How does 3D printing work?
3D printing makes a physical object from a digital model. The printer heats plastic filament to a malleable state, then recreates the model by laying it down in a series of thin layers. 3D digital models can be created from scratch, or downloaded pre-made from the Internet.
3D printing can be used for a variety of applications – some are just for fun, such as creating customized phone cases or cookie cutters, and others are more functional, such as recreating lost parts to a broken machine.
Design preparation & software
Pre-made 3D models can be found at thingiverse.com. To create your own model, tinkercad.com is a good place to start. Both websites are free. After your design file is complete, the 3D printing process can take 15 minutes for a simple design, to a whole day or more for larger, complex objects. The Library’s maximum allowable time for a print job is six hours – printing time is confirmed when a print file is uploaded to the 3D printer. Users may submit up to three print jobs per week.
What does it cost?
The user pays for the plastic filament only – the cost is $.10 a gram. The cost will be calculated by The Studio staff and must be paid before printing. Only filament from the Library can be used.
How to get started?
The Library offers creative project course and we encourage everyone to attend one of our 3D printing classes before submitting a print. However, those already familiar with the 3D printing process can submit files without any training. All print files must be approved by The Studio staff.