Meet Versatile’s New Drafter: Curtis Nagel

After his enlistment in the Navy Curtis returned to Texas to complete an Associate Degree in Architectural Technology and begin his professional journey as a drafter. Curtis’ most recent accomplishment was obtaining his Master’s Degree in Technology Management with an emphasis in safety (occupational and industrial hygiene). During each of these degrees, Curtis worked full time as a drafter and buyer for an electronics manufacturing business which developed devices for the disabled community that had limited to no mobility.

You’ve been brought on as one of Versatile’s Drafters. Tell us about what your areas of responsibility will be.

My main areas of responsibility will deal with documenting site specific conditions and applying my knowledge of architectural building systems to assist in drafting technical shop drawings for manufacturing. I will be collaborating with the sales, estimating, manufacturing, and other design teams to ensure my work will be easily understood and of high value.

You have a background in personnel management, avionics maintenance, architectural and mechanical drafting/design, and component procurement. What aspects of Versatile’s work and process are most similar to your previous work? What’s the most different?

The most similar aspect that I can compare is collaboration. Knowledge is not static and must be continuously updated to assist in getting all hands on the same page. With multiple divisions collaborating projects together, we all can gain by learning the experience and knowledge from our peers and clients, working towards an end goal. The most different aspect that differs from my previous employment is with the large amount of individuals involved with each project. When I designed electronic case enclosures, there were only a handful of individuals involved from start to finish during project conception all the way to manufacturing, including principals.

What inspires you about custom manufacture?

I consider custom manufacturing to be hand crafted and of quality work that cannot be obtained at a big box home improvement store. There are many times we “update” our homes with what is readily available but not always of the most suitable choice when seeking quality and period correct components for the project at hand. No matter what restaurant, store, landmark, building, or house that I am visiting, I am constantly looking at the design and building techniques used. I find more enjoyment out of those who take the time to understand the building components and manufacture them to suit the building properly and with quality.

Describe one of your favorite past projects. What were the challenges? What were some of the features that made it memorable?

I was in charge of developing an adaptive switch that would allow users with cerebral palsy to access switch-based communication devices. While there are many types of adaptive switches in the niche market that we served, none were of higher quality. I was able to dissect and study each of the main competitor switches to see what made their switches “special” in their brand. Overall, I found nothing that really set them apart and I focused on designing a switch that was quieter when actuated, was much more durable for the CP user who was rougher on equipment, and that used custom manufacturing techniques that did not require redundant and costly fasteners. I was able to incorporate die-cut sound dampening foam pads that reduced noise when actuated as well as when the switch recoiled. Designing the switch using a specific blend of plastics that allowed higher impact. And since this switch was only 2.5 inches in diameter with incorporated wiring and mechanics, the use of excess fasteners was reduced by understanding the effects of bonding plastic parts together with certain solvents. The precision design work of multiple components this small was a challenge to make sure they mate properly and did not hinder functionality because that would mean our disabled users would not be able to use their communication devices.

What are the top 3 things on your “bucket list?” 

  1. One of my bucket list items would be to travel to the Pyramids of Giza. I have always enjoyed learning about the architecture of the ancient Egyptians.
  2. During my first year of architecture school I wrote a paper on the architecture in Greece. I would love to go see the Acropolis in person.
  3. A few years ago I used to run competitively and never made it to the marathon level. I would love to leap over that distance hurdle.

About Versatile Wood Products | Contact Us

Versatile’s New Sales Assistant: Nicole Carruth

Meet Nicole Carruth, one of Versatile’s new Sales Assistants. She has a degree in Interior Design from Portland Community College and previously studied art. Professionally, she has a background in retail and the service industry.

You’ve been brought on as one of Versatile’s first-ever Sales Assistants. Tell us about what your areas of responsibility will be.

As a Sales Assistant, my basic responsibility will be to format sales quotes and estimates; I am also here to support the Sales Team whenever other needs come up. I’m excited to grow in this position and I look forward to discovering what defines the role of Sales Assistant in the future.

