Membership Survey - What do you want from HSBNE in future?

Hi All,

I’d like to make sure we’re heading in the right direction for the membership. In future, what would you like to see us buying/doing/improving around the space? Are there any gaps in your creation/production line that we could fill in? What new tools would you like to see?

Any thoughts are much appreciated.

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I think we’re on the right track, but we should be focusing on:

Improving overall consistancy

This doesn’t just apply to policies, application of policies etc but with regards to expectations of members, their guests and community uses of our site/resources.

Incremental improvements around the space

The space can always do with incremental improvemetns to how it looks, how it operates etc. Things like the greenroom tables can be replaced/improved.

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I would like to see HSBNE have a “Expensive tool fund” for tools worth over 10 grand. HSBNE is somewhere to go when you need something and most people cant afford the expensive tools they need to get there job done.

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  1. No new tools. We got everything we need, mostly.
  2. Make everything work.
  3. Have all the handtools handy and complete. Alan keys anybody?
  4. CLEAN!

I’d like to see more proper/dedicated places for some tools, to make sure they get put back in their proper place. Or maybe some sort of accountability when (not if) tools go missing. It’s frustrating to not be able to find what I need, especially when I’ve already gotten frustrated and personally donated extra sets of tools only to have them somehow disappear. Examples: I’ve donated three sets of screwdrivers to the green room so far this year (yes really) and it’s often a struggle to find one of the size I need. Both pairs of scissors I donated had disappeared when I needed them just a week after donating, which is a complete mystery to me. Four tape measures and it’s still difficult to find one. And then there’s consumables and how they’re completely devoured by the membership whenever I donate some. Six cutting knives in two months, and it’s still a stretch to find one. A thousand zip-ties lasted us just over a month (seriously!!! Is someone zip-tying elephants together or something?). Thankfully I wised up to our excessive consumable consumption and have been flooding the tapenator with an over-abundance of stock so there’s always been sticky tape when I need it now, but who knows how long that stash will hold against the horde of members. :stuck_out_tongue:


I’m with Mike on this one.

Better management of tools and supplies,
we can purchase many toolkits but the left handed screwdrivers are always the first to go missing!

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New member disclaimer

I would like a bit more clarity over what tools are available, their induction/usage status and documentation, who is responsible for said induction, and a bit more general “use the tools” nights so people can get inducted into using multiple tools on one night with a minimum of effort

Although “just ask x until they say ask y” is a valid strategy I suspect it is quite daunting for people who may feel less secure in the space or do better via initial written vs interpersonal communication, particularly when those most obviously helping out with such things are also amongst the busiest, and we rely on them giving us their time and expertise.

Acknowledging the significant amount of work that goes into keeping the more complicated tools working, I think emphasis on ruggedising such tools is important. I’m aware of the balance between keeping things working, and keeping people using them.

Accountability for tool use is important; moving forward on interlocking and storage is probably important.

Making projects aimed at the space clearly documented remains crucial so that where people would like to help, project managers are encouraged to seek help and collaboration.

I agree that the level of tooling in the space is of a very high standard and that large projects are probably not in high demand. However I would mitigate that with the observation that utilisation seems focussed on a fairly small group for most of the tools, which documentation and induction may assist with.

With that said funds for maintenance and consumables (such as laser mirrors tubes and lenses, milling bits, hand tool batteries, soldering iron tips, fasteners, gas for furnaces) - although boring - may need higher priority going forth

And lastly, small tools get more respect when they have specific, rather than general, homes. Neatness is not everyone’s forte but the easier it is for people to be tidy, the stronger it can be enforced.

A conveyor belt for the green room tables, electronics bench and other shared spaces that automatically “clears” them at the end of the night is a tempting but passive-aggressive reaponse


interesting, like in the realm of a HSBNE fabrication shop, like emachineshop?

I think HSBNE has an awesome and extensive array of tools, purchased and DIY that can be used for so many projects. As sven pointed out [quote=“Svenska, post:4, topic:1596”]
.2. Make everything work.

That would be my #1 quickly followed by a more comprehensive and trackable induction process and some documentation and spare parts. Even possibly machine consumables (sanding belts, drill bits etc) in vending machine for purchase.

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If I were to create a system to easily create QR codes for:
a: Item X needs Restocking
b: This is a link to documentation on this tool.

And then implemented them, who would use it? Please like this post so I can gauge priority.


