Guide/Tidying items from the space

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WARNING: This guide is a draft, and has not been approved by the Hackspace community. Please take care before following its advice.

Despite strong encouragement, entropy and politeness means the space tends to fill up with abandoned projects and unwanted junk over time. To address this, we have a general process to get rid of a seemingly abanoned item you may find in the space. As with all guides, the points below are heuristic, not exhaustive, and you may need to make an exception.

There are three parts of this lifecycle - everyone is encouraged to help, especially in the first part.

NoD stickers

These can be printed from the kiosk.

Disposal of an item

If you're not sure whether something is abanoned, leave a note for the owner with the current time, so that someone checking in a few hours or days can see whether it has gone unanswered.

  1. Is there a valid Do-Not-Hack (DNH) sticker and a record in the online storage system? If so, the item is not abandoned. Email the mailing list if you feel it has outstayed its welcome.
  2. Is there an expired DNH sticker? If so, email the list, making sure to CC in the email on the sticker.
  3. Is there an incomplete DNH sticker? If so, add a Notice-of-Disposal (NOD) and email the list with a photo.
  4. Does it appear to be a work-in-progress that has just arrived at the space? If so, email the list to identify the owner. You may like to leave a note pointing out Rule 8.
  5. Does it consist entirely of raw materials or components that the space has storage for? If so, put them in the appropriate location.
  6. Is it valuable, or personal? If so, put it in the owner's box and email the mailing list, or put it somewhere safe and contact the trustees.
  7. Is it unambiguously trash that can be replaced without cost? If so, put it for recycling or in the bins.
  8. Is it too big to put in the three-week system? If so, add a NOD and email the list with a photo.
  9. If you've exhausted all the above, the item should go in the three-week system.
  10. If you're not sure whether the item is rare or useful to the space, you may also like to email the list to start a discussion about it.

Please do not bring something to the space in order to leave it in the three-week system, unless you are certain it will be used. We have to pay for disposal. Please refer to our guide on bringing items to the space.

Ageing and disposal

  1. The three-week boxes are rotated every Tuesday
  2. The third box, labelled "This week", will be put in the large bins outside (or the skip if we have one).
  3. The remaining boxes will be shuffled down to the next label.
  4. The now empty box is put back under the label "Two weeks".

If an item has an expired Notice-of-Disposal sticker, it can be thrown out or disassembled for parts. However, you may like to make sure that the person who added the sticker notified the list correctly before throwing it out.

Repurposing items

Items in the three-week boxes may be taken and used for your own projects. However:

  • Always bear in mind that items have been looked at by someone following the process above. You are unlikely to find something with no intrinsic value, and not everything is broken or even beyond repair.
  • Take care with items in the first box. These items may have been put in the three-week system on the day you're looking. The owner may not have noticed them missing.
  • Similarly, be cautious with items in the second box on a Wednesday (or when the first box is empty). These items may only have been in the system for a day.
  • The best time to scavenge for items is before the meeting on a Tuesday. The third box is about to be thrown out, and items in the second box will have been in the system for at least a week.
  • For fairness, try not to irreversibly alter or disassemble something you've scavenged until the full three week period has expired.

Do not repurpose an item with a Notice-of-Disposal sticker before it has expired.