By Maya Stone
WARSAW — Looking for someone to create new devices that solve those pesky everyday problems? Ian Denzer, a college student from Warsaw, might be just the person you’re looking for.
Denzer is an 18-year-old student at Purdue University who was born in Fall River, Mass., but moved to Warsaw when he was a year old. He loves finding new ways to fix old problems and even newly formed ones. The devices he makes serve the needs he has and others are purely for the fun of designing and creating them.
This hobby of started when he replaced the speakers and stereo in his GMC Sierra when he was just 16 years old. When changing the speakers he had to buy a soldering iron and out of curiosity started messing around to see where else this new forming hobby could take him. His main focus on all of these projects is music and retro video games.
“After getting into electronics I knew I had to start small,” Denzer said, and that’s exactly what he did. This journey has had many successes but also many setbacks.
His first creation was a small speaker made out of a tin pepper can that did not go as planned and failed. He originally planned on this portable speaker being in a small Altoids can but after working on it he quickly realized this would not work. He did not give up on this idea though, instead he switched it over to a slightly bigger tin pepper can.
He got everything put together and even bought a switch for it. For a brief time, he thought it might work when one of the speakers worked. But again it failed. “I think where I went wrong is I used super glue to keep everything in place and that gets everywhere,” he admitted. His new creation on the other hand was a Gamecube portable screen. His plan was to create this portable Gamecube, but the battery was so old it didn’t work and the screen stopped working. So he remade it three times, and on his second revision, he even added speakers to the screen.
“I still love it, even though it can be sloppy, it’s still the first thing I made that worked,” he said.
More of his music-related creations include a Bluetooth iPod, boombox, backpack boombox, giant boombox and many others. The creations he’s made related to video games include a portable Wii, portable battery made out of a Wii remote, VR glasses, a portable Gamecube screen and many others. All of these amazing creations are fully functioning.
Denzer also likes to make creations that are not his original ideas and see if he can improve on them. These creations include customizing Gameboy systems with better screens, audio and putting solid-state drives into old iPods instead of hard disk drives.
When making these creations, Denzer tries to use as many resources as he has. One of these being the facilities at Warsaw Community High School like their workshop. In the workshop is where he would spend most of his time putting some of these creations together including the giant boombox and portable backpack boombox. He would then take these creations home and do all the wiring there. All of his creations that have involved music he made at home in his own spare time.
Denzer has so many more ideas he would love to start working on, but sadly being a new college student he has much less free time and money to do so.