Brian Koenig’s Nomination for the 2016 What’s in your box? Giveaway

My name is Brian Koenig and I would like to nominate myself for the What’s in your box toolbox giveaway. You can call this a re-nomination since I had a nomination in last year, but was not selected.

As I was growing up I learned most of my “mechanical knowledge” from my Grandfather. He was trade school trained in the aircraft industry and when I was young he had a “job shop” in the basement of his home. His bread and butter work was repairing electromechanical aircraft instruments, so he had a working knowledge of both machinery and electronics. As a kid I spent many hours in his shop absorbing everything I could.

I grew up in NYC and there was no such thing as shop classes in High School even then. As I went through high school and eventually college I continued with all things mechanical and fabrication on my own time.

I also have a great love for history and work part time for a local museum. I quickly became the go to guy when any of the antique machinery or equipment needed repair. There is always a steady stream of things that need work!


I have been trying to find a local trade school or classes that teach manual machining as I really want formal training to enhance my “figured it out” self-training. However, I quickly learned that trying to find anything involving manual machining is tough. The only machining courses within an hour and a half drive from me were strictly CNC. I don’t have anything against CNC, and it does interest me, but I have manual machines and would like to learn on them first. I happened to mention my class problem to Bruce Whitham and he suggested finding a tractor club or similar as they are pretty generally heavily invested in manual machining to repair the old equipment.


This was the best suggestion I could have gotten as I really struck gold. I found that there is a large steam club near me with a full machine shop and members more than willing to teach. To top it off, the machine shop is steam powered and driven by line shafts. The history buff in me loves working in a real old school machine shop. In addition to this I have also taken classes in machinery concepts and repair. These classes greatly helped my understanding of many aspects of machines.


As to my goals and what the box would mean to me. My immediate goals for the next year is to start up a small business and a YouTube channel. My plan is to start small at first by making one-off parts for machine restoration and items for historical sites. A YouTube channel will be there to show my progress and hopefully serve as some inspiration for others as many YouTubers have done the same for me. The box and tools will allow me to expand on what I am able to do. I have a basic set of tools and I am using the WIYB list as a guide to build my tool set. A full box will really allow me to take my work to the next level.

Thank you!