Video: MRU’s Maker Studio makes 3D printing convenient

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https://calgaryjournal.ca/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/sferg413-explainer-final.mp4
Audrey Burch shows how the 3D printer works. Video by Stuart Ferguson.

When the MRU students were taken home, the Maker space in the Riddell Library was mostly dormant, operated by its technician Audrey Burch. As a polymath who has had his work featured in multiple art exhibitions, they act as friendly guardians of space, happy to bring in all manner of students.

The most curious of these machines are 3D printers, which feature a hot glue gun-like nozzle that skates around a motorized plate while gently layering plastic in the build process. For Burch, it’s a liberating way to work on creating new designs.

“That’s the great thing about 3D printing. You can quickly prototype your designs by printing them out and tweaking them to suit your needs,” Burch said.

Audrey Birch posing in front of a resin 3D printer. Photo by Stuart Ferguson

In the 3D printing process, the original model file can always be modified and scaled according to the defects and oversights observed.

“You can quickly prototype designs by printing and testing them, looking for design flaws such as material tolerance that could be added to the 3D model of the pen holder. By testing, you can go back to your 3D modeling software and make changes now that you’ve quickly prototyped your first iteration.

The design studio remains free for students, and avid users can submit their own files to print via email.

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Video: MRU’s Maker Studio makes 3D printing convenient

Audrey Burch shows how the 3D printer works. Video by Stuart Ferguson.

When the MRU students were taken home, the eMaker Space in the Riddell Library was mostly idle, run by its technician Audrey Burch. As a polymath who has had his work featured in multiple art exhibitions, they act as friendly guardians of space, happy to bring in all manner of students.

The most curious of these machines are 3D printers, which feature a hot glue gun-like nozzle that skates around a motorized plate as it gently layers plastic in the build process. For Burch, it’s a liberating way to work on creating new designs.

“That’s the great thing about 3D printing. You can quickly prototype your designs by printing them and adjusting them to suit your needs,” Burch said.

Audrey Birch posing in front of a resin 3D printer. Photo by Stuart Ferguson

In the 3D printing process, the original model file can always be modified and scaled according to the defects and omissions observed.

“You can quickly prototype designs by printing and testing them, looking for design flaws such as material tolerance that could be added to the 3D model of the pen holder. By testing, you can go back to your modeling software 3D and make changes now that you’ve quickly prototyped your first iteration.”

The maker studio remains free for students, and avid users can submit their own files to be printed via email.

This article was first published on Calgary Newspaper and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.

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