A few weeks ago we got an email from Luxembourg. Well, more specifically, from Marc Teusch, one of the founders of syn2cat. He said he’d be visiting Milwaukee and was wondering if he could stop by Milwaukee Makerspace… the answer was YES!
Visiting other spaces is awesome. It’s great to see the differences (and similarities) between different hackerspaces. I visited Baltimore Hackerspace and highly recommend you try to visit other spaces in your travels.
Anyway, Marc stopped by during our weekly meeting, then afterwards I gave him a tour of our space and we talked about making, hacking, Luxembourg, the US, and all sorts of other things.
With Tabletop Day approaching and my great affinity for complicated rules attached to cardboard (see picture on left of what should be my linen closet) I thought it would be the perfect time to work on a few projects to improve some games that I much enjoy. On top of some other, smaller things I decided that the boxes that come with a great majority of card games are kind of worthless. Take for example. Gloom. A fantastic game in which you try to make your family as miserable as possible before killing them off in horrid ways all the time trying to make your opponents family happy so they cannot do the same (I realize I sound crazy but if you come down to the MakerSpace this Saturday I will have it so you should give it a shot. It really is fantastic). While the game is fantastic it came in was one of those that has the bump of cardboard in the middle between the two stacks of cards that is supposedly, in some fantasy universe where cards have different physics than everything else, supposed to keep them separate. This never works and the box usually breaks fairly quickly.
Being utterly fed-up with these boxes I decided to make my own for 3 games. Gloom, Cthulhu Gloom, and GOSU: Tactics. With the first two this also has the added benefit of being able to make the box large enough that I can fit expansions in with the base game and in the case of GOSU it is an opportunity to make a box that better fits sleeved cards and add a 3 turn counter to keep track of the round after the pass (If you have played GOSU you know it can get a little hazy when some people are taking a whole slew of turns per round).
After some playing with Inkscape, cutting out the first one on the laser cutter, realizing I suck at measuring, cutting things again, some gluing, and several layers of shellac later I had a few new boxes.
I had several people ask me how it was that I achieved this look on Baltic birch plywood so I thought I would go over that quickly. The
inner part was just rag stained with some dark Minwax stain (I think it was Red Mahogany) so nothing special there but it adds a nice contrast to the lighter outside I feel. The outside is an amber shellac. I just applied 5-6 coats with a heavy sanding between the first two and a very light sanding between the rest. Nothing too exciting but it really makes this plain wood look pretty decent.
We made some good progress last time, but the repairs continue, and this time we got as far as a test drive!
We managed to finish the motor mount, get the chain on, repair the kill switch, and fix a wobbly wheel. We still need to get the new brakes in place, reattach the cooling fan, and see about some replacement wheels. But yes, it is running!
If all goes well we should have it ready by Minne-Faire on April 13th, 2013 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (We decided not to drive it there, but instead will put it in the back of a regular old gasoline-powered vehicle, just so the batteries are fresh when we get there. :)
Check the video (which is a time lapse of the repairs) and you’ll see a few shots of driving it (note to self: take camera out of time lapse mode when driving!) There’s also a short bit of real-time video at the end showing a first-time guest driver taking it for a spin. (Literally!)
As Pete posted earlier, my proposal, the traveling mascot, won the Raspberry Pi challenge. I proposed a self-tracking traveling mascot based on the Raspberry Pi. My hope with the proposal was to make the project a community project. This is my call for participation from other makers. I’m looking for artists, designers, developers, and makers of any kind to participate in the project.
The kit came with lots of extras, breadboards, case, power supply, cables, GPS module, etc. To work with the project in the space I needed some additional equipment. So far I’ve scrounged a monitor, keyboard, mouse, etc. at the space. Vishal has donated the use of a Motorola laptop converter for phones. Ed has donated a cable. Yet, the project could use a USB hub. I’ve found the need to attach more than two USB devices at one time. Does anybody have a spare?
My plan is to work out the functionality requirements, so we can figure out the size restraints before designing the appearance of the mascot. Yet, if you have any ideas for how it should look, please share them. My immediate goal for the project is to figure out the GPS unit. Soon I’ll work on the battery, camera, and home base server.
If you want to help, participate, or just check out the project talk to me when I’m at the space, or post a message on the mailing list.
I have been meaning to make one of those “Dirty/Clean” signs for my dishwasher for a good while now and I was figuring I would end up printing something cool, slapping a magnet on the back, and calling it a day. But as I was sitting down to work on the design the other day I thought to myself “Why do something good enough that will take 20 minutes when I can spend 3 hours making something completely over the top?” and thus this was born.
You crank the gear to the far right on the one on the left turns to indicate the current state of your dishwasher. Necessary, no. But it was fun. If you want to make one the design is up on thingiverse.com: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:63444
My apartment has sub-par to poor lighting. Combine that with our lease’s “no painting walls” policy and you’ve got a one-way ticket to Drab-ville. Many moons ago I planned to replace the over-cabinet lighting in our kitchen with RGB LEDs controlled by Arduino, but I never found the motivation to actually do it. Then one [...]
When we say “The Art Jamboree is Coming” we really mean The Art Jamboree is Coming! That’s right, Art Milwaukee is bringing the next Art Jamboree to us. Mark your calendars for Friday, March 29th, 2013 when the Art Jamboree will take place at Milwaukee Makerspace.
This one is titled “The Maker” and besides the usual awesomeness that includes the best in Milwaukee art, there will also be raffles, food & drink, and free low-fives(?) We’ll also be adding our own maker-related art to the mix. Expect some some interactive pieces as well as art in mediums you may not be used to. (Sure we like paint, but we also like lasers and molten plastic and beer.)
This event is free and open to the public. (All ages are welcome, but keep an eye on the kids. We have a lot of rotating blades, but we’ll do our best to keep them powered-down during the event.)
Mark your calendars for March 29th, 2013 from 7pm to 11pm. We’ll see you at 2555 S. Lenox Street in beautiful Bay View.