When fans of Instructables travel to new places or go on holiday (or vacation), we still need to feed our hobby urges.
This 'ible describes how I scratched my itch in sin city.
I originally entered this for the travel tips contest but it was rejected, however when I asked them to re-asses it, they responded quickly and agreed that it should be eligible. Well done Instructables.
I really do personally recommend that all makers seek out fellow makers wherever and when ever they can. Travelling is not just about seeing sights and events it is also about meeting and talking to local people. Who better to speak with, than locals that share your own interests?
I hope that as you read this you agree enough to vote for this 'ible in the contest..
Step 1: Seek and Ye Shall Find
I hit our old friend Google and searched for Hacker spaces and maker spaces.
The top hit in Vegas was via meetup.com which referenced SynShop.
The extra good news was that they had an open night that evening.
I just had to persuade my fellow travelling companions that it was a good idea to visit.
Having persuaded my wife and our travelling companions that it was close to other Vegas attractions that they could enjoy whilst I enjoyed SynShop. We traveled to the area and I found their place.
From the outside it looked interesting and inviting.
They have a secure entry system and soon one of the members let me in.
Step 3: Visitors From All Over the World
They showed me their visitor map featuring the home locations of other travellers that have visited them.
I was invited to place a pin on my home location which is Manchester UK.
Clearly they had most visitors from the U.S. , but they had already extended the map with 'extra detailed maps' for visitors from Australia and France.
They added their idea of the UK shape and my name to officially add me to the visitor map.
Note how the relative locations of the different countries has also been accurately replicated.
My dditional tip for all travellers is to have a personal visitor card to hand out to those that request your email etc. I do not mean a business card as such, but a personal card. I will certainly be carrying such cards next time I travel.
Step 4: Kindred Spirits
It was quickly clear that we are all on the same wavelength and had common interests.
A great bunch of guys and girls.
Step 5: Me and the Guys
Of course I was wearing my Instructables tee shirt as we posed for a souvenir photograph.
Step 6: The Tour
I was treated to a personal tour of all the superb facilities provided for members.
I asked about their membership details and they gave me an outline.
They currently have over 150 members who pay $40 per month to enjoy access to great tools and a supportive environment.
They have training events and support local maker fairs and other appropriate events.
Step 7: Super Projects
I have not listed all their equipment since you can find all that information and more by visiting the links at the end of this 'ible.
The graphics on the front windows are simply window cleaner sprayed through laser cut stencils.
Also shown are a few pictures of the Star ship Enterprise model, that is displayed at the front of the workshop.
I have also included an example of their laser cut work.
Step 8: Future Links
The photo above is of the door to their male restroom, Lt Uhura graces the door to the ladies facility.
I uploaded some parts of this 'ible using my iPhone and some with my iPad, as I prepared to leave Vegas.
(Not quite overcoming the horrendous issues with the Instructables mobile apps and having to fix the issues when I got to a 'proper PC'.),
You may use the links to help you find places to visit when you travel.
Here is a link to my 'ble for a mini solder pot, that I made using the SynShop facilities.
I hope that this short 'ible has encouraged you to seek out maker spaces and hacker communities when you go travelling. It may even be worth organising your trip around such visits.
I hope that you can find the time to vote in the Travel Tips contest too?