February 7, 2012
MakeIt Labs - Nashua NH
How they describe themselves: “MakeIt Labs is an open-access workshop in Nashua, NH. It is a place where anyone can come to dream, learn and create with like-minded people. We’re looking for anyone with an eye for building awesome things.” and “We are New Hampshire's first
Open-Access Workshop (a.k.a hackerspace), located in Nashua, NH.”
Opened: July 1, 2010 in Lowell MA and then re-opened July 2, 2011 in Nashua NH.
Size of space: 6000 sq. ft.
Number of Members: ~ 60 in March 2012. Their membership almost doubled from Sept. 2011.
Structure: 501(c)(3) Non-profit and apparently run entirely by volunteers
Pro Membership - $75/month: 24/7 RFID access, long-term project storage, priority access to tooling, free premium tool training (Lift, Kiln, Laser, etc.), free access to premium tools, large discounts on classes.
Hobbyist Membership - $40/month: Access after 7 PM or when others are in the space, 1-time fee for premium tool training, premium tool use by appointment, small discounts on classes.
Day Pass - $20/day - equivalent to a one day of hobbyist membership
Working Pro Membership - $40/mo + Service Duty: A reduced cost membership in exchange for performing a small assigned work duty. Membership is reduced to hobbyist level if duties aren’t performed. Working memberships are limited and must be approved by the board.
Rental space is available to members who need additional work or storage space. It’s on a first-come, first-serve basis and it requires a $75/month “Pro” Membership.
For $30/month members get space for a 6x3-foot movable workbench they can design and build themselves or one that the space will provide for the cost of materials. When not in use benches must be moved to a designated parking area.
Or for $100/month they can get a 100 sq ft “Plot Rental.”
Both rental spaces are on a “at will” month-to-month basis and require approval of the board.
MakeIt Labs first opened in Lowell MA as a for-profit business. Its owner, Joseph Schlesinger, had a strong entrepreneurial background and felt that by retaining complete control he could raise capital faster and avoid the political infighting and long reaction times that some communal run organizations have. You can learn more by reading “Founding a Hackerspace,” which includes his business plan.
They were shutdown for permit and code violations 6 months after they opened in Nashua. It took them 2 months, $7000 and thousands of hours of volunteer help to reopen. See links below for more information.
Eventbrite - List of classes and events
Hackerspace can be schooling the way you wish it was - Nashua Telegraph
Hands-on helpers put MakeIt Labs back on line - Union Leader
City permits in hand, Nashua’s ‘hackerspace’ MakeIt Labs has reopened - Nashua Telegraph
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