Summer Scenery Job

Hey all. Sam Kusnetz, sound designer for the Haunted Hotel, has reached out to the school looking for carpenters for the summer. His post is below. I don’t have any more information about this job, so you should contact Sam directly at the email address he provided.

I need to hire a theatrical carpenter for the summer. if you can build a 4×8 hard-covered flat without assistance in half an hour, you are qualified.

you also have to be nice; i have a strict policy of not hiring jerks.

june 21 to august 20, pay plus room and board. good coworkers, fun environment.

email me at

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End of Semester Meetings

If you haven’t scheduled your end of semester meeting with me yet, you must do so now.

You can schedule the meeting here: All meetings must be complete by 5/29.



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Moulding Estimates

Hey guys,

Here’s the moulding prices we got from Dykes in Hawthorne, NY (approximately 1 hour 14 minutes away from the college):

Dykes Model No.                  Wood                                        Price Per Foot
195 (Crown Moulding)              Poplar                                          $1.65
224-B (Framing)                        Pine                                              $1.05
292 (Base Moulding)                 Primed Ultra MDF                    $1.05

There is an $8.00 fuel charge for any purchases over $300.00

There is a $50.00 delivery fee for any order under $300.00

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HG Page Lumber Prices


Attached are the items that I received a request for and Page had in stock

HG Page Lumber Pricing 4/27
1×3 Pine 8′ 3.47 16′ NA
1×6 Pine 8′  6.14 16′ 11.8
2×3 Spruce 8′ 5.94 16′ NA
2×6 Spurce 8′ 10.31 16′ 20.62
5/4″ x 6 Pine 8′ 13.2 16′ 26.4
2×4 SPF 8′ 3.7
4’x8′ Luan 1/4″ 14.99
4’x8′  Luan 3/4″ NA
5×10 Luan 1/4″ NA
5×10 Luan 3/4″ NA
4’x8′ Masonite 1/4″ NA
3/4″ NA
4×4 Treated 8′ 13.58
4×6 SPF 16′ 33.56


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Problem 4 and Summer work

The problem 4 page has been updated and can be found here: Problem 4

Also, a few more summer work opportunities have come across my desk. One local and one out of town. If you are still looking for summer work, let me know.


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Notes from Wednesday: 4.18.18

(Show is running for two eight-show weeks.) 


All scenery will need to be painted.
Consider exactly when it will be painted.
Walls will need to look realistic and as seamless as possible.

Furniture, couches, lamps, couch, table, bed, etc. will be props.
However, appliances like the fridge, stove, sink are incorporated into the build, so that will be scenery’s responsibility. You need the solution to fake the stove function. Floor of apartment will be installed right over stage floor, so your elevation will be whatever thickness of lumber you use to make the floor. Windows do not have to be practical, but all doors will open and shut. This will be a second floor apartment, so the top of the trees outside of the window will be crucial to representing a realistic environment.

When you read the play, it becomes apparent that it is a group of modern day college students. Play discussion later in class will be helpful to answering any functionality questions about what appliances work in what ways.

Everything needs to be flame-treated!

Finding items to minimize budget spending: Getting items from a scrap yard or craigslist is optional, but it’s important to consider whether you would realistically have any of these items in your own apartment. Consider quality just as much as acquisition.

Ask yourself, “What are the consequences of getting these items from an unknown origin? Will it be safe? Will it be clean? What is the upkeep of the item?”

Carpet: It should match the carpeting all around. You could get molding to separate the QASA industrial carpeting. The bed has to serve as the bed for an apartment and the bed for a hotel room. It’s relatively cheap. No raw carpet edges. Try to use some sort of hardware strip to mask that seam.

Regarding budget: 

Make your best estimate first, then get feedback. The producers have not allocated money towards each department, but the annual operating budget for the company as a whole in one production is less than $50,000. Scenery needs to balance this budget with the other crews.

The shop will work for either making it a wood shop or a steel shop. It’s too small to accommodate more.

Don’t worry about buying tools. The shop will provide it. However, if you want some sort of special tool to facilitate the build process, that’s an option.

You should consider transportation in your budget. It is non-trivial that things will need to be transported to and from the campus.

Regarding employee wage:

Master carp and staff carpenter both get overtime. They get paid time and a half after 40 hours in a week or 12 hours in a day. So if you schedule someone for 14 hours, two of those hours will be over time.

Once they go into overtime, they stay in overtime until they get a day off. Monday to Sunday week, each Monday will go back to regular pay/time.


We’re going to do a specific load-in activity in two/three classes where we’ll get all the details sorted out.

You can load in as large of a single piece as you want. The exit from the scene shop is a large roll-up door that’s at least 10 feet wide and 20 feet tall.

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Summer Work

Alright, what’s everyone doing for summer work?

Most companies have probably already hired their summer staff, but there is a nationwide shortage of carpenters and technical directors so you might still be able to land a decent job in the field. If you would like some help figuring out your employment options for the summer, come see me and I’ll do what I can to help.


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Field Trip Forms

Everyone planning to go on the field trip on May 4th needs to fill out and return the following form on Monday, April 16th:


You will also need to complete some Title IX training.

Current Web link for training is:

Just hit next do not delete the code

You only need to do part A

Take a screen shot of your completion screen and bring it to me to turn in with my field trip paperwork.

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Syllabus update

The syllabus has been updated with changes based on our snow day schedule. You can it here and I will have paper copies available when we get back from break.

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Notes 2/26

Key ideas for selecting whether to make a piece of a show in the shop or to order it:

  • Weight the cost and time of building a piece vs the cost and time of ordering from a shop that specializes or has experience with it.
  • Total budget vs cost of order. Spending $5 on a order with a $10000 budget is less significant than that of a $5 order with a $100 budget
  • How common a piece is? If its common its more likely to be in stock or purchasable at a cheep price. If its uncommon then it would require time in the shop or a high custom order.

Group test pieces (Take feedback and use it in the future in the field, not just for the class):

1.Val Andrew,Alissa:

  • Manufactured half route instead of purchasing it, with the goal of saving money
  • Breaking the molding into different pieces
  • testing size increments and pieces took 15 to 20 mins
  • process takes a while to test but manufacturing time is quick


  • Testing using sheets of MDF curved to fit curved styles and runs for the flat
  • Curved make by dado cuts to the MDF
  • Reconsideration will be made for method


  • Steaming wood in order to achieve curve
  • rate of steam: 1 inch per hour
  • steam box made from 3/4 inch ply( made for one time use, Not long term.)

4.Caroline, Gus, Javier:

  • Style of curved flat assembling similar to that of a truss cut deck
  •  Curved boxes attached to a skeleton frame
  • When building using a concentric curves,use the same base point to measure but make the radius adjustable on the tool not the table or base point itself.

Other notes from McCullough:

-Try to make a bend piece before assembling it together, make the wood bend to the radius and to the length needed then build with it.

-its not uncommon to build a quick jig for any project in order to complete a certain design or to complete a certain task.





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