September 6th Meeting Minutes

A total of 14 members and 4 guests attended the meeting.

Made In Milwaukee – Event Recap

Several members attended ‘Made In Milwaukee’ last Saturday, downtown at Cathedral Square.  The event was a great success despite the rain.  The soldering classes went well and the group discussed plans for soldering projects at future events.  Royce agreed to look into pricing custom PCBs with traces that form our logo.  A discussion has started on the mailing list.

Power Wheels BBQ – This Weekend

Saturday, 9/10 we will be joining PS:One and others in Chicago for a picnic and gathering.  A few of our makers will bring their cars along and plan to discuss the 2012 season, rules, and have fun.

Doctor Who Party – This Weekend

Ben Nelson will be hosting a Doctor Who-Themed birthday party for his brother this weekend.  For more information on time and location, check the mailing list.

New Books in Library

Ron Bean noted that he’s added three books to the Library bookshelf:

  • There Are No Electrons: Electronics for Earthlings by Kenn Amdahl.
  • The Art of Electronics, by Paul Horowitz and Winfield Hill
  • Electrical Engineering 101 by Darren Ashby

Members are welcome to use them, but please refrain from taking them home.  Ron plans to use them while at the space.

Miller Welding Sponsorship

Kevin called Miller again this week to inquire about a sponsorship or possible equipment donation to us.  We had contacted them months ago, but never heard back.

Cheap Electric Welders

After Kevin’s update, Tom and Rich noted that they had found some cheap DC welders for sale with options for TIG, MIG, and pulsed current for aluminum.  The group seemed interested, either for the space, or personal use.  Tom agreed to look into the sale further.

Welcome Guests

Four new guests joined us for this meeting and expressed interest in memberships and various projects.  One guest, Andor, shared information on the upcoming Harvest Moon Festival and Sustainability Fair 9/24 and 9/25.  More info can be found on their Facebook page.  Another guest, Dan, was looking to meet Jason and discuss his FIRST Lego League Team.

Soda Run

Kevin and Tom mentioned they planned to go on a soda run later this week, possibly after the meeting.  There were requests for Diet Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, and “strange, unique” sodas to bring with to PS:One this weekend.

Forge Ready

Brett announced that the forge was ready.  After the meeting, the group watched as he fired it up.

Project Roundup 5/12

It’s been one month since our Grand Opening.  We’ve added a few new members and some new equipment!  Here’s a quick trip around the shop to see what’s going on:

Brent and Jackie are building a vacuum forming machine to mold plastic.
David has a quad copter kit he’s building that when done will be able to lift 1.1 kilograms! 

Richard used the jig saw to cut out wood blocks for a Daft Punk helmet prop he’s making.

Kevin and friends spent time welding metal to a bicycle wheel as part of an joke gift sculpture.





CCTV Progress

Thanks to the efforts of Jack, Royce, Tom, Ross, and I, the CCTV system is finally working!  Zoneminder’s been set up and we plan to have 12 cameras total when finished.  The goal is to eventually broadcast them all to the website here so visitors can see who and what is going on at Milwaukee Makerspace.  Stay tuned!

Project Roundup 2011-01-27

Here’s a brief synopsis of two projects currently underway.

Ron is leading the construction of a CNC router.  A workpiece will rest on two platforms, salvaged from a defunct laser cutter, and stepper motors will drive them in the X and Y-axes.  Another stepper motor will move the a router up and down in the Z-axis from a mount above the work.  When complete, the device will be able to produce 3-D objects out of wood and some light metals.  So far, the two heavy platforms have been installed on a wooden frame and Ron is busy working on a carriage that the router will mount to so it can travel in the Z-axis.

Here we see Adam testing his latest creation.  Using an Arduino board, he has built a device that registers a ‘hit’ whenever a magnetic pellet strikes a sensor. The ultimate goal is to build a vest of sensors, lights, and buzzers that airsoft enthusiasts can wear.  Whenever a gamer is shot, it will light up and make noise.  Other possibilities include real-time score keeping and ways of recording who shot who, where, and how often during games.

More next time!

Brief Project News Brief

I can’t believe it’s already been two and a half months since we first moved into our space.  Tools and parts are still trickling in, but most all of the big stuff is on site and the next step is organizing it all. Here’s a few projects from Thursday night. 

This past evening Tom Gz. & Tom Gk. gave the Space Invaders Pinball machine some more TLC.  The biggest time sink so far has been troubleshooting the lamp sockets. The sound cuts in and out, but the machine is totally playable.  Occasionally you can hear some of the sound effects come through clear, but the rest is scratchy.


I’ve been tinkering with the crate of CCTV gear.  I managed to resurrect a small Bunker Hill security camera which I mounted in the vehicle bay next door.  That way we can watch for people headed back and forth from the restrooms and avoid locking anyone out when we leave at night.  That brings the total number of cameras hung to five with possibly three more to go.  Once they’re all up and wired, Jack D. and I plan to link them all together with a PC and broadcast them to the web in some fashion.  Just imagine, people will be able to browse our website AND our shop in real-time!  It’d be cool to have a page with an explanation of where each camera is pointed too.  We’ll have to think about that one.

Tom Gk. was kind enough to bring his vinyl cutter to the shop last night and create some magnetic signs for the front doors.  They look great, even better than some of our neighbor’s signs, heh heh.  At any rate, the place is really coming together.

Look for the more impressive heavy machinery in an upcoming blog entry.  There’s work being done on the lathe and mill as well as other projects we haven’t begun reporting on yet.  We also have the Power Wheel Build Session this weekend so there’ll be plenty to talk about in the next post!