Monday, October 23, 2017

[137] Get ‘revved up’ for MTSU’s Makerspace String Race Oct. 24 at Walker Library

MURFREESBORO — The string’s the thing at MTSU’s James E. Walker Library.

Personally crafted small vehicles will zoom across tensioned synthetic string tracks in the Makerspace String Race from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 24, in the Makerspace area on the library’s second floor. Participants must be at the Makerspace before 1:30 p.m.

All MTSU students and staff are invited to design and construct their own vehicles, each powered by two AA batteries, for a double-elimination drag race-type tournament that encourages creativity.

“You can build any kind of vehicle that you want as long as it can hold two (AA) batteries and it can run along a string like a zipline runs down a string,” said Valerie Hackworth, assistant manager of public technology.

After being trained on the three-dimensional printer and laser cutter in the Makerspace, contestants of all levels of experience can make their own lightweight vehicles with an eye toward maximum aerodynamic effect.

The Makerspace opened in fall 2016 and strives to facilitate active-learning experiences and creation of all kinds to acquaint students of all majors with technology, fabrication, and scientific disciplines.

The area is equipped with soldering kits, safety goggles and a motley collection of wood, metal and plastic parts that can be used to bring individuals’ designs to life, but it’s essential to get started now.

“You may think that you can create your racer in two hours,” said Hackworth. “You might actually need two days once you get working on it.”

Makerspace Specialist Ben Becker is available Monday through Thursday to provide assistance.

A vehicle made by Neal McClain, director of library technology, won a prototype race during the summer semester. His prize was an acrylic statuette made on the laser etcher cutter in the Makerspace.

There is no fee to enter. A signup sheet is posted in the Makerspace. For more information, contact Hackworth at 615-904-8545 or or Becker at 615-904-8525 or

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