By Kara Larson, Make it Minnesota

Duane has always had a passion for cars, but developed his passion for restoring classic cars during his retirement. For 44 years he worked as a clinical physical therapist and inventor, authoring 14 patents on physical therapy devices and products. Duane lives in Eden Prairie with his wife Bonnie and their dog Percy, two cats and hundreds of wildlife visitors. Duane runs three miles a day and likes to wear his purple Elvis suit while riding in his 1963 Cadillac convertible in the K-State homecoming parades.

Have you participated in MSP Mini Maker Faire before? What will you be sharing there on June 3rd?
This is my first year with the MSP Mini Maker Faire. I plan to bring the BMW Isetta and several other projects to the Maker Faire and be ready to show participants how I do my wine cork art.

Have you always been creative? What choices or steps have led up to your current creative projects?
I have always been creative. I owned a company that manufactured and sold physical therapy/sports medicine equipment. I have 14 patents.

Talk about the beginnings of your wine cork art. What inspired you to begin this endeavor?
Since retirement, I have to be busy and have something to do. My two hobbies are restoring classic cars and wine cork art. We always saved wine corks and one day I decided to make something with them. The first thing was the Kansas State Wildcat logo which I donated to a scholarship fund auction. It brought $600.00. This motivated me to do more things such as my family coat of arms, my fraternity crest and several other interesting things. Then, I took on a project that I still don’t see how I did it: I covered a BMW Isetta with wine corks. It took me a year. Then, I did a BMW 600. Crazy!

The wine cork art I do requires a lot of equipment and a shop. It is not something you can do in the living room. For most projects, I cut the corks in half with a band saw. Wine corks are not all the same size so they must be sized. The ends sanded with a disc sander so they fit tight together is just the beginning.

Where can we see more of your work?
You can see some of my hobby on my website www.saundersclassics.com.

Originally posted on Make it Minnesota (http://makeitmn.com/duane-saunders/) and reposted with permission.

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