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- Intro Music by Fran Blanche -
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FranArt Website - http://www.contourcorsets.com

By Fran

14 thoughts on “Who is this fran person?”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Kevin Rose says:

    As an electrical engineer with a life-long passion for anything electrical (and working in a dream job), I want to thank you for your perseverance and your strong attention to detail. I hope you will be able to find a contact in the organization you would like to be a part of – I am convinced, even though I don't know you in person, that once you set your mind to something, you do it. I also think you have courage. I have seen you work (through your videos), and with your attention to detail, this organization would thrive with the work you were doing for them. Like you, I am also a musician, and music takes practice and lots of it (I have a master's degree in organ performance – I found a BS in Electrical Engineering to be great preparation for this master's degree).

    A more important question (you need to answer for yourself): Why do I believe so much in this organization? What can I be doing now to advance the cause of this organization? I hope you will, through networking, be able to meet a decision maker in the organization.

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Ziggy Stardog says:

    Fran is the whole package as an OG maker, business-person, communicator, collection curator, IEEE recognized engineer and musician. She’s an inspiration for me to get off my couch in my Franlab shirt and create today. I came to her channel when Franlab 1.0 needed a new home and I’ve been here ever since. I’m happy to support her in every endeavor she might apply her many talents to, because she’s demonstrated herself worthy of her loyal following and an asset to any organization savvy enough to see her many merits.

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars K5SM KPT BENCHOD says:

    FRAN i dont know ITS YOU I can’t describe it but you truly seem like such a humble person!!! Also it’s the way you create videos I’ve been a viewer for almost 4 years!! Your ability to keep GOING ALSO..!!!! We appreciate you and you make us smile ok… that’s my opinion my two cents and I hope your people read it because it’s from my heart we love you friend

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars lordmuntague says:

    The following is written by a bloke in Liverpool who despite being thousands of miles away remains one of the subject’s most committed supporters. Here’s why.

    Put simply, Fran Blanche is an engineer (both electrical and mechanical), artist, carpenter, entrepreneur, musician, and curator of a notable collection of artefacts, media and art encompassing a genuinely unique glimpse of human creation and invention. Her appeal to her audience on her “FranLab” You Tube channel is largely due to her friendly style and ability to explain and discuss the items and subjects she presents.

    Her achievements include the creation of a range of guitar effects pedals still described in hushed tones by top flight musicians, a significant contribution to the Smithsonian Apollo commemorative project, a zero-gravity flight, and a wide selection of projects, musical, artistic, electronic and constructional, which have fascinated her audience for over a decade.

    More notably, she has caught the attention of a wide range of people from different backgrounds, even internationally, who identify with her personal view of science, art and the world in general.

    All of this becomes exceptional when realizing that she has overcome a string of persistent difficulties, personal, health and financial, to be able to present her collection and activities today, amassing an audience approaching (at the time of writing) a quarter of a million.

    The release of a FranLab video is awaited (by this fan at least) with the same excitement as watching Mo Salah start a run on goal towards the Kop End. You know that ball is going straight in the back of the net.

    And with that sporting analogy, this author believes Fran is the best possible choice for any team that identifies with any of her activities. She’s the best signing anyone could ever make.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Daniel Bingamon says:

    Fran – When I think of Philadelphia, the city of invention, I think of Benjamin Franklin, a fellow inventor and a whole lot of things you have done on your page are in the spirit of Ben Franklin. Let's recount some: The Apollo DSKY research, various historical electronics components, amplifiers, science, electronic theory, music, historic pipe organ, antique light bulbs and amazing amount of stuff.

