South Side Hackerspace Chicago

Help us transform 1000 sq. ft. into a home for innovation, collaboration, education, exploration, and above all -- for Makers.
Jessica Fong
Chicago, Illinois
United States
2 Team Members

Here's the Deal!

Hey. You know what would be cool? If someone could create a home for innovators--for educators and learners, for architects and builders, for writers and scientists, for Makers.

Well, we did, and we call it South Side Hackerspace: Chicago.

Since March 2012, we have been forging friendships with Makers all over Chicago. These talented individuals founded our organization, and they continue to diversify our membership. In July 2013 we moved into our first space - a 1000 sq ft studio in the Mana Fine Arts Building at Cermak and Throop, but we need your help!

With the funding from this campaign, we'll be able to provide a much needed resource to the South Side of Chicago: we will build a sanctuary for creativity, inspire young adults to not only ask tough questions, but to discover the answers, and foster science education in our community. We can make it happen.

What We Need!

The biggest task is to build out the rest of our space. As only 1000 sq. ft. is available, we must be mindful of how we utilize our space, while also catering to the majority of our members’ interests. Certain tools donated by friends and members require clearance and often a circumference of space to operate them.

We have envisioned a plan that separates our space into 3 major areas. By the window, the space is divided into woodworking and metalworking areas. The metalworking area is capped off with a storage loft that will be accessible by a ladder. The rest of the space will be an open plan with a large tabletop in the middle and smaller workbenches by the walls with built-in storage space. The other end of the space is completed with a server room, an electronics workstation and storage.

With our current member contributions and the remainder of our reserve funds alone, we have finished erecting the structural walls and the loft. However we need your contributions to complete the rest!

This campaign will help us purchase additional furniture, technical equipment, and tools, such as interior dividers, a flammables cabinet, additional storage units, shop-sized trash cans, task chairs, workbenches, torque wrench, acrylic, patch cables, wireless access point, hard drives, server rack shelving and more!

If we do not reach our entire goal, we will use what funds we receive to finish building the space. Safety is our first priority. The rest will come in time. :)

What You Get!

We're excited and proud to offer fun perks. :)

Here is Oscar:

Here are the swanky stickers we designed:

[a circular die-cut sticker and a vertical banner sticker]

Here is the amazing swiss-army style keychain in purple:


[a baller 3d printed keychain, also could be made from lasercut acrylic]

Here are some cool dudes modeling one of the two types of shirts you could receive:


[standard T-Shirt modeled in gray and in gold]

[raw layout for special edition T-Shirt in gold]

The Impact is HUGE

With the build out complete, we can immerse our members in a clean and functional space that encourages imagination. We look forward to hosting more events for the general public and bringing to life some things the world's never seen before!

We seek to improve the surrounding community and inspire young adults to find a safe space to explore and grow. In the past we have worked with our friends from TOOOL to host a Nerf hacking tutorial and a lockpicking workshop, and we will be hosting an event later this month with the Chicago Public Library Maker Lab on soldering. We have big expansion plans and hope to service the greater area of Chicago in the future!

Other Ways You Can Help Us Kick Butt

We live in an age where "sharing", "liking", "tweeting", and "reblogging" have made the difference between one view and one million. Please help us spread the word.

Our Website:
Our Events Calendar:
IRC Chat: #sshc on

Find This Campaign On
raised by 69 people in 2 months
45% funded
No time left
$7,000 USD goal
Flexible Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on May 7, 2014
Select a Perk

    Reduced 2-Month Membership +

    Reduced full membership for two months. Get full access to our space and machines, rights to vote and to run for office, a special edition T-Shirt and a shout-out on our blog/social media sites!

    5 out of 5 claimed
  • $3USD
    We Tip Our Hats To You

    All donations help! Watch for a shout-out on our blog/social media sites!

    0 claimed
  • $10USD
    Oscar the Kitty Pictures

    We will email you a high def picture of our adorable kitty mascot, Oscar, every day for one month that will make you go "Awwww!!" instead of "Ugh, another work email."

    2 claimed
  • $15USD
    Special Edition Sticker Set +

    Two special edition, custom designed stickers and shout-out on our blog/social media sites!

    7 claimed
  • $27USD
    3D Printed/Lasercut Keychain +

    A single 3D Printed or Lasercut Keychain (randomly selected colour), set of special edition stickers, shout out on our blog/social media site!

    9 out of 30 claimed
  • $34USD
    Standard T-Shirt +

    Our original logo t-shirt in your choice of black or gray, set of special edition stickers, shout out on our blog/social media site!

    8 out of 50 claimed

    Reduced 1-Month Membership +

    Reduced full membership for one month. Get full access to our space and machines, rights to vote and to run for office, a special edition T-Shirt and a shout-out on our blog/social media sites!

    5 out of 5 claimed
  • $50USD
    Special Edition T-Shirt +

    Special edition T-Shirt designed by one of our members to commemorate your donation to our campaign, in your choice of gold, red, or creme, set of special edition stickers, and a shout-out on our blog/social media sites!

    20 out of 50 claimed
  • $75USD
    ROUND II: 2-Month Membership +

    It was so popular we're bringing it back! Reduced full membership for two months. Get full access to our space and machines, rights to vote and to run for office, a special edition T-Shirt and a shout-out on our blog/social media sites!

    3 out of 5 claimed
  • $96USD
    Federation Pilot

    ENLIST TODAY! Be the first test pilot for the Hackerspace Federation: a joint endeavor between Pumping Station: One and Southside Hackerspace: Chicago. Must be 18+ to apply. Enjoy 2-Months membership at both PS1 ~and~ SSH, equivalent to and governed by the same conditions as "Starving Hacker" memberships from both respective spaces.

    4 out of 5 claimed
  • $200USD
    The Preludes to Success

    Setting up and using 3D printers often involves trial and error. A lot of error. We'll send you our failed 3D prints accumulated over one month and pictures of Oscar the cat to soothe you. All this crammed in a medium flat rate box and shipped directly to your door!

    0 out of 3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: June 2014
  • $500USD
    Tea Tasting for Four

    Tea is the new hip thing, and if you came to our party, you know we're total snobs. Maybe you want to impress your loved ones with our nuggets of knowledge. Maybe you just want to eat delicious home-made scones, cookies, and cucumber sandwiches. Maybe you just want to try a bunch of tea because you genuinely wish to determine which kind you like best! All these things and more. :D Join Jessica and Brian either at the hackerspace, or in the comfort of your own home!

    0 out of 2 claimed
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