MAKE Asks: Finished Projects

MAKE Asks: Finished Projects

MAKE Asks: is a weekly column where we ask you, our readers, for responses to maker-related questions. We hope the column sparks interesting conversation and is a way for us to get to know more about each other.

This week’s question: What do you do with a project once it’s completed?

When I finish a project I like to put together a blog post documenting the build and the final product. This isn’t just an act of self-fulfillment — once it’s up on the internet I hope it can help and/or inspire others with their own projects. I also like to keep an eye out for public venues to show my work. At the very least I show it to friends to get feedback.

Post your responses in the comments section.

26 thoughts on “MAKE Asks: Finished Projects

  1. Daniel Harrigan says:

    I usually take a few photos and maybe a short video, then I disassemble my project to use the pricier components in another build. For me this hobby is more about learning than building permanent objects to take up space. Maybe someday I’ll break the cycle of creation and destruction when it comes to my projects, but the fact that they’ll only exist temporarily makes them more fun to me.

  2. Bob Alexander says:

    I use it for it’s intended purpose! My GPS clock, my wooden logic probe, my PC in a miniature Altair 8800 case, my arcade machine, my LED RSS feed display: they’re all in current use. I also post pictures and descriptions on my blog ( to let family and friends know what I’ve been up to.

  3. FredB says:

    I use my completed projects. I make my own toys, always have.

    Other things I build to give away.

  4. Jason Tardy (of AudioBody) says:

    We try to get them on stage and in front of an audience as soon as possible and then instantly start considering improvements for the next version. Its never going to be perfect so the sooner you get in a real world situation and get some feedback the better.

  5. Jeff Patton says:

    I’ve just started building things. I enjoy the challenge of making something, and then the feeling of accomplishment i get from it when it’s done. Most of the work I do on a day to day basis, lacks that physical feeling of completion. I’m a sysadmin for the University of Kansas, so it’s nice to hold something up and say, see…i made this and it’s pretty neat :)

  6. James H says:

    For me this ties in with the unfinished project question from last week. I am the type of person who has always had 5 or 6 projects happening at a time. I am in the process of building a new shop and I don’t want to start in my new space with a bunch of old projects and I have been in a mode of finishing up a bunch of projects in a variety of disciplines. I do things from graphic art to a couple of cigar box guitars, a guitar overdrive pedal and some models. I photograph the projects, put a post on one of the many forums I frequent for my different areas of interest. Then I use it for its purpose, display i, or give it as a gift to someone I care about.

  7. Pete Prodoehl says:

    I also tend to document my work, sharing it with a blog post, on Flickr, Vimeo, and other sites, and occasionally in public, either at Milwaukee Makerspace or other events we get involved in. I really enjoy when people get inspired by what I do, ask questions, and get ideas of their own.

  8. asciimation says:

    I also blog about my projects (usually in way too much detail) and I tend to actually use a lot of them. Space can be a problem, especially when projects include things like a scale TARDIS and large static electricity generating machines or dining table model railways. I keep thinking I need to come up with a way of calling my projects are then selling them to people with too much money for outrageous prices!

    1. asciimation says:

      That was ‘art’ sorry!

  9. FlorinC says:

    Make them, blog them, then display them on my desk as nice conversation starters.

  10. lrwickerdesign says:

    Many of the things I make are made in multiples, so I sell or give them away and use them myself. I also document many of my pieces on my blog ( so folks can see how they are made and maybe get inspired to do something too!

  11. ameyring says:

    With little free time while raising a family, I have been focusing on projects that will have an end use by a family member or to give away. Only thing I’m doing that is experimenting is playing with Lego robots as a way to get experience with programming them while coming up with ideas to use Legos.

  12. woodshopcowboy says:

    My finished products usually get blogged about, put to use, broken, repaired, broken, cussed at, blogged about again, repaired again, cussed at some more, thrown away, reworked, reiterated and finally perfected into something passably presentable to my wife and kids and students.

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In addition to being an online editor for MAKE Magazine, Michael Colombo works in fabrication, electronics, sound design, music production and performance (Yes. All that.) In the past he has also been a childrens' educator and entertainer, and holds a Masters degree from NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program.

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