That’s the Maker Spirit!

Today’s visit to the Fab Lab started by bumping into the group of new guys and girls taking the tour through the Lab for the first time, just as I did a couple weeks ago. I am still amazed by how many people come there and sign on every Wednesday, and how diverse they are.

Shortly after I sat down there, a guy I’ve seen a couple of times at the Fab Lab came up to my roommate and asked him what tool the workshop was on today.
Well, my roommate speaks German, but not really that kind (quite the strong local dialect), so I jumped in and told him.

He is somewhere between 40 and 50 years old and just had this “eager-to-learn” grin on his face, to be honest, he looks like an odd fellow but he is incredibly nice and motivated!
Cheesy line coming up! Watch it! “Never judge a book by its cover.” Yeah. I just did that. I’ll  have to take a shower now.

After talking to him for a bit I found out that he apparently works in IT and has been working for Siemens before, he told me that he spends all of his free time acquiring all kinds of skill he’d be able to use on “making” stuff.

I was quite amazed by his enthusiasm. He actually already built a fully furnished in Google Sketchup! I myself didn’t even really decide on which 3D modelling program is best suited for me and the easiest to learn for all the plans I have with it.

So after I talked about my struggle deciding on which one to use and mentioned Blender (which is actually a 3D Animation Software), he said that he’d love to see his creations move and “live”, so he’s going to try learning that too. I am baffled, Blender is quite a hard program to acquire let’s see if he actually sticks to it, but judging from my first impressions, he will. =D

I had to help out my roommate with some Vector graphics and left the guy with a note referring him to shapeways.com, which is yet another amazing thing I have to talk about here, you can basically send your 3D Prints there and have them printed in all kinds of materials, removing the restriction to print in one-color plastic! I hope he will have some fun with that too !

Just a few minutes later, the workshop started and this time it was about the “Lathe” (as this translator I am using tells me).
To be honest, I don’t really think that there is any real use in me trying to explain how to use it here because you will have to be taught in the Fab Lab you hopefully already signed on to anyways. ;)
Now for a quick look at it though.

Workshop on the Lathe

So this is the Lathe, basically, what you do is putting anything cylindrical in it and it spins at 100-2000 rotations per minute. By pressing a piece of steel against it, you should be able to change whatever materials shape that you happen to have put in.
With this, you are able to create some fully symmetric cylindrical workpieces.
This is the only workshop at the Fab Lab that is not on a digital fabrication tool and most of it was on security, so I guess a lot of people already hurt themselves on it.

It was quite the busy day there, all kinds of people with fancy plans and instruments cnc-milling parts out of aluminium. And me, sitting here with a tablet, nothing better to do than writing about them and thinking about where I should find the time to learn a 3D modelling program (and which one!!). What a harsh life =P

Happy Making!

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