Balsa is Better

At a very young age, my father started teaching me how to use the tools of his hobby. As a kid, building literally hundreds of rubber band and free flight kits, allowed me to excel in a woodworking career of building boats and furniture. I have always had the passion for constructing things out of wood. Collecting tools and knowing how to use them is the secret of my success. In the early 80’s, I started “Wood Forms”, manufacturing custom furniture. A few years later I introduced conceptual 3D rendered models to my clients, this became an incredible design tool and also aided in the layout and construction process. In 1990, I was using computer graphic tools daily for my architectural and engineering clients and along with designing parts in my hobby shop. With this background I bring you a series of building articles, generally based around projects in my hobby including building with wood, 3D printing and construction in foam.

  • This was my first build since 2005. Owning DWFoamies kept me from getting back to the building table. Now that I have run out of foam and shut down the business, there will be more fun projects like this one. This is a great example of classic kit designs from

  • The Printer A friend decided I needed a 3DPrinter to work with, so he had a one dropped off an my doorstep. After taking it apart a few times trying to get good prints, I decided to design my own line of printers that I called KomodoXL.  The Process These

  • After a scary Lipo fire, I built a FMA Powerlab charge station. The deck was custom cut on my laser cutter. It uses a Bump controller that identifies batteries using a special tag. The Bump keeps a history on cells and amount of charges.

  • ​ This was a project I designed and built for DWFoamies in 2012, it was to be used in advertising campaigns and trade shows while we were on the road. The construction is 6mm/9mm Depron and 1/8″ lite Ply, the hinging is done with a carbon rod and fiberglass pivot

  • As a young boy from the age of 4, I lived for every moment working in the garage. Learning the secrets of model building from my father, a master builder, has carried me through a life long hobby. Today, I build both sport and scale models for customers, even one

  • In my collection of 100+ vintage kits sits a Sorrell HiperBipe from Master Kits by Frank Massa. Without disturbing the original kit, I carefully copied the plans and traced every part. I worked out the weight and ordered an AXI power system to give the airframe plenty of power. Framing

  • Back in the late 90’s I started working as a consultant for an engineering company. They developed master planned communities with 100’s of acres of land. They needed a way to monitor construction along with environmentally sensitive areas. With my background in model airplanes I came up with an electric

  • I started building model airplanes back in the late 50’s, I lived for working in our garage building with my father. We would go fly our newly built or repaired airplanes every weekend. Back then a good flight was getting off the ground and a great flight was landing within