What to do when you break something

August 15, 2018 2:48 pm

We’ve had a few members approach leaders at the makerspace lately to say, “I just broke a machine! What should I do!?” This topic is covered in safety classes but we wanted to reiterate some best practices.

Here are some things you should NOT do:

  1. Have no idea what to do
  2. Leave without doing anything
  3. Blank stare for extended period of time

Here are some things you SHOULD do:

  1. Turn it off.
  2. Unplug it.
  3. Gather information. Examine the situation as best you can. What’s damaged? Will new parts be required?
  4. Notify the area lead via email. Use this page for contact information or just remember the popular emails –
    metalshop@makeict.org for all woodshop operations
    woodshop@makeict.org for all woodshop operations
    fablab@makeict.org for 3D printers, laser cutter, other fablab
    info@makeict.org if in doubt this is the fastest way to inform lots of us and we will forward to the right place
  5. Make a big obvious sign with your name, your contact information, the date, what’s broken. Tape it to the machine in a place that’s obvious to see, like right over the power switch.
  6. Use the lockout/tagout equipment if the machine is unsafe to use.

Be sure to review area policies around maintenance practices before attempting to repair any damage yourself.

If you made a mistake that caused damage we’d appreciate it if you’d pitch in on the repair costs, but this isn’t required, we understand that not everyone is in a financial position to pay for repairs. MakeICT has an equipment repair budget. We don’t want anyone to be afraid to report damage. Tell us what happened!

And finally, always remember that safety classes are free for members. If it’s been a year or two since you got an authorization, it might be time for a refresher. You can ask more questions based on your experiences and gain confidence that you’re using the equipment safely.

August News

August 8, 2018 2:16 am

Coming up in August: Burgers & Brooms

Sunday August 12th, 3:00-6:00pm
Join us at MakeICT to hang out with fellow makers, clean up our space, and have a cook out…burgers and fixins’ will be provided! Please bring a side dish, chips, or dessert to share. This event will give us time to prep our space for Open Streets ICT on September 23rd and the Art Auction on September 28th.  More info…

Annual Art Auction

Just a reminder our annual art auction is September 28. It’s a highlight of the year and I hope everyone is busy working on amazing pieces to show off what we’ve done and raise money for MakeICT equipment. Talk about our auction or invite your friends on facebook in preparation for the event.

August Featured Maker: Scott Sullivan

Scott considers himself a “general all around crafter”. He knits, crochets, weaves, embroiders, makes brooms, does leather work, gardens, and sews. He is the treasurer of the CSMA (Central States Metal Artisans) blacksmith organization.  He joined MakeICT to have access to a woodshop, metal shop and pottery studio, but when contributing author Jenni Alonso first met Scott, he was hanging out with the Textile Tribe repurposing old shirts into aprons. Read more about Scott on our blog…

Forum highlights

Some of our top monthly posts:

Featured Maker: Scott Sullivan

August 6, 2018 8:06 pm

Scott Sullivan makes the most of his monthly membership dues. He joined MakeICT to have access to a woodshop, metal

shop and pottery studio, but when I first met Scott, he was hanging out with the Textile Tribe repurposing old shirts into aprons. He definitely utilizes the most of what Makerspace has to offer.

Scott was born in Seoul, Korea. He describes growing up as “not quite an ‘army brat’ but close”, moving to a new location every 3 to 4 years. He caught the ceramics bug while an exchange student at Kansai University of Foreign Studies in Osaka, Japan. He has a lot of ideas he would like to try when it comes to pottery, currently working on making a bird bath for his front yard. He states that not having thrown anything that large, he finds this project quite a challenge. Another project he is working on is designing a metal candle holder to be cut out with Plasma CNC.

Scott considers himself a “general all around crafter”. He knits, crochets, weaves, embroiders, makes brooms, does leather work, gardens, and sews. He is the treasurer of the CSMA (Central States Metal Artisans) blacksmith organization. And if you think there’s not enough hours in a day, he also studies foreign languages, already having studied French, German, Chinese, Arabic, Irish, Russian and Icelandic.

When asked to ponder deeper on the reason they make manhole covers round, he responds “Manhole covers are round because manholes are round. Manholes are round because manhole workers are round.”

