August 2nd, 2014 by danbackslide
Time for a couple of updates:
The lobby is closed for now
The floor in the lobby was painted and sealed on Friday. The sealer will need at least the weekend to cure, and possibly longer than that. So, until further notice, the front door is locked and the lobby is off limits. Don’t even think about trying to go in there! You can get into the shop through the yellow metal shop door, or the dock door if it’s open.
To stave off your curiosity, here are a couple of teaser pics (taken before the floor was painted):
Scanning Electron Awesomescope!
This morning I met up with the SEM’s former caretaker, and he fixed a couple of mistakes we made while setting it up. Then he showed me how it works. So we now have a functioning scanning electron microscope!
That said, please don’t try to run the SEM without first being shown how it works. It’s a complex scientific instrument, easy to break if you don’t know what you’re doing. We’ll will be working out the training details, and there may be a SEM party somewhere in the near future.
Here are a few photos for you to drool over in the meantime:
A speck of unknown origin
Inclusions in a piece of cast iron
Not a leaf — it’s more cast iron
July 16th, 2014 by danbackslide
A while back I was contacted by Bede Willenbring, a research chemist at H.B. Fuller. He was getting some new equipment for their lab, and wondered if we were interested in getting a scanning electron microscope.
A Scanning. Electron. Microscope!
Obviously the correct answer in this situation is “Yes sir, please, sir!” Arrangements were made, and just a few hours ago we rolled a Cambridge Stereoscan 260 into its new home.
As I write this, McSteve is working on getting it hooked up to the 20-amp circuit in the classroom. We’re hoping that by later this evening we can get Cammie (for that is her name) powered up. After that? No idea, really. If you know how a SEM works, why not swing by? (Mr Willenbring has offered to give us a hand with it once we have power, but more brains are always better!)
I want to extend a huge thank you to Mr Willenbring and H.B. Fuller for making this possible. For great science!
December 23rd, 2013 by metis
Our team has won the Ultimate Maker Vehicle Challenge sponsored by Make and Ford!
Not only did all your support get us #1 in popularity, but the wonderful, wise, and generous sponsors chose our design as the Grand Prize Winner, AND Ford is intending to build and showcase our design! Our humblest and heartfelt thanks to everyone who supported us in the voting process, we couldn’t have won without you. Competition was stiff, and the show of support from all over the world for our design and the community we’ve built is really appreciated.
A **HUGE** “Thank You!” to the sponsors for the honor they’ve bestowed upon us, along with the giant novelty check. We’ve got a few great plans in the works on how to spend the funds to improve our facility and outreach programs.
We’re intending on having a minor celebration at the weekly open house on the 1st of the year, and would love to see all of you there.
Update: And a follow up post!
December 2nd, 2013 by SLSolarz
CNC-cut chair by Pete.
ATTENTION EVERYONE: The Hack Factory will be a stop on the Seward Winter Frolic Art Crawl. We want YOU to come display your cool projects, teach people skills as you work on a project, etc.
The Winter Art Crawl is THIS WEEKEND, December 7 & 8 (Sat, 10am-5pm and Sun, 12-5pm). We advertised our stop in City Pages so we can expect a good turnout. This is an important opportunity for us to show off the space and to promote Twin Cities Maker.
To learn more about the Art Crawl, go to sewardarts.org. To participate in or volunteer for the event email Susan at firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 14th, 2013 by danbackslide
Is it noon already? Wow, time flies when you’re sleep-deprived…
Donations are coming in, slowly but surely. If you haven’t already, please click on the lovely green logo and give us a donation. Everything you give through Give.MN today is being matched, so even a small gift grows almost like magic. Or if you prefer, like sufficiently advanced technology.
Fox 9 News did a story about Give to the Max Day, and it features TCMaker. Go take a look! Riley was also interviewed on KSTP’s midday news; we’ll put a link up to that as soon as we can.
Our big project, the skeeball machine, is proceeding along. We’ve got the target area pieces cut, sanded and stained. Electronics are basically working, but will need to be installed so that the IR sensors can be calibrated. The playfield pieces still need to be cut on the CNC machine, and somehow I’ve got to make a gigantic gauge to show your score…
No sleep ’til skeeball!