One of the best ways for us to learn is to work on things which matter to us. I can remember when I was young(er), before I got my first car, my bicycle was my ticket to freedom. I could get on and pedal all day long, visiting my friends, going from the sandpit to the store, or even getting to those far off fishing holes where my uncle said all the good trout where hiding. But when my bike broke down there was a sense of loss and an immediate desire to fix the thing. This desire drove me through a lot of problem solving, and thus learning. I learned about basic concepts like tension and friction from chains and cables and brakes, I learned about ball bearings, raceways and threading (along with the values and troubles of grease) I learned about materials like steel, aluminum, rubber, plastic, and foam. I took apart my reflectors and thought long and hard about optics. I even learned how to paint. It was a great source of tinkering in my youth.
While this is my story, I feel it is one that is shared by a great number of people in our community.
We recently partnered with the Breakwater School to get our bike shop program up and running. Through a generous contribution of many bikes, bike parts, bike tools, electric/hybrid bikes, and electric components. We are excited about being able to give people a place where they can work on their bikes and hopefully build a few to give away. With all the electric components, I wonder if anyone will get their bikes powered up and learn a little about hybrids and prototyping in the process. We hope that people will come to use the Open Bench Project’s bike station to keep their own bikes and commuter bike communities in good working order.
Getting the OBP Makerspace opened will allow us to make this resource available to our community. So that kids can earn their freedom and we can help keep a few more cars off the street. And who knows, maybe we will even grow a few tinkerers in the process.
Be sure to check out our Indiegogo campaign and make a contribution so we can get this