3D printer is finished and operational.

The 3D printer which the Makerspace bought as a kit, had suffered intermittent problems with the drive belts.

The problem has now been resolved. The repair involved replacing the drive wheels with wheels which have two locking screws instead of one screw. Then realigning all the belts and the drive wheels to enable free movement of the print head.

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Hello from Poland

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Blackpool Makerspace received an invitation from Poland to attend a financial services conference to be held in London on Thursday 4th October.

The invite generated much discussion about the media the invite arrived on. A 3.5 inch floppy disk!  One of our younger members, Josh, had never seen a real floppy disk before.

Some suggested the floppy was a stunt to make the invite stand out and become a talking point, as only geeks would have the ability or hardware to read a floppy.

On a separate note,  Dan Lynch from Liverpool Makerspace came for a visit today before going with Les to the Blackpool Raspberry Jam birthday party. Four years and still going strong.

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Busier than usual

This week the meeting was busier than usual, and we almost ran out of chairs.

Dave and his son Josh, Dave2, Mike1 and Mike2, Tony, Les, Anthony and Jon paid us one last visit before returning to New Zealand.

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Energy Self-Sufficiency in an Urban Environment

2018/8/18 meeting

Some of the members of Blackpool Makerspace have been considering undertaking one or more energy self-sufficiency based projects with reference to a Blackpool Town-House.

Water recycling, Solar hot water generation, Solar electric generation, wind generation of electricity, other types of generators which can or could use a range of different fuels.

Also considered as possible projects: How to store the energy for later use, using batteries, water tanks, piles of bricks and other yet to be thought of ideas. How to minimise energy use, and how to conserve energy.

Food production is also being considered. Compact growing systems for confined spaces, including hydroponic and Aquaponic.

While looking for projects, it became apparent that there are numerous old patents and designs which have been sidelined or forgotten about in the name of progress. There was also a suspicion that big business buy up patents if the patents in question may pose a threat to their business model.

Practicality, cost, and return on investment will be considered for each project under consideration. For example, it was pointed out that the cost of the scaffolding alone would be over £1000 before any type of solar panels could be put on the Makerspace roof. With wind turbines, there is legislation regarding hight and size to be considered. There is a lot of conflicting information relating to solar and wind generation, with the marketing people tending to push the most expensive option as opposed to the most efficient, or best value for money option.

Energy companies in the UK are pushing (marketing) smart meters as an energy awareness and possibly energy saving option. But it has been reported in the press that the meter might cease to be smart and need replacing when you switch to a new supplier. It is also reported that the meter may not save the user any money at all. Given that switching supplier is becoming more common, needing a new meter every time you switch looks like a huge waste of money and resources.  http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/bills/article-4912922/Smart-device-replaced-swap.html

There are numerous free and open source methods of energy monitoring which may be more appropriate and waste less resources. The Open energy monitoring project: https://openenergymonitor.org/

More details of our progress will appear as we continue to investigate the options.

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Jon travels from New Zealand to attend the Blackpool LUG

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Les, Tony and Jon –    The Screaming Penguins together again…..

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AGM Summary

Attending: Mike, Tony, Les, Jeff, Mark, Dave and Josh.

Mike Hull was re-elected as Chairman, Mike Hewitt was re-elected as secretary and Tony Hughes was re-elected as Treasurer.

The Treasurers report indicated the club finances were in reasonable shape with a small surplus. It was discussed if we should spend this surplus on tools and equipment, or use it to complete the shower/bathroom.

We discussed the upcoming (in October) Craft Council Make:Shift:Do event and wondered how we could better promote the event this year.

With regards to how the club is progressing, and any pros and cons, it was suggested that maybe the club should have something like a mission statement, or an overarching focus/vision/aims statement. This is to be discussed further.

 

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Annual General meeting 2018

 

It is time for an Annual General Meeting. It is proposed we hold the AGM on Saturday 23 June 2018 at 10am.

It would be great if as many as possible members and friends can attend to voice their opinion on the ongoing operation of Blackpool Makerspace and LUG.

 

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