Largest Amateur Rocket Ever!

Over the past few years MESH President, Sascha Grant (aka El Presidente), has been involved in a project to design and build a scale replica of the famous V2 rocket, it is almost 14 metres tall! The rocket was finally launched in March, 2015. The launch has garnered international attention, with the rocket being featured by the Science Channel in the US. Here is a preview below.

Outrageous Acts of Science – Rocket Launch

This group built the largest amateur rocket ever!An all new Outrageous Acts of Science premieres at 9p!

Posted by Science Channel on Saturday, January 9, 2016

I’m sure the future there will be even larger rockets launched by this group, going higher than an amateur rockets has ever flown before. This is a rather large example of what ordinary people can do, as long as they dream big and apply themselves to make their dreams reality.

Happy New Year!

2015 was a great year for MESH, but 2016 will be even better. Hopefully, by the time we next meet in February or early March (dates coming soon), we will finally be in a new permanent location! I am sure that all of us will be busy the first half of this year creating a fantastic makerspace.

The proposed location is at the Wantrina Campus of Swinburne University of Technology. We are working with Swinburne and Knox Council to make sure we have a space that is of benefit to all stakeholders. As we work through the details of the new space I will keep you all up to date.

I hope everyone will have a fantastic year and I look forward to seeing all the gadgets created by MESH members 2016! See you soon.

Regards,

Chris Fryer
MESH Secretary

AGM – 22nd of November 2015

Our AGM will be taking place at the Parkwood Community Hub 35 Tortice Drive, Ringwood North 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm. Hopefully we will have time to do some making afterwards.

Thank you to everyone who made Stringybark festival a great success!

MESH will next be appearing at the Mini Make Day at the Library at the Dock 107 Victoria Harbour Promenade in Melbourne’s Docklands on Sunday 25th October next week – It starts at 12:00 PM!

Our next meeting is on the 8th of November at the new North Ringwood Community House which is located at the Parkwood Community Hub 35 Tortice Drive, Ringwood North 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

The Parkwood Community Hub is on the old site of Parkwood Secondary College. See You there!

Maker Stuff in October!

It will be a very busy calendar next month with lots of maker stuff happening in October. These are:

1. The 3D Printing Showcase at Melbourne University on Friday 9th of October
2. The Stringybark Sustainability Festival on Saturday and Sunday 17th and 18th of October
3. Mini Make Day at Library at the Dock in Melbourne’s Docklands on Sunday 25th of October

The 3D Printing Showcase at Melbourne University looks really exciting with University of Melbourne’s #SharksDen Innovation Challenge and an open Makerspace led by Melbourne Library, consisting of the various community Makerspaces across Melbourne and Victoria such as CCHS, MESH and others . Makers will be on hand to allow showcase attendees to participate and actively learn about 3D printing and the growing maker community in Melbourne.

The Stringybark Sustainability Festival is celebrating its 30th birthday in 2015. At the festival there will be three stages featuring acts from local schools, groups and individuals, both professional and amateur. The food court will be full of international cuisines as well as fundraising sausage sizzles. There will also be market stalls with fair-trade and ethical crafts on offer. There will be creative and educational displays and hands on workshops for all ages.

The Mini Make Day at the Library at the Dock in Melbourne’s Docklands. This will feature a broad representation of the maker movement of Melbourne. Library at the Dock is a new library in Melbourne’s Docklands which has an open Makerspace where members of the public are able to learn about 3D printing and use the equipment. Sadly there are some people that don’t know how accessible technology is these days and are ignorant of the broader maker movement. The idea of Mini Make Day is to spread the word and show the public the extraordinary things that can be achieved by ordinary people this day and age.

See you there!

A very MESHy Christmas

A big hello to everyone, the committee of MESH wish you all a safe and happy Christmas.

We are overwhelmed by the amount of people who have shown an interest in starting a new Hacker/Maker space in the outer reaches of melbourne and we now have over 90 people who have signed up to this Meetup Group and a regular turnout at our general MESH meetings at the Ringwood RTTF.

Hopefully more of you will venture down to a meeting in the new year and sign up as a financial member (very low cost) and help make this hackerspace grow and prosper.

The committee will endeavour to keep our Website and Meetup pages more current and fresh so as to keep you all better informed as to what we are all up to and where we are heading.

On behalf of the MESH committee, please be safe and have a great break over the holiday period and come and play with all the great hackable gifts you got as presents for christmas when we reopen in the new year.

As a further personal note, I wish to thank each of the committee members who have worked invisibly in the background to get us to where we are now and a special thanks to Chris, Nick and Peter who have done most of the heavy lifting in getting the legals out of the way. And I would also like to thank Lachlan, who has been a fantastic liaison between MESH, the RTTF and CCHS and has offered valuable steering  with our initial planning when it was all just ideas and dreams.

