These are Frequently Asked Questions asked by people who are new members or interested in becoming members; but they are good for old members to review, too.
- The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the one. If it puts members, the public, or the organization at undue risk (which includes doing illegal things), it's not OK. We try to resolve conflicts through consensus, and by focusing on the best outcome for the space and community as a whole.
- We are a do-ocracy. If you want something done, do it. This is subject to Rule #1 and #2.
- Sign some paperwork (shop rules, insurance waiver, etc.).
- Pay a $25 refundable key deposit if you want 24/7 access to the Hack Factory, and
- Pay your Member Dues for your first month.
You can do all of this online *(need a link to this!)*, or in-person during an Open House.
No. IRS rules prevent member fees from being tax-deductible, but donations above member dues are tax-deductible when you give through Springboard for the Arts.
Use the TC Maker Communication Tools.
Take some time to subscribe to some or all of the communications channels. Although you don't need to use all or any of them, we are an active bunch and are keen on trying different things. If you have a suggestion on a good communication channel, add it above and let us know.
See Hack Factory for detailed information and more-specific questions.
3119 E 26th St. Minneapolis, MN 55406
The list of shop equipment changes all the time as members lend tools, things wear out, etc.
New: The preferred entrance is now through the front door. For reasons of security, we aim to keep the sliding gate closed unless access through the gate is necessary. Often though, the gate access is available during our Wednesday evening open house.
Entry through the sliding gate: There a short video on the process.
There is a sliding gate to your right as you face the building. Once through, there is a yellow door up a few stairs to your left; that's the Hack Factory shop entrance.
- To open the gate, set the combination wheels on the hanging lock box to the gate code you were given when you joined. Use the key inside to unchain the gate. Please don't forget to put the key back in the lock box and scramble the dials.
- To open the shop door, scan your key fob by touching it to the reader at the left of the door. Wait a moment after the light turns green for the door to unlatch.
- Check to see if the alarm has been armed. If so, enter the alarm code you were given when you joined to disarm it.
If you get stuck, e-mail a member [we should have a specific address for this].
- Double-check that you've cleaned up after your project: keep the space nice for everyone (be excellent to each other ).
- If no one else is there:
- Do a quick run through all areas, upstairs and down, to be sure nobody else is still there
- Make sure you have your key fob, that you didn't leave it in the space
- Check that the yellow shop door on the west side of the main room is closed tightly
- Be certain the bay door is down and latched shut
- Shut off all the lights and any equipment that shouldn't be left running
- Exit through the door going to the front office
-New: This is now the preferred exit, as the driveway gate should be mostly closed and locked
- Arm the alarm using the alarm code you were given when you joined
- Exit and close the front door fully - CHECK TO MAKE SURE IT'S LATCHED
- Inspect the West gate to verify it's completely closed, chained, and locked
-If not, lock the padlock if you know the gate code or get someone to assist
There a short video on the process.
Yes! Every Wednesday starting at 7:00pm CT, our doors are open for anyone to come, visit, meet the community, get advice on projects, and tours. You may also contact us at info -at- tcmaker.org or call 612-293-MAKE to request a tour.
Yes, members can use our tools. Be safe and sensible:
- If you haven't mastered a tool (which means knowing it well enough to teach someone else), don't use it.
- If you're ever unsure about how to use a tool safely, ask for help.
- Be nice to the tools – other people want to use them too.
- Pay attention to the tool labeling system:
- A Green sticker means a tool is reasonably safe and allowed to use, subject to the guidelines above.
- A Yellow sticker means the class of tool requires some special training and a safety test before you use it. Once you know how to use one drill press, you can use them all, for example. Speak to the tool owner or shop manager about training and safety testing.
- An Orange sticker means the specific tool requires permission and special training to use. Each CNC machine, for example, is enough different that using one without being trained on it could cause serious damage or injury.
- A Red sticker means the tool is either private to a member, really dangerous, or very expensive to operate. Use of this tool requires explicit permission from its owner; don't assume being allowed to use it once means you can always use it.
If you bring a tool, please label it. Labels are in the shop, near the posters explaining the labeling system.
If you use consumable materials, please be nice and buy some more – TC Maker doesn't bear the cost of most consumables.
Sometimes tools accidentally break or need maintenance. If you observe a broken or unsafe tool, put a orange borked sign on it and tell the department head. We always need people who know how to repair and maintain tools, too, but please check with the shop manager before repairing or maintaining a tool, so he can keep notes.
Always make sure tools are set to a safe state both before you start using it and after you finish.
Our insurance company requires that we prohibit anyone under the age of 18 from using the tools.
We must carry insurance per the terms of our lease, and insuring under-18 members is extremely costly, so we currently have no plans to do so. This sucks, we know. Sorry!
If you do choose to bring kids, be aware that you are entirely responsible for them and their well being and that this is an adult environment; people here do drink, talk as they please, etc. That said, we as part of being excellent to each other we do try to keep public events family friendly until about 10pm.
You can eat or drink anything that's legal and doesn't cause other members to forcibly eject you due to smell/etc. We don't usually provide any food or beverage of any kind, but we do have a soda machine and a snack machine on-site. We don't have a kitchen or any specified food-prep area, but we do have a microwave in the classroom. Don't cook here, please!
Be aware that there are toaster ovens and microwaves that are not food-safe because they are used for craft. If you're not sure, ask.
If you're over 21, you can bring alcohol to drink here, at your own risk. Don't be stupid: if you drink, don't use the tools, and don't drive. Ask a member for a ride if you need to, we'll hook you up.
By state law, the Hack Factory facility qualifies as a “work environment”; therefore, there is no smoking indoors.
There are small trash cans throughout, and large cans by the entry door. We only have recycling on-site for cardboard.
There are dumpsters just outside the gate: one for trash and one for cardboard. If you see full trash cans, please take a moment to empty them into a dumpster!
We don't have a cleaning service, so we rely on you to be excellent to each other, and leave the space cleaner than you found it.
Please pay special attention to sweeping up the shop area when you use tools, clearing up your food and drink detritus, and keeping the trashes from overflowing. Take a trip to the dumpster if you see full cans!
We are a non-profit corporation. We are not yet a tax-exempt (501(.c)3) organization, but we will be soon. We can accept tax-deductible donations currently, if they are given through //Springboard for the Arts//.
The legal responsibilities of our organization are handled by our Board of Directors.
Note that being non-profit – and eventually tax-exempt – means there are certain restrictions we have to abide by. Ask a board member for details.
Ok, so no one asks this. :)
Given that we're a non-profit organization run on a very tight budget, the survival of our space and community depends on the timely payment of dues from our members.
Our Treasurer, like the rest of the board, is an unpaid volunteer – be excellent to him by paying correctly and on-time. You can set up an automatic member payment through PayPal for maximum convenience.
Remember that member dues are not tax-deductible, but donations above that can be! See the relevant FAQ entry for more information.
We don't yet have a good solution to publishing our reports; however, they are available to members by request to our Treasurer.
If you want to give a class, do it.
Add your class to the calendar and put a post up on the blog; speak with our Event Coordinator; she can help you with picking a good time and with what you need to do to make your class successful.
Don't forget that half of your course fee (not counting materials fees) will be credited to membership, too!
Not sure if you want to teach? The worst that can happen is no one shows up; you're not out anything but some time if that happens, right? You don't have to be an expert to teach, you can even plan a “learn together” class.
We need you! Education is one of our core goals, and you almost certainly have skills that someone else would love to learn from!