Alan DeVilbiss grew up on a rice and cattle farm near Lake Charles, Louisiana. His first woodworking project, at age 13, was a table made of pine, fir, and fir plywood that he designed to hold his ham radio station. Today, DeVilbiss, a retired Hewlett Packard Co. (HP) engineer, has grown his love of woodworking into a devoted hobby.
In 2000, DeVilbiss built a new home in Colorado Springs, Colorado, complete with an impressive workshop, which also serves as office space, extra garage space, and a maintenance shop for the house. Numerous utilitarian projects for the house have made their way through the shop: built-in closet shelving, walk-in pantry shelving, storage-room shelving units, media-room equipment cabinet, office cabinetry and bookcases, and many others. DeVilbiss has also experimented with instrument building, constructing a violin for his musician daughter.
After earning a BSEE at Louisiana Tech in 1960 and an MSEE from Cal Tech in 1961, DeVilbiss spent four years at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory doing electronic circuit design for the unmanned lunar and planetary exploration spacecraft Ranger, Mariner Venus, Mariner Mars, and Surveyor. In 1965 he joined HP designing software and circuits used in the company’s oscilloscopes and logic analyzers.
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