We had about 20 MakerBarn members volunteer their time and effort to take simple 2×4’s and make them useful pieces of furniture for the Conroe House of Prayer, a church for the homeless. It was a fun and productive morning!
The Maker’s Mark Ever since people have been making things, they’ve been placing their mark on the item. From the stones in giant buildings to tiny pieces of jewelry. Why? Because they were proud of their work and were willing to show it and they wanted people in the future to know where it came from. The mark was generally hidden, and quite often could only be found by someone else skilled in the trade. If you look at the silicon die inside an Intel 8080 microprocessor chip, you will see the stylized initials “HF”. Hal Feeney was one of the designers of the 8080, and the person who designed the physical layout of the chip. Rumor has it that the Soviets cloned the 8080 by doing a straight copy of the chip’s artwork, including Hal’s maker mark. The maker’s mark is usually not in plain sight. On a chest … Read More
“Man is a tool-using animal. Weak in himself and of small stature, he stands on a basis of some half square foot, has to straddle out his legs lest the very winds supplant him. Nevertheless, he can use tools, can devise tools; with these the granite mountain melts into light dust before him; seas are his smooth highway, winds and fire his unwearying steeds. Nowhere do you find him without tools. Without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all.” Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881) I thought the quote above was well related to what The MakerBarn is all about. Availability of the proper tools can greatly expand the capabilities of any person. The shop has been very busy at The MakerBarn. Today, some of our most valuable tools are not hardware, but instead, software. The Maker Barn Fusion Class Autodesk Fusion 360 is a 3D modeling software that comes with … Read More
“What is Air” presentation done at The MakerBarn 2nd Anniversary. Some experiments measuring air using a vacuum chamber. Footage from a GoPro.
The CNC Router Class held on March 26 was a success. The class covered CNC (computer numerical control) in general, and specifically for the CNC Router. In the last half or the class, V-Carve was discussed and examples were done. V-Carve is the CAD/CAM software used for controlling the CNC router. It is a very powerful design program that can be used to generate DXF files for the laser cutters as well as G-Code to drive the CNC routers. The MakerBarn is fortunate to have a makerspace license for V-Carve which allows members to use V-Carve free of charge on their own computer. The next class will be held on April 23rd. There are only 8 openings, so be sure to sign up early. Contact George at email@example.com for questions or reservations. This is a members only class, there is no fee for this class.
It didn’t take long. By the time I got this blog posting organized, the class was already filled. Never fear, there will be additional classes in the near future. The class will be concentrating of getting members certified to use the two CNC routers we have. The small router, “Mini-Chop” was primarily designed for mechanical etching of circuit boards. Its super precise control of the Z axis also makes it great for engraving Romark type plastic. This is the material with a thin top layer of plastic over a thicker base of a different color. We also have “Robo-Chop”, designed and built by member George Carlson. This machine has a 26×48″ build space and a 3HP water cooled spindle. It is on loan until we can purchase our own high-end CNC router. Both routers use the Mach3 control system, so operation is pretty much the same for both machines. The … Read More
Imagine the Possibilities, our theme for the Makerfair It was crazy! The Mini-Makerfaire was held at the George R. Brown convention center on November 12 and 13. We had a 20′ x 20′ booth with lots of small projects for the kids to work on. To select the project, the person would operate the large switch on the MakerBarn Robot Control Panel. A large version of Makey would spin his “Wheel of Making” and randomly select a number for the project. We had around 200 – 300 kids (and some adults) build the projects Greg created. The booth was very crowded both Saturday and Sunday. With all the clattering from Makey, and the constant use of the Aztec drum, we had to be the noisiest booth at the show. Another big attraction was the Van de Graff Generator. After a transfer belt change on Sunday morning, the generator was producing 10″ sparks. … Read More