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The HiveMind

HiveMind is a wiki built by the The Hive and the Georgia Tech maker community as a resource for all students using equipment and making projects within the Interdisciplinary Design Commons (IDC).

Besides containing up-to-date information on IDC equipment, the HiveMind also contains useful advice on how to make your projects come to life, as well as step-by-step guides on how to recreate the Hive's most popular workshops on your own time and standard operating procedures for all of our equipment .

At the IDC, you can find a plethora of equipment to assist you with your projects. Along with spare wood to help you downstairs, and a seemingly endless supply of 3D print materials, our electrical equipment lying behind the front desk can be found here at this link.

This equipment list is a work in progress, so it may not be 100 percent up to date, but it should have just about everything we have. You're always free to ask if we have something if you don't see it on the equipment list. Additionally, small scale components like IC's, resistors, and LED's are very plentiful and are not on the component list, but we have them (1-1Mohm)!

When you enter the Hive through the main entrance on the second floor, you'll see the front desk on your left. Be sure to sign in! The front desk is a place to ask questions, find information, check in for workshops, and learn about the Hive. If you have a question and don't know who to ask, the front desk is a great place to start. If the PIs there can't answer your question, they can either direct you to another resource or send a message to other PIs. If a room you need access to is locked, visit the front desk, and a PI can unlock and staff a room for you.

You can also check out equipment (for free!) at the front desk, including Raspberry Pis, motors, Beaglebones, solder practice kits, USB cables, and several types of Arduinos. The loan period is two weeks, and can be renewed at the end of the time period. Other supplies, including circuit components, electrical wire, and solder, can be found near the workstations.

There are also lockers available for checkout at the front desk. If you have a big project, or don't want to carry a project back home each day then you may want to consider getting a locker. A PI at the front desk can get you a locker and a combination lock for it. If you forget your combination, we can look it up for you at the front desk too.

The Hive currently has 10 3D printers: You can click on any hyperlink to learn about each specific printer. It links to their SOP!

    • The F170 printers are FDM printers intended for both rapid prototyping
    • These printers allow unique geometries to be printed by using dissoluble support material
  • j55 stratasys?
    • The Ender 5 Printers are our low cost printers that allow for casual, low time-consuming prints to be done
    • Our ultimaker printers allow our users to print in up to two materials. It works very similarly to the enders.
    • The MarkTwo is a specialty 3D printer that prints high strength parts using nylon-based material with fiber reinforcements such as carbon fiber.
  • 2 Creality LD-002R SLA Resin Printer
    • These SLA printers specialize in high detail and surface finish

We have two laser cutters made by Universal Laser Systems Inc., which are located in the production studio on the first floor of the IDC. You can see them through the outside windows at the IDC's ground entrance. Our laser cutters can cut a variety of materials, including wood, acrylic, paper, and cardboard. They are also capable of engraving most materials, such as metal, phone cases, and the examples already listed. If you would like to learn how to use the laser cutter, ask a PI to show you. If you already know how to use the laser cutter, stop by the IDC during open hours to use it. Remember that it may be different than the one you're used to, so don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions.

We have a couple pages of information for you to browse if you need it. These documents are written as if the person reading it is a Peer Instructor, but that in no way means that only Peer Instructors can browse it (:

  • For our full Standard Operating Procedure that tells you how to use the Laser Cutter and the process of getting trained click here.
  • For more in depth detailed settings on how to use the more advanced settings on the laser cutter click here
  • To see our common errors and how to solve them page click here

We also have video tutorials if you don't want to sift through the SOP or documents. The video tutorials will cover all the basics of the laser cutter, the documents have more niche topics that you may not be interested in. You can find the video tutorials here.

Quick FAQ:

  • Both of our Laser cutters are Carbon dioxide lasers but are able to cut through most materials with the exception of metal (it can etch the metal!)
  • The Laser cutter's bed is 32 inches by 18 inches, should you have something bigger, you can cut it down in the machine shop
  • We have a rotary attachment to allow you to cut on curved surfaces
  • While the laser cutter can accept any files that can be sent to a normal printer, vector format types work best
  • Spots on the laser cutter come on a first come first serve basis with some exceptions, we're usually busier in the afternoons and evenings
  • We do provide materials to some degree, but you are encouraged to bring your own, for most of the material we give is scrap from previous projects.

The IDC contains a suite of electronics benchtop equipment available to all end users.

Each standard station includes an:

  • Oscilloscope
  • Function generator
  • Multimeter
  • Power supply
  • Soldering station, complete with a soldering iron and desoldering tool.

When you check out a station, you gain access to drawers with additional hand tools, such as tweezers, wire cutters, and screw drivers, to help you in your project.

