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3D Printing in the Mardigian Library

Guide to our 3D printing service

3D Printing FAQ

What equipment does the IDEA studio have for 3D printing?

We have one LulzBot TAZ 6.

How does 3D Printing work?

3D prints are created in an additive process. 3D printing makes three dimensional objects from digital files. It is 
additive because the printer lays down successive layers on top of each other.

Commonly used materials are: PLA, ABS, Nylon, Wood.

What colors/materials can you print in? Can you use multiple colors?

We print with PLA filament in the Studio. We currently are only printing in one color. A list of the colors available can be found on the 3D Printing Form.

Can I print my design myself?

At this time, we print your design for you on our filament. In the future, we hope to house more 3D printers in our IDEA Studio so that you may self-print.

How do I get something printed?

Follow our steps here.

How much does it cost?

It is .05 cents per gram, with a minimum cost of .50 cents. The collected costs go towards purchasing filament, maintenance, and printer supplies.

You can download the free Cura printing software we use to estimate the size of your print in grams.

How many can I get?

We have one 3D printer for the use of our community of students, faculty, and staff so we cannot print large batches of items unless they are approved by the IDEA Studio well in advance. Please email us to discuss.

How do I learn how to make 3D files?

We suggest starting with something simple like Tinkercad or SketchUp. Other software includes: Blender, AutoCAD, and Rhino.

How large can I print?

The print area is 280 mm x 280 mm x 250 mm (11.02 in x 11.02 in x 9.8 in). The build volume size is roughly the size of a basketball. All files, regardless of size, have to be approved by the IDEA Studio prior to printing. We cannot usually print large designs on short notice. If you have a design that will take over 8 hours, you will need to contact us in advance. To check the size/time of your file, you can download the free Cura Lulzbot software for an estimate. We are not currently printing overnight, so files in excess of 12-16 hours may not be approved.

Who can submit files to be printed?

Only current UM-Dearborn students, faculty, and staff can use our 3D printing services. Please email us if you have any questions about this.

When are files printed?

We generally print Monday-Thursday, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. We do not print when the University or the Mardigian Library is closed, during school breaks or holidays. Please see our 3D Printer Calendar for more information.

I want to print something but I don't know what.

Search Thingiverse or shapeways for ideas to get started.

Any other questions? Please contact the IDEA Studio  

University of Michigan - Dearborn Logo
  • 4901 Evergreen Road
    Dearborn, MI 48128, USA
  • Phone: 313-593-5000
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