Welcome to the Milwaukee Makerspace! This Member Handbook contains some important and basic information that will help you at the space. If you find yourself wishing something useful to members was on the page, log in and add it!
The board of directors currently consists of the below list of members. To contact the board email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The makerspace has Area Champions who oversee the activities in each of our many areas.
We are open to the public every Tuesday and Thursday starting at 7PM. On Tuesday nights we have organizational meetings to discuss business and give personal project updates. Agenda items can be added on the meeting agenda page. Members that cannot physically attend the meetings can participate using Google Hangout. Members work on projects on Thursday nights. Non-members are welcome to stop in either night to check out the makerspace.
There are several regularly scheduled clubs that meet at the makerspace. These club meetings are open to the public.
Every member can pick one day a month for several hours to let a bunch of non-members into the space as part of a club meeting or similar gathering. However, you need to create a calendar event and a reservation for the space you will be using. Otherwise other members can kick you out of your space!
Members clean and organize the makerspace after the meeting on the last Tuesday of the month. 20 mins only!
Full time membership includes one full pallet of storage space for free (40” x 48” x 36” = 40 cubic feet). Part time and student membership includes shelf space equivalent to 1/2 pallet for free (22.5 cubic feet). The shelves are located on the east wall of the east room. Alternately, part time and student members can store one member-made cart for free - maximum cart dimensions are 30” deep, 48” long and 34” tall (including wheels), and are stored under the pallet racking on the west wall of the east room. There are lockers and file cabinets located in the Vault hallway, and they are a free alternative to pallets and shelves.
There are three other options for additional project storage space, and all are coordinated through the operations director. Floorspace can be rented for larger projects, at a rate of $.50/sq ft. All floor space rental is coordinated with the operations director. Lockable vault rental is also available for about $1/sq ft. See the exact rates here. Extra pallet rental costs $12 per month, but all pallets are to be stored in the pallet racking Part-time and student members can upgrade to a full pallet for $6/month.
There are three different makerspace membership levels. A full membership gives you 24×7 access the the makerspace and costs $80 per month when paying for one month's dues, $75 per month when paying for three months dues, or $70 per month when paying for six months dues. A half time membership gives you access Monday through Thursday or Friday through Sunday. The half time membership costs $40 per month (independent of number of months paid). A student membership gives you 24×7 access and costs $40 per month. Dues payments can be made by cash or check to the Treasurer. You can pay online via Dwolla or PayPal (email@example.com). Note that PayPal is discouraged at this time due to higher transaction fees.
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Milwaukee Makerspace is a non-stock corporation operating in the State of Wisconsin. We are not a non-profit 501©3 however we are sponsored by a group called School Factory which supports organizations like ours. The donation process is spelled out on their website here: https://atrium.schoolfactory.org/spacefed/node/28962
If you see something unsafe, say something, do something. Speak to the member, unplug the machine, add a label warning about an unsafe thing. It’s hard to draw a box around every case, but the key is to be pro-active.
You must be checked out on every power tool / machine at the Makerspace prior to using it. To be checked out on a machine, see Tom Gralewicz, Kevin Bastyr, the area champion, or the owner of the machine. One of these members must train you on the equipment before you can use it. Have your trainer update the page attached to each machine after your training is complete.
Please do your part to keep the space neat. Before you leave the space clean up and put away whatever equipment and workspace you may have been using. Projects often involve working on five or more machines, and it is easy to accidentally only clean up 4 out of 5 work areas. To offset this, its best to leave the space just a little cleaner than you’ve found it. A mess, left behind, depresses the other members and damages the sense of community that is the true value of the space.
Feel free to consume the resources of the space (scrap, electronics components, etc.) but be reasonable about the quantity. Please don't go into mass production using the community materials! It’s a great idea to put a donation in the machine shop donations jar when using consumables. If you are burning up end mills with all the machining you need to do, please buy a set just for yourself.
If you damage something that you cannot repair, please post to one of the mailing list about it. Don't leave it for someone to find. In some cases the damage can be repaired and you can learn a whole lot in the process. Even if it can't be repaired the other members will think far more of you for admitting a mistake than if you remain silent. Remember that all of the machines in the space were leased by individual members – would you want damage to your machine to go unreported? Likewise, please don’t move or modify any large equipment in the space without approval from the area champion and equipment owner.
All major equipment in the space is leased to the space by its members. If you'd like to lease something to the group, ask first, then fill out this form equipment lease form and give it to a board member. Please do bring your personal tools into the Makerspace, but if you want them to live in a public spaces, you must allow members to use them (with proper training of course.) If you plan on being the only one using a tool, you should keep it in your storage area when you are not actively using it, and yes, the rules about non-members still apply, even if it's your own tool.
Members can bring two guests (10 years of age minimum) to the makerspace. All guests must sign the guest liability waiver. Note that members must supervise their guests at all times. No leaving a guest in the Wood Shop while you walk off to work in the Electronics Lab, etc. Guests are prohibited from using any electrical or heavy machinery, so table saws, the forklift, and even power hand tools are prohibited. Guests are permitted to use non-powered hand tools.
Perhaps you'd like to ask a friend or family member to join you at the space and help you with a project? That's welcome, but the member must be the one who uses the equipment. A good example would be your friend holding boards as you screw them together or spot you as you use the table saw. Perhaps you'd like to teach a soldering, welding, or sewing class? That's also welcome after the appropriate liability waivers have been signed, but your students should be under direct supervision at all times.
We don't want to make things difficult or exclude people from being part of our community here, but we also don't want to take unnecessary risks. We can't be certain of a guest's training, skill-level, judgment, or knowledge of our policies and procedures. Just because someone knows how to use *a* lathe doesn't they should assume they know how to use *our* lathe. Every machine is different and checking members out on equipment is how we work to ensure people are knowledgeable and safe.
In order to keep things civil and respectful, the Board of Directors has adopted the following guidelines for discussions on the message boards and other social media: