It's time to fix the world -- starting with the junk in your garage.

Broken electronics and appliances are the flotsam and jetsam of our modern lives: the jammed printer, the silent CD player, the toaster that rejects sliced bread.

The problems seem simple, but the solution is out of reach. Where's the repair manual? What are the parts? Who has a voltmeter or stereoscopic microscope?

In frustration, it's tempting to throw up our hands and drive to the nearest big-box store.

But there's help:

  • Palo Alto: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, Museum of American Heritage, 351 Homer Ave. Details: www.repaircafe-paloalto.org. Questions: info@repaircafe-paloalto.org.

  • Albany: 1-4 p.m. Sunday March 10, Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave. Details: Fix It Clinic mailing list at www.bit.ly/znzWjH or Fixit Clinic Group Facebook page at http://on.fb.me/FOEVxi.

  • Santa Cruz: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, May 4, California Grey Bears, 2710 Chanticleer Ave. Details: email repair@greybears.org or call 831-479-1055.

    Want to learn more?

  • San Luis Obispo-based iFixit: www.ifixit.com. Their website offers free online step-by-step repair manuals, videos of teardowns and sell useful service parts and tools.


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  • West Seattle Fixers Collective: http://wsfixers.org

  • New York City Fixers Collective: http://fixerscollective.org.

    Contact Lisa M. Krieger at 650-492-4098.