solid as steel

“THAT WAS IT,” SAYS JOHNNY WENNER, 43, pointing to a bandsaw. “I was cutting a large bundle of material, and as it was traveling through the last bit, my hand was in the wrong spot. It barely grazed my hand, then I looked down and I could see my bone split in half. When the pain set in, it was like my hand was on fire in a vat of acid.”

The saw sliced through the metacarpal of his pointer finger and required 30 stitches and some titanium. That was 2009, and it’s the only injury Wenner has sustained in 17 years of professional metal fabrication and six years as a welding professor.

“I like the permanence of metal,” says Wenner. “It’s not easy to work with and there’s a level of accomplishment with it.”

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