Beginner guides on to use each piece of equipment are listed below:

In addition we also have Youtube Demo's listed for all of these different pieces of equipment found here:link

Here at The Hive, we have a suite of tools made by LPKF that enable students to fabricate printed circuit boards (PCBs). Students go through a three-step training process to gain access to the tools, after which they can use the equipment and our materials free of charge whenever The Hive is open.

There are three primary pieces of equipment used in this process:

  • The LPKF ProtoMat S103 - a 2.5-dimensional plotter that drills and mills (cuts) PCB substrates, plastics, and soft metals
  • The LPKF ProtoLaser U4 - a 20um-diameter laser to etch (selectively remove) a wide variety of film/substrate pairings
  • The LPKF Contac S4 - a semi-automatic electroplater for via formation and other copper/tin plating needs

The Hive provides double-sided copper on FR4 in 0.5 oz/ft^2 (18 um) and 1 oz/ft^2 (35 um) weights to our users at no cost, though many other substrates can be used.

Our DRC file: DRC
Out CAM file: CAM

Questions? You can reach the PCB MPIs at

Located on the first floor, the machine shop provides resources for students to design and develop the structural components of their projects. The shop has both large power tools and small tools, which are generally geared towards woodworking. Large equipment, most of which require SUMS access, include:

  • Miter saw
  • Drill presses
  • Scroll saw
  • Band saw
  • Belt sanders
  • Sandblasting booth

Other tools available include (this is a long list, so we might not want to put it here):

  • Cordless drills (with drill bits and screws)
  • Dremmels
  • Hand saws
  • Jigsaw
  • Saw zall
  • Sandpaper
  • etc.

Scrap wood is located in a large red bin inside the machine shop. For specific materials, we recommend purchasing what you need at our locallocal store or online. Lots of people also go to the nearest Home Depot which is near Ponce City, it's a little far, but probably has anything you need if you can get a ride there. Here's the address.

The Hive also has some SOP's (Standard Operating Procedures) so you can familiarize yourself with the equipment. However, you must have a PI in the room to use any of the tools in the machine shop and just reading the SOP's is not enough for training. Here are all the SOP's we have!

In addition to the SOP's, the Hive has also created a video series on the Machine shop that you can watch to familiarize yourselves with the tools. Here's the playlist. Below you can sample one of these videos.

An embedded system is a digital computer system that contributes to the operation of a larger device. Although the term is often used in the same sentence as “Internet of Things” (IoT) or “smart devices,” it is better described as a broad term for embedding digital electronic systems in things. Many embedded systems use some sort of microcontroller.

At the Hive, we have a large selection of electronics available to checkout for a two-week loan period. At the end of the period, you are usually allowed to renew your loan. Examples of embedded systems resources include:

  • Arduino microcontrollers
  • Raspberry pis
  • Adafruit lilypad
  • Beaglebone
  • TI launchpads

Items are available for checkout at the front desk. We do not sell electronics parts. If you need to purchase a part, please visit an online vendor. For more information on borrowing components, see the front desk.

  • Add more resources and pages on getting started with embedded systems! Logistics do not go here.

Ever wanted to create your own stickers, or embroider some random material? Look no further, the hive has a vinyl cutter and embroidery/sewing machine to help with any of your designs. This crafting area is located by the benchtop desks right by the stair case that leads to the bottom floor.

Our vinyl cutter is a Silhouette Cameo 3. This machine uses the computer located right next to it, and the application to use this device is called silhouette studio which is very similar to illustrator. We have anywhere from vinyl, to cardstock, and stencils for anything you want to cut with good precision.

Our sewing/embroidery machine is the Brother SE1900. You don't really need to know how to sew or embroider, as most of the process is actually computerized! We have various colors of thread for you to use and test shirts for you to practice your designs before you try it on your own material.

It exists! A ventilated room is located on the first floor of the IDC and can be used to make your final product look nice. Some common spray paint colors are provided, but for specific colors and substances, please purchase your own. We also have various wood stains for your convenience.

The third floor of the IDC is dedicated to providing space for students to work individually or with others on their projects. This floor features desktop computers (with spinny chairs), movable tables, whiteboards, and generally lots of space. The area is open to all Georgia Tech students for any reason. This is the only public place food is allowed in. Don't forget to sign in!

What's up! It's cleaning the space with Matthew Lim.

If you've ever wondered how the space stays clean and how you can help us keep it that way, this is the section for you.

Currently, only approved authors may edit the HIVE wiki.

Note that we have the Video Share plugin installed, so if you want to embed videos, please use follow instructions there.

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  • Last modified: 2021/08/05 09:27
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