Alex Brown
  • Arbors
  • Lectern
Project Description

project: Lectern

date: 2003

Last year, one fateful night, my parents returned from a town meeting and mentioned how the town moderator, Charlie Kaye, complained about the podium he had to use at our new high school.  It was very plain and simple—a slim tower that rose up from a square base to an angled top, no more than 12” wide.  As soon as I heard this I said, “How about I build one for the school?”  For the remainder of that week I searched on line to see different designs and styles, as well as dimensions—and price.  When I related my idea to the principal of my school, he said it would be great.  A few days later, I met with the principal and vice principal to show them a sketch of my proposed design, and to discuss how everything would work out.  Not only would they get a solid wood lectern, but I told them there would be no labor charge; the school would only have to pay for the materials.  To top all that, I mentioned there would be two wheels on the bottom so that the lectern could be tilted onto them for easy mobility.  At the end, I told them the price tag, just below $300.  One of the things that prompted me to take up this project was that it would benefit Charlie Kaye, the town moderator, and my school, which had a tight budget.

After that meeting, it was finally time to start the job, I had the go ahead.  Weekends, half day Wednesdays, and vacations, I was downstairs in the shop whenever I could afford the time.  In the blink of an eye, the entire lectern was ready to glue together—and I had my first close call.  I had glued the two side frames together.  Now it was time for the front—the phone rang, so I took the call.  Then I returned to my business.  After I was done I realized, I forgot to put the two raised panels in the front!  I fought with the glue to pull the frame apart, re-glued, and I was done.  When it was finished (April vacation), I was extremely relieved and proud.  It looked great (and still does).  Upon delivery, I brought with me an invoice to present to the school as well.  After labor was deducted (66 hours) the final cost came out to be $285.34, not bad for what could have set the school back over $2,000, from what I came across on line—but mine has raised panels.

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