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars valjean246019430 says:

    I'm from a small town and retired from the Navy Nuclear Power program. Fran Blanche is of the same caliber as a number of people that I enjoyed working with. Her in-depth knowledge on such a vast array of topics showed me that she takes her work very seriously. Topics from what it takes to take an idea for a product all the way to marketing. In depth discussion on the Saturn 5 rocket engines and the many engineering aspects of it's workings. The meticulous detail of her projects. Open and honest about what didn't work and why and what did work. The quality of her work is what inspired me to financially donate so that she may continue to broaden my knowledge.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Keri Szafir says:

    The terse and meritoric version:

    Fran is a tremendous inspiration to me, a role model in different aspects and someone I truly admire and look up to. A hardworking professional, skillful engineer, craftsperson, designer and artist, a woman of numerous passions and deep knowledge of many subjects, dedicated to preserving, rediscovering and educating others about the technological and scientific heritage of current and bygone era. Also, a determined and supportive activist who is not afraid to voice her opinions, which are deeply rooted in the current scientific consensus. A proud defender of reason, dignity, justice and equality. Someone I would be absolutely delighted to meet in person and have as a mentor, coworker or friend.

    The long-ish, personal version:

    I first found Fran at some point in late 2000s or early 2010s, when I was 25 or so, studied chemistry at a technical university and have been doing electronic stuff for 10 years. At that point I was volunteering at a campus radio doing maintenance/restoration on vintage pro audio gear. Ran a lab at home that I named "Vault-Tec Electronics" (that started a few years before Bethesda bought the Fallout franchise), built a few tube amps, preamps, a compressor/limitter and some other stuff for me and my buddies. I was mainly interested in vacuum tube electronics, guitar and hi-fi gear, old radios etc. Years later I know much more about electronics, but still stick to my tubes.
    I also was – and still am – largely interested in the goth, post-punk and industrial scene/subculture, both musically and aesthetically (fashion etc.), which involves corsetry. I was doing some research and reading, mainly through the Long Island Staylace Association, and found Fran's fashion business (Contour Corsets), read her writings on corsetry, discovered the electronics business (Frantone) and again, read her writings on design & engineering.
    Also, by that time I was already seriously interested in feminism, queer/gender studies etc. I knew I wasn't a "man" despite being assigned male at birth – I didn't match the then pretty restricted, medicalist notions of transsexual/transgender woman, but saw myself as an androgyne / third gender… the "non-binary" term wasn't widely used yet. Fran, being a trans woman and not hiding it (and warning against doing that in her writings on the pitfalls of deep stealth) AND being an electronics geek, strangely resonated with me. At some point I unfortunately forgot her name, all ties seemed to be lost. A few years later I was growing uncomfortable with the way others saw me and I saw myself, which pushed me to start transitioning. Then I felt comfortable enough to come out as a trans woman over a year ago.
    Even though I forgot Fran's name, I had a vague memory of her being a trans woman who lived and worked in NYC, made corsets and audio stuff. I tried to find her but didn't know who to look for, which made things harder – e.g. no one in a list of 100 women in audio matched the description. Then, at some point in 2021, I came upon the mention of Fran in one of Flux Condenser's videos by sheer accident, something told me "maybe that's the one? go and check her out…" and yes, it clicked. Binge watching Fran's videos and supporting her on Patreon followed.

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars pomonabill220 says:

    I would say that you are very organized, considering what you just went through. I am proud to help you with my Patreon support!

    All the projects you have done, and your effort to share your findings with us, takes tons of time and production.

    You have uncovered things that I didn't know existed!
    Your review and use of the Origin CNC hand held router, that I didn't know existed and have been wishing was available, led me to purchase one, and it is very handy! No need to a big router table that is limiting, and the huge community of it's support makes it an invaluable tool.
    And I have YOU to thank!

    Your research into the Wanamaker pipe organ was fascinating to me as I love pipe organs! Just wish you could get more of it.

    Your teardown and repair/modification of the Heathkit clock was fun! I was a Heathkit junkie while they were in business, and built many of the kits they offered, with some changes thrown in also. You showed the clock and what you went through to get it to work, and the problems you had with radio reception for it's synchronization.

    Your drive to keep surviving in the pandemic, and just living and having to move without giving up, is great!

    You are just an amazing person with the drive and determination to go above and beyond what most people can do.

