Art Jamboree (at City Hall!)

Art Jamboree

I was a bit disappointed that I missed the first Art Jamboree that we were invited to, so I really wanted to make it to the next one, and hey, it just happened to be at Milwaukee’s City Hall!

It was without a doubt, a total blast. We had the Friday Night Drawbot and the MakerBot CupCake running, and both drew a lot of attention. People were really fascinated by 3D printing, and the samples we had on hand.

Art Jamboree

From the Makerspace, Royce was there, and besides showing the spin cast jewelry he had made, I heard him explain the Drawbot to plenty of people, explaining Arduinos, and servos, and programming. MattN has his latest CNC Router work there, which is still in progress, but looks pretty amazing so far. Shane had one of his laser etchings, and Adam had the MakerBot doing its thing. (We even printed a few whistles that actually worked.) And Brant? He just did an awesome job talking about everything. Jason H was also there, and Kevin even showed up. We probably had the largest group of people, which was great to see.

Art Jamboree

The best part of the evening was all the great people we met. Lots of folks stopped by to check us out, but we also had a lot of great conversations with people too. I talked to two different high school teachers, one from Bay View who thought it might be a good idea to show her students that robots could do more than fight with each other. The other high school teacher told me he built furniture in his apartment, but could only do so when he knew his neighbors were not home. (Sounds like a potential member!) There were also people from UWM’s Art Department, a guy who used to sell vacuum forming machines, a girl who said “my boyfriend always talks about CNC machines, but I never know what he’s talking about!” (she took a photo of the MakerBot to send to him.)

Art Jamboree

As long as we didn’t need my laptop for the MakerBot, I figured I’d run a Processing sketch I had been playing with. It’s based on the ASCII Video sketch with my own tweaks added, and made to capture an image every 15 seconds. (Yes, a time lapse video will follow… Update: Here it is.)

Art Jamboree

I think we did a great job of letting people know what kind of stuff we do at the Makerspace, and beyond all that, it was just genuinely fun to share it all with people, especially people who got really excited about it.

And hey, if you saw us at the Art Jamboree (or heard about us from Art Milwaukee) and want to find out more about us, feel to stop by any Tuesday night at 7pm for our weekly meeting. We’d love to show you what we’re all about. :)

Makerbot Spools and Rack are in Effect

Image of the spool holder filled with spools of plastic

A while back, Pete and I had discussed making spools for the ABS plastic that the Makerbot uses.  The stop-gap solution until now has involved painters’ tape and coils of filament laying all over the table.

After Matt had a print job interrupted due to a kinked filament, I decided I had better hurry up and make this thing.

Full step-by-step instructions are available on Instructables here: The Spools and The Spool Rack

I’ve decided that it’s worth it to pick one random project now and then that addresses a need that the ‘Space has.

Next up: a fully functioning version of ED-209 to guard the doors to the ‘Space.

A Tribute to Steve


If you haven’t noticed, I’ve been spending a lot of time with the MakerBot at the space lately. (And yes, it’s now much quieter and doesn’t force you to yell in the lab when it’s running.)

Last night Dustin stopped by to work on calibrating it a bit more. (He maintains one of the MakerBot Thing-O-Matics at Discovery World.)

We made a bit of progress by tweaking things in Skeinforge, and after much calibration test printing I thought we should print one “fun” thing before the night ended.

We chose the 1:9 scale model Apple II+ from Thingiverse. It seemed a fitting tribute to Steve Jobs.

MakerBot Octopus

MakerBot Octopus

Drew did a great MakerBot demo last week, and one of the things he printed was this octopus.

Over on Thingiverse there are a number of octopuses (yes, it’s a real word) so I’m not sure exactly which one he printed, but I think it might be the Bucket O’ Octopi version. (In the fine tradition of the “Barrel of Monkeys” some of us remember from childhood.)

MakerBot Octopus (close-up)

Here’s a close-up showing the layers of plastic, which if you ask me, is as close to an octopus as I’ll probably ever get.

A big thanks goes out to Drew for the demo. Learning from other members is one more reason I love the Makerspace. And if you aren’t a member yet, come on down to one of the Thursday night demos, learn something new, take a tour, and meet some makers.

This week we’ve got a welding demo, so mark your calendars for Thursday, September 8th, 2011 at 7:30 PM.

Fun with 3D

Milwaukee Makerspace 3D Egg

Here’s a recent Egg-Bot experiment, putting the Milwaukee Makerspace logo on an egg… in 3D!!!

Well, it’s not really 3D exactly, as I just plotted with blue, then again with red, and the fact that registration isn’t perfect makes it look like 3D printing. But you know, we do have a box full of 3D glasses at the space, so maybe we should test it out.


I also made this egg for BarCampMadison, which happened this passed weekend. The Sector67 guys were there, and gave a session on 3D printers which included the RepRap, and the MakerBot. Speaking of the MakerBot, we’ll be doing a demo of it this week Thursday, September 1st, 2011 at the space. The demo will start around 7:30, and it’s open to the public, so come on down. You can also RSVP on Facebook if you like.