywood chairs, and students in the mass production class used a new piece of equipment in the department to create the wooden pieces.
The students used a CNC router, which is a computer-controlled cutting machine. They enter the dimensions and mathematics of the design, and the machine cuts the plywood pieces.
Barber said the router at Chartiers Valley is a commercial version of the product.
“This is not a toy,” he said. “This is the industry standard.”
Freshman Morgan Henderson designed the rocking chair in her computer-aided drafting class. She said it was part of a larger project – to design a college dorm room with furniture and pieces that were completely collapsible and portable.
“We had to be realistic with ourselves about what we would make,” she said. “We wanted something different and creative, but we had to be realistic.”
She said she and the other students looked at various rocking chair designs before choosing one to adapt. She said they wanted a design more modern than a traditional rocking chair.
Students came up with their own dimensions and designs for the chair. Henderson said there was a lot of trial and error.
“We kind of had to wing the dimensions,” she said. “When we had it on paper, we couldn't see if it would work until we actually tried it.”
She said particle board prototypes allowed them to see where they went wrong and what should be changed.
“It was tedious,” she said. “We knew what we had to know and we knew what we wanted to do – it was just a matter of getting it there.”
Barber said there were parameters for the project – it had to be able to snap together, be recyclable, be collapsible, and it had to use just one sheet of plywood.
Each student will make a rocking chair with a customized design on the chair back.
Barber said he will use the design in classes next year, when he hopes to sell the student-made chairs in the startup school store.
“The kids are running with this, and they're excited,” he said. “We want to get rid of the ‘wood shop' stereotypes and make things as high-tech as we can.”
Megan Guza is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5810 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Collier Township’s use of solar energy recognized by state
- Carnegie skatepark construction heats up like the weather
- Carlynton, Chartiers Valley reaffirm security in wake of FR school stabbings
- Voluntary tutor sessions popular with Carlynton students
- Carnegie uses state allocation to update road paving schedule
- South Fayette family spreads the good news in many ways