Makers Local 256 is a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit of like-minded individuals who have created a hackerspace located in Huntsville, AL.

Upcoming Events

Monthly Member Meeting: June 22, 7:30 pm

This month’s member meeting will occur at 7:30pm sharp! The meetings are a great way to keep up with shop business, discuss upcoming events, and have your voice heard. Typical run time is 30-45min.

Pig Roast: June 24

Pig Roast is coming up fast, and prep work is starting to move into it’s final stages. You may have heard our radio ad, recorded by Jeff Cotten a few weeks ago, or seen one of our flyers around town! This is looking to be our largest pig roast yet, so come hungry! If you’d like to bring a side or dessert, check out the wiki page and sign up!

 

Shop Talk

Giant Laser Cutter

We are in full swing fundraising for a new giant laser cutter! At the time of writing, we are 3 weeks in and 25% of the way to our goal of $10,000! A huge thanks from us to everybody who has contributed!!! This laser cutter has a working area of 48″ x 36, which can be used for both large-scale projects and increased output of smaller projects! Check out the Generosity link for more information.

Textiles Expansion

From Jeff: One of the latest improvements to the Makers Local 256 facility is the addition of a new enclosed and air conditioned space! One of the challenges facing the upstairs Textiles area was malfunctioning equipment due to maker dust and temperature issues. This new enclosed space will better protect the sewing machines, sergers, embroidery machines, and vinyl cutting resources that are available at Makers Local. It’s thanks to our community of members and friends that this room is coming together – donations of insulation and, discounted doors and drywall, and wiring expertise of our members have kept costs down and the work looking professional. The project should be completed in the next few weeks, we hope you come out and enjoy the fruits of this labor 🙂

Tool Area Improvements

From Jeff: Our Tool area is also undergoing improvements! Thanks to labor put in by some of our members, the Tool Area of the shop has undergone a great transformation, and will soon offer a new layout, with improved organization for access to tools, including the CNC Table, Metal and Wood Lathes, Drill Press, Routers, Drills, and Articulating Arm Saw.

Projects in Progress

Tyler Crumpton loves arcade cabinets! He designed his first table-top cabinet last year after retrofitting the full-size cabinet in the shop with a new monitor and accessories. He cut and assembled revision #1 of his bar-top arcade cabinet at Makers Local 256 this month! It was CNC-cut from 3/4″ MDF, built with a 15″ Dell flat-panel 4:3 monitor, and uses Happ buttons and joystick. Final steps for this project will be sanding, painting, and T-molding!

            

 

Did You Know?

Here are some cool facts about ML256!

  • The shop’s roots started over a decade ago! In October 2006, the first meeting was held, and in 2008, this group of makers moved into the first physical space (shop 1.0)! Currently, we are in our third home, shop 3.0.
  • We have over 80 members! At the moment, we gain approximately one new member per month! Our members are diverse – from teenagers to golden-agers, biologists to engineers, women to men (and sometimes dogs and cats!) – we have a wide range of ages, genders, and interests represented in our membership!
  • Our space has some secret upgrades – the USB door lock and RFID change machine (CasCADE) are occasionally overlooked by first-time visitors, but are well-loved by frequent flyers!

Tyler Crumpton has been a member of the shop for a number of years, and has been board chairman several times! He is an extremely active member, working on a variety of projects mainly involving the laser cutter and 3D printing. Click through to learn more about Tyler!

Read More →

A game of Plan Bee in action. Cursor focused on a Unicorn Bee, who has a rainbox hex.

Tyler, Hunter, and I were a team for Ludum Dare 38 the weekend of April 21st, and we streamed the whole thing. We made a silly game about bees! You can play it here, and you can view the source here. Read More →

Upcoming Events

Monthly Member Meeting: May 18, 7:30 pm

This month’s member meeting will occur at 7:30pm sharp! The meetings are a great way to keep up with shop business, discuss upcoming events, and have your voice heard. Typical run time is 30-45min.

Pig Roast: June 24

Some of you may have noticed flyers for this year’s Pig Roast – big thanks to Tyler Crumpton for making those! Last year we had a huge turnout, and it looks like this year will be no different! Volunteers are a huge part of what makes the Pig Roast possible, so if you’re able, check out the wiki page and sign up! There are still a few spots available, as well as opportunities to bring side items and desserts.

 

Shop Talk

Textiles Expansion

Travis Crumpton and Jeff Cotten have been heading up an effort to enclose the area next to the fab lab and move the textiles area into it! This will greatly improve the ability of makers to produce textile items, as well as increase the amount of air-conditioned space present at the shop. The first work day scheduled was May 7, thanks to everybody who came out!

ML256 @ STA

Monday May 1, we held a fundraiser/trivia night at Straight to Ale’s Campus 805 location. This event will bring around $350 to the shop!! A huge thank you to everybody who turned out to (wo)man the table, donated items to sell/display, and drank beer!

Ludum Dare #38

Tyler, Hunter, and Jake were a team for the Ludum Dare #38 — a themed, tri-annual game jam — the weekend of April 21st. The theme this time was “Small World”, so they made a silly game about bees! You can play it here, and you can view the source here. If you’re interested in forming a team, keep an eye out for announcements about LD39, which will be held around August!

NACC Sewing Workshop

On April 8 the shop hosted a cloak-sewing workshop to benefit the Madison Children’s Theatre. Over the course of the day, 20 cloaks were sewn and donated to aid in their production of Harry Potter, as well as future productions involving cloaks. Thank you to everybody who came out, and thank you Scott for setting up this excellent event!

Projects in Progress

Jeff’s Bottle Tree

Jeff has been working on a bottle tree that is doubling as an opportunity to learn to weld! David Pemerton walked him through the basics of welding, and just last week he tacked on the final piece of the tree.  It’s now at his home, and he will soon be painting it, and then sinking it into the ground.

Safety Reminder!

When using any of the heavy or dangerous equipment at the shop, remain aware of your surroundings and the status of the tool. Ensure the tool is in good working order before use, and safely store it after use. Additionally, goggles, eye protection, gloves, aprons, and other PPE are available for use throughout the shop! Nobody wants to make a trip to the hospital on a night they had planned to get some cool stuff done 🙂