All good things come to an end. Sadly, that is the case regarding Chuck Schultz’s blog, which comes to an end with this, his final posting.
Yes, eight years and some 670 postings later, Chuck is calling it quits.
Another saying is that no one is irreplaceable, but Chuck comes pretty darn close. His weekly commentary on gearing and just life in general have been witty, pithy, and spot on.
So let’s wish Chuck the best as he basks in a retirement well earned.
Gear Technology Staff
We had no idea what we were doing when we met in January of 2014 to discuss starting a blog. Blogging was the latest rage and Gear Technology needed content for its website. I had previously been a columnist for the publication and bartered blogging for advertising space for my consulting firm. Over seven years later, things have changed for both the magazine and this blogger.
With no fixed agenda, the space has covered many topics; almost all of them connected to gears. If there is a world record for the most posts by one author on gears, I probably hold it. We never got the back-and-forth interaction working, but occasionally a question made its way through the spam filters in search of an answer. Mostly, I wrote about things that I wished someone had informed me about along the way.
I mention this lack of structure not as a defense of the rambling nature of “story time” but to encourage someone else to pick up the torch of writing about the non-technical side of this trade. Not every problem has a mathematical solution; even with today’s fantastic design/analysis software, internet data bases, and incredible computer-controlled machinery — it is still a people business.
While there are a few villains in my story, for the most part my colleagues and customers were good folks just trying their best to get things done. And what an amazing range of things we did together! From a multi-speed paddle shifting gearbox the size of a quarter to a twenty-ton piece of bridge machinery, we explored the full range of the gear world. If there is a weird application out there, I probably got involved in it at some point.
In recent years, some of those old projects circled back on me. Callers from around the world were shocked that I could predict difficult aspects of their situation based upon previous work. It would have been much less stressful to have stayed in one “lane” for fifty years, but stress can be a wonderful motivator. You never appreciate how creative you can be until you have to invent your way out of a corner.
The time has come for me to go do other things, so my consulting operation will no longer be seeking new clients. There is a small group of clients that will always get a call back, but my days of “heavy lifting” are done. A big final project has been a reminder of how “sleeping on the problem” drains energy from other activities I want to pursue.
In that group, of course, is the magazine. You may see my name in an article or attached to an “Ask the Expert” question in the future. I do not rule out adding to my blog post total occasionally, but my calendar will no longer include regular deadlines. It would be very sad if no one takes on the “official blogger” mantel, as the gear trade is about so much more than just technical reports.
That’s all, folks. Thanks for supporting the blog for all these years.