Bringing my own tools to VHS?

I am a new member to VHS! I see there is mandatory training for the welding machines provided by VHS. I plan on getting trained for them. However, I do have my own mini arc welder. It’s the size of a small toaster. I have welding gloves, helmet, rods, etc.

I am wondering if I am allowed to bring it to VHS and use it? I would plan on leaving it at VHS for future use, and I am open to leaving it there for other members to use.

Am I allowed to do this? Would I still need a welding orientation to use my own welder ?


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Welcome to VHS!

Generally speaking, a welding shop orientation is good form, regardless of what tools you’re planning on using. It’ll cover shop basics, like ventilation, noise restrictions, the mandatory fire watch, etc…

Janet hosts open nights on Tuesdays, she’s the welding shop’s Area Champion, there are other folks who can give you an orientation as well.

As far as bringing your tools to VHS, it’s generally encouraged. In this case, though, the welding shop is equipped with a MIG and TIG setup already, and there’s remarkably little free space. You’re welcome to bring your machine to use, but finding it a home in an already crowded shop may prove difficult.

There’s also a formal process for lending machines to the hackspace. Gating can only be done on safety (human and machine) level. Machines at the space that are gated require a clear path for training. Additionally, the area committee usually have a first say at what is allowed to be added/removed from an area (though I encourage you to join that committee, usually they are open to anyone willing).

Formal process is a form that helps track who owns what and under what conditions things happen, etc as well as approval from the committee.

Training requires someone who wishes to be trained on it have an opportunity to do so in a reasonable amount of time (I think there’s a codified time limit but we are still resolving some other tools that have been hard to coordinate training).

That’s all there not to discourage you from trying to get it in there, but to lay out expectations. Another option is if you do prefer to avoid that and use it only for yourself, there is an opportunity for member storage bins and a toaster-sized item would be able to fit in said bin.

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@hackyryan great to have you at VHS! Are you on slack at all in the welding channel? That’s a good place to talk about this and also an easy way to reach the welding committee/folks who run the welding shop.

If you need a slack invite, let me know.

Thanks for your reply. The MIG and TIG welders look like they would perform far better than the one i have

Good stuff to know, Mike :+1:I’ll keep the welder in a storage bin

I dont believe i am yet on Slack. I’ll check that out. Thanks

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Hey Ryan, the TIG can also be set up for SMAW, if that’s what you’re most comfortable with. I’m around on tuesday evenings, and can do the checkout with you if you like.

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Slick. I’ll be there this evening