Yes, that’s good - I started work on something similar a couple of years ago but never finished it.

Don’t have a separate restocking code, though - too easy to scan it by accident. Have the one item/area QR code that goes to a page with alert buttons at the top - restocking required/broken/found in a messy state, and documentation below that.

Bonus points if the qr code looks like a picture of the tool :smiley:

I would like to see tools put back after use so the next person can find them. 3 x 250L wheelie bins for workshop offcuts and saw dust housed outside the woodwork area. It is too crowded inside. Green permits seem to go missing!?@#$ I have a milk crate with diverse pieces of wood but I can’t lift it over the rubbish to the other side. Comment on consumables. I tend to bring my own, I seldom get the right sized anything despite the use of size gauges so the Bunnings up the road that takes back opened items is a God send. Outside under the awning is for me premium work space, protected from the sun and light rain with low dust and no stale perspiration odour - I would like to see some very long tables at desk height in this area for working on projects as this height is ergonomic for me and I believe others. Eventually some outdoor all weather power points. The outdoor tap needs a new fitting so a hose can be attached. The kitchen sink tap needs a new washer and is hard to turn on and off. A basin lever tap would be an option. I would welcome some more thorough and documented inductions. Safety aspect. There are 2 pieces of wood on the floor that are perpendicular to the bench saw blade and support the table the device is mounted on. They are too long and a tripping hazard. I have tripped a couple of times and my hand has landed on the bench saw table. Grunge and ergonomic factors. In my opinion rusty greasy bolts, screw drivers, metal files and parts of projects etc don’t belong in the kitchen area and they leave a grunge impressions on members and visitors alike. The table there is better placed parallel to the window and left cleared when not in use


A nicer tool induction process. I’ve been a member for six, seven months? Not sure. Haven’t been coming in because I don’t know that I can use the tools I want to use without breaking HSBNE OH&S and member rules. I’m getting to the point where the membership paid could have bought some of the tools I want to use.

This is mostly down to me not being pro-active and engaging with existing HSBNE members, but if the process were a bit more formal I’d be all over it.


I’m hearing a lot of documentation needs to ‘actually’ be in place


minor upgrades to increase cleanliness and ability to work on projects?

HSBNE for a long time has operated in a strange DIY way. If it looks like it needs fixing, just fix it. This can be daunting as hell for new members. I know it took me almost a year to feel comfortable enough to make very minor changes. The reality is, if you chat to a couple of members about your plans. ie cutting the timber under the saw bench so its no longer a trip hazard, no doubt they will be supportive and in fact a good 50% will give you a hand to do it.
Its an amazingly cooperative group. I implore everyone to talk more about making space improvements. If someone comes to you regarding one, be sure to say “Sounds interesting, how can i help you achieve this?”

As for documentation; I have been waaaaay out of the loop for a long time. however Scattered throughout the forum and the wiki is ‘some’ documentation regarding tools and inductions. Perhaps we would form a group and some meetings, or even just a google docs file (@nogthree ) to set some tasks and goals

I had a go at updating the documentation for the mini cnc but i have no idea re its current state @Svenska
can we add an induction page, separate for each hsbne area, or included in each tool page?


I agree with the new member nervousness with regards to modifications and approaching members you may not have met in real life before.

I do agree with the feeling that the space is friendly and cooperative, but what people bring to that situation will include shyness, anxiety and negative past experiences.

I’m wondering if there should be a “communication cause” to try and coordinate documentation efforts, so we can have a small team help the other groups or even provide documentation where easy.

Simple things like

  • this machine is called …
  • QR code to documentation, ID tags and inventory
  • links to projects that have used the tool / suitable uses
  • Safety assessment (restricted use, induction only, experience only, general use)
  • induction contacts where available
  • home location (for portable tools)

Sounds like we need to organise a “Documentation Working Bee” to get a bunch of stuff done in one hit. Even if it’s the most basic descriptions for things, it’ll give a decent baseline for people to make ad-hoc edits to later.

This is getting a bit off-topic, though - should we split “improvements we can make now” into a separate thread?


I think the thing I would most want is a 2d CNC that can cut a full sheet of plywood.

That’s already coming. :grin:

I really like this idea, let’s get this working bee on the road. Please like this link if you’d like to chip in, and I’ll set up the events and details.


I’ve set up the documentation working bee to coincide with the next Saturday open day, and the event page is here:

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