Who can use the 3D printer?
Anyone can! There is a certification class available (1-2 hours). Once certified, you can bring your own models in and use the printer for up to 11 hours at a time! Even without this class, you can come and select from a variety of pre-made objects to print!
How do I access the printer?
If you have completed the certification course, just call or visit the library and set an appointment, availability allowing. Once booked, we will log you onto the Creation Station. (Where all the magic happens!)
When can the printer be used?
During our normal business hours, so long as the printer is not currently in use. For longer prints, it's best to come earlier in the day.
What kind of Printer does the TPL have and where did it come from?
Our printer is the Ultimaker 3 and was purchased with funds donated by Dr. Colleen Froese in memory of her parents, Emil & Mary Froese.
I don’t have my own PC to make art for the printer, can I borrow one?
Dr. Froese’s generous donation allowed us to purchase a powerful PC workstation to create digital art assets and is a intrinsic part of the 3D printing workflow at TPL. When you book the printer, you inevitably also book the PC to print from, but it can be booked separately and used for any kind of content creation you like!
What kind of materials can I print with?
Currently, we are printing with a material called “PLA” (Poly-lactic Acid) due to its versatility, ease of use and bio-compatible nature. It is a safe and effective material that comes in all sorts of colours. We also have varieties that glow in the dark, change colour with the heat, are as transparent as glass, and much more!
How much does it cost to print things?
Print cost is determined by the amount of filament your model uses. This can be tough to pin down, as nozzle size and support structures can take up a lot of space! The short answer is that small objects are rarely more than a dollar. The largest, most expensive prints we’ve seen are still under $30.
What if my print doesn’t work? Do I still have to pay?
If a print fails due to unforeseen circumstances (power outage, mechanical error, filament runs out etc.) you do not pay for the failed job (and you are welcome to keep the partial print). Staff will also do their best to restart the print for you, when possible.
How long do prints take?
Prints vary in length depending on size and complexity. A small ring may take 5 minutes, but an intricate figure just 3-5 inches tall could take an entire day!
I'm not an artist! Is the 3D printer still worth my time?
Because many people do not know how to create their own 3D models, we have bookmarked Thingiverse. This website is a primary resource for free 3D models, tutorials on 3D creation, and much more related to the 3D printing hobby!
I have an idea for a product/toy/thing – will you help me create it?
The Terrace Public Library only provides access and education. The hard work is entirely on your shoulders! 3D printing at the TPL gives you an opportunity to experience the technology in a fun, safe, risk-free way to drive curiosity, exploration and education.