Prof. Dave Beach

Prof. Dave Beach is and has been the director of the Product Realization Lab (PRL), Stanford University’s machine shop, since 1974. Over time he’s expanded the lab, and today it has become the embodiment of Stanford’s result-driven, hands-on engineering approach.

In the classroom, he’s a wacky teacher who imitates the jarring sounds of machining tools, and gets a high from “being on stage” teaching students. I had the pleasure to be in one of his manufacturing classes.

This “day in the life” project captures him in class, on a field trip to a manufacturing factory, and at his quiet home in Palo Alto.

Cool facts:
- He’s a professor who’s never published a paper.
- He built his house himself with help of grad students.
- His beloved truck works! He took me on a spin.

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