Real Carbon ready for move to Port’s Halyard Building

May 18, 2011


Tenant improvements to the inside of the Port’s Halyard Building.

Real Carbon and the Port of Hood River are working on an early June move-in date for the company in a section of the recently-constructed Halyard Building at the Hood River waterfront. The company, located in Hood River since 1991, will take 5,000 square feet or about a quarter of the building. Tenant improvements are currently in progress and are expected to be completed within the next month.

"We needed more space," said Mike Graham, Real Carbon President. "The company has grown by about 600 percent in the last four years."

The company's current location at 405 Columbia Street served it well for years, but with growing production came the need for more space to work; and, although places like Double Mountain and Full Sail breweries, DaKine and Hood River Cinemas made great neighbors, Graham said his business was looking for a more industrial location to expand to.

Real Carbon specializes in designing and manufacturing custom carbon fiber parts for a variety of local and international businesses. Its products are used for their strong and lightweight properties.

A brief history of Real Carbon (from

"Real Carbon Inc. started, in California, with a dream of lightweight, super strong and very fast Windsurfing boards. Karbon Kreations, as the company was originally called, built the world's first pre-preg carbon fiber board in 1988. Today, twenty two years later, the founding members, Wes Lapp, Chief Engineer and Mike Graham, President, own and operate the company, now called Real Carbon Inc., which is based in Hood River, Oregon. Graham, originally from St. Andrews in Scotland, moved to the US in 1987. Mike is a Chemist with an Honors degree in Chemistry from the University of London. He is currently serving as President of Real Carbon Inc. He lives in Camas, Wa., with his two teenage children and wife of twenty years. Wes Lapp serves as Chief Engineer and currently oversees the production dept. at Real Carbon Inc. Lapp lives in Hood River with his daughter and wife, enjoying a life in the Hood River valley. Wes earned an Aerospace Engineering B.S. degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1987.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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