So happy Hacking and hope to see you all next year

Peter (Pres)

2nd Meeting

The second meeting of MESH went great with even more people, over 20, than last time and in an amazing new location the Ringwood Trade Training Facility (RTTF) adjoining Ringwood Secondary College. It continues to surprise me how fast all this is happening. When I created a group on Meetup.com 49 days ago I did not think that we would already have had 2 meetings with high attendance by now.
We still have a bit to go, if we are to continue meeting at RTTF we to need formalise our organisational structure and work out a few minor details.

We took some pictures!


Now that MESH is starting to take off tell your friend and family about it, share a link to our meet up page / website / forum on Facebook or Google plus.

If MESH is too far away for you there is also the CCHS in Hawthorn. If neither of those are practical for you – start your own hacker / maker group. MESH started with one guy with an idea. Instead of just remaining an idea plagued by self-doubt and never happening like several of my ideas I just went ahead and did it – not really knowing what I was doing.

This could have been another failed idea if I didn’t have a number of people to help me (some who do know what they are doing).

So thanks everyone – you are awesome! :)

1st Meeting

Today we had a great first meeting of the Eastern Suburbs Hackers Group. We still need to pick a name East Hack or MESH. Melbourne Eastern Suburbs Hackers that name really works… Anyway, our first meeting went great with lots of ideas, communication and motivated people that will make a Hacker Space in the eastern suburbs happen. We have a long to do list and lots of work to do. Thank you very much to Jenny Fryer for catering our first event (for free). It was great to meet all you guys and girl, just a word of warning I will probably not remember all your names ( I forgot my own name once).

Here are the pictures.

Eastern Suburbs Hackers Group

Makers or hackers are people who create things. This could be using technology such as electronics, computers, programming, CNC machining, 3-D printing or all of these. Also included is the wider DIY community from knitters to people who restore furniture and vehicles or people who renovate their houses and even somebody who likes to cook! Ordinary people can make extraordinary things.

The maker movement has accelerated with the introduction of hacker spaces. These are places where nerds can congregate to share their knowledge, learn and build things together. Many hacker spaces are important centres for the development of open source software and hardware. Most hacker spaces have open membership and want people from all walks of life to join. Just because you do not know anything about technology does not bar you from membership. You can collaborate with people who do have the knowledge to make your dreams reality.

Hackers pull apart devices and use the parts to create amazing new devices such as robots.

I think eventually makers will transform our society. Soon it will be possible to make any sort of device, even a mobile phone, with off-the-shelf components. We won’t be dependent any more on huge multinational companies to make all our stuff. You could download all the design documentation for free, then 3-D print a really cool custom housing for it. Stick in all the components and then download the latest version of android and install it on your new phone. You could then connect wirelessly to a public mesh network – for free. Before this happens the mobile phone may have become obsolete – replaced with a smart watch or something.

Further on into the future, if breakthroughs continue in robotics and 3-D printing, it will be possible to 3-D print almost anything. Just put all of the components in the correct resource bin and press print. The current proprietary world where everything is protected by intellectual property laws and copyright will start to be irrelevant. In this world everyone is a maker.

What is the Maker Movement?

The Maker Movement is the convergence of social media, the Internet, high technology, 3-D printing, free 3-D design packages, open source software, open source hardware, computer programming and more. It is now possible everyday people to create extraordinary gadgets.

What is a Maker?

The simple answer is we all are. Once upon a time our society was full of makers: the butcher the baker, the candlestick maker etc. Throughout our recent history and the industrial revolution we have transformed from makers to consumers with everything we buy being manufactured in large factories or imported from overseas. There were always people that continued making people who chose to make their own clothes, knitting and pottering around in the back shed.

Now I believe we are at a stage where normal people are once again able to make even the most complex of electronic gadgets at home or in a hacker space. With the Internet and social media we are all makers again. When you post a status on Facebook, take and upload photos, upload a video to YouTube, modify a Wikipedia article or add a definition to Urban Dictionary – you are making.

What is a Hacker Space?

Also known as, maker space, hack space, hack lab and of course the back shed. These are places where nerds can congregate to share their knowledge, learn and build things together. Many hacker spaces are important centres for the development of open source software and hardware. Most hacker spaces have open membership and want people from all walks of life to join. Just because you do not know anything about technology does not bar you from membership. You can collaborate with people who do have the knowledge to make your dreams reality. Oh, and did I mention, it’s lots of fun.

Who can join?

Anybody can join. We welcome people of all ages, cultures, backgrounds etc. You do not need to have a background in computer programming or electronics. If you do join you may choose to collaborate with others or pursue your own solo projects. I look forward to the Eastern Suburbs Hackers Group being a place where you can ask any sort of question and you don’t feel embarrassed being a newbie – because we were all newbies once.