User talk:Djlauber

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Welcome to Artisan's Asylum! We hope you will contribute much and well. You will probably want to read the help pages. Again, welcome and have fun! Jess Muise 09:33, 30 June 2017 (EDT)



Very Local

  • Atlas Metals, Only one mile from our Tyler St location and open until noon on Saturdays. 475 Columbia Street, Somerville, MA 02143. (617) 666-8440. ‎


  • Metal Supermarkets in Woburn. You can order online, or show up and buy there. They like the Asylum.
  • Admiral Metals in Woburn is great. You can buy just about any metal except mild steel (aka "normal" steel; they do stainless though), of any type (tube, bar, sheet, plate etc...) and they do it all by weight. For example: 4"x4"x12" 1/8" wall aluminum tube... $7. A downside is that they keep banker's hours. 11/4/2014 MetalSource recently changed and now only does online/phone ordering. During a call recently, I noted that pricing was now no longer done by weight and the materials were considerably more expensive. [11 Forbes Rd, 781/932-0482]
  • For small tubing, Artist & Craftsman Supply (Cambridge, Central Square) and Tags (also Cambridge; Porter Square) are decent sources.
  • Cambridge Metals in allston. Primarily targetting roofing supplies, but they claim to have some other stuff as well. Their website may be weird, has info.
  • Grainger Steel, aluminum, copper, brass, bronze, stainless, etc. Order items online and pick up at their local branch in Everett (3.8 miles from the Asylum) to avoid shipping charges.
  • J. Freeman in Dorchester. Sheet aluminum and sheet plastic.
  • Kaufman in Norwood, so driveable to save shipping. Spot-checking materials like sheet & bar stock, they seem to be 1/2 to 2/3rds the price of MSC until you get into huge sizes (e.g,. 1.5"-diameter solid bars, etc), at which point they still seem at least somewhat cheaper than MSC. They claim to have a 1700-page paper catalog.
  • in Connecticut. they do online and in person. Prices for their Bargain Barn are $1/lb for steel and $5.00/lb for stainless/aluminum. They have a great selection, but cut at a rate of $20 for the first cut and $2 per cut thereafter. Remember to bring cutting tools if you want to avoid the fee and don't have a truck.
  • Mid City Steel For large section (you know, girders) they are a long haul, but they do have an online inventory, so you can check before you go.
  • MIT's central machine shop will sell stock to MIT affiliates for cash.
  • Philip A Rand Co 139 California St, Newton, MA 02458 – Good source for steel wire for sculptural and other applications. Small place, they will let you in back to "feel" the wire.
  • Pierce Aluminum for aluminum. May have better delivery rates / minimum.
  • Sumo Steel in Medford has been known to sell steel & aluminum scrap and offcuts. This is an industrial steel fabrication shop nominally, but they have a bunch of stock and scrap that they sell for cash to make a couple bucks in this wintry economic clime. Call first.
  • Turner Steel Co. Inc. is in West Bridgewater, MA. $25 minimum, $150 minimum for delivery. 1-800-521-8881. Aluminum, brass, steel, threaded rod, drill rod, tubing, etc. They can get many of the items on this extended stock list
  • Central Steel Supply

By Mail

  • Ebay has a surprisingly large selection of metal stock
  • MSC has a huge selection of everything (not just metals); normal UPS shipping is typically next-day from their nearby depot. Can be pricey, but they have lots of promotions. Good search engine; enormous cinderblock of a paper catalog ("The Big Book").
  • McMaster Carr Like MSC; somewhat different selection. Very nice search engine (but hard to get normal paper catalogs).
  • Wick's Aircraft 4130 steel tubing.
  • Online Metals Small quantity metal orders, lots of selection.


Tool Testing

Test sub-page for tool testing.

<meta name="viewport" content="width=device-width, initial-scale=1" /> {{#dpl:category=Backup|format=,*,%PAGE%\n,}}

Wiki Notes

Deal with single-instance tools (like each of the CNC mills) which all have their own individual training and testing, with a combined tool/species page.

Way to index/document non-capital tools and resources (i.e. small tools in the toolboxes, fixtures, etc. that don't need a full tool page, maybe make a small tool template??)

Setup shop landing page as non-category page

  • Make a template that transcludes sub-pages for each category, looks nice & easy to navigate
    • Sub-pages should NOINCLUDE sub-page category (i.e. rules,shop lead, testing, etc.) so it doesn't list that
    • Is there an easy way to create a template so that the data in it can be transcluded intelligently? i.e. craft area template "shop lead" can be transcluded as {{:Machine Shop/Shop Lead}} for example?
    • Arguably should just be done with templates instead of sub-pages??
  • easy for leads to maintain (i.e. an obvious place to see everything that's their responsibility, and see anything missing, follow pattern to create correctly)
    • make templates for sub-pages
  • Doesn't just dump unorganized list of everything in the category
  • Shop calendar
  • Shop knowledge & reference material (i.e. Category:CoolTools )
  • Make shop sidebar include tool list

Way to build special views/listings based on queries. i.e. list shop rules for all shops. Build pretty lists based on categories, i.e. list of free events using free events category (or template)

Make auto navigation footer for shop:

  • List of tools in shop
    • List of all tools in shop
    • List of tool species
    • List of tools by tool species
  • Quick links to rules, policies, mailing list, maintenance, shop lead, reservations, testing, etc.
  • Automatically shows on all pages in the shop

List all tools by shop


Make all content clearly the responsibility of somebody, and that person should have an easy to use console to show them their pages. I.e. categorize all education material 'education' so ed director can see all their pages

  • That person should be watching all pages within that category

Shop_Leads table should automatically update?? Also all shop leads should have a real profile page.

Clear way to track/distinguish works in progress, i.e. taking notes to develop chemical hygiene plan, without publishing it officially (typically done with derivative templates like toolbox-gone craftarea-proposed)

Good intro to editing our Wiki

  • Projects
  • Shops
  • Other stuff???

Site Nav:

  • Better landing page
  • Make different portals,
  • Sidebar link lists [3]
  • Balance heirarchy and flatness
  • Idea: Metalworking portal to consolidate metalworking info (for people who don't yet know what the right shop is)?

Basic Priorities

  • Easy to Maintain - info is valid
  • Easy to find info you need
  • Encourage editing & reading through the whole thing
  • Make it a daily visit for active members, and go-to for updates for occasional users (make an automatic what's new section?)

Admin & Extensions

Install widgets extension Widget:Google_Spreadsheet

Page rendering:

  • Set proper viewport so it renders nicely on mobile. Ideally upgrade to version w/ responsive design.
  • Change styling to match the main Asylum page (colors, fonts)

Ability to make some content only available to logged-in users. Is there a way to cross check auth with our other systems?

Personal tools
Wiki Maintenance