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A Knack for Building – by Charles Pikor, MakerSpace Student Lead

I have always had a knack for building things with my hands. The pile of scrap wood behind my house is testament to my interest, resembling a graveyard of old and forgotten projects. I relish the instant gratification of turning an idea into a finished product.

My time working at the MakerSpace, and having the opportunity to use state-of-the-art equipment and mapping softwares, has only fueled my curiosity and creativity. The machine I spend most of my time with is the Epilog laser cutter. This futuristic cutting system has the ability to cut and mark paper, wood, and certain metals within minutes.

Last semesterpikor2 Ipikor1 was in need of a case for my sunglasses. It wasn’t long before I began sketching a number of odd and unusual concepts that blended practicality, quality and style. Of the few prototypes I produced with the laser cutter, some did not make it to the manufacturing stage after failing basic durability tests. These losses, in turn, motivated me to go back and redesign a real and functional case.

The opportunity to utilize the MakerSpace not only as an intern, but as a maker and part of a creative community, has proven to be a valuable learning experience for me. Even after my time in the space ends, I will continue to apply the skills I have learned in a real world setting, and put my new knowledge towards daily challenges in whatever I do.

 

What have I learned?  Here is a list of the skills and trades I have acquired during my time at the MakerSpace:

– vinyl cutter certified and technician

– laser cutter certified and technician

– proficiency in Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator

– a working knowledge of Rhino and Roland Cut Studios

– basic knowledge in maintenance for 3D printers

 


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