Welding is a skill that really takes practice and time, so it's always amazing to see tinkerers dive in headfirst with no prior training. We begin by going over our Tinkering School goals and welding group agreements before jumping right in to a technical demonstration with Amanda. After watching how it's done, the tinkerers take turns welding two pieces of metal together to get the hang of the motor skills of welding before going into the design phase. Tinkerers sifted through the available metal pieces and started drawing out their project ideas, while thinking about how to make them in 3D with the available pieces. They figure out their designs and get to work!
Only being able to weld two pieces at a time, tinkerers have to get creative with how they set up their pieces.
Ideas begin to take shape, but sometimes the tinkerers have to be flexible about changing their ideas slightly to fit with the parameters of the materials. Collaborators were not cutting any custom metal pieces on the band saw today, so it was up to the tinkerers to figure out how to use the materials given to realize their designs. Sometimes the material constraints led to even cooler creations!
A lot of the pieces that they could use were quite small, so tinkerers had to be very delicate with their welding.
The projects began to take form! As tinkerers finished the welding portion, they realized that the welder could leave the metal discolored and lumpy. To make their pieces look shiny and finished, the tinkerers had at them with files, brushes and good old fashioned elbow grease to polish them up before the arrival of families.
Finally, everyone gets a chance to share their projects with their family and the other tinkerers.