You have a background in interior design and showroom sales. What aspects of Versatile’s work and process are most similar to your previous work? What’s the most different?

The aspects that are most similar to my previous work are things like writing specifications and researching materials. The thing that is most different is that I’m working in a sales department that isn’t storefront retail, which is refreshing.

What inspires you about custom manufacture?

Custom manufacture is unique and somewhat of an art form in modern society; and I have the privilege of contributing to that.

Describe one of your favorite past projects. What were the challenges? What were some of the features that made it memorable?

Most of the projects I’ve worked on have their own set of challenges. I can’t single one out, but I know that I’ve learned a great deal from all of them, and that’s the most important thing to me.

What are the top 3 things on your “bucket list?” 

I don’t know about three, but I definitely want to visit Spain someday.

About Versatile Wood Products | Contact Us

 

Meet Versatile’s Newest Drafter: Taylor Rife

Taylor Rife is Versatile’s newest Drafter. He has a Certificate of Computer Aided Design and Drafting from Portland Community College and a Culinary Arts Diploma from Oregon Culinary Institute. He drove a cab for four years, commercial trucks for a short time and cooked in a variety of restaurants. Read on to find out what inspires Taylor.

1. You’ve been brought on as a Drafter for Versatile. Tell us about what your areas of responsibility will be.

 I will be working mainly with cabinetry; drafting for shop drawings.

2. Tell us about your background. What aspects of Versatile’s work and process are most similar to your previous work? What’s the most different?

I have a culinary background and a background in transportation. Similarly, I really enjoy the creative collaboration with engineering and communicating with others in a progressive environment. In a sense, the detailed way that things are done are very unique which makes it different as well.

3. What inspires you about custom manufacture?

Architectural design and specifically woodwork, is an organic art form, which makes it a very interesting subject.

4. Describe one of your favorite past projects. What were the challenges? What were some of the features that made it memorable?

A lot of my training was in 3D/solid modeling CADD programs (Solidworks, Inventor). I worked on a variety of applications, including mechanical and consumer product design. The satisfying thing for me is in the details. Putting a lot of work into all the little things, such as geometric and parametric features, that enhance the functionality and beauty of a product; then seeing the end result be awesome, it is a great feeling.

5. What are the top 3 things on your “bucket list?”  

I don’t really have a defined bucket list, but I do really enjoy traveling; the outdoors. I’d like to travel to a lot more countries and gain some fluency in Spanish and/or another language. Eventually, I’d like to own a small piece of property somewhere rural. One day, I’d like to play in a band again.

 

About Versatile Wood Products | Contact Us

 

Window Word of the Day: Argon Gas

Argon-Gas

Argon Gas: An inert, colorless and odorless gas used to fill the airspace between the insulating glass panes which greatly increases the overall performance of the glass; Argon is less conducive to heat than air.

The glass panes are sealed to keep the gas from escaping to ensure a consistent interior temperature as well as overall energy efficiency.  This method works for all window frames and allows for unobstructed views and reliable insulation.

More Window Words  |  Explore the Versatile Project Galleries  | About Versatile Wood Products

Window Word of Day: Air Infiltration

air-resistance
Air Infiltration: The amount of air that passes between a sash and a frame; Measure in terms of cubic feet of air per minute per lineal foot of crack (margin).

Air infiltration is the major cause of heat loss or gain in a home. A reduction in air leaks will provide a more comfortable environment and improve energy efficiency in the home. Some ways to prevent air from leaking through windows include using caulking or weatherstripping and replacing glazing compounds. One of the best solutions for historic homes is to have failing windows restored; windows can also be replaced. Restored windows can last many years with proper maintenance.

If you’d like to explore how to correct air infiltration issues that may be occurring in your historic home, contact Versatile at quotes@versatilewp.com  and a Client Services Specialist will be in touch.