Come Visit Us During Doors Open 2016!

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Doors Open Milwaukee is back!  Saturday, September 17th and Sunday, September 18th from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

This is Milwaukee Makerspace’s third year participating in the city-wide event and each year we’ve seen about 800 guests per weekend!  If you’ve been meaning to check us out, but haven’t done so, Doors Open will be a great time to get a tour and ask your questions.  We hope to see you this weekend!

Auto-Off Timed Outlets

If you’re like me, you’ve left a soldering iron plugged in once or twice.  Hopefully you’re also lucky like me and it’s never started a fire.   Occasionally I’ll grab something off our Hack Rack and take it apart.  A) It’s fun and B) it helps cut down on the ever-growing pile of appliances in the East Room.  Recently I focused my efforts on a microwave oven.  During my salvage operation I managed to extract one plastic fan, two thermal cutout switches, a transformer, the magnetron, a huge capacitor, and the controls.  I soon realized that what I had in front of me was a digital timer wired to a normally open relay.  I couldn’t immediately think of something to do with it, but it seemed too good to toss or disassemble further.  About a week later I decided to wire it to a pair of 120-volt receptacles.  Voila.  Any appliance with a standard plug can be set to run from 00:01 to 99:99 before powering off.  Just press “TIME COOK” then enter the time in minutes and seconds, then start.  The relay closes the circuit and the outlets are energized.  When the timer runs out, a piezo buzzes and the outlets shut off.  The relay on the microwave’s circuit board is 120-250 volt at 16 amps, so I’m fairly comfortable it will handle one or two 40-watt soldering irons.

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WISN 12 – Doors Open Milwaukee 2015

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http://www.wisn.com/entertainment/doors-open-makerspace/35379102

Thank you again to Van McNeil and WISN 12 for their interest in Doors Open Milwaukee 2015!  Historic Milwaukee has done a phenomenal job promoting and organizing this event for the last five years.  If you haven’t had a chance to visit any of the 175+ buildings available this weekend, there’s still time Sunday from 10 AM to 5 PM.  Be sure to check the full list of participants at the official Doors Open website:

http://www.doorsopenmilwaukee.org/