What kind of shops will you have?
First and foremost, we’ll have clean, organized, well-equipped and well-maintained shop areas. Hurrah!
We expect to add shops based on demand (another reason to fill out the survey), and this is what we are currently planning (specific models and brands of equipment are TBD, but feel free to email us with questions/feedback ):
Woodshop: everything you’d expect in a professional woodshop… Table Saw, Miter Saw, Band Saw, Jointer, Planer & more + Automated Dust Collection
Metal & Machining: extensively equipped, including MIG and TIG welding, metal blade chop saw, horizontal bandsaw, plasma torch, etc.)
Ceramics Studio: wheels, kiln, drying racks, damp closet, glaze storage
Jewelry Making: work stations equipped for everything from wire work to lost wax casting, soldering, etc.
Digital Fabrication: large format CNC router, Tormach, 1-2 laser cutters and several 3-D printers
Who will run this space?
As a board-driven nonprofit, we will have a Board of Directors with diverse backgrounds, talents and experiences. The BOD will solidify Asmbly’s mission and goals, fundraise, and vote on organizational decisions.
Employees will be key to managing the operations of Asmbly. Initially, there will be two paid employees: an Executive Director to work directly with the board to manage day-to-day functions of the nonprofit, and a Facilities Director to maintain equipment and facilitate shop operations. We will also have a paid cleaning crew to help us keep the space tidy.
But as a nonprofit we will need volunteers to help us make everything work. Volunteer opportunities include everything from serving as a shop champion (e.g. woodshop guru, CNC expert) to leading open house tours and shop orientation.
What makes this a nonprofit?
Asmbly exists to promote the arts and technology, as well as education of anything related to arts and/or technology. Education is central to Asmbly’s mission, and our education programming will include:
A variety of disciplines and skill levels
Regularly scheduled offerings
Classes with clearly stated objectives, curriculum, and prerequisites when applicable
Qualified, contracted instructors paid per class hour
What are Asmbly’s plans for community outreach?
We have a lot of ideas right now for community outreach projects, including skills and job training/placement for high schoolers and young adults, fabrication partnerships with artists and arts organizations, and programming for the underserved. We will seek grant funding for our community outreach projects.
How will all of this be funded?
Monthly member dues and class fees will cover Asmbly’s budget. But we need start up capital to purchase equipment, build-out a space, and more. The good news is that we have already identified ~ 50% our funding needs through private loans and donations. We get the rest of the way to our goal primarily through tax deductible donations, additional private loans, and commercial loans issued by nonprofit lenders. Hopefully, most of that is through donations; when we don’t have to pay it back + pay interest, 100% of that money can go into Asmbly.
Will there be crowdfunding?
Yes! We will be launching a crowdfunding campaign for Asmbly soon. Crowdsourced funds are important, but just as important is the validation of community interest. Are people willing to pay to use this space? We, as well as our private loan providers, want to ensure that the community is truly interested in a nonprofit makerspace as we have described. Crowdfunding will allow us to pre-sell memberships at a discount as a reward for being part of the campaign. The more participation we have, the more evidence of community interest in making Asmbly happen.
When will all of this happen?
Here’s an overview of our timeline. We are nearly through with the first phase below.