Thank you Jenni Alonso for contributing this post.

July News

July 8, 2018 2:05 pm

Makers, I heard that you’d like quick, scannable emails to let you know what’s going on. So here are my top things to know for July.

First – If you only do one thing, please take our 2018 member survey The next year is going to be huge, and we’re using your survey responses to drive our priorities. Thank you to everyone who’s taken it so far.

On the calendar

MakeICT Logo Screenprint Jam Monday July 9, 7pm (bring your clothes!)
MakeICT election process Town Hall Monday July 16 7pm
MAKERFAIRE July 21-22 volunteer spots still open

There are some great new classes this month: acrylic pouring, ring making, vinyl cutting, pocket sewing all on our list of classes.

From the blog

July’s Featured Maker: Dominic Canare
Election and annual meeting proposal results
2018 Nation of Makers conference report out

From the forum

Are you interested in selling what you’ve made?
Laser Cutter #2 is almost here!
Fundraising for new oscilloscopes
MakeICT is featured on this month’s Douglas Design District Podcast

Thanks, Kim


July 6, 2018 8:05 pm

This post was contributed by LaDeana Dockery

We met a lot of great people and had a lot of fun going to the 2018 Nation of Makers Conference (NOMCON).

Most of us (David, Malissa, Logan and myself) set out Friday morning… well Thursday night really.  It is 2:30am when the train leaves Newton, Kansas heading West.  If you have never taken the train, you should at least take one trip.  We watched the scenery from Western Kansas, Colorado and New Mexico fly by from the Observation car as we anticipated the conference.  When we made our final stop late in the afternoon at Lamy, NM, we realize we had landed in a place way smaller than Newton.  The “bus trip” from Lamy to Santa Fe was guy driving a hotel van with just the four of us and the other two people who got off the train in Lamy.   No one had cell service until we were within a few minutes of Santa Fe.

Sam picked us up in his rental car at the dropoff location in Santa Fe and we made our way up to our AirBnB rental.  This is the first time I have done AirBnB and it was quite interesting.  We stayed at an “Artists’ Hidaway”.  It was open and airy and definitely full on New Age.  After taking in a local meal, we all retired back to the BnB except for David who wasn’t feeling well and got a hotel room.

The next morning we made our way to the conference.  After a morning conference opener that was mostly thanking everyone, we got down to business.  We tried to choose separate sessions to try and and gain the most from the conference.  My first session was titled the Five Stages of Grant Writing.  As I went into the room, I realized that this conference was not going to be like the ones I had attended for work.  There were grouped tables and rather than listening to a single speaker, we talked a little bit about who had Grant Writing experience and who didn’t and what people thought was important.  Someone took notes that we all could share (which was good, as the conference center had spotty WiFi which we quickly overwhelmed.)

The next session I had was the one I was to lead: “Moving a Makerspace”.  My session went pretty much like the first as we networked and talked about who was moving their makerspace and who already had.  One of the fellows took some notes.   I promised to take the notes and what we learned when we moved to make a book for all the makers about “Moving a Makerspace”.

There were a couple more sessions that afternoon that went much the same way.  I realized the conference was more about networking than anything else and set about making conversations with many of the different makerspaces.  We have some differences, but many of the community makerspaces have problems and joys that parallel our own.

David mentioned he was going back home early as he really did not feel well.  That evening we went to one of the social events and met more folks from various makerspaces.

The next day heralded a much better crop of general speakers,  The theme of the conference was Intentional Inclusion and a very dynamic speaker told of her struggle to find shoes that worked well with her disability.  A speaker came to speak to us in spite of having major dental surgery issues.  We had a speaker talk to us about making special costumes for kids in wheel chairs.  ( You are not supposed to cry at a conference… but these were powerfully moving speeches.)  We should totally try to do the costumes for wheelchairs…

Finally Adam Savage got up to speak and I thought it will be hard to follow the wheelchair folks.  He held his own, but barely.  And then the rest of the day to network with other spaces.

We had more fun before we left.  Meow Wolf (the famous art exhibit/mystery story/funhouse) and Itchy-o (a percussion group) and a train trip back.

This is already too long, so see me or one of the gang for details 🙂

Photos from the trip

2018 Annual Meeting Results

July 5, 2018 5:28 pm

Thank you to everyone who attended our annual meeting, we had a great turnout.

