October 11th Meeting Minutes

A total of 15 members and 3 guests attended the meeting.

Guest Introductions

Housekeeping Items

The sink is being repaired, but until then, there is a garden hose out by the bathrooms.  All other plumbing fixtures still work.  The group reminded everyone to check the back door is closed and locked when leaving.  Also, the air compressor is currently out of order.  Rich and Tom will be repairing it shortly.

Black Friday Make-A-Thon

We are planning our second annual Make-A-Thon for the day after Thanksgiving.  Several project ideas have been suggested including CNC or saw cut wooden snowflakes, Makerbot-made cookie cutters, decorating eggs with the Egg-Bot, and soldering LED tie-pins.  We’re still open to ideas, especially those that have more guest involvement and less fabrication time like CNC designs would need.

CNC Work Days / Club Meetings

Ron announced that CNC Club Meetings will likely occur on the first Sunday of each month.  As a reminder, the Electric Car Club meets on the second Sunday of the month.  More info to come.

Game Day

Sunday, October 16th will be our first ever Game Day.  Elizabeth has offered to bring in The Impossible Machine and Timeline: Inventions.  Tom will bring Empire Builder and Ticket to Ride.  Settlers of Catan, Warhammer, and others have also been suggested.  Events start at 3pm.  See the discussion on our Google Groups page. 

Real Steel Matinee

The group is planning an outing this Saturday, October 15th to go see the new Hugh Jackman movie “Real Steel” featuring boxing humanoid robots.  Meet at Marcus South Shore Cinemas prior to the 4:20 PM start time.  See the discussion thread for more info.

A Visit From An Ethnographer 

One of our guests this evening was Michael, an anthropology major from Beloit College, about 75 miles southwest of us.  Michael is interested in becoming a member and studying the culture and community of hackerspaces.  We just happen to be the closest one he’s found.  Over the next several weeks Michael will be interviewing members, observing projects, and working in the shop.  When completed, we have been promised a copy of either part or all of the finished work.  There is also a presentation component that Michael will be organizing for his class.

October 4th Meeting Notes

A total of 14 members and 3 guests attended the meeting.

BarCampMilwaukee6 Wrap Up

Our “Learn to Solder” booth at BarCamp was a smashing success!  We had nearly 60 campers solder up either a Milwaukee Makerspace Logo Board or the Maker Shed Robot Board.  Our location out in the loading dock also put us close to the 3D printing group so we better got to know people from PS:One, Sector 67, and TC Maker.  On Saturday, we ferried people from Bucketworks over to our space and gave 30 or so people a tour.  The whole weekend was a great event and we’re glad we were invited to be a part of it.  Pictures from BarCamp6 can be found on the Flickr photo pool.

Electric Car Club Meeting Sunday, October 9th

CNC Machining Club Proposed

Ron has announced that he intends to start a CNC Club for those interested in computer controlled milling, routing, machining, and fabrication.  Meetings will likely occur on Sundays, but specific days are yet to be determined.  Stay tuned for more information!

Black Friday Make-A-Thon Revisited

Last year Milwaukee Makerspace hosted an all day “make-a-thon” at Bucketworks where guests were invited to make light-up Christmas tree ornaments and other small trinkets rather than go out and fight the crowds at department stores.  The group discussed possible projects for this year and garnered interest for a 2011 event.

Innovation in Milwaukee – MiKE

A new organization has been formed in Milwaukee that promises to foster innovation, technology and design, entrepreneurship, and collaboration.  MiKE’s partners include General Motors, Kohl’s, Briggs & Straton, Spreenkler, the Greater Milwaukee Foundation, and many others.  An introduction meeting is scheduled for Thursday in their new space in Grand Avenue Mall with an open house to immediately follow.  More information is available on their website at http://www.innovationinmilwaukee.com/

By-Laws and Voting

The mailing list has been buzzing with talk of how to best make fair and informed decisions regarding the direction of our group.  The discussion Tuesday clarified several procedures and reiterated how our by-laws work.  In short, the major points included were:

  • Any member can propose a vote be taken or require that vote be delayed
  • Members will be notified prior to a vote taking place, usually one week
  • Those who put items to a vote will be expected to express why a vote is necessary
  • Voting by proxy is allowed since not everyone can attend every meeting
  • If a simple majority agrees, votes can be re-examined
  • Typical topics requiring votes include membership, purchases, and major rule changes

For more information on our organizational structure and operations, refer to the By-Laws Page.

Officer Elections and Other Business

After the discussion on policies and voting, the group voted on new officers.  The roles of President, Vice President/Treasurer, and Secretary were opened for new nominations and votes cast.

