Artist Jennifer Richter recently showed us how she uses papier-mâché to make art.
A member has loaned us an older Cricut, which is a machine that can cut letters and shapes out of vinyl and paper. They are often used for scrapbooking, card and sign making, crafts, schools projects and many other uses. The Cricut is not hard to use but we’d like you to be 18 or older and to carefully read the instruction manual before using it.
A native Rochestarian, Karin R. Staples, is the Rochester Makerspace’s December “Artist in Residence”. A self proclaimed “hobby artist” she has had shows at the CWC Gallery and the Rochester Memorial Art Gallery. Her favorite medium is acrylic paints and she often does landscapes of the Finger Lakes in a monochromatic style.
Her scholastic art training was throughout grade school and into college. Her favorite instructor is the incomparable Mr. Thomas O’Brien. Then there was period when she focused on work and everyday life. But in the past five years she has renewed her passion for painting and multimedia art. She just started an art blog which you can find at KarinSmiling.wordpress.com and she does commissioned work by request.
We now have two Solidoodle 3D printers thanks to the generosity of Rick Aseltine. He has loaned us a like-new 2nd generation Solidoodle that he bought a year ago and never really used. His machine has a bigger 8×8-inch bed but it is otherwise identical to the one we have.
Rick’s printer did not work very well when he took it out of the box and we experienced the same problem. Ours didn’t make really good objects until Kevin, Wyatt and Peter made a series of tweaks and modification to it. We expect to make the same modifications to Rick’s machine.
By the way, I’ve been told that the Rostock 3D printer we built at the Makerspace will be fully operation in time for us to demonstrate it at the Maker Faire on November 22nd. Afterward it will be back at the space and and we’ll have three 3D printers for everyone to use. Kevin’s employer and new bride has been keeping him away from the makerspace so he took it home so he could get it working perfectly.
By the way, we started the Rochester 3D Printing Meetup Group to find people in the area who are interested in 3D printing and to organize events where they can meet and learn from each other.
Albert Mazzeo, who is a very skilled and experienced machinist, has been working almost daily on the CNC (computer controlled) router that we’ve been slowly building for a long time. As a result it may be operational soon. When finished, it will be able to cut intricate shapes out of wood or plastic, and do intricate 3D carving in the same materials.
Although the end of the project is clearly in sight there is still a lot of work to do. Albert will soon get us to the next phase which will require hooking up the stepper motor controller to a PC, installing Mach3 and other software on the PC, configuring the software, calibrating the motors, and installing limit switches and some other components. We could really use your help if you are someone with strong troubleshooting and computer skills, the ability to follow detailed instructions, and a willingness to show others how to use and maintain the machine. [We also need someone with a truck to help us get some more lumber to build a workbench for it.]
We also want to thank Bob Wagner for his help with this project. Bob also worked very hard on this project and many other around the makerspace. There has also been many others who have helped.
The Rochester Makerspace just held a stained glass demo with the Rochester Artists and Crafters Meetup Group. The demo was given by Nancy Topolski, a very experienced instructor who will be teaching a 4-week basic stained glass class at our makerspace on Wednesday nights, from 6:30 to 9:30 PM, beginning on Wednesday, March 19. The cost for the course is $90, plus a modest investment in materials which you can buy at local stores like Milestone Glass Creations, Classical Glass and Hobby Lobby.
The makerspace owns enough glass grinders and hand tools for at least 5 to 8 people to work together on stained glass projects. Members can use the equipment whenever they want and non-members are welcome to use them during our weekly free community nights, on Thursdays from 6 to 9:30 PM.
Paul Flavin has always been able to spot a good bargain. That nose for an excellent deal has helped him become engrossed in a new hobby.
Flavin leads the Arduino group from 6 p.m. to 10 on Thursday at the Rochester Makerspace. The Arduino is an easy to use micro-controller with exposed I/O pins, programmable through a USB Cable.
Flavin started using the Arduino with remote controlled cars he bought at Savers and other discount retailers.
“It always intrigued me, on a conceptual and metaphysical level,” Flavin said. “It’s like measuring the progress of the child by when he can walk, balancing on two legs, it becomes automatic. The balancing is a beautiful example of a simple control problem.”
Group participants can use the Arduino in a variety of projects including designing and building robots and control theory. Learning the Arduino can help anyone’s knowledge in a wide range of fields including electronics, programming and robotics.
The “Raspberry Pi” board, which runs the Arduino, can be purchased for $35 at most electronic stores including Amazon.com and RadioShack. The Arduino Software is free, open source and available for Windows, Mac OS and Linux.
“I am kind of surprised, if you go to the library and just read it, you have to have patience and perseverance when you first use it,” Flavin said. “You can run into problems. It is good for anyone to learn.”
The Arduino’s popularity can be seen not only in the United States, but worldwide as well. The website arduino.cc features not only basic information on the technology, but links to groups from places such as England and Poland.
“The Arduino has been extremely popular worldwide, they have done everything possible to make it as simple as possible,” Flavin said. “You plug into a laptop and into a USB. There is no telling how big the thing can be.”
For more information on the Arduino group at the Rochester Makerspace visit the website rochestermakerspace.org.
Posted this to our Twitter and Facebook account about a week ago but wanted to share it with you here. One of our members, Mike Turiano, recently used our space and tools to complete a really cool repurposing project. Please check his website for and in-depth look at his project and other cool stuff he has completed!
The Rochester Makerspace can teach you things from how to make stained glass to how to make a circuit and they will help you every step of the way. So why not do what I did? Go to the Rochester Makerspace. You’ll be glad you did!
After almost two months the electrical outlets our landlord promised us have finally been installed. However, there were suppose to be fourteen of them and the contractor only installed twelve. They also put “double” outlets in the main room instead of “quads.”
Ironically, the two missing outlets were going to power our electronics workbench. The lack of quads will make it difficult to plug in the many shop lights Vince has donated to provide better lighting over workbenches. There is also no outlet anywhere near the microwave oven and small refrigerator that Roger and Rob donated.
We were willing to pay to have some additional outlets installed. But we thought the quote O’Connell Electric gave us was a little unreasonable. Installation of additional 110-volts outlets would have cost about $300 each. The three 220/240-volt outlets we wanted for an air compressor that’s being donated, our thickness planer and the SawStop table saw hope to buy someday soon would have been about $700 each, even though they would all have been placed within about fifteen feet of the electrical panel. In all, the bill would have been about $3500 and there’s no way we can afford that.
We are going to get quotes from other licensed electricians. Some have been recommended to us but we haven’t had time to call or meet with them. We’d really appreciate it if someone would volunteer to do that, or if an electrician would volunteer their services or let us do some of the work to save money.