[hackerspaces] Cost sharing for lasers and 3D printers?

Al Billings albill at openbuddha.com
Sat Jan 19 01:58:38 CET 2013

Ace Monster Toys charges for laser cutter usage. 

Seven (?) of us got together and fronted the money to buy the giant ass laser cutter and got it into the space. Once a quarter, out of funds collected, are are paid back a little on the investment.

We charge the public $1 a minute (this is from memory). AMT members pay $0.50 a minute. The original investors pay $0.25 a minute and it is applied against their investment monies owed.

We built a little odometer that counts every second that the laser tube fires (we could build a better system maybe) automatically. We hand keep records of the tallies per user of readings when they started and stopped using on a given use. People bring their own materials in to laser cut from the approved list.


Al Billings

On Friday, January 18, 2013 at 4:51 PM, Arclight wrote:

> Sorry to post off topic, but I have a hacker space related question.
> We just acquired a new 3D printer (used commercial-grade machine) and
> of course lots of people have already lined up to use it.
> How do other spaces do cost recovery/sharing for machines like laser
> cutters and 3D printers? We know we need to record what people use and
> get them to pay for materials and money towards upkeep, but what's a
> good system?
> My experience in the past has been that some hackers either think
> everything should be "at cost" (meaning materials+0.0% markup of any
> type) and that "the collective" will chip in and pay for stuff when it
> breaks. My experience with this is that someone is always left holding
> the bag when some $300 expense pops up and passing the hat yields $38
> and change.
> Other folks (like me) feel that the space should charge members for
> materials, plus money to bank for repairs and hidden costs, leaving
> anything left over as profit/money towards a later replacement
> machine.
> What system does everyone use? Money jar next to the machine? RFID
> accounting by user?
> Arclight
> 23b Shop
> _______________________________________________
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> Discuss at lists.hackerspaces.org (mailto:Discuss at lists.hackerspaces.org)
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