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3D Print Farm
3D Printing at the NExT Lab runs as a service bureau. After setting up a file, the NExT Lab will review and print it for you. You will be able to learn all the ins-and-outs of 3D Printing without needing to deal with the technical issues as our staff will maintain all the technology. Our facilities and resources are open to all at the University of Melbourne.
- 2.Knowledge Base - This Knowledge Base is where we hold all our learning resources. Understanding the capabilities and limitations of the technology will help you achieve your desired outcomes. Using the navigation on the left or the search bar, you can find a variety of guides on the printing process and techniques.
- 3.Consultations - Book here Speak to one our technicians before you begin to find out how to best utilise 3D printing in your project! Additionally, if our Knowledge Base does not hold the answers you seek, come have a chat and we will guide you in the right direction.
There is a queue that can get busy during the key submission times across the semester with a fluctuating turnaround time, so get files in early!
Standard 3D Printing
Figure 1.0 - (Left) Makerbot Replicator+ (Right) Makerbot Replicator Z18
The NExT Lab is home to 29 x Makerbot Replicator + and 2 x Replicator Z18.
The Makerbot Replicator family of printers are engineered and extensively tested for reliable, faster 3D printing. It is the perfect tool for you to quickly and cheaply test and bring new ideas to life. The only difference between the two models is the build volume.
Our choice of material is PLA (polylactic acid). It is biodegradable, easy to print and has a wide variety of colours to suit your desired outcome:
These colours are subject to availability:
- Ocean Blue
- Neon Pink
- Warm Grey
As long as you have access to the NExT Lab you can submit via the Makerbot Innovation Center. All jobs submitted through this standard process defaults to using these printers.
Makerbot Innovation Centre will calculate your estimate price, however, NExT Lab technicians will calculate your job individually.
High Quality 3D Printing & Dissolvable Supports
The Makerbot Method is available that prints at a finer layer resolution, combined with its heated chamber, it results in very high quality prints. This printer's main feature is its dual extruders that allows it to interchange between two materials throughout a print. This main use is for dissolvable supports. This will allow you to print highly complex 3D models or even stack models without having to worry about support removal. Dissolvable support material completely dissolves when submerged in water, making this printing method perfect for fragile and complex models that would normally required a lot of support.
Print Material: PLA Plastic and PVA Support Material
- Print Area: 190mm (L) x 190mm (W) x 196mm (H)
Dissolves in water, eliminating the need to remove supports.
Refer to the True White above with the Makerbot Replicator family.
Refer to the True Black above for the Makerbot Replicator family.
As long as you have access to the NExT Lab you can submit via the Makerbot Innovation Center. Please ensure you have selected the Method as the printer in Makerbot Print before slicing and uploading your files to the Makerbot Innovation Center.
BYO Experimental materials
Makerbot printers can be equipped with experimental extruders to allow for the experimentations of various material printing, e.g. wood-filled filament. If you are an enthusiast who would like to try your hand at a different material, book a consultation with us to discuss feasibility.
The cost of a 3D print using the Makerbot is calculated by the weight of plastic that is used to print the object. This includes the amount needed for the raft and support structures used to complete the print successfully.
If you are familiar with 3D printing already there is an in-depth guide on preparing files for the 3D Print Farm from Rhino to Makerbot:
If you are after a quick-version, you may use our Quick-Start Guide