It’s been over 3 years since my move from Manchester. I’m still splitting my time equally between work days in Manchester and home time in Teeside. This resulted in a situation when I have no time for my friends in Manchester (I work 12h shifts) and I have no friends at home. A slack group I belong to mentioned hackspaces thing, near the university, but for some reason, I have been postponing the visit. I will blame it on my work. Long story short, I attended an open evening at the Teeside hackspace and now I’m a member.
I’m not sure how these look like outside of the UK (or an equivalent of it), but if they come close to how much fun I had last night, I would recommend you to go online right now and start to look for one. In case you are not familiar, these are often self-funded workshops, where makers like me and you can come to share their ideas, learn new skills, and use tools and space provided for your prototyping ventures.
To me, the biggest advantage of the hackspace is being among like-minded people. Having a couple of members of different trades/skills/passion to talk to and bounce off your ideas is brilliant.
Drop the hesitation, fear, and whatever negative feelings you have had bottled inside you and go to hackspace meetups. I was afraid, that I don’t have anything that I can contribute, that everyone else around me would be much smarter, more experienced and skilled than me. The reality is that it doesn’t really matter. We all learn from each other. Getting some help in a crucial moment of your project’s progress would remove the stress and frustration that often builds up when you cannot overcome an obstacle on your own.
Bring your toys and gadgets with you. It doesn’t matter if this is a broken racing drone, some small project with an ESP module, or just a piece of code. I’m almost 100% sure you will always find someone that is willing to listen and help you. With time, you will find yourself helping others.
I get to know a bunch of people. In that short time (I came with a notepad) I got advice on how to troubleshoot my WiFi switch, and how to create the enclosure for my long lost, but not forgotten piNAS project. I will be getting training to use some of the machines next week. This is super exciting.
I don’t expect that many of you are living nearby, but if you are – consider joining us. The Teeside Hackspace comes with:
- Friendly atmosphere
- Space and internet access
- Laser cutting tool
- 3D printer
- CNC mill
- electronic workshop
- and more…
They run an open to non-members evening every Tuesday from 7 pm and the membership starts from £5 a month (bargain). See more here.