Fall 2008

A Creative Group

PSL Shop photo

It has been well over 10 years since the fabrication staff at PSL was featured in our newsletter. Long enough that there are several new faces among the original group.

One who has been around for more than 25 years is the instrument shop supervisor Bill Cotter. Bill is responsible for overseeing the day to day operations of the shop but also spends a good part of his time with our customers. He is always more than willing to make a trip to the Madison campus to meet with a client who has a project needing our expertise. He ultimately provides a written cost estimate or firm quote for the work. Bill remembers a project that took him to Hamburg, Germany for several weeks to oversee the installation of cables on the Zeus detector at DESY. Away from work Bill keeps busy with hunting, fishing, woodworking and collecting antique glass.

Mike Coudray has been here just under three years. Mike attended MATC for machine tool techniques a while ago and has worked at several machine shops in the Madison area. He assembles and welds parts at PSL. Two of his favorite projects were the Firn Drill and the training tower for the IceCube researchers. One of the more challenging and also educational projects for Mike was a gas mixing/heating “showerhead” apparatus. He comes from northern Wisconsin but has been in the Madison area for most of his adult life. He enjoys spending time with his wife, family and especially their grandchildren. His interests range from searching through junkyards, old cars, and going to swap meets to photography (on film).

Tim Sailor has 25 years as an instrument maker with PSL. Tim makes parts and assembles equipment for the university and international research community. He has contributed to interesting projects over the years, including the CMS detector at CERN, several monochromators, medical equipment to deliver radiation treatments, drilling equipment for Antarctic research, and numerous smaller assemblies. Before joining our team he was a teacher with the Madison School District. Tim enjoys woodworking and riding his recumbent trikes, travel, visiting family, walks, concerts and movies. He is married and has two grown sons, two step daughters and three granddaughters.

With 10 years at PSL, instrument maker Bart Dana’s main job is to run the Fryer CNC mill using Mastercam X3 cad-cam. His favorite project was working on the winches for the Hot Water Drill and the Shot Hole Drill. “They were both huge projects for us all, and everything just seemed to come together so easy.” He also recalls the CMS project at CERN and all the work putting together the chamber positioner and how well it works. Bart is married with a young daughter and a boy on the way. Hobbies include cars (Mustang), traveling to auto races, and restoring old metal and woodworking machines.

Instrument maker Ron Smith has 25 years as a welder, UHV lead check and machinist with PSL. Ron also serves on the Safety Committee. He can fabricate a monochromator from start to finish. Ron has worked on several internal projects that took him to Germany, Taiwan and Korea. He works with engineers on campus projects such as MST. Ron met his wife at a wine festival near the Mosell River in Germany. They enjoy traveling to visit relatives there. He spends time working on sports cars (Porsche, Ferrari) and repairs around the house. He’s originally from Potosi, WI and while in high school worked for a cheese maker.

Mike Hughes has been an instrument maker for about three years and splits his time between welding and machining on the new Sharp CNC mill.

Instrument maker Bill Koenig has 25 years with PSL and works mostly on the Hermle and Fadal CNC mills machining parts. An interesting job was machining a copper cone for a Purdue University project. Bill enjoys photography and playing pool.

Darrell Hamilton started with PSL in 2002 as an instrument maker. He oversees the support shop operations. Darrell has made several trips to Antarctica for the IceCube project and is there this season with the firn drill team. He is married and lives in Evansville and still has input on the family farm operations.


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