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Maker Challenge returns

“The Amsterdam”, a walnut coffee table by Team 2

“The Amsterdam”, a walnut coffee table by Team 2

Rubio Monocoat USA and Festool USA held a successful Maker Challenge in April, following a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.

“The Rubio Monocoat and Festool Maker Challenge started five years ago,” Brian Sedgeley, Festool USA’s tool and application trainer, explained in a statement. “We invite the best builders from around the country to compete over two days to build pieces of furniture to be auctioned off to charity. It is a wicked good time.”

This year’s charity was held for Nathanael Jablonski, the youngest child of Faith and Lucas Jablonski of Lighthouse Woodworks in East Boston, Mass. Nathanael was born in 2021 with a genetic condition called CHARGE Syndrome, which is not the first medical setback the family endured.

“The Old Fashioned”, a bar and stools by Team 1 in the 2022 Makers Challenge

“The Old Fashioned”, a bar and stools by Team 1 in the 2022 Makers Challenge

“Nathanael’s parents are no strangers to hard times. Faith recently beat cancer and the incredible woodworking community rallied around them with support while they were fighting that battle,” according to a statement from Rubio Monocoat.

The Challenge featured 14 makers split into two teams, which each had 12 hours to brainstorm, design and build an auction piece.

Team 1 participants were Ryan Rademacher, Amanda Russel, Char Miller-King, Jef Behnke, Daniel Dunlap, Peter Capar and Scott Couch. They produced “The Old Fashioned,” a walnut bar-height piece with two matching white oak bar stools.

Team 2 included Nolan Thompson, Mike Coffey, Lindsay Zuelich, Ronnie Fulton, Jess Behnke, Erik Curtis and Ben Paik. They made “The Amsterdam”, a walnut coffee table finished with Rubio Monocoat Oil Plus 2C Pure and White.

“It is such an amazing time to see the entire process from splitting the teams to the finished product. To see the ideas and how well each maker works together, given the fact that these are all very creative individuals with different ideas,” added Allan Nery, a Rubio Monocoat sales representative.

Along with Festool, companies that donated materials and tools included the Wood Shed, Berdoll Sawmill, Harvest Lumber Co, Woodpeckers, Bessey Tools and Lee Valley Tools.

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This article was originally published in the July 2022 issue.

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