Nova Labs for #KittenConsul!

You may have heard about a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign for a card game call Exploding Kittens. The designers are running a contest to get a pre-release copy of the game as long as you promise to playtest it in a public place, and give them feedback. They are calling it the #KittenConsul.

Vote for #KittenConsul by clicking “Like” on YouTube!

From now until March 24, please watch the video above and click LIKE (view it on YouTube to do so).

With your help we’ll get a copy and can play at the Nova Labs’ game night on Friday, April 17. All of those details can be found at

Carbon fiber money clip class build

Carbon fiber money clip

Back in October I attended a Composites 101 class at Nova Labs. Taught by NL member Bo (an aerospace engineer), the start of class was a short lecture about composites in general, including a show and tell of various bits and pieces he’s collected over the years (a piece of a prototype tail-rotor shaft for a large helicopter was particularly cool).

The second and third parts of class were hands-on where we got to practice working with carbon fiber sheet and epoxy resin. Everyone in class got to make a carbon fiber money clip, and then the class built a wine bottle holder where we utilized honeycomb in addition to many more sheets of carbon. That project also gave us a chance to prepare for vacuum bagging a part.

So, how did we make the money clip?

  • Prior to class, Bo cut several parts from lite plywood and pink foam insulation on the laser cutter. Everyone got a set of these and some nuts and bolts to hold it all together.
  • Stack the parts up and fasten them with the hardware.
  • Prepare the two sheets of carbon fiber, mainly by securing the edge with masking tape, and trimming it down to be just wide enough to hold the edges together.
  • A sheet of acetate (very smooth, thin, plastic sheet) is put on the table, and the mixed resin is spread in a thin layer on the acetate.
  • The first sheet of carbon fiber is laid onto the resin, and then more resin is added on top of it fully wetting out the carbon fiber.
  • Add the second sheet on top of the first, and add more resin to wet it out.
  • Lay the second sheet of acetate on top of your resin-infused carbon, making a goopy sandwich.
  • From here, we bent the whole thing into the jig, and clamped the assembly together to allow it to cure.
  • Due to the time constraints of the class, we didn’t get to finish the parts that day. Bo came in a few days later and cut them down on a bandsaw, and sanded the edges.

While the surface finish of mine wasn’t perfect (I had several little bubbles) I think it came out pretty well for a first attempt.