How Can I Contribute?


Seeking advice from other Open Source Hardware initiatives, we have created this page to highlight areas of contribution that would really help out MakerPlane.   There are so many people that want to be involved and to paraphrase Chris Anderson of 3D Robotics and DIY Drones, “One of the biggest challenges in an open source development project is getting the “Architecture of Participation” right.”  We should be in a position to allow anyone with various levels  of skills and experience the opportunity to contribute in some way to MakerPlane.    People that find our organization on-line and want to help are enthusiastic and get what we are doing, we must be in a position to focus the efforts of the various volunteers and contributors so that we don’t lose that energy!

What people see on our site is honestly the tip of the iceberg in terms of the efforts that are going on constantly behind the scenes to create and maintain the ongoing MakerPlane site and projects.  Lots of emails flying back and forth, Google + hangouts and conferences, private messages on the forums and sometimes packages being sent across the world with electronics and ideas!

If you have come to this page asking yourself, “How Can I Contribute to MakerPlane?”, then here are some specific areas that I have identified.

Communications and Community Building

  • Blog and News articles about open source hardware and software, aviation related topics, how MakerPlane could be used for x, y or z etc.  Post suggestions for articles that you want to contribute and we will get them online.
  • Case Studies for implementation of open source hardware and software in aviation would be really interesting.  Maybe you have built an aircraft using the MakerPlane avionics?
  • Moderators for topics of interest in the MakerPlane Forums. Particularly for the CNC topics and Avionics (you should have some experience in these to be a mod)
  • Active participation in the forums to ask questions, provide feedback, contribute ideas!
  • Evangalists to promote MakerPlane to EAA chapters, schools, academia and so on.  In fact it would be fantastic to see MakerPlane used in schools all over the world to help kids get into aviation!
  • A volunteer coordinator to look after these activities would be awesome!

Avionics Projects

  • Phil B. is currently working on an update to the CAN-FIX protocol draft.  We need volunteers interested in reviewing the spec, providing feedback and getting involved with it.  Once the spec is released, we will start building example projects for Arduino and other controllers and then designing avionics based upon it.
  • CAN-FIX API.  Need some assistance for Phil to potentially write an API for CAN-FIX.
  • Our pyEFIS open source EFIS.  We need a dedicated team of highly skilled and enthusiastic software developers with aviation/avionics experience to take this to the next level!  This is one of those game-changer exciting projects, so we want to here from you NOW!  Just imagine an open source EFIS which you can put together with hardware for $500 or less.  Our github repository is here.


3D Printing Projects

  • We would like to get a library of 3D models together specific to aviation such as stick grips, throttle knobs, door handles, tools, jigs etc.  Basically non-structural items.  The library could be hosted on MakerPlane, or Thingiverse.

CNC Projects

  • We would like to get a library of CNC files together that might be interesting to people interested in aviation, aircraft homebuilding and so on.  The library of items could include workshop items such as cabinets, work-tables, jigs, tools and so on.   These might be interesting items that EAA chapters could use in their workshops, hangers or classrooms as well like chairs, tables and BBQ smokers!  🙂
  • A moderator with CNC experience for this forum is required.