SWAP-O-RAMA-RAMA is coming to the Hack Factory

June 5th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

@ The Hack Factory

Sun Sept 11, ’11 @ 11am-7pm
@ Hack Factory
…$5 & a bag of clean clothing or $10 w/o donation

Join in the communal process of reuse and celebrate our collective creativity! You are invited to Swap-O-Rama-Rama, a giant clothing swap and series of do-it-yourself workshops in which a community explores reuse and creativity through the recycling of used clothing.


June 1st Open Hack

June 2nd, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Pictures from June 1st’s Open Hack Night at the Hack Factory. Lots of new faces, new members and lively discussion on the up coming annual meeting. Oh and Robots in Yurts!

A Few Class updates

May 30th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

The welding class has been opened up to beginners who havent’t taken the intro class.

The DIY Brewing class has been added to eventbrite so you can now sign up.

There is some talk of putting together a wood joinery class, have your say on the forum post if you want to see it happen.

Also the calendar has been added to the side bar of the homepage, to give a bit more upfront idea of what is happening at the space.

Oh and the whole space can now be accessed by members so come and check our our new added space!

Edit: Also, we have the Intro to Woodworking class on June 16 and 17! – wammie (via Skyler)

Brewing Class @ the Hack Factory

May 27th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

June. The 18th @ the Hack Factory

starting fairly small, the future is wide open, perhaps the perfect balmer brew.


Apple uses automated schnapps IVs.Image XKCD

Suggested $10 donation. More info at the forum post.

Now with eventbrite http://june18homebrewing.eventbrite.com/

Woodworking 101 @ The Hack Factory

May 27th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Woodworking 101 Thursday, June 16, 2011 at 7:00 PM -9:00 PM and Friday, June 17, 2011 at 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

This class is for the beginner with no or limited woodworking experience. It will cover shop safety, woodworking hand and power tool safety and knowledge, basics of joinery, etc.
The first night will consist of general shop intro and basic training on all the tools and safety. The second night will continue with tool instruction and work on small project. The two night class will be $25.

We will cover some basic tools
Table Saw
Radial Arm Saw
Compound miter saw
Band Saw
Jig Saw
Drill Press

After going over the tools and getting everyone a chance to use them, we will talk about building & assembling projects, what glues to use, clamping, and finishing. We can use the remaining time answer any questions you may have, and to work on an in-class project of your choosing. Keep it simple is the best advice I can give you here. I’ll have some example ideas with me the first night of class.

Class will begin at 7:00 pm and will go until 9:00 pm.

Any questions please see the forum post


May 25th Open Hack

May 26th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

New members and more hacking, can’t get better than that right?

May 18th Open Hack Roundup

May 20th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Pictures from the May 18th Open Hack Night at the Hack Factory.

Handmade Music Minneapolis Number Seven

May 20th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

CMKT4 will be coming on their Great Western Hackerspace Tour to Minneapolis and will be having a contact microphone workshop.

Facebook Event Page

Nootropic Video Experimenter on Make:Blog

May 17th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Mike Krumpus, one of our fellow TC Makers has one of his kits up on Make:Blog

The Video Experimenter, an Arduino shield by Nootropic Design lets you program your Arduino microcontroller to manipulate and analyze NTSC or PAL video signals from a composite video source. You can also decode closed caption text, which is transmitted within the video image.

Learning to Solder

May 16th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Some shots from the learning how to solder class at the Hack Factory.

A big thanks to the great showing of TC Makers that helped with different parts of the process. Thanks Everyone!

All of the students walked away with working units, too!

A learn to solder page on the Wiki is up now as well. Wiki Page

Join Twin Cities Maker for Make Day at the Science Museum of Minnesota

May 14th, 2011 by otto_pjm


The weather did not cooperate, so we were inside for Make Day 2011. It was still a great time, I took a few pictures, but the hall was a bit dark for my phone camera, hopefully someones got more and better shots, here a quick visual recap, with pre-work on the t-shirts and treb-Foshay tossed in.

Thanks for stopping by, and if you know a Maker type, please tell them about our Member Drive.

Read the rest of this entry »

5/11/11 Open Hack Roundup

May 12th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak


Lots of great things going on at the Hack Factory this week. The big news, our sub lease is up at then end of the month and we need to raise some money and members got assume the whole lease. Great news on both fronts actually as we gained 2 new members, and have raised $700 of the $1000 dollars in the matching fund. Even more great, last night our President announced on twitter that he would contribute another $500 to the challenge fund if we met the $1000 goal by Friday.  The full download on the situation with our space The Hack Factory can be found in this post.

