If you’re looking to bring something to fix, here are the basics:
For indoor event spaces, DO bring:
- Small appliances
- Small furniture or woodworking (chairs or smaller)
- Clothing / Textiles
- Garden tools
- Electronic items that aren’t computers or laptops*
- …anything else you want to fix that isn’t on the “DON’T” list.
For events with outdoor capacity, DO bring:
- Combustion engine things like chainsaws or weed whackers
- Bicycles and bicycle-related things**
- Tents, canvas things, larger furniture items, patio stuff.
Generally speaking, DON’T bring:
- Mechanical clocks (they take too long)
- Things under warranty
- Major appliances (no refrigerators or large air conditioners)
- Things that need welding (too dangerous for a public event)
- Anything living (we can’t fix the fact that your cat is a jerk)
- Big or heavy things.***
Items that make contact with the body should be cleaned and sanitized thoroughly before submitting them for repair. If it’s not sanitary, don’t bring it. Though it’s not generally in our character to do so, we reserve the right to refuse any item for service. We have to protect not only our volunteers, but also the donated spaces in which we hold our events.
* Even though there’s a demand for low-cost computer repair, we don’t fix desktops or laptops for the following reasons: a) We don’t want to undercut local businesses, and there are plenty of local places to fix computers. b) They tend to take a long time and are often extremely difficult to fix. c) We don’t want the potential liability (or heartbreak!) of potential data loss. All that said, go ahead and bring your printer, since those are fairly simple machines, and local businesses tend not to make much money fixing those anyway.
** Bike parts are expensive and diverse! We don’t plan to stock many bike parts at Repair Public events because they’re so weird. We might have some new cables or cable housing. We’ll be happy to give you a tune-up, and probably a referral to a local shop if your bike needs more parts and work than we can do at an event.
*** Items have to fit through the door, not take up too much room, and be easy to work on. Less than 30 inches and under 15 pounds are good rules-of-thumb, but ironing boards and floor lamps are good candidates for repair. Outdoor events are usually good for small gas-powered items, and/or items up to 40 pounds. If it’s difficult to get your item out of your vehicle, it’s probably beyond the capacity for a Repair Public event. Use good judgment and ask questions!
If you want to bring some tools of your own related to the item you’re fixing, please mark them distinctively in some way as belonging to you. We cannot be responsible for any tools lost during Repair Public.