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MAKE 40: Makerspaces

This article appeared in Make: Vol. 40.

From TechShops to Fab Labs, makerspaces are popping up around the country and the world, helping makers gain experience, develop support networks, and build bigger and better than ever before. Volunteer-run or professional, membership- or employee-based, non- or for-profit, theyʼre offering tools, education, and space to makers who donʼt have a home shop or who want to go beyond it.

Part recreational shop, part product incubator, part R&D lab, part community center, they cater to — and help define — a growing, decentralized hub of the maker world. These are places where makers are safe, welcome, comfortable, and free to pursue their goals, where innovation and creativity is fostered, learning is encouraged, and community trumps just about everything.

In these pages youʼll see some makerspaces up close, as well as look at what they can do and how theyʼre growing. Youʼll see some of their tools and their builds, and maybe youʼll be inspired to check one out in your area. Welcome to the Geek Club.


Projects

Make a Modern Mobile

Make a Modern Mobile

Swivels and a weight give flexibility and stability to this contemporary design. Conventional mobiles are mostly made with hook-into-loop connections, which restrict movement. This mobile uses swivels, which allow the...

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Categories: Home

Fond o’ Bondo

Fond o’ Bondo

Body filler is a thick, two-part polyester resin, commonly called Bondo. Cursory Googling reveals a universe of mostly automotive applications, primarily for repairing body damage, but we’ll leave that to...

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Categories: Workshop

R/C Omniwheel Robot

R/C Omniwheel Robot

A robot that can move in any direction immediately is useful for getting around tight spaces and for behaviors like chasing (or fleeing). No matter how fast an R/C car is, there’s no way it...

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Categories: Electronics Robotics

Before You Start

Raise a CNC’ed Makerspace Shed

Raise a CNC’ed Makerspace Shed

Since its publication in Volume 40, the “CNC Makerspace Shed” has gathered a lot of attention. For those who don’t have access to a CNC machine, we’ve added instructions for...

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Articles

From Cubicle to Clock Repair

From Cubicle to Clock Repair

Learning how to repair antique clocks seemed like a good way to commune with the master automaton-makers of old. I didn’t expect that it would turn into an occupation that...

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Lumber Hack

Lumber Hack

Picture it: A giant supermarket claw machine, but instead of a metal hand with a frustratingly weak grip, it’s a real-life chainsaw. In place of stuffed animals, there are stumps...

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Categories: Art & Design

Makerspace to Market

Makerspace to Market

Makerspaces aren't just a good source of camaraderie and hobby level one-off projects. They also occasionally create and manufacture pro-level consumer products and services. Here are a few notable items that you can purchase,...

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Categories: Maker Pro Makerspaces

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