Over at iHub founder Erik Hersman’s blog, there’s news that Nairobi’s most prolific tech hub and business incubator, iHub, is formally launching a new hackspace for hardware entrepreneurs and experimenters, called Gearbox.

It’s interesting because the first time I heard Erik speak on tech in Africa, at an event in London in 2010, he talked about how desperate he was to augment the famed software training facilities of iHub with a place that you could design and create physical goods with 3D printers and rapid protoyping equipment. It’s been building up piecemeal, a little like SA’s own House4Hack, and is now up and running.

A lot of thinking behind Gearbox comes from the iHub team’s work on BRCK, of course, and according to Hersman it will be equipped with:

  • CNC table w/backup supplies
  • Diesel Generator
  • Welding equipment
  • Band saw, full + handheld
  • Compressor, full + portable
  • Power supply scrubber
  • Oxyacetylene torches
  • Saws, table + chop
  • Soldering iron
  • Drill press, hand drill, corded + cordless
  • Grinders
  • Forge

Gearbox will be split into two themes, Gearbox: Heavy for the big hardcore workshop kit and Gearspace: Light for the 3D printing machines, soldering stations and the like.

It’s awesome news for iHub. Time for SA hubs to step up, again.

This is where Gearbox will be. Part of it, at least.
The equipment that will go into Gearbox: Heavy, donated in a shipping container workspace by recycling specialists Re:Char.
Adam is the Editorial Director at htxt media. He has been writing about technology for almost two full decades now. In a previous life, he was the editor of PC Format and Digital Camera Shopper in the UK, before going on to work as a freelance journalist for seven years. His work has appeared in or on Stuff, The Guardian, Linux Format, TechRadar, Wired.co.uk, PC Gamer, Green Futures, The Journalist, The Ecologist and The Review. Adam moved to South Africa in 2012 and loves 3D printers, MakerFairs and tech hubs. He hates seafood. None of his friends remember this when cooking.