Minutes for the annual meeting are here on our wiki.

The election results were announced in our forum:

Q1: Vote to change the board of directors term duration as set by the bylaws.

  • Result: Bylaws will not be changed

Q2: Vote to remove Members Rights section of the Standing Rules

  • Result: Vote passes to remove Members Rights section

Q3: Vote to amend the guest policy to clarify the use of the space for tutoring.

  • Result: Vote passes to add ‘only exception to this is tutoring’ to guest rules.

Board Members:

  • President: Kim Burton
  • Vice President: LaDeana Dockery
  • Treasurer: David Springs
  • Secretary: Kez Cook
  • Members At large:
    • Jeremiah Burian
    • Paul Masseberg
    • Malissa Long
    • James Lancaster


Notes for next year

Our election process hasn’t changed much since we were an organization of 20 members, and this year was a good opportunity to reflect on ways we can improve.

First, the election ballot has always been assembled by current secretary with assistance when needed from other board of directors members. We’d like to ensure next year that the ballot can be assembled by people who are not running for board of directors positions, to ensure impartiality.

Second, we used ranked preference voting for the second year in a row. Last year we announced and discussed which voting system to use, but this year raised new questions about exactly how to score the ranked preference votes and why we don’t use a one person one vote system similar to our US election system. To address these questions we’ll be holding an election town hall meeting on Monday, July 16 at 7pm in the showroom area. Everyone is encouraged to attend.

With respect to the annual meeting itself, we have a thread about logistics where we’d love to hear suggestions for how to improve this important event.


Featured Maker: Dominic Canare

July 3, 2018 2:11 am

Dominic originates from Derby, Kansas. He is a collector of degrees and is currently working on finishing a PhD in Human Factors Psychology and Human Computer Interaction from Wichita State University. Except for planning his upcoming nuptials, obtaining his PhD is his most current passion.


Some of Dominic’s current projects include research in brain plasticity, perceptual and motor learning, and helping develop a high-fidelity driving simulator to investigate trust in automation and aging effects on driving. Driving most of his projects is the motivation to improve the human experience.

Dominic wants to specifically encourage people to volunteer for MakeICT Outreach events. He proclaims that it is actually easier and way more fun that it seems like it could be. But above all of the good stuff that happens at Makerspace i.e. collaborating and socializing, the best times for him involve working on his projects in his “zen-place” which consists of just being surrounded by equally productive individuals.

Outside of school, work, and volunteerism, Dominic has also dabbled in some professional modeling, he claims to have been a model for a balloon company, and has submitted a photo as proof. He is also a protector and provider of two domesticated cats, and promised to be wed to one domesticated woman.



Thank you Jenni Alonso for contributing this post.

June MakeICT News

June 11, 2018 1:32 am
Patrick and Barb teach kids to solder at Riverfest STEAM city. A huge thank you to all the volunteers who helped this week: Barb Davis, Kim Burton, Patrick Hutchison, LaDeana Dockery, Malissa Long, Rhonda Davis, Mark Esau, Krissie Lagana, Trysten Jones, Drew Holler, David Span

June MakeICT News

Hello Makers! There is a lot going on in June, but first a reminder to please attend our Annual Meeting on Sunday June 17 2018 5pm at Hyde Park.

Details: https://talk.makeict.org/t/notice-of-annual-meeting/895
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/841635212693595/

Here is where you tell us what you’re bringing for the potluck:

We will elect our 2018-2019 board of directors through an electronic ballot immediately after the meeting. You will have 48 hours to vote. If you are a voting member of MakeICT, please be ready to check your email carefully for this important ballot. Anyone can attend the annual meeting, but only members in good standing in accordance with our bylaws will receive the email to vote. The list of candidates is on the 2018 Elections Ballot page, and you can ask questions to read candidate positions in the Leadership section of our forum.

See you there!

Five MakeICT members attended the Nation of Makers conference (NOMCON) in Santa Fe this year.

Class interest survey

Want to take a class? We’ve pulled a giant list of every class we’ve ever taught to see which ones are more in-demand and need consistent scheduling and they’re all in our
Mega Class Interest Survey
Sit down with a coffee and check out the list! If you see classes on there you’ve already taken, pretend you’re taking the survey for a friend who’s heard your recommendations.

