Students showcase technological talent

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Damon Lemke (left) with his wood tech project.

Two Blue Hills College (NSW) graduates recently had their technology projects displayed in Sydney, beating more than 10,000 students from across New South Wales.

Damon and his guitar.

Damon Lemke, who graduated last year, showcased his technology project at the Shape 2016: Showcase of HSC Technology Projects at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney last month. Shape 2016 showcases a selection of outstanding major projects of Year 12 students in 2016. These exemplary student works have been selected from three subject areas: Design and Technology, Industrial Technology, and Textiles and Design.

Among the 36 works on display are a universal coffee pod recycling tool, a hand-held peak flow meter for young children with asthma and a hollow body electric jazz guitar designed and built by Damon in the Wood Technology classroom at Blue Hills College. Only 5 woodwork projects were selected, and Damon’s was the only one from the Northern Rivers area.

Damon has played guitar for ten years, so he wanted to know what makes the instrument work. The curve, size, shape, and wood all affect a guitar’s aesthetics and final sound. He researched the tools, materials, and processes for the build, and consulted many master luthiers—guitar makers—to learn the best ways to accomplish certain tasks. The top and back pieces alone took around four months to carve by hand.

Mitchell and his project.

Both Damon’s project and that of Mitchell Nabbe, another Year 12 student from the 2016 class, were selected for display in the InTech 2017 exhibition, to be held in June at the Sydney Timber and Working with Wood Show at Olympic Park.

“On behalf of all the staff, the school advisory council and the Blue Hills College community, I would like to congratulate Damon and Mitchell on their outstanding achievements,” said school principal Mr Carel Neuhoff. “During [the work process] many blisters and calluses were formed, but the patience and discipline paid off.”