Thursday, December 7, 2017

Fixit Clinic CCXLV (245) San Francisco-Noisebridge

Held in conjunction with Noisebridge's Circuit Hacking Mondays, this was a rare weekday evening Fixit Clinic. There were a surprising number of young people present. 


Among the treats at Noisebridge is a stereo microscope hooked up to a large display so everyone could watch the fine soldering work in action:




Fixit Coach Scotty Allen worked diligently with these young people and the stereo microscope to figure out a bad Bose iPod dock. (Scotty's famous for his iPhone hacks: see https://strangeparts.com/how-i-made-my-own-iphone-in-china/)


This air compressor gave us all sorts of problems and we blew out a voltage regulator trying to fix it.


This mixer had decades-old batter hardened in the slots for the beater blades -- fixed!


These ravenous, enterprising, and opportunistic diners used a heat gun to defrost their burritos.


More photos from Fixit Clinic CCXLV (245) can be seen here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/Q1QbmsdME1bWSu5f1


Monday, December 4, 2017

Fixit Clinic CCXLIV 244 Burbank CA

A beautiful late fall Sunday in SoCal brings us to Burbank for their inaugural Fixit Clinic.


Among the items seen were:

This Peanut Butter Maker -- Fixed!


Gralab Darkroom Timer -- Fixed!


This Breville Toaster Oven needed a new thermal fuse, and they brought the part -- Fixed!



More photos from Fixit Clinic CCXLIV 244 Burbank CA can be seen at https://photos.app.goo.gl/jekEtUCcQq4qID9o2

A great day of fixing with great people: looking forward to the next one.


Sunday, October 29, 2017

Bi-Coastal Fixit Clinics This Saturday November 4

We've got two Fixit Clinics this Saturday (November 4) on both coasts of the United States.

1) Fixit Clinic CCXXXVII (237) Honan-Allston Branch, Boston Public Library

As shown in the photos: Rob Gogan at Harvard University already has the library tastefully decorated with our logo.



see it on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/events/213316409202549/
and on Google+ https://plus.google.com/events/cdgh77a2gu3vdsk3gsveee87llk

2) Fixit Clinic CCXXXVIII (238) Solano County Library - Springstowne Library, Vallejo, CA

This is our second Fixit Clinic at this library (their inaugural Fixit Clinic was in mid-April.)


First-time Fixit Coaches are always welcome at all events: sign up here http://goo.gl/xS1MRK. And if you’ve got friends who you think might make good Fixit Coaches please encourage them to sign up too or just show up and observe.

Thrilled to have Fixit Clinics happening on both coasts in one day.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Saturday's San Mateo County Fixit Clinic


(We'll be at 455 County Center, 1st floor, Room 101)

We're excited to be holding a Fixit Clinic this Saturday Oct 28 11AM-2PM at the San Mateo County Center in Redwood City. See it on the web here:
https://www.facebook.com/events/1609002885787381/,
https://plus.google.com/events/c430ak01u3b64cs2bm3vgn1pmkk,
http://www.bayareascience.org/calendar/index.php?eID=21221
(and see the text announcement at the bottom)

As always: we're looking for new Fixit Coaches: sign up here: http://goo.gl/xS1MRK ?
Basics on Fixit Coaching are on our web site: http://fixitclinic.blogspot.com/p/coaches-corner.html (let me know if this can be clearer.) And if you've got friends you think might make good Fixit Coaches please encourage them to sign up as well or just show up and observe.

==========================
Fixit Clinic CCXXXVI (236) San Mateo County Center

Celebrating repair by conveying basic troubleshooting skills, Fixit Clinics are do-it-together hands-on STEM-oriented fix-n-learn community-based exploration and discovery workshops where neighbors, friends, and families work collectively to learn about and repair their broken items.

So bring your broken, non-functioning things -- electronics, appliances, computers, toys, sewing machines, bicycles, fabric items, etc.-- for assessment, disassembly, and possible repair. We'll provide 1) workspace 2) specialty tools and 3) volunteer Fixit Coaches to consult with you on the disassembly and troubleshooting of your item.

Whether you fix it or not, you'll learn more about how it was manufactured and how it worked, ready to share your new-found confidence and insight with your friends, neighbors, and the community at large. (Hopefully you’ll be inspired to become a Fixit Coach yourself.)