Thanks Kez Cook and James Seymour for setting up this nifty new rapid prototyping tool – Brutus the 3D pen! Read more…

Can you teach a class?

Thanks to everyone who came out or helped spread the word on our “How to Teach a Class” class last month. We went over the highlights of how to set up a class and become a MakeICT teacher. If you’re ready to jump in but missed the seminar that’s okay – the Teach a Class form guides you through a lot of what you need to know! Please submit your classes at least a month in advance.

Check out our calendar or class list to see what’s planned. This month we have lots of cool new classes like Learn to Solder a Colorful Wire Tree (June 13), Basic Computing Skills (June 16), Make a Lift Lid Box (6/18), Make a Scarf Dress (6/30) and more are being added all the time.

Mini MakerFaire News

Have you signed up to volunteer at Wichita’s Mini MakerFaire yet? We are all getting ready for this event on July 21-22. Learn about MakerFaire at wichita.makerfaire.com/ or sign up to volunteer.

Adam Savage and David Springs at NOMCON 2018
For everything else going on in between newsletters, check out our forum, it’s a busy place! If you haven’t been in a while, you can check out the top posts of the weekmonth, or year.

Questions concerns or comments – email me (kim@makeict.org) or us (info@makeict.org).

May Newsletter

May 8, 2018 12:00 am
Our latest featured maker is woodworker Allan Bacon who makes amazing live edge tables and mixed media pieces. Read about Allan’s story on our blog.

May News & Events

Happy springtime, Wichita Makers! I hope everyone is enjoying the weather and all the great things Wichita has to offer when the weather gets warmer. We have so much going on that this newsletter has a lengthy table of contents. I know there are a lot of places to get news about our makerspace, but this is the place where I really try to condense everything for one-stop-shopping. Ready?

Volunteer with us at Riverfest June 2-9

Can you help kids make brushbots and structures? Do you want a free riverfest button? Volunteer at MakeICT’s kids corner and STEAM city tables! There is no experience or prior knowledge needed, we’ve got everything ready to go. We need volunteers every DAY between June 2-9, mostly in the evenings after 5pm. View the full schedule and sign up on our forum.

Summer Intern Boot Camp start May 28

Do you know someone visiting Wichita just for the summer? In the past we’ve had summer interns join MakeICT and spend their first month getting in and acquainted just like regular members. Then the next month, they have to go back home. This month we’re doing something different for them – scheduling a fast track week of authorization classes so they can hit the ground running and make the most of their summer. Tell them about our Summer Intern Boot Camp program at http://makeict.org/intern

Electric Bus Party Sunday May 4

Want to work on our famous electric bus? We’ll be meeting Sunday May 6 at 4pm to discuss the history, status, and fate of one of our original group projects. If you can’t attend but have questions or thoughts, post those in our forum thread. Otherwise we will see you Sunday.

The Plastics Shredder Project

We’re tired of hearing about plastics filling up landfills and killing wildlife, especially in our oceans, so we’ve been really happy to see MakeICT members from Five For a Change creating a plastics shredder to reclaim the plastics we keep throwing away. Their next meeting is May 6 at 4pm at the makerspace. For details visit fiveforchange.org.

The Last Toastmakers May 20

MakeICT’s Toastmakers club has been meeting to help creative people communicate ideas and overcome public speaking fears. It’s been an awesome year, we learned a ton and met some great people, but we did not quite get to the required 20 members to charter our own official Toastmasters club. That’s okay! We’ll be celebrating our accomplishments with one last demo party on Sunday May 20 at 7pm. Of course, if we accidentally somehow get several more members before our deadline we’ll keep meeting. Join the toastmakers facebook group to learn more.

How to teach a class class May 24

Ever wanted to teach a class at MakeICT? Do you know a teacher looking for a summer side gig? Send them to our How To Teach A Class Class where we talk about the types of classes we’re looking for and how to jump in. Thursday May 24 at 7pm. [Facebook event]

May Gallery Show starts May 25

May’s gallery theme is about the things we make at classes, but your work doesn’t have to match a theme. If you complete a project, give it some time in our gallery. Sign up on our forum.

