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Some of the equipment in the hackspace is well cared-for. A great example is the laser cutter - everyone appreciates the work Paddy puts in to keep it in working order, and how quickly it would be useless if he didn't.

But what if every tool in the hackspace had someone to love it ? And not just tools - everything we use, from welding equipment to mops.

This is a scheme to try to provide that, by getting as many members as possible to 'adopt' something - make sure it's kept working, replaced when broken or lost, has a place to live, and someone to ask when help is needed.

There's something for everybody - you don't need to be a mechanical or electrical engineer, and you're not responsible financially for replacing it; if it breaks or goes missing, the important thing is that somebody notices so that the rest of the hackspace can look for it, help fix it, buy another one or whatever's necessary. You can even ask for help in getting started, if you'd like to adopt something but don't know how to look after it. You're not promising training (though it would be great if you could) - just monitoring. If you don't visit very often, tie up with someone else to cover something between you.

If you hardly ever visit, there are still things you can do : maintain the wiki (get rid of spam, fix errors, add useful information), help with the newsletter, answer questions on IRC or the mailing list ..


  • DO take on at least one job, maybe more
  • DON'T take on too much. One is good. Three is wonderful. Five is probably too many.
  • DO make sure you can keep up. If you're not able to check something once a week, you probably need an accomplice.
  • DON'T be precious. You should be first contact for any problems, but if you don't keep up, someone else may take over
  • DO be patient. Bad things happen. Stuff gets broken. Live with it, maybe rage a little, but help us get stuff fixed.

Getting started

  • Put your name on the list. Make sure there are contact details.
  • If the tool has a wiki page, check & ensure it's up to date
  • If it doesn't, make one. Even for 'trivial' stuff
  • Put a photo on the wiki page. Get someone else to do it if you can't
  • If the tool doesn't have a correct place to be put away, create one. Get help if you need it.
  • Make sure you understand how to use it. If there's any doubt, consult someone else.
  • Write it up, again, even if it appears to be trivial. It will give someone else the opportunity to correct you if you missed something.
  • Record the present state. note any damage, especially if it affects functionality

Carrying on

Ideally, every time you visit the space, but certainly no less than once a week :

  • Check the item is in it's proper place
  • Check the item is undamaged and working properly
  • Note and request replacements of any consumables
  • Report any problems that you can't sort out yourself

If possible :

  • If someone is using it, make sure they're using it correctly

Equipment needing frequent maintenance

List of items needing care, add your name against them. Add to the list, combine items, or split them up, as you see fit. Pick as big or small an item as you like. If you think a spanner is too easy, look after a whole toolcupboard.

  • Rage saw
  • Small milling machine
  • Band saw (needs finishing)
  • Dremels
  • Tesla
  • A3 Colour laser printer (inc Recycling printer cartridges)
  • Giant roll-feed plotter (needs fixing)
  • Mop
  • Fridge
  • Dishwasher
  • Heat gun

The contents of the main tool board Phil

To include....

  • Screwdrivers
  • Pliers/Cutters
  • Spanners/Grips
  • Hacksaws/Blades
  • Knives/Blades
  • Straightedges/Rules/Squares/Levels etc.
  • The other bits and pieces on this board

Other tools

Occasional maintenance

Not all items need constantly checking. Some are used only occasionally, but it still saves a lot of time and wasted effort if they're in the right place and ready to use when needed. If you don't visit frequently enough to take on a high-usage tool, please consider one of these.

  • Tröllfläppi
  • Other battery drills
  • Spare soldering irons (mostly blue, used for workshops)
  • OKi soldering iron