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Frequently Asked Questions about 3D Printing at the MakerLab

How can I print on the 3D printer?

All Boise State University students, staff, and faculty can learn how to print on the 3D printers.


What kind of printers does the library have?

To print a model you will need an STL file (.stl).  Most 3D design programs can save or export in this format such as Sketchup Make, AutoCAD’s 123D, TinkerCAD and Blender.

The 3D model must be smaller than 298mm x 275mm x 250mm (11.7in x 10.8in x 9.8in).

The mesh or surface of the 3D model must be watertight and a solid. When the faces are not fully closed they produce gaps or holes in the model preventing good prints. Please check that your model is manifold before printing in Netfabb or Cura.

We recommend printing with a brim on all parts printed.

Can I hollow out my part to save on plastic?

It is not necessary to hollow-out a model in an attempt to save on material.  An alternative to hollowing out an object is to print certain objects can be printed with no infill at all.

How long will it take?

Printing time depends on a number of factors including the model size, complexity, and infill. The software Cura adjusts settings and establishes the length of time to print. Download Cura for free!