Surplus Tool Auction

Need a kiln, saw, 3D printer or a door? Bid on these and lots of tools at our surplus auction. Bidding ends May 8! Learn more or submit your bids on our forum.

Electrical outlet installation

We need volunteers to help install outlets. Sign up at our volunteer page or contact safety@makeict.org.

NOMCON 2018 in Santa Fe June 9-10

Tune in next month as several members jump on the train to the Nation of Makers Conference! Our spots are filled but I wanted you all to know MakeICT will be represented very well at this first conference on June 9-10.

Payment Envelopes

Our treasurer David Springs is one of the hardest working volunteers at the space so please make his job easier by only depositing money in a filled out payment envelope. They are scanned in as business records so when someone doesn’t use one, he has to guess what the money is for and fill out the envelope for you. Payments might be returned to members if the envelopes aren’t properly filled out and could even delay your membership renewal.

Thinking Ahead to our Annual Meeting

June will be a busy month for us as we elect new officers. A special email will go out when we announce our annual meeting to be held the weekend of June 16-17. Officer nominations will be accepted starting around May 18. 

Parking Reminder

With the Douglas construction in front of our space complete we have a lot more clearly marked parking spaces by our space. So remember to park on the street and not our neighbor’s parking lots. Do not park in Poorman’s lot, either in front or back, or at the starter shop next door.

Makerfaire July 21-22

Makerfaire is just around the corner! Visit wichita.makerfaire.com/ to try for a last minute booth spot or sign up to volunteer.

Featured Maker: Allan Bacon

April 7, 2018 9:56 pm

Featured maker Allan Bacon in our woodshop at MakeICT

One of the most wonderful things about MakeICT is the wide array of experience levels in our makerspace. We have brand new makers who’ve gone from knowing nothing to making art with a plasma cutter in six months. We have highly experienced makers who’ve been creating great things since before MakeICT was around. Allan Bacon is an experienced woodworker whose tables caught our eye, so I sat down to talk with him about how he got started and where he finds inspiration.

Coco Bolo Wood Tonfa

Allan has been woodworking for 22 years. He originally started in to make martial arts weapons when he wasn’t satisfied with what was commercially available, and diversified over time into different wooden styles. A few years ago he saw a live edge table and admired the juxtaposition with the natural edge and the glossy, smooth top. He had just retired from the aircraft industry and had time for bigger projects.

Ladybug Table

Inspired by pacific northwest artists like Greg Klassen and George Nakashima, live edge tables retain the outer bark of a slab of wood. Some have natural holes to fill in, other tables are made by splitting the slab in half lengthwise so the bark edges are turned to face each other. Allan has used different techniques to fill in the center: resin fill, acrylic or glass tops, LED lights, even phosphorous powder mixed in to casting to glow in the dark.


Ladybug Cabinet

1890s Cast Iron Sewing Table Base

Allan gets his supplies from Richard’s Wood Shop in Kechi, Cook’s Woods online, Intermountain wood, and friends around the Wichita area. For one table he used an antique singer sewing base. There was a lot to learn in taking the treadle table apart, cleaning it, and re-assembling the cast iron parts to work together just as they had since the 1890s.

Like many of our members, Allan has his own shop at home but he joined MakeICT in its first few years because we had some tools he did not have, like a 15″ planer and CNC shopbot router.

He says he recommends it to people all the time and has talked with plenty of woodworkers in other cities who are jealous of what we offer for $25 a month. “For someone who would like to get started in wood, the MakeICT project classes are a great intro to the world of woodworking. The projects use several of the machines in the shop and the instructor is right there to help along the way,” he says, “Plus you will meet other people with similar interests, so it’s a good networking opportunity. The people there are usually more than willing to answer questions and are glad to show you their projects.”

Illuminated Inlay Table

“For me, MakeICT offers access to machinery that I couldn’t begin to afford. And with a fob/card you have 24/7 access. You don’t have to schedule around “Open” hours. Plus there are machines that I’ve thought would be interesting to learn, but had nowhere to do so. How does the average person get access to a laser cutter, much less learn how to use it? Or a CNC plasma table? Or a 4’ by 8’ ShopBot? Only at MakeICT.”