Fair Use Building and Research (FUBAR) Labs is New Jersey’s First Hackerspace, established in Highland Park in 2009 and now in New Brunswick since May 2015. FUBAR Labs was formed as a non-profit community based organization with the purpose of bringing makers, hackers, and tinkerers together to collaborate and share ideas and knowledge. We are a community of people with common interests, such as computers, electronics, DIY, software, technology, science, and crafts can meet and collaborate. We are an open community offering classes, workshops, study groups, and long term projects.
Makerspace.org describes FUBAR and other makerspaces as such:
“...makerspaces are community centers with tools. Makerspaces combine manufacturing equipment, community, and education for the purposes of enabling community members to design, prototype and create manufactured works that wouldn’t be possible to create with the resources available to individuals working alone. These spaces can take the form of loosely-organized individuals sharing space and tools, for-profit companies, non-profit corporations, organizations affiliated with or hosted within schools, universities or libraries, and more. All are united in the purpose of providing access to equipment, community, and education, and all are unique in exactly how they are arranged to fit the purposes of the community they serve.
Makerspaces represent the democratization of design, engineering, fabrication and education. They are a fairly new phenomenon, but are beginning to produce projects with significant national impacts.”
No matter how people know FUBAR, they all know that FUBAR members do things with passion and enthusiasm. FUBAR Labs has been the stepping stone for many innovators and entrepreneurs who have developed new products and services and businesses. At FUBAR we strive to enable everyone to reach their full potential and dreams and we are most passionate about encouraging the next generation of makers.
The Origins of FUBAR Labs
FUBAR Labs had a very humble beginning with only a handful of founding members meeting in a comic shop. The idea of establishing a makerspace in New Jersey grew out of those early meetings in the comic book shop in Highland Park, New Jersey. FUBAR. Labs in 2010 secured it’s own location and grew into a full makerspace with dedicated learning areas, a workshop and a 3D printer. The FUBAR community grew as others with an interest in making and tinkering soon saw FUBAR Labs as not just a place to learn and meet like minded individuals, but to share a passion of teaching others and expanding interests beyond our own. From these passions FUBAR became the stepping stone for many innovators and entrepreneurs who have developed new products and services and businesses.
With the explosion of maker spaces and DIY components more and more people started to come for Arduino and Raspberry Pi projects nights. They also came to learn soldering, electronics, 3D printing, and Laser Cutting. As the Maker community evolves and grows so does FUBAR Labs. We are on the precipice of a major transformation and you can be apart of this rare opportunity to be part of that transformation and help us make FUBAR Labs a beacon for makers and tinkers.
“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” – Thomas A. Edison
The opportunity to grow FUBAR truly came disguised, it came as a challenge to the very existence of FUBAR. For they past year or so we have known that our physical space was not going to support us long into the future. We had hoped to stay for an additional year, but in February this year we learned that we would not be able to continue on in our location. If not for the passion and resolve of our members, it could very well have meant the end of FUBAR. Instead, members pulled together and decided to take this challenge and turn it around and use it as an opportunity to go big. We were all a little scared, but we knew that going for a bigger space meant we could do more in the community. Everyone dug deep, planned, and searched for a suitable location. After several false starts and with our deadline fast approaching we found a location in Edison, New Jersey. On the eve of signing that lease – we lost that location as well.
Not willing to give up, we started the search again the very next morning. Down on our hopes we walked into the Technology Center of New Brunswick. The Technology Center is geared for venture backed incubators and high end professional laboratories. We never could have imagined that they would have space for us, nor could we have imagined that we could afford it. As it turned out they not only had a space that was available, they loved what they heard about FUBAR Labs and wanted to help us. After a few more discussions and with the support of the owner and his management team we struck the deal for our new location.
We see the new location of FUBAR as a launching pad for us to go to the next level and reach a wider audience in the community. We plan to have our overalls on for a very long time and we hope you will join us not just in this campaign, but as part of the ever growing FUBAR community.