Family Rocket Day, 9-24-16

In the second session of a family rocket day, one family built and shot off rockets in the Discovery Lab at the Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library. Using the rest of the Estes Gnome rockets,  three youngsters and their mother built three rockets. We then went outside to launch said rockets.

The Gnome rocket makes a good first-time project as they are easy to build and can be launched soon after completing.

I enjoy presenting these programs as it is a joy to see the little ones’ eyes light up when the rocket they’ve made launches.

-Steve

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Family Rocket Workshop at the Library

Today 5 families built and launched rockets. I chose the Gnome rocket from Estes. The Gnome is small and easy to build; it took about 20 minutes to complete the kits, and the rockets were ready for launch. The Gnome rocket uses a streamer for recovery (as opposed to a parachute).

Each family got to launch their rocket two times. The rockets went up about 800 feet and tumbled to the ground after the engine ejected the nose cone and streamer. The orange streamer made for an easy recovery.

And as a bonus, I got to launch my rocket (orange one below, from a previous rocket program) once.

A good time was had by all.

There is another family rocket program on September 24, 2016 @ 10am in the Discovery Lab.

-Steve

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Denver Tool Library

Recently, two of us from the adult reference department at the library took a field trip to the Denver Tool Library. Located at 555 Santa Fe Drive in Denver, the DTL is a community resource where members can borrow hand and power tools that they otherwise might not have access to.

The membership costs $80 a year and a tool may be checked for approximately 4 days. The library is open on Tuesdays & Thursdays, 3pm-7pm and Saturdays & Sundays, 10am-2pm.

Librarian Sarah Steiner started the library about a year and a half ago after raising over $20,000 in an IndieGoGo campaign.

Tools run the gamut from saws, screwdrivers, hammers, mallets, clamps, tape measures, squares, table saws, chain saws, routers, brad $ finish nailers. Check out their online inventory of tools for a comprehensive list.

Even more impressive is a bike station where members can work on their bicycles.

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Another Day of Soldering at the Library

Another fun-filled morning of soldering at the Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library.

Today, 8 participants successfully completed the Sparkfun Weevil Eye kit. It is a great starter kit for beginners on which to learn the basics of soldering. As always each participant used the trusty Hakko FX888D temperature controlled soldering station.

First I gave a short lecture on the basics of soldering, which covered equipment, safety and soldering technique which was followed by the participants completing their Sparkfun kits.

This class was a follow up to a previous class. The first one was so popular that it filled up quickly. Soon after the wait list filled up. So another class was in order.

-Steve

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Makerspaces: The Gizmo Dojo’s Kickstarter Campaign

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The Gizmo Dojo, a local Broomfield makerspace has launched a Kickstarter campaign.

Serving the Broomfield/North Denver area, the Gizmo Dojo is a non-profit makerspace whose goal is to offer community space for makers, tinkerers, thinkers, artists, entrepreneurs, and innovators of all backgrounds and ages. The group endeavors to offer a  space filled with tools which might not normally accessible. They offer classes which encourage learning through doing including: robotics, textiles, woodworking, electronics, metal working, computer science, chain maille, 3D printing, crafts, backyard forging and anything else which can be imagined.

If you can envision it, the Gizmo Dojo wants to be able to give you the space, knowledge and tools to make it happen. The Kickstarter campaign will give them the necessary funds to enable members to create.

Click here to check out their Kickstarter campaign: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/thegizmodojo/the-gizmo-dojo

Currently, the group meets on Mondays at the Mamie Doud Eisenhower Public Library in the Discovery Lab at 7:00pm. Come by and check them out.

-Steve