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars David Peaker says:

    I first found Fran's channel through her Apollo AGC DSKY video at the Smithsonian, from there I went to her Apollo LVDC circuit board teardown, but then I found videos about pens and pencils, pipe organs, automatons, music, so many diverse subjects, I was hooked. Fran can make anything from the fantastic to the mundane interesting, understandable and engageable.

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jon Pardue says:

    Fran Blanche is a national treasure with an international audience. Few people have Fran's depth and breadth of real experience as a designer, technician, experimenter, engineer, craftsperson and technologist. Few possess the ability to stick with a project like Fran, seeing it completed especially when the project is complex, when new skills and understanding are needed. One of the things that makes Fran really special is the gift of explanation. Not just glossed over textbook material, but real life observation in a framework of precise, high quality content.
    You want Fran Blanche involved with your organization! There is no finer person as inquisitive, dedicated or intelligent with such a wide spectrum of interests.

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars BobC says:

    Who is this Fran person? And why would anyone want her in their organization?

    Fran is curious and loves to share her curiosity wherever it leads. I can hardly count the times I've been surprised and delighted by where that curiosity has gone, and the tenacity and dedication Fran exhibits following her path and sharing the journey.

    Fran is an investigator. More often than not, her curiosity leads her to fascinating science and technology, most especially including things that were key steps on the way to solving some thorny problems. Fran will dig into an item "all the way down" until she not only understands it, but understands it well enough to share with others in a comprehensible and engaging manner.

    Fran is a communicator. And not just in videos! No medium is beyond Fran, be it material art, music, speech, writing, video and more. This is the key to Fran's success on YouTube, where over a quarter of a million people follow her channel.

    Fran is a historian and curator. Simply put, she loves old stuff, and not only old tech, though that does tend to fill her archive more than anything else.

    Fran is an inventor and creator. I was going to say "artist", but that word feels too narrow, despite much of her work being truly artistic. Many of Fran's inventions serve to solve problems at hand, ones encountered as part of her other efforts. Some inventions are quick "hacks", others are years in the making. Fran is one of those rare folks who can share their invention and discovery processes in ways that encourage others to try it for themselves.

    Fran is inspiring. If the above list isn't enough to illustrate this, Fran does all this while having what others may label as disadvantages or handicaps or limitations, but which Fran turns into superpowers. I'll not list them, but I will say I share some of them, and I'm singularly amazed by how they hardly slow Fran down. She drives me to do better with and for myself.

    Fran is proof that Art and STEM go together: Fran is a STEAM practitioner and advocate like no other. An engineer with words, an artist with technology.

    Fran has enormous passion. She acknowledges few limitations, and considers even those few temporary in nature, to be resolved or worked around. Fran can weather adversity better and push herself harder than anyone I've ever seen. Fran has tenacity and grit.

    Fran is a trailblazer. Fran has started and run multiple businesses. FRAN LOVES PHILLY! Fran has a rich and wry sense of humor. OK, I should probably stop here, though there is more to be said.

    Who is this Fran person? Bring her aboard and find out for yourself!

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bob Pockney says:

    A world treasure I would say as she has followers and supporters around the world. I've only been following her for two years – I guess a pandemic period discovery – and have been so appreciative of her work to become a patron.
    I have an electronics background, but her videos are superbly done to capture the interest of all. Reclaiming historic short films for posterity is one of the important projects she's done, but the breadth of the topics she covers is wonderful. My life has been significantly enriched by Fran and I am truly grateful for this.

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bob Darlington says:

    If it's who I'm thinking of, they basically went downhill rather quickly after booting the radio club. Things started to break and nobody was around to handle repairs. Slowly but surely, every interesting thing I remember from my youth went away and was replaced by the same cookie cutter kiosks at every other similar location. They are in dire need of folks like you and I really hope they figured this out in the last 25 years.

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars fluffy says:

    I love all of the stuff that you do to examine and explore old technology, especially explaining things like old display devices and obscure electromechanical components. The old short film preservation is also extremely valuable.

    Good luck on your continual recombobulation! I'm still trying to get around to finish unpacking from my move a year ago.

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