Digi fab meeting 27/12/2016 @ 10pm

Rule changes for Lasercutter
the laser cutter can only be run under the supervistion of a laser saftey officer (key holders)
the key holders are to be voted on by the cause current standing for key holders for laser cutter is Mike, james, Nog and Aaron
if you run the lasercutter without one of the Key holders in attendance at the hackerspace (supervising), a ban will suggested to the exec for 3 days.

Filament purchase
$150 budget for abs filament

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I’d like to add these items for discussion:
I do not think it reasonable to limit those who can operate/supervise the laser cutter ( called “keyholders” by crofty in the previous post) without their being a clear set of criteria for how others ( non-key-holders) can become “keyholders”. I expect this would be a set of demonstrable skills that can be gained under supervision, and a willingness to remain updated on regular changes/tweaks to the system through close contact with the other keyholders.

Proposal 1:
I’d like to vote on having the following as the steps that need to be taken to become a “laser supervisor” ( if someone wants to write up a longer or more detailed list, no problem, but this is a good start):

1 - first time using the machine, get shown how its done, by a current “supervisor”, as a spectator only, no touching the machine, but ask as many Qs as you like about the process. ( this is upskilling on the process, and proper/normal working )
2 - second time using the machine, you may operate the machine directly while 100% “supervised” by a current supervisor. , including cleaning. If you are able to demonstrate operating the machine from beginning to end without error, you may proceed to next step. ( this is demonstration of the skills )
3 - third time using the machine, also fully supervised, the supervisor should deliberately introduce a “unknown” fault in a secondary piece of equipment ( eg disable the air compressor ), and the new operator must be able to identify and fix this minor fault without causing equipment damage etc. (this is upskilling on possible/common faults, and how to identify )
4 - the new supervisor is required to join the laser-supervisor/s preferred communication/s channel ( eg slack?), and keep up-to-date on issues/faults/rectifications, including being involved in repair of issues where it’s within their skillset and time abilities.
5 - the new “supervisor” is now permitted to operate/supervise the laser without other supervisor/s present.
6 - the new person is added to the wiki page as a “laser supervisor”.

For example, I note that I have done the equivalent of the first 5 steps already, as far as I’m aware, so I expect that I would be able to become a proiperly sanctioned “supervisor” after this relatively easily.

Proposal 2:
Proposal to accept Buzz as a “suspervisor” for the laser cutter subject to him satisfying the above 6 points to the satisfaction of at least one current supervisor.


It’s not that we’re special or anything, it’s just that we’re actively working on it. Getting “approved” just so you don’t get slightly inconvenienced when using the machine is precisely the sort of thing we don’t want.

Also, inventing a process so that people can pretend to be “actively working on the machine” just so they can get “approved” so they can avoid being slightly inconvenienced? Fuuuuuuck that.

Hell, maybe I should stop getting in the way. When the laser cutter dies, it won’t get fixed, and we won’t have to have this argument again.

And Buzz, YOU HAVE YOUR OWN MACHINE. If you’re motivated to fix ours, there’s no reason you can’t have yours working.

James, you post appears to be filled with emotion, which I’m going to ignore.
My concerns are first and foremost that I want a clear and precise method that people can use to become self-sufficient with the equipment, so it can be used by members who want to use it, not at the whim of the the few who have previously been able to commit large hours to that specific machine.

With regard to “actively working on it” - that’s great, I’m glad you’ve all been able to commit so many hours to the laser cutter in general recently, but none of you have written a process on how to induct people on it, or a process for being sign-ed off on using it, etc, which is what we need. I’ve just tried to do that.
My version of “working on it” was that I personally proposed the purchase, got the group to approve it, organized the quotes for pricing, got individuals to volunteer to put their own extra money in for the short-fall, personally put in more money than anyone else, was part of the small team that picked it up from the warehouse, commissioned it, tested it, watched over other/s as a bunch of people in turn (a) broke sh1t and (b) fixed it or © replaced it ; and with those cookies well-and-truly licked, I stayed out of the way, hoping for traction, asking people questions, hoping it would “be working again soon” ; and when the red laser-cutter was offline for so long that I thought it was never going to be revived… I started building another one… if for no reason other than to see the people who had lost-interest in the red laser-cutter to be invigorated by the challenge of getting it working again “before buzz got the other one working”.

Also, with regard to the myself specifically ( not the most important point, see above ) , are you saying I’m not adequately trained to use the red laser cutter unsupervised (capabilities), or are you saying I’m not adequately “engaged” with the nuance/s of the laser cutter(troubleshooting) ?

I m not saying that key holders are set to those people and just those people,

I m saying that those people are the ones that are trusted to run the machine at this time and those are set to be the first set of key holders.

