Good grief it’s been a lot of work getting the HFC hackerspace set up!

I’ve had to inventory a lot of equipment in the past month. This is because YOU ALL have donated so much gear through the years! THANK YOU SO MUCH! It’s been pretty funny because sometimes you guys have brought me stuff that I didn’t really need but was so cool that I couldn’t resist bringing it back. Often times this gear would sit in my “locked” closet because I didn’t have the time to learn about the cool thing, and even if I did, I wouldn’t have anyone to share it with. But NOW.. NOW I FINALLY have a home for all this gear and students to share it with and WOW! The hackerspace has taken a giant leap forward in a short time thanks to your donations!

But I want to be a good steward of this gear, so I’m barcoding everything that doesn’t already have one, and engraving our name into it for good measure before locking it in our ridiculous security cage. That’s taken a LOT of time, but we have the ability to easily check items out to our members safely and easy, and track where they go, and who’s responsible for the item.

My family has been a huge help along the way, getting things setup.

This time we’re almost finished with our electrical system. The whole space is regulated 110v at all the tables. The electrical thing has been a real hassle because the raw power is terrible. 25% dips and spikes are common, and this is a KILLER to computer gear. So we have to introduce regulators to flatten things out. In the CTC next door we put in 500va regulators at every table four years ago. This was expensive, even though the regulators we bought were “cheap Chinese” units. This time, we took another approach and only bought two higher-powered, much nicer 3Kva Japanese units for the entire hackerspace and wired sockets to each, strung along the wall. We also have “raw” 220v at the wall, since some of our equipment uses 220v, like locally-purchased laser printer, laminator, and some power tools. Of course some of our equipment is irreplaceable and 110v only, so I have to label all sockets and tools and I’ll likely keep 110v equipment locked up so that only managers can use them .. until we gain some confidence in our users at least. ;-)

And last but certainly not least, we have an official HFC banner (Thank you Justin!) that fits perfectly over our front window (to block the last of the sun which is trying to kill us) and artwork (Thanks to Eddie!).

It’s looking great, everyone! Thanks!