Some exciting stuff coming up for TC Maker. We will be at Make:Day at the Science Museum this will be our third showing there, lots of hard work going into making that successful.

A learn to solder class is going to be held on Sunday evening, there are 5 spots left so if you have any interest sign-up now. The proceeds are going directly to the space fund.

A new Handmade Music Minneapolis will be announced later today, some pretty exciting details to come on that so watch the blog for info.

One of our original members who was with us when we were meeting in coffee shops for a year also learned that he is going to be moving back.

The Great Global Hackerspace Challenge has voted and while we didn’t make it down to the semifinalists some of our members are still going to Maker Faire in San Mateo, CA. Adam from Wayne and Layne plans on showing off some of his gadgets at a booth.

As some of you saw on the forum we are loosing our dust collector as a member who loaned them is taking them back, thanks to bradito for letting us keep it for so long. As luck would have it last night another TCMaker stepped up and is going to loan his for 3 months, thanks Cam.

A final note to our followers at large, if you are thinking about becoming a member in any capacity, please do. We need the support. We have several members that contribute the $50 dollars a month solely because they like what we are doing, and don’t actually make it down to the space very often, if at all on any given month. This type of membership is very valuable to us as a group, if you think you are in a similar situation to this, please don’t hesitate.

The other day a potential member asked videoman, our president, what we do at the Hack Factory and he said “Yes”. If you want to be a part of that, join up or donate a few dollars from $1 to $20 to $20,000, it all helps. If you want to be part of a dynamic group of people working on lots of interesting things, that’s us.



Learn to Solder and Help Save TC Maker

May 11th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Modeled after SparkFun’s Soldering class, TC Maker is offering a soldering class. The kit and the price is all the same but the location is a not Denver, it’s Minneapolis.

Description: If you’ve never soldered before, this is the class for you! This course teaches through-hole (90% of electronic kits) soldering and is recommended for the beginner. This is a hands-on class where the students learn techniques to help them solder through-hole components. Soldering can be daunting for the first solder joint, then the 2nd solder joint is not so bad, and by the time you’ve assembled the Simon game, you will be quite confident and proficient in basic soldering skills.

Classes take place at The Hack Factory. We provide all the tools, irons, solder, parts, and seats for 8 students. You’ll be soldering the Simon PTH Kit. By the end of the night, you will have a functioning game to take home and show off to your friends (we get funny looks all the time).

There is a minimum age requirement of 8 years old, but other than that, anyone is encouraged to sign up. We teach people all the time with no previous soldering experience!

The class is expected to take around 1 hour to complete, there is a buffer built in in case we go a bit longer.

Prerequisites: None! Just bring you. The class price includes the cost of the Simon Kit. The class is open to the public and to members.

What to bring: TC Maker will provide all the tools, irons and solder.

Proceeds above will go to help keep TC Maker afloat. For more on the current situation TC Maker has found itself in, see our blog post. We will also be accepting other donations, so if you are so inclined please do donate. We have a tax deductible status too if you are interested.

Time and Place: Sunday May 15th 6:00pm to 7:00pm at the Hack Factory.

Who is Teaching: Paul Sobczak, Electrical Engineer, and other TC Maker members.

The class is $40. Sign up on the Eventbrite page.

TC Maker / Hack Factory Needs a new lease! And we need your help!

May 5th, 2011 by videoman

Dear friends of Twin Cities Maker / Hack Factory,

We need your help. In an unexpected turn of events, TC Maker has been informed that our landlord (who rents from the management company for the building) is terminating their lease on May 31st. This means that our sublet with Broadband America will terminate as well. What we are planing to do is lease directly from the building management company. This would mean that we’d go from about 4,500 square feet to about 7,800 square feet. This would give us access to the entire space to set up things like a lounge in the front office area, create a dedicated class room, and expand to have way more shop space for working on bigger projects. The TC Maker board has decided to pursue a lease with the building. This is a big gamble for us, but should have huge benefits and rewards for the community and our members.

The Board of Directors called an informal discussion at our weekly open house to solicit feedback on 5/4/2011. After discussion on costs, pros and cons of moving and other considerations, the membership in attendance, as well as the board, were unanimous in their decision to seek a lease in our current location. Unfortunately this decision had to be made quickly so we can make plans for the coming months, as 25 days to find a new space is not something that is reasonable right now.

While we don’t need everything today, we have some significant commitments to make this happen. We need to increase our membership by 25 new members (while retaining current members) through August of this year. This is a very achievable goal however we do still need some capital in order to act on this great opportunity for growth. At the meeting, one member stepped forward and generously offered us a challenge grant. If we raise $1,000 before June 3rd, that will be matched with another $1,000. While that will reinforce our security deposit, we still need to average ten members in growth each month over the next three months.

