Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) plastic printers are available for student, staff, and faculty use. The printers are located against the south wall of the Knowledge Commons on Level 2. Users may bring in their own filament, provided it is 3mm PLA, HTPLA, or PLA+ filament. Users are discouraged from printing with ABS, nylon, wood, or exotic filaments. If you would like to work with these materials please reach out to us at our mailing list: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Lulzbot TAZ 6 3D printers in the Knowledge Commons are pre-loaded with Library-owned PLA filament. This material can be used by students, faculty, or staff at a cost of $0.04 per gram of material used. Once the print is complete, users can weigh the print using the nearby scale and pay for the print at the Reserve Desk on level 2.
To start a print
- Log into the 3D printing Mac computer using your uNID and CIS password.
- Launch Cura Lulzbot Edition from the dock.
- When prompted to choose a printer, select "TAZ 6", then "single extruder", then "single extruder v2.1".
- Left-click on the "rocktopus" test model to select it. Press the delete key to remove this object from the print area.
- Select "All" from the material ease-of-use dropdown, and "PLA (eSUN)" from the Material dropdown. This will set temperatures for the pre-loaded filament.
- Import a design file in .STL format. Cura imports in millimeters, so you may need to scale your model accordingly. Click here to learn more about optimizing designs for 3D printing.
- Rotate, scale, and position the design so that the flat side is down and the print is centered on the build surface.
- If the model has no obvious "flat" side, generating support material (next step) may help.
- Left click and drag the model to change the position on the print surface. Prints should be roughly centered on the checkered build area.
- You can rotate your view in Cura by right clicking and dragging inside the printable area (the checkered area).
- Use the "Print support structure" checkbox to select whether or not to generate support material.
- Preview your print by changing the view button at the top right of the screen from "Normal" to "Layers". You can use the slider at the bottom right to view different layers of the print.
- Check the first layer in this view mode to ensure the footprint of your build is flat on the build surface.
- Look for support material underneath overhangs.
- Check to ensure all of your model's features show up in the layer view. Features that are smaller than the diameter of the printer nozzle (.5mm on the TAZ 6) will not show up in preview mode, and will not print.
- Export your print as "gcode" and save to an SD card (cards are stored in the printers, just to the left of the LCD menu/screen).
- Put the SD card into the printer, and choose "Print from SD" using the dial/push button.
- Select your .gcode file from the SD card using the dial/push button. The printer will begin the auto-calibration routine which cleans the nozzle of any debris and touches each corner of the bed to establish a level printing surface.
- Observe the first layer of the print to ensure that the first layer is sticking to the print surface.
- When the print is completed, wait for the print bed to cool, and remove your print. If you need a print-removal tool, check out a 3D printing tool-kit from the Student Computing Services desk.
- If using Library filament (labeled with a "Marriott Library" tag on the spool), weigh your completed print and fill out a 3D printing receipt.
Layer Thickness with 0.5mm nozzle: 0.050 mm to 0.5mm (0.002 in to 0.02 in)
Slicing software: Cura Lulzbot Edition, Slic3r
Recommended Filament: Amazon.com eSUN 3mm PLA PRO (PLA+) 3D Printer Filament 1KG Spool
Students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to learn to use the Library's 3D printers. If you would like to schedule a consultation to get help with a print job, please send an email to email@example.com.
You agree to abide by copyright guidelines as outlined on the Copyright Overview & Resources page.
Assistant Head, Creative Spaces