Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Chris Vestal's maker mentality

Posted By on Tue, May 9, 2017 at 1:37 PM

click to enlarge TODD JONES
  • Todd Jones

Chris Vestal, founder of the Pikes Peak Makerspace (735 E Pikes Peak Ave, pikespeakmakerspace.org), grew up with a love for technology and design, eventually getting hired by General Motors right out of college to work on prototyping and fiber optics. He’s also been 3-dimensional printing since the ‘90s, and has taken his love for making to the Pikes Peak Makerspace, a cooperative work space based on creativity, technology, and community.

“The Pikes Peak Makerspace is definitely focused on helping out our community and including the technology and equipment that our community in this area is interested in,” Vestal says.

“Makers” are born problem solvers, but they may be harder to find in the future if a particular problem isn’t addressed right now — the lack of trade skills and workshop classes in schools. Vestal, an entrepreneur and maker based in mechanical design, sees PPM as a way to begin filling this void. The Makerspace is Vestal’s fifth startup, a space for beginners and advanced makers alike to come and use the software and machinery provided for a small membership fee. With 3-D printers, a CNC mill, plotters and laser cutters, and classes teaching the safety, proper use, and software needed to use each machine, Vestal is inspiring the mentality of a true maker in all who come through his doors.

Vestal says, “Our core thing is this in an excellent place to come in, have 24/7 access to these tools, and if you don’t know how to use these tools, we have training.”

He continues to get excited about the community built around the Pikes Peak Makerspace and the people of Colorado Springs. He gets invigorated by the energy of newcomers and the expertise of seasoned veterans and looks forward to seeing what exciting things get created through the Makerspace.

“My favorite thing that keeps me rolling with the Makerspace is the community. Everybody’s coming out with a new challenge or new talent and seeing what we can do with that,” Vestal says.

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