Leatherworking for steampunk projects

November 28th, 2011 by swinkdaddy


Material provided as part of class:

  • Speed stitcher/awl
  • Brown nylon waxed
  • 4oz veg tanned tooling leather

Materials you should bring:

  • Really sharp and strong scissors (get them at a sewing store not hardware store)
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Objects to “steampunk” your creations

This informal class will cover the basics of leathercrafting for steampunk projects. The first day we will cover basic leatherworking skills like cutting and sewing.After a quick break we will start working leather and plan a quick project that you can finish that evening. The next Thursday will be a full workshop where you can bring in ideas for personal projects to work on and get help with. We will also cover a few more detailed leather working skills on the second Thursday too. So start collecting brass and copper bits to steampunk your creations!

leather working class


Open Hack Night 11/23/11

November 26th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

One new member on Wednesday, welcome! Shots from the night are up, enjoy!

Chili Cookoff – Nov 30th

November 21st, 2011 by swinkdaddy

Got a special chili recipe? One that you have to keep in the safe deposit box, lest your brother steal it and make millions? Well we dont want your recipe, just the awesome chili to taste. Winner gets bragging rights and the coveted 1st Annual Hack Factory Chili Trophy of Awesomeness!

Rules: Its a hackerspace, come on?!? Well wait, it has to be chili at least…
Voting: ballot in a box
Winner: most votes

Date: Nov 30th Open House
Time: Pack in 7pm, Tasting at 8pm

Open Hack Night 11/16/11

November 17th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Pictures from the open Hack Night!

Welcome to the 4 new members that signed up on Wednesday! Our total right now is at 91, we update the bar which is currently at 81 at the start of each month so, there is a really good chance next month we will exceed our goal which will be really great. Thanks to all of our new and continuing members, you are TC Maker!

Also our starving hacker fund has been depleted so if you are so inclined to donate some money to help out fellow members that have fallen on tough times you can do so by talking with Brandon our treasurer@tcmaker.org.

Pedal Dragon Brainstorm Kickoff

November 17th, 2011 by swinkdaddy

When – November 30th Hack Factory Open House, 8pm, classroom
What – Making awesome out of thin air
Why – Why not…

After a couple of months to stew on the pedal dragon concept, we are going to have a formal brainstorm session to really hash out a realistic (yeah right) plan that we can start on. Bring those idea and sketches you make while unable to move after eating too much turkey, or avoiding black Friday.

Give to the Max Day 2011

November 15th, 2011 by metis

As many of you know, Twin Cities Maker is fiscally sponsored by the wonderful folks at Springboard for the Arts.  Because of this partnership, physical and capital donations to us can be tax deductible. On the right side of the blog, there’s always a link to our fundraiser page through Give MN , a group that facilitates charitable giving here in Minnesota.

Every year, Give MN sponsors a “Give to the Max” fund-raising drive for charities across Minnesota.  Today, Wednesday the 16th, our usual processing fees are waived for all donations received through Give MN. As an extra bonus, each hour all day long,  one random donor to GiveMN will get a bonus $1000 added to the first donation they made that hour. So even a small donation can have a chance to help out a lot, and every donation we get increases our odds of getting the bonus cash.    Even the most modest donation made by clicking the logo above is quite appreciated.

If you’re pondering giving financially to Twin Cities Maker before the end of the year, today is the day that we will get the most benefit from your generosity. We can always take non-cash and cash donations, but Give to the Max happens once a year. If you’ve got a maker who’s particularly hard to buy a holiday gift for, a donation in their name might be just what they were hoping for.

Membership dues cover our basic operational costs, and previous generous donations have gotten us some major improvements to our space. Help us keep our gears spinning! Your generosity will help to buy tools and equipment, improve the space, and offer even greater services to the maker community in the Twin Cities.

As always, feel free to email “development”  at our domain if you’ve got any questions about donations.

Online fundraising for Twin Cities Maker

CNC Engraving with Inkscape

November 11th, 2011 by swinkdaddy

Class title: CNC Engraving with Inkscape
Preregister at: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/2486595474
Requirements: A laptop/netbook running Windows/MacOS/Linux with Inkscape
(www.inkscape.org) installed.

In the first portion of the class, we’ll explore the Hershey Text and
Gcodetools extensions for Inkscape, then we’ll create some art to engrave.
If you have existing vector or raster artwork you’d like to engrave, please
bring it to class. Once we’re finished with the designs, we’ll render
Gcode, the step needed to tell our CNC router what to do.

In the second portion of the class, we’ll be using the CNC router (driven by
EMC2 (www.linuxcnc.org) to create real-world objects engraved with our
Inkscape art. Blanks of pine (3.5″ by 8″) will be provided for engraving.

$25 for members, $30 for non-members. 15 Students max.

6pm-9pm November 22nd.

More information at http://tcmaker.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=1594

Twin Cities Maker Clothes Line Racers in Make: Magazine

November 10th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

The latest issue of Make:Magazine #28 has a write up about Twin Cities Maker’s clothes line event.

Here is a the full article written by TC Maker’s own John Baitchtal Here are some more pictures of the event in the Flickr. You can see the ferret in real life at the Hack Factory, it’s up in the corner of the classroom.


11/9/11 Open Hack Night Photos

November 10th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Pictures from the weekly open hack nights at Twin Cities Maker’s Hack Factory.

