Reoccurring tasks

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This page lists Reoccurring tasks that need to be done to keep the space functioning. All Hackspace members are expected to contribute in some way to the running of the space!


During the discussion prompted by James H's "It's my time" thread on the mailing list, it appears some members would like to have a list of stuff they can/are expected to help out with. Here's an incomplete list to get people going, although members are invited to consider that just because something isn't on the list, doesn't mean they shouldn't do it - none of this is rocket surgery - use your initiative to make the space a nicer place to be.

By area or category

In no particular order, but perhaps with a slight emphasis on areas people neglect...

Comfy Area

It's especially important to keep the Comfy Area tidy as it's the first thing people see when walking into the space, and helps set expectations / creates first impressions for new / potential members. Things have a tendency to migrate to the comfy area:

  1. People sometimes leave food wrappings and such here - throw this stuff in the trash (and if you saw someone do this, yell at them)
  2. Used mugs and glasses etc. into the dish washer
  3. Toys and such into storage boxes (those round table things can be opened to put things inside)
  4. Musical instruments back on racks / wall hooks / stowed in storage units
  5. Magazines / periodicals on shelf under table
  6. Books and stuff back on the shelves in the proper sections
  7. Neaten cushions & fold blankets and drape over the backs of sofas or into barge footstool storage
  8. Vacuum using studio area Henry (behind the door inside the member's storage room) and put back afterwards!
  9. Wipe down surfaces using kitchen spray (under sink in kitchen)
  10. Water the plants


The Toilets are often in need of a good clean.

  1. Make sure all cubicles have a toilet roll on the holder, and a spare (supplies above washing machine)
  2. Put dirty hand towels in the laundry bag
  3. If the laundry bags are full, do the laundry (we have a washer)
  4. Wash the sink area
  5. Address "problem" cubicles as appropriate - you know, bleach, scrub, nuke from orbit just to be sure and so on

Clean the kitchen

This is really important - the Kitchen sees heavy use and needs constant cleaning to keep it from getting nasty. Clear away cooking things promptly. NEVER LEAVE ANYTHING IN THE SINK.

  1. Clear and wipe down surfaces and table - cleaning spray is under the sink; J cloths are either under the sink or in the stage area of the bathroom, the right of the sink, above the washing machine (yes we have one!)
  2. If the dishwasher is full of dirties, set it running (detergent under sink); flip the sign on the front of the dish washer to "empty me"
  3. If the dishwasher has has run but it still full of clean things, put them away in the cupboards / drawers; flip the sign on the front of the dish washer to "fill me"
  4. Re-stock the kitchen towel
  5. Tidy / wipe down tea / coffee / toaster after - move jars and toaster and wipe up crumbs and such
  6. Put things from draining board into cupboards / drawers
  7. Wipe down and bleach the sink and draining boards
  8. Clean the inside of the microwave
  9. Wipe down the front of the dishwasher, oven and fridges
  10. Clean out the fridge - 'ruthlessly throw things away that don't have a DNH stickers on, or are out of date. Don't leave the bin full of rotting food - take it to the dumpsters!
  11. Clean the inside of the oven
  12. Clean the little gas stoves
  13. Tidy the storage shelves - remove out of date foodstuffs!
  14. Tidy the corner table and wipe it down with detergent
  15. Tidy / organise the cupboards
  16. Put good sharp knives onto the magnetic holder on the wall, less good knives can go in the drawer

Studio & Textiles Workshop

  1. Clear the Studio desks and wipe them down. It's unacceptable for members to leave projects on desks, the cutting table and so on unless they're currently doing something to them; i.e. in the space and actively working on them - abandoned projects should be moved to the donations area or thrown away.
  2. Tidy chairs and move desks to their proper positions
  3. The Textiles Workshop has a tendency to get kinda stuffy - open that window and get some air through there!

Workshop / Dusty Area

The Workshop & Dusty Area are amongst the highest traffic areas of the hackspace. Please make sure you clean up as you go when using them. If you have some spare time, here are some tasks that always need doing:

  1. Put Cordless Drills back on charging station
    1. Remove bits and put back in bit storage on side bench
    2. Batteries should be put in chargers, drills into the charge station (chuck down in holes on top shelf)
  2. Sawdust should be vacuumed / put in bins
  3. Vacuum floors (use workshop vacuums only NOT the Henry from the studio!)
  4. Hand tools should be tidied away. Many go on the shadow board on the side wall, some go on drawers and under the side bench. If you don't know where something goes, ask someone. If you can't figure it out, find somewhere AND post to the mailing list asking where it should go and where you left it
  5. Vacuum / sweep bench tops
  6. Tidy / sort the drill bits
  7. Arrange the parts boxes on the racks. They coded with strips of colours tape!
  8. Empty full bins and take them to the dumpsters. Put new bin bags in the bins (new ones can be found in the bathroom above the washing machine). Never leave bins with no bags in as people still still use them and then they're a nightmare to deal with.