WHAT: Fixit Clinic CCXXXVI (236) San Mateo County Center
WHEN: Saturday, Oct 28 11AM-2PM
WHERE: San Mateo County Center 455 County Center, 1st floor, Room 101, Redwood City 94063
HOW: Register at http://goo.gl/qTzh9J then
- Bring your broken item with all parts necessary to recreate the symptoms (carry-in only: no oversize items)
- Bring any parts and tools you already own that might be helpful (e.g. hand tools, sewing supplies)
- Come ready to describe what’s wrong and what you’ve tried  (advance web research is helpful)
- Come ready to learn and to share your knowledge with others
WHO: An all-ages family-friendly event: accompanied children are heartily invited!
COST: Free!
WHY: To make friends, learn and teach how to fix things, and have fun!
First-time Fixit Coaches always welcome; sign up here: http://goo.gl/kwVNlv

Sponsored by the San Mateo County Office of Sustainability http://www.smcsustainability.org/

More into on Fixit Clinic at www.fixitclinic.org, https://www.facebook.com/FixitClinic/, https://plus.google.com/+FixitClinic
==========================

Hope to see you there! -Peter

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Fixit Coaches and Autonomous RC Car Racing

Among the things we're most proud of with Fixit Clinic of is the community of Fixit Coaches we've gathered under the banner of teaching repair to the broader community. When you bring wonderful people like this together their interests and passions are bound to manifest in other ways.

Here in Northern California a bunch of the Fixit Coaches have gotten together to form an autonomous RC car racing team: they meet with others in a warehouse in Oakland, California to build, test, and race autonomous RC cars with the intent of developing and refining ideas around collision avoidance, passing, and path optimization that may someday make their way into full-size passenger vehicles.

Here's a professionally-developed video showing what the scene in the Oakland warehouse is like featuring Fixit Coaches Charles Glorioso, Dave Coleman, and Peter Mui.

Learn more about the autonomous RC car events here: https://www.meetup.com/DIYRobocars/

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Fixit Clinic CCXXI 221 San Lorenzo Library


A bright sunny California day and the newly opened San Lorenzo Library hosts a fabulous Fixit Clinic. Among the highlights:

It was a two weed whacker day: one gas and one electric, both fixed:


We've been carrying around a bicycle patch kit for awhile now and finally got to fix a flat:


This Keurig uses the reusable K-cups, we're glad to get it working again:


in the past year we've held Fixit Clinics at these Alameda County Library System Branches: Castro Valley, Fremont, Newark, Union City, and now... San Lorenzo.

More photos from Fixit Clinic CCXXI 221 at the San Lorenzo Library can be found here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/KMevSDxEcYz2tz4B2

All in all, another satisfying day of fixing; we look forward to our next Fixit Clinic here.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Our Name In Tools



Fixit Coach Steve White designed a Fixit Clinic logo out of tools. As he writes in his accompanying email:

The F is a Monkey wrench that I bought in Malaysia in 1979.  These were the first adjustable wrenches made.  They were used by "grease monkeys" - so called because they had to climb all over those big early machines to get to the lubrication points - in the days before oil pumps.  And they got covered in grease in the process.  Later on the Crescent Tool Company realized that if they put the jaws at a 30 degree angle, and you turned the wrench over every 1/12th of a turn, you could tighten a hex head bolt when there was limited clearance.

The first I is a scribe I made in 1962 in an 8th grade shop class.

The X is a pair of needle nose pliers.  I don't remember when/where I got them.

The second I is a 1/4" drive flex handle and socket I got in 1977 when I was a mechanic working for the city of Beverly Hills.

The T is a crate hammer that I got from my dad.

The first C is a clamp - don't remember where/when.

The L is a square - don't remember where/when.

The 3rd I is a hex drive screw driver & bit that I got in the 1980's when I was working at Electrical Appliance Parts Co. in San Francisco - across from the Cal Train station.

The N is a folding rule that I've had since I was a kid in Wisconsin.

The 4th I is a metric box/open end wrench that I bought in 1973 when I was living in Munich, Germany.

The 2nd C is a clamp (one of 6) that I made in a welding class in Santa Monica in 1977.  The body was cut with a torch from 3/4" scrap.  Top "grip" is 1/8" steel plate, arc welded.  Bottom is a pair of 5/8" nuts, arc welded.  Uses 5/8" all thread with a ball ground on the end.  The "pivot grip" is the end of a 5/8" bolt with a hole drilled to fit over the ball on the all thread.  It is held in place by a split/lock washer with a 5/8" OD.  I bent it open/closed to get it around the neck of the ball and then flame welded onto the grip.  The other end of the all thread, not shown, has a 5/8" nut welded in place.  You need to use a wrench to tighten the clamp, but you can also use another wrench on the pivot grip to prevent the clamp from disturbing the alignment of your work while you tighten the clamp.  It was a great welding class - they let you bring in all sorts of projects if you wanted to.

As you can see, there are lots of good memories to go with the tools in the picture.

Steve's even incorporated it into his Fixit Clinic badge:


Thanks Steve for this wonderful design and your enthusiasm for Fixit Clinic.