1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Good in parts but too much emphasis on niche elements.,
This review is from: The Makerspace Workbench: Tools, Technologies, and Techniques for Making (Kindle Edition)
The Makerspace Workbench is a bit of a mixed bag and, at the risk of stating the obvious, what you will get out of it very much depend on how you intend to use your Makerspace. I’ll write this review from the point of view of a general user though do be aware that depending on your needs this may not be appropriate for you. Firstly what’s good; the book is well written, well illustrated, has an excellent index (seriously, never underestimate the power of a good index!), provides a good planning and layout tools for your Makerspace, has a good coverage of hand tools and their uses and a very good chapter on building circuits. Not so good, from my point of view, is the excessive chapter on laser engravers (I see these as a nice to have not an essential), a somewhat confused chapter on 3D printers (I couldn’t work out if it was a how to use, how to make or how to repair chapter or all three) and no coverage of a number of tools or procedures like lathes, mills, routers, brazing, welding or vacuum forming. There is also a large chapter on using your Makerspace as an educational environment which while it’s a good chapter in itself I question whether it’s appropriate in this book. From a British point of view there’s also the problem you run across in a lot of U.S. oriented technical books which are that some of the requirements for projects aren’t easily available, many of the recommended suppliers are U.S. based so you can’t use them or if you can it gets really expensive really quickly and the supplied measurements are typically Imperial (confusingly called English!) where most of the stuff we have access to comes in metric sizes.
So good book or bad book? Well from a general point of view the first chunk of the book is very useful, the next chunk depends largely on whether you have a laser engraver and 3D printer (which are admittedly the sexy part of Making that gets all the attention) and the final chunk depends on whether you teach. If you’re interested in metal working then there’s very little that will be of use to you here. It’s quite hard to give an overall assessment. The quality of the writing is very high and the bits that were relevant to me were very well done but for my purposes there was too much on expensive tools at the expense of some basics which I just found somewhat frustrating. For me it’s a three star book but if you are a heavy laser engraver or 3D printer or a teacher it may be a four or even five.
One general note, I think it really is worth spending the extra couple of quid and getting a paper copy of technical books as you’ll probably find yourself doing lot of flipping backwards and forwards between bits and scribbling notes in the margin which is just not as easy to do in e-formats.