Roberston County Students Salvage Memories
Making new from old, students at Robertson County School have spent the last few months creating mementos from parts of the old Deming gymnasium floor.
The gym, which sustained damage from a waterline break in January (2014), underwent extensive repairs. Parts of the old floor also underwent changes, converted into miniature replicas of the gym floor to be used for a fund-raiser to supply mementos of the “Deming Era,” officials said.
“I was granted permission to take up a large section of the undamaged portion of the flooring in order to utilize in my classes,” said Frank Gifford, RCS agriculture instructor. “Students were really excited to be a part of such a meaningful project to the community and have followed through strong in order to get these completed.”
There were several steps to turning the aged maple wood into workable replicas.
After the boards were removed, by Gifford and adult helpers, students removed nails and ran every board through the planer to remove paint and clear-coat material. Boards were sorted, with students picking and fitting boards in combinations they felt complemented each other for each replica.
Once assembled, each replica took about an hour to be sanded. Computer aided design equipment was used to replicate the layout of the paint lines and graphics, Gifford said.
“Using this software and our vinyl cutting equipment, students produced over 100 vinyl overlays for the assembled floors,” Gifford said. “Boards were then coated with polyurethane and smoothed down using steel wool. Graphics were then applied before three more coats of polyurethane were added.”
Students also researched the gym and added the information to the back of each replica.
“They have worked diligently to produce a high quality product that will hopefully be enjoyed by many who were a part of the 'Deming Era',” Gifford said.
A display is set up in one of the trophy cases by the cafeteria and replicas are available for sale, he said. Proceeds from the sales are used to fund other projects.
Though the old school building is gone, Deming gymnasium currently remains a functional part of RCS for sport practice and public activities, officials said.
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