Others to be added later once it can be shown that they can handle the machine and are willing to spend a little TLC on the machine.

At this point the 4 people that are able to use the machine are the ones spending the most time fixing it and gettting it back to working order all the time.

Because we keep trusting people to use the machine under supervision and we have having to clean the machine after use.

Guide lines are being broken all the time with the machine by people that are trusted to run the machine under supervision and it is getting really bloody annoying having to always watch out for people screwing with it, ie the machine is not to be run when the temp gets above 30c, if it does get that high cool the room down then use the machine again,

I would just like to point out the reason that the Red one took so long to get repaired was because we were waiting on parts in china to be fixed under warranty (which did not end up happening) and as well as waiting on a new smoothie board, once this had happen would would have notice the Nog and I kicked our ass into gear to get it back online for use.

We then had a safety audit which Mike (for good Reason) pushed all those that we working on the laser cutter to read the safety standards and get the machine in compliance.

Mike then with help from Nog, myself and a few others cleaned the lens and mirrors, something in which in the past, were cleaned with a shirt.

and the tool chain is always being worked on by James all the time.

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I’m not trying to appoint blame, and really, I don’t care much as to WHY it was offline for so long… I’m just pointout out the fact that it was, and that I felt by having two laser cutter/s would mean we’d be more likely to have one that worked. ( and that in fact turned out true, as the red one has been mostly working most of the time due to the effort/s of many ) .

Folks, can we please not read tone and emotion into people’s messages. We all know text doesn’t accurately convey that and can lead us off track.

Buzz, I don’t think your process is completely unreasonable and sounds like a decent framework to work from in future once the machine is more reliable.

are you saying I’m not adequately trained to use the red laser cutter unsupervised (capabilities), or are you saying I’m not adequately “engaged” with the nuance/s of the laser cutter(troubleshooting) ?

Neither. Your primary goal is to use it for your own projects. That’s fine, but it means you’re only going to pay attention to the machine when you’ve got a personal need for it. We’ve got four people who are actively maintaining the machine so that the machine is available to you. We bend over backwards to be around when people ask to use the machine, and multiple people have had no problem getting dozens of hours of laser time under this arrangement.

When people who haven’t even asked for our help start going to lengths to justify why they should be allowed to use the machine alone, that’s a major red flag.

Finally, we’ve had trouble keeping everyone up to date even when there’s only four of us and we’re all paying attention. Add in a dozen random members who are purely focussed on getting their own project done? That’s a recipe for disaster.

James, your assertion that I will be unwilling to assist others by supervising them is incorrect. I have done little of that so far purely because I’m not a sanctioned supervisor of this equipment, and till today had no clear way of becoming one.

Had a talk with Adam privately last night, and a few points came out of that conversation.

We’re not supervising the users. We’re watching the machine itself, so that we can address any issues that come up when you’re trying to use it.

You don’t need an induction to be allowed to use the machine, but one of us has to be around and given permission every time. If we’re comfortable with you using the machine, and the machine is in a reasonable state, we probably won’t do more than poke our head in occasionally. That’s not a major burden, and we’ll happily negotiate to be around when it’s convenient for you.

There is no induction that gets you to the point where you can maintain the machine yourself. We don’t need or want more people fiddling with the machine, four is already too many.

If you really want to play with a laser cutter for the sake of it, there’s a whole second laser cutter in digifab that needs a lot of work to be done on it. I daresay Aaron would accept any that is offered.

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I’d also like to add 3D printing inductions to the agenda for mentioning.

Next year I’m really keen to begin teaching the basics of 3D printing, including a how-to in using the machines. I’ve recently run 3D printing workshops at the Coterie (QUT) and my theory content is up to date. I’ve also booked myself in to do a more consumer-focussed version of the content with Brisbane Workshop here: http://www.work-shop.com.au/event/intro-3d-printing/
It would be great if you could ask at the meeting for volunteers to sit down with me on a convenient Tuesday night/weekend to flesh out the wiki page around this more to include the ‘how-to’. http://wiki.hsbne.org/tools/repraps
This means I can start to translate this into my existing presentation. Alternatively, volunteers that are also willing to start to work on the wiki documentation in their own time are also great.
I’ll also look at pairing the 3D printing workshop with a 3D modelling workshop to run one after the other. This also means digifab can start to hit the class quota.
As a side note, I think monthly ‘3D modelling’ meetups might be cool. Just work on your own stuff and ask for help if you need. I’ll look into doing this too if the 3D modelling workshop is popular.


I have not seen the outcome of this digifab meeting ( minutes etc ), so I presume that because it was scheduled for the day after boxing day , during holiday period that it was either cancelled, or postponed?