In the discussion, a number of members pledged to pay double dues for a few months to help keep us on track, but relying on the generosity of members will only get us so far. Our long-term goal is to increase our membership. We’ve been averaging a new member a week for the last few months, but we’re really going to have to step up our game in order to achieve this goal.

A number of marketing and fund-raiser ideas have been brought up, and we will pursue these to benefit the community space. Over the next week we’re going to get some formal information up on the wiki and provide some coordination tools for this, and we ask for your patience while we start this sprint. We also ask that you contribute time, skills, or capital as you are able to help to this unexpected catalyst strengthen our community.

To help us make this challenge grant you can either send money via PayPal, give us cash directly, or donate through GiveMN, but please annotate it as “Challenge” so that we can count it towards the goal. Keep an eye on the forums and on the blog for ways to volunteer, and as always, if you have input or ideas to help, please share them on the forums or via email to the board, and we’ll do what we can to help you facilitate them.

As an aside, we need approximately $1,000 – $1,200 to make up the difference for the security deposit right off the bat.

TC Maker / Hack Factory is excited for this opportunity, and we want to welcome you and your friends to become members, teach classes, or take classes.

Board of Directors, Twin Cities Maker

Email: info@tcmaker.org

Donate via GiveMN.org (tax-deductible):

Donate via GiveMN.org

Use PayPal for a one-time donations & dues payment:

Open Hack Wednesday and News

May 2nd, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Pictures from last weeks Open Hack Night.

Every Wednesday from 7 to 10pm open to the public. Bring your project, work on it, or bring your ears and voice and talk about whatever. If you have never been to the Hack Factory, or are curious, this is a great opportunity to get to know the place, and the people.

In other news TC Maker membership has crossed the 60 Thank you TCMaker Members.

The Global Hackerspace Challenge is wrapping up, and a post about that is in the works. Our hackerspace worked on putting together a 10x breadboad with 10x components, it’s quite impressive.

Handmade Music Minneapolis #6 went well there are pictures from the event on the Handmade Music Minneapolis Blog.

Videoman put on an info session on brewing, this last weekend and that went well also.

Our Treasurer rolled out a new system that members should have seen.

May 3rd There is an open locksport event at The Hack Factory.

Handmade Music Minneapolis #7 is scheduled for late May more details on that next week.

Handmade Music Minneapolis on the 30th

April 26th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Handmade music is coming soon, April 30th.

More information at the Handmade Music Minneapolis’s blog

This episode will include John Keston, Kris Peck on Xenharmonic Instruments and Adam Looper with his DIY MIDI controller and some of the Minneapolis Community and Technical College’s student sound synthesis club.

8:00pm – 11:00pm @ Hack Factory

Wednesday Roundup

April 20th, 2011 by otto_pjm

Added some shots of the evening to the Flicker pool, including two of the rainbow I saw driving over, tried to get shot of it over the HackFactory, but it had clouded up by the time I got there.

Rainbow over Franklin Ave

Rainbow over Franklin Ave, enroute to the HF

More pictures here.

Or see the link on the right hand side.

Activities included thermoforming, playing with fire, talking and casting RTV, which I have no shots of. I also added the latest shots of some 10x components.


Handmade Music Minneapolis Number Six

April 10th, 2011 by Paul Sobczak

Saturday, April 30 · 8:00pm – 11:00pm
Hack Factory

3119 east 26th street
Minneapolis, MN

John Keston

Kris Peck
Xenharmonic Instruments

Adam Loper
DIY MIDI controller MCTC student sound synthesis

Hand Made Music Page

Facebook Event Page

This Handmade Music Minneapolis 6 is free, byob if you would like to, bring your own inventions if you would like to show them off.

Minne-Faire II, April 9th!!!

April 7th, 2011 by videoman

Just so everyone knows, the Minne-Faire is fast approaching, April 9th, 2011 from Noon-11PM – Please tell your friends!  There are going to be 17+ exibtors, music, and maybe some fun outdoor activities!  (Water rockets anyone?)

MUSIC starts at 7PM:

  • JAZARI – Crazy and super awesome machine music!
  • Tim Kaiser – Really cool custom music instruments!

Check out THIS PAGE for more info.  We will be doing clean up and general shop pickup all this week, and will need people Friday afternoon to come in a help us move our tools out of the way… Members feel free to drop by and give us a hand!

Twin Cities Maker

Ignite Minneapolis 3!

March 29th, 2011 by videoman

Ignite Minneapolis #3 is coming up on April 21st!

Our president is going to be presenting this time! If you want tickets, signup for the mailing list!



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