May 20, 2011, 10:24:50 AM5/20/11
Spooq and myself were discussing getting a metal-store going at the Hax. We'll bulk order metal in and cut it into certain common sizes, and also have some larger pieces available. We had to think long and hard about this and the compromises regarding it and there's a few differences between this and say, the wood pile:
.wood can generally be had free (wombled) but metal bar/sheet/plate stock is much harder to find (you can find stuff that's already been formed, but rarely raw bar/stock)
.we probably need more stock in a variety of sizes/materials that we can melt from old hard-drives (at least for now)
.metal is actually moderately expensive - the honesty system can work, but it needs to be enforced properly
.we dont want to end up out of pocket as a result of this
.we'd like to be able to grow this collection over time so we can add cool and rarer things (like brass, bronze, stainless, maybe titanium - eventually!)
.we dont want to end up building metal-dispenser! (because we want to cut metal, not build/debug a vending machine)
This is what we came up with - we're happy to hear your feedback on this:
.We'll get a locking closet for the metal stock (so it doesn't go walkabout, there could easily be a few hundred quid of metal in here at the end)
.Buying into the "metal club" costs a small nominal amount (i.e. 10/20 quid) - members get keys, initial money goes into seeding metal purchases.
.We'll keep a cashbox/logbook inside - everything will be labelled with a price. When you want something, please pay, make entry in log book.
.Prices will be base cost + 10% (initially) so we can afford to slowly grow the stock
.We'll start by seeding this with aluminium which is good to machine, and easily worked
.Non metal-store members *can has* metal too (the 10% premium means they're paying to expand the stock)
...but it's up to a member to open the closet (and lock it when they're done!) and ensure payment is taken
.Donated metal *does not* go into the metal-store, but another pile - this is to prevent ambiguity of conditions (i.e. if I donate and I'm not a member, can I have metal in exchange?)
Hopefully this should work and prevent fisticuffs from people either uninformadly assuming that it's free with the membership, or maliciously nicking it.