Meet the Maker: John "Jack Trash" McNulty

Tell us your name and what do you do:

John McNulty aka "Jack Trash." I am the sales director at Boca Bearings, and a maker also. I just finished a large fire-shooting sculpture for this year's Burning Man festival, and am currently designing and building next year's project, an art bus of the theme "India meets Mad Max."

John "Jack Trash" McNulty, Burning Man 2015
If money was no object, what would you build or design?

I would build an enormous Juggernauth, at least 6 stories high, that we would pull (at least 200-300 people) across the country from Miami to Seattle. I am very serious. It would probably be the most senseless human-powered act in all history.

What cool maker thing or project you have seen lately that you can’t stop thinking about and would like to tell others?

I saw this at the Orlando Maker Faire a couple weeks ago, and had to buy it. Great idea for learning Arduino, and easy to carry around.
Do you have a philosophy about failure?

Fail as much as you can take. Then have a cry, then laugh, then fail again, until you get it right.

What do you know very little about, but hope to soon be an expert?

Propane-based fire effects using Arduino controls. Just got started, quite addicting.

Do you belong to a makerspace/hackspace/collaborative group? If you do, how does it help you?

I co-founded Makers Square in Fort Lauderdale back in 2013, and every day I go I meet someone new and interesting.
Makers Square in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Any advice for kids who want to make and design things?

Be ridiculous! Try making the most complicated thing you can dream up. Get your friends involved. Watching how things break is very fun.

What is your favorite tool?

I have been using this wire stripper for years, and love the feel and dependability:

Wire Stripper

Interested in telling us about yourself, and your projects? Email

Autonomous Rover Part 5: Using the ArduPilot Mega(APM) and GPS

     I have finally received the ArduPilot Mega 2.6(APM) and GPS from 3DRobotics. It took them a pretty long time to ship out to me. I originally had also ordered sonar sensors to place on the rover to avoid obstacles but they are out of stock and I think they have been discontinued from 3DR. I guess the main reason why the APM took so long for it to come was because of the backordered sonar sensors. I just canceled the ordering of the sonar sensors and then the APM and GPS was finally shipped.

Boca Bearings at Maker Faire Orlando 2015

The crowd was in the thousands at the 4th annual Maker Faire Orlando event held at the Orlando Science Center, Orlando Museum of Art and Loch Haven Park the weekend of September 12-13.

And the Boca Bearing Company was proud to be part of the sponsors and also to participate in the exhibit that featured over 300 'MAKERS' that included anything and everything from robotics, crafts, advanced technology, art, lego, science, music, 3D printing, learning activities and ... cookies.

Simply put, the event was a huge success.

This community-organized Faire celebrated the young and the older who share a passion for creativity and innovation. People who just enjoy showing and displaying what they like to make, what they can make, what can be learned and much more.

It was fascinating, for example, to see how a 10-year-old boy who stopped by the Boca Bearings display station and had the curiosity and knowledge to talk about 'bearings', to say that he likes working with his hands to create different things and that he wants to be an engineer.

Much of the exhibits revolved around technology, the makerspace community, the garage-minded thinkers. There were battles between robots, there was robotic arms, lego fun, laser tag shooting range, video games which were all highly popular.

There was a first for a Maker Faire with a super fun KrazyKart racing outdoors. Talk about some fun and a little competition.

Students showed projects how to make promotional products, videos and photos. Kids had the opportunity to play with an Arduino-Based interactive game and also there were crafts classes that were very appealing.

The Eureka! Factory featured their Instructable Showcase with hands-on fun and homemade instruments from recyclables.

The NASA Kennedy Space Center had a beautiful display showing the future of space.

Lock Haven Park had food trucks and tents with some makers exhibiting their goodies outdoor.

The Maker Faire in Orlando started in 2012. This exhibition is part of the original Maker Faire that began in San Francisco and now has shows in New York, Atlanta, Detroit, Rome, Paris, Tokyo and many other cities around the world totaling some 120 organized Mini Maker Faires worldwide.