  • Royce remains President
  • Jason G. replaced Tom G. as Vice President/Treasurer
  • Brant remains Secretary

The attendees also approved a budget of roughly $450 for 500 custom PCBs and parts for new Makerspace “Learn to Solder” Boards since we have exhausted our handmade supply during past events.  Royce is handling the pricing and ordering.  A budget of $20 was also approved for a rubber logo stamp so we can mark guests’ Hackerspace Passports when they visit from other spaces.  Pete is leading the stamp project.

September 27th Meeting Minutes

A total of 14 members and 1 guest attended the meeting.

BarCampMilwaukee6 is this weekend!

If you haven’t yet, go visit their website at http://barcampmilwaukee.org/

Membership Promotion

Jason proposed that we actively engage the public and recruit new members.  He volunteered to lead a small group and make contact with people at area schools and colleges.  More to come shortly.

Jumpstart Sponsorships

Rich presented an idea to sponsor people who regularly attend meetings and help out at the space, but lack the disposable income necessary for membership.  Candidates would be eligible for two or more months of part-time or student level membership.  A fund has already been set up using donations from other members.

Jason noted that PS:One and other groups offer incentives to bring in materials, clean the space, teach classes, etc. and earn points which can be redeemed for merchandise, discounted dues, and more.  More details to come.

Doorbell Project

It was noted that Shane, a regular at the space but not quite a member, was left waiting outside in the rain last Friday without anyone to let him in.  People were in the space, but did not know he was out there.  The group discussed the need for a doorbell to alert occupants to the presence of guests waiting outside.  Ross volunteered to help build a system with a bell and lights and began working shortly after the meeting.

Electric Car Club Meeting October 9th

As usual, the Electric Car Club will be meeting on the second Sunday of the month.  Tom asked for a few volunteers to come to the space and help direct any guests that attend the meeting.  People will hang out between 10:00 AM and 4:00 PM with the meeting somewhere in the middle.  Tom noted that Ben is working to make the group an official chapter of the Electric Automobile Association.

September 13th Meeting Minutes

A total of 14 members and 5 guests attended the meeting.

Introductions – Guests Welcome

Bookkeeping Items

Tom indicated that we have paid the fee for Made in Milwaukee and we will be cutting a check to sponsor BarCampMilwaukee6.  For more information visit barcampmilwaukee.org The group agreed to put donations from members toward the sponsorship and pay the remainder out of organization funds.

Upcoming Events

This Sunday, September 18th from 1-3pm Royce will be teaching a class on the DipTrace printed circuit board design software.  You can RSVP on Facebook.

The First Annual Wisconsin Science Festival will be held in Madison September 22nd-25th.  Milwaukee Makerspace is not actively participating however the event has been shared on the mailing list.  wisconsinsciencefest.org

BarCampMilwaukee6 is scheduled for October 1st-2nd and many of our members will be in attendance; a few will even be teaching!

Wiki and Website Content Discussion

There is a discussion on the mailing list about starting a Makerspace Wiki.  Jason, Ross, and Royce led most of the discussion in the meeting Tuesday.  While it is not clear if members would maintain or use a wiki, blog posts are being made often so the website is staying fresh and up-to-date.  Is it also not clear at this time if WordPress has “collaboration” style pages like Drupal did with the former website.  Brant volunteered to port the old cleanup task list and recommended vendors list over to the new website.  Brant and Jason expressed interest in tagging the equipment with QR codes or something similar to track relevant information and possibly maintenance.

Current Projects

The group went around the room and shared what projects they are currently working on:

  • Royce P. – Gyro Belt/E-Textile Project for Dancers
  • Rich N. – Electric Ford Ranger Conversion & Restoring the Craftsman Lathe
  • Chris H. – Electric Ford Escort Conversion, transmission work
  • Ron B. – Wants to build a large electric clock using wooden gears, plans to level the CNC milling surface soon
  • Tom Gr. – Tweaking the Electric Dodge Neon, battery monitors and “smart” battery chargers
  • Mike K. – Temperature control circuit for an ATV, motor controller, possibly a Tesla coil soon
  • David R. – Motorcycle repairs, RFID audio plane
  • Jack D. – Continuing work on the ambulance, siren and PA coming soon
  • Jason G. – Coaching a FIRST Lego League Team
  • Matt N. – Looking to fabricate aluminum porch post covers
  • Ross O. – LED scrolling display hacking, analog synthesizer, repairing various test equipment picked up from yard sales
  • Brant H. – Scoreboard clocks, video projector hacking, making a key for the TP dispenser in the Women’s Room
  • Brett – Continuing work on the forge, needs to make tools and casting forge, also a LilyPad bicycle illumination project for night riding


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.