About Us

Hacking is about making things, creating technology and solving problems with innovative solutions. Hackerspaces faciliate hacking through providing a community, a workshop and tools.

The Ballarat Hackerspace is a community-run non-profit organisation that supports and encourages Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) culture in the Ballarat and surrounding regions in Victoria, Australia.

These ideas are promoted through engagement with the broader community, partnerships with other institutions (government, commercial, non-profit) and to anyone with an interest.

Our usage of "hacking" is the traditional version; of creating things with technology, making and reusing technology for different purposes. Many people use the word "maker", "makerspace" and "making" to mean the same thing. This is opposed to the modern common usage of hacking, which means breaking into computers, stealing data and so on. In fact, such actions are against our terms and conditions.

Since our creation in 2014, we've become a core part of innovation in Ballarat. Our members learn skills that expand their ability, increase their skills and employability (in an ever-changing world), and express themselves through their craft.

If you are looking to increase your skills with technology, make things, or learn new skills then we would love to have you at the Ballarat Hackerspace.

We provide a workshop, available to members, with facilities and equipment for projects including 3D printing, electronics, soldering, prototyping, and programming. Our members pursue various constructive activities, and the Ballarat Hackerspace aims to suport them as best it can. We also support some destructive activities, in the name of learning.

The Ballarat Hackerspace is modelled on an international movement of like-minded communities that started in Germany back in 1995. Our philosophy is the idea that you should make, create, build, hack, develop and learn about how the world works, how the technology around us works and anything else related to "the ultimate question".

The Ballarat Hackerspace is actively inclusive, with firm and binding community rules and a code of conduct centred around being excellent to each other. Our commitment to inclusiveness is shown through ventures such as our Women's Wednesdays, which encourages women and their supporters to use the space for free on Wednesday nights.

Our Association Rules are publicly available, if formalities are your thing.

Donations

The Ballarat Hackerspace is a registered non-profit volunteer run organisation. We are entirely by our members and the generous donations of our sponsors. If you would like to support the work of the Ballarat Hackerspace Association to help with the running costs of the Hackerspace (e.g. rent, consumables, workshops, etc.) then any donation would be gladly accepted and put to good use!

If you share our vision, please help support us. You can provide time, expertise, funding, equipment or anything else you think we can use.

If you or your company would like to sponsor us, please contact us directly.

Donations to the association can be made in cash at the space itself, or via bank deposit to:

Account Name: Ballarat Hackerspace Inc
BSB : 193-879
Account No: 468 349 494

Or you can donate Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash to the following address:

1BHackHL8bYsGb5PBaXURAot2ymLZtRpTo

Let us know if your flavour of crypto is different and we can work it out.

The Timetable

To satiate curiosity and accessibility we are open to the general public for walk-ins at the following times:

PLEASE NOTE: due to the COVID pandemic our opening times are no longer as consistent as they once were. We endeavour to keep our calendar on the front page up to date with the most recent scheduling and any last minute updates are posted to our Slack channel. Feel free to email us if you have any queries about our schedule.
Day Open Times
Monday - All Welcome 6pm – 9pm
Tuesday - All Welcome 4pm – 9pm
Wednesday - All Welcome 11:30am – 2:30pm
Saturday - All Welcome 9am – 3pm

: The hackerspace will close up to 1 hour earlier if there are no members or visitors at that time. If you need us to keep the hackerspace open for you in this last hour please let us know via twitter or slack, we're happy to stay open if people need to use the space!

Note: Non-probationary Workshop members have 24/7 access to the space.

The Space

In July 2018, we moved into our new space on Albert St. We are now in the Tech School building, with entrance via the South-side of the building (up the stairs). For disability/mobility access, there is a lift at the footpath on the South-East corner. The lift is secured, but availalbe for use during our open times. A committe member can provide access via the lift, please contact us when you arrive.

The hackerspace is equipped with wonderful facilities (see below), it is also a great hub for enthusiasts and 'hackers' to meet and exchange ideas and collaborate on projects. Hackers produce amazing tools and gadgets around the space to improve the facilities and support its members; such as the airconditioner robot, door entry system and laser cutter guides and jigs.

Join the Ballarat Hackerspace to be part of our active and growing community. Casual members can use the space's equipment and facilities during opening hours. Full time members receive 24-7 access to the space (with committee approval).

You are also welcome to join the Slack, or follow us on Twitter or Google+

Facilities

  • Electronics area with soldering irons, reflow wand and oven, desoldering, oscilliscopes and meters
  • 6x 3D printers; including 4x Prusa and 2x TAZ printers, with a dedicated slicing workstaiton
  • Large industrial laser cutter
  • Small scale CNC
  • Hand-tools; including screw drivers, cutters, saws, hammers, pliers etc
  • Power tools; including drop saw, drills, dremmel and compressor
  • WiFi Internet access
  • Projector/Presentation
  • Standard IT equipment for use in the space including keyboards, monitors, cables etc
  • Library of technical reference books
  • large workspace for projects
  • Dedicated arcade gaming systems
  • Kitchenette with Tea, Coffee machine, cutlery and crockery
  • Dedicated mobility-friendly bathroom facilities on-site

Before visiting the space

The space is a workshop, so it is an Occupational Health and Safety requirement that enclosed shoes are to be worn while visiting. There are rules that apply in the space for everyone’s safety & enjoyment.

Children in the hackerspace

Please note: that well behaved children may attend the space, however all children must abide by the rules and safety requirements of the space and be actively supervised by a parent or gurdian.

We have lots of sharp things, hot things, breakable things and generally dangerous things. Responsibility for children and/or damage is solely on their guardian.

Location

Our street address is:

2nd Floor, K Building (MB John Building)
136A Albert Street,
Ballarat Central,
3350

Google Map

The Association

The Ballarat Hackerspace is a volunteer based, non-profit incorporated association (in Victoria) and follows the Rules of Association that it was founded with.

As part of this, we elect a Committee as chartered in the association rules. The current elected committee members are:

Position Elected Representative
President Scott Weston
Vice President Robert Layton
Secretary Ian Firns
Treasurer Brett James

Code of Conduct

Ballarat Hackerspace is dedicated to providing a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, or religion. We do not tolerate harassment of people at our events or space in any form. People violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the space or the event at the discretion of any Ballarat Hackerspace member.

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The Movement