Welcome to the new members that joined up last night, not sure on the count but I know we had at least one! We updated our number goal for the upcoming month to 90, hopefully we will get there!

Handmade Music 10

November 10th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

We will be building an easy to build LoFi Fuzz distortion effect using kits provided by GetLoFi.com

This transistor based circuit will instantly add gritty tones, sustain, and oscillations to your guitar, microphone, or any other electronic instrument with a 1/4 inch output.

Price of the workshop is only $10 and that will include the cost of the kit. Soldering experience is not required. Bring your own tools if you like. Duration 2hrs.

Talking Computron and The Ring Toss Twins performance after the workshop.

Saturday, November 19 · 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Hack Factory
3119 east 26th street
Minneapolis, MN

facebook event

 More information as it comes in.

Intro to Arduino

November 10th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Our intro to arduino class is going on, this session is full. Be sure to keep an eye on the calendar for up-coming classes. Here are some pictures and a video from the first session.

Board Meeting – Date Change!

November 7th, 2011 by pyrodogg

Board meetings for Twin Cities Maker are now held on the second Tuesday of each month. The time and place remain unchanged; 7pm  at the Hack Factory. The first meeting on this new schedule will be held on November 8th.

The board voted and moved on the date change at the October meeting. The board is dedicated to transparency which is partly why the meetings were originally held on the Wednesday night, which corresponds with the weekly open house at TC Maker.  While it provided a great intersection of many members at the space space and important things happening it became too much of a hassle for the board members to conduct a meeting and perform other duties.

By tying up the Boards time for up to two hours on the busiest night of the week, it prevented the board members from socialising with the members to solicit their opinions on how the organization is doing.  It also tied up Brandon and Karin (our two primary member intake folks – thanks!) from helping new members fill out their applications and getting their key fobs.

This isn’t to say that the board members are going to have a decreased presence on Wednesday nights, far from it.  They already remain quite active at the space on non-meeting Wednesdays currently.  This just means that the board can have a more dedicated time where they can focus on the meeting at hand and still have time to socialize with the members.  The meetings are still open to the public and participation from the membership is encouraged.

If you’re interested on the goings-on of the board I highly encourage you to show up to the next meeting, Nov. 8th at 7pm at the Hack Factory.

More information on the Board’s proceedings, including agendas and past meeting minutes, can be found on our wiki.

What: Board Meeting
When: Second Tuesday of each month, 7pm
Where: Hack Factory







We have a spark…

November 6th, 2011 by swinkdaddy


Date: Sunday, Dec 4th
Time: 12pm – 4pm

The big Mill-er TIG is up and running. And talk about power, this thing has juice to spare. That being said, we are having an orientation class to familiarize members with this machine. The class is mandatory for anyone using the machine. We need to be SURE everyone has been given the proper startup and shutdown procedures to keep from damaging the machine. Also for simplicity sake, we want everyone to use the same collet/tungsten electrode kit rated for this welder, so you will be getting your own kit as part of the orientation materials (dont worry we get a good discount on bulk orders so its cheaper than getting it yourself). Also this unit uses quite a bit of argon. We want to make sure we can keep this thing in gas, so we trying to get a shop sized tank. The rest of the orientation cost goes right back into feeding this beast a steady diet of argon.

This will not be an introduction to welding class. You will need to have had a mig or gas welding class before signing up and be a member in good standing of the Hack Factory. You can also test out of the prerequisite classes by finding either Dave or I and showing off your wicked welding skills.

Videoman testing the big TIG

You can also register in person with Karin (class/events coordinator) up til nov 25th (we need a week to order kits)

550 101 Fun with Paracord

November 4th, 2011 by karinf22

550 cord (aka paracord) is strong, relatively inexpensive and versatile. Our “101” course will teach you to make useful, decorative and interesting things using this material. No prior experience necessary. We’ll use a few basic (and surprisingly simple) knots to tie a variety of bracelets, belts, tool lanyards, handle wraps, key fobs and holsters.

The course will cover the basics of working with cord, design and measurement considerations and pro tips of executing and finishing your projects.  Practical “lifehacker” applications for rope and cord and a few extra knots that everyone should know will also be shared. Don’t worry if you can’t even tie your shoes (we’ll teach you a superior knot for that too).

This course is very hands-on. All materials and tools will be provided. We’ll complete several projects in class and students will go home with extra cord and a basic tool kit to continue their exploration of cordcraft.

Jeff “Rigger” Berg will be the instructor. Jeff’s been fooling around with rope for over a decade. His resumé includes a stint as a yacht rigger.

11/2/11 Open Hack Night Pictures

November 2nd, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Pictures from the Open Hack Night at the Hack Factory. Welcome to the 3 new members that signed up tonight!

Class Sign up!

November 1st, 2011 by karinf22

Make sure to check out our upcoming classes for the month of November!  We have some exciting topics that will be covered this month. Sign up today!


Oxyacetylene this Saturday Nov 5 http://introtooxynov.eventbrite.com

Arduino for English Majors Nov 10 and Nov 17 http://arduino4em.eventbrite.com

Intro to Stick Welding Nov 12 http://introtosmaw.eventbrite.com

550 101 Fun with Paracord Nov 19 http://550101.eventbrite.com