Metalworking Area

The Metalworking Area contains lots of equipment that can be prematurely worn out or damaged by a messy environment.

  1. Clear the benches and welding table:
    1. Grinders, vice grips etc go in the cabinet
    2. Files, punches etc. go in the drawers next to the Donkey Saw (they're labelled!)
    3. Needle files, taps dies, etc go in the little wooden drawers to the left of the welders
    4. Hammers, saws and other tools go on the racking above the bench
    5. Drill bits go in the small drawers.
    6. Lathe / mill tools go in the racks attached to those tools (and shouldn't be on the benches anyway!)
  2. Chip management! There is a bin specifically for swarf. General trash should not be in here - pick it out - carefully!
  3. Vacuum dust and other detritus from around tools!

Electronics Area

It seems like the Electronics Area gets messy a lot. Spend a few minutes helping to keep it nice:

  1. Components left out on benches should be tidied away
  2. Tidy away tools and components - make sure each bay has tools put back in racks (pliers / strippers / tweezers etc)
  3. Put multi-meters back in holders
  4. Tidy away wire / solder etc
  5. Put extra hand tools in tubs
  6. Component / tool tubs replaced on shelves and arranged (lids are colour coded!)
  7. Vacuum up / throw away wire clippings / stripped insulation

Tidy up after yourself

Before you leave the space, do a walk-around any areas you used to double check you didn't leave any mess - tools or materials out and so on. Any area you used should look clean and tidy, whether or not any mess there was made by you.

  1. Tools should go back in the right place. If you don't know where it should go, ask someone. If there's no-one about, try HARD to find the right place. If you still can't find the right place, leave a tool in a prominent place AND post to the mailing list saying you did this, and asking where it should go
  2. Tidy away your materials / half finished projects into your box or onto the large project storage shelves
  3. Take complete projects out of the space
  4. Don't leave opened / half eaten food out because "someone might be able to use it". They won't. It will go nasty and someone else will have to clean it up. Don't do it.
  5. Put your dishes in the dishwasher - run / empty it if it's full
  7. If you see other people leaving the space without properly tidying up after themselves, challenge them about it. It's NOT OK.

Turn off unused lights

If you're in the space at night and there are many lights on, turn them off in unused areas. If you're the last one out, turn out the lights!

Many of the light switches are in non-obvious locations! Locking up has a nice map.


  1. The workshop has two switches next to the workshop/studio doors - "near" and "far" - if there is no-one in the back of the workshop, turn off the "far" one. If there is no-one in the rest of the workshop, turn off the "near" one
  2. The Old Electronics Area has a switch on the wall under the shelf with all the bench supplies and the like on it
  3. The main Studio light switch is behind the cutting table
  4. The Toilets and Kitchen switches are on the studio side of the doors to those rooms
  5. The Textiles Workshop / some Studio / Members Storage room strip lights are under the servers in the member store (!)
  6. The Textiles Workshop CFL bulbs are plugged into the wall socket opposite the door
  7. Comfy Area lights:
  • Paper globe lamp shade light switch is on the post between the sofas
  • Rope lights / EL wire along bookcases are plugged into wall socket to the left of the screen
  • Bottle lights, map globe thing and other misc pretty lights are plugged into the wall to the right of the screen
  • Remember not to leave the projector running when you're not using it - there should be a remote control on the table, or you can use the buttons on the projector itself


  1. Lights downstairs are controlled using the space's Network using the address [queen:8181], allowing control of individual lights. There are also physical style switches:
  • In the entrance corridor on the right hand side as you enter.
  • In the Blue Room near the printers.
  • In the CNC Area near the CNC Mill.
Note Note: Turn me off.

Bins & Recycling

There is often too much stuff for one person to take in a single trip. If there's someone there who hasn't done it before, ask them to join you so they know where to go in future!

When emptying bins, never leave bins with no bags in as people still still use them and then they're a pain to deal with. Bin liners can be found above the washing machine in the bathroom. If you find a bin with no liner, fix it!

Dumpsters can be found as follows:

  1. Take your entry card with you in case you get shut out
  2. Leave the space by the rear fire exit (leave the door on the right open for when you return, or go round to the front door again and use your entry card)
  3. Take the first right and through the door, you will find the lift here
  4. Take lift down to ground floor
  5. Go through the front door onto the street. Voila, dumpsters should be in front of you.
  6. Remember to shut the rear space doors when you come back in

Anything Else That Needs Doing

Think: "Is this a mess? Would it be better if someone tidied that up / scrubbed it / organised it? Wait! I'm a someone! I'll do it!".

Then stop thinking about it and do it.

Do the hell out of it.

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