Prototyping Equipment

The ILC workshop (108 & 108a) provide students with a diverse array of tools, equipment, and technology to assist with the development of prototypes for assignments, projects, and research.

The hand tools, power tools, and floor standing machines are all available for students to use on completion of safety training (provided by Mike Vanberkel) and machine specific training (Mike Vanberkel or Steve McNally).

The workshop also offers students and researchers 3D printing, laser cutting/engraving, circuit board engraving, CNC machining, non-structural welding, and 24" wide colour printing. All these services are operated by either Mike Vanberkel or Steve McNally and are billed at cost-recovery (includes material, machine maintenance, tooling, and Technologist/Technician time).

Plotter charges: $5 per 36" x 24" (Arch D) sheet for all users.

Technologist/Technician time: $50/hr and material costs for external users, graduate students, and researchers for CNC machining, laser cutting/engraving, welding, and circuit board engraving. For undergraduate academic and design team jobs, only material costs are billable.

Contact: Mike Vanberkel or Steve McNally

3D Printing

The ILC has two 3D printers, a Stratasys Dimension SST 1200es printing in (thermoplastic) and a Stratasys Objet260 Connex3 (photopolymer).

The Dimension SST 1200es offers users an ABS thermoplastic build in a single colour with layer thickness of 0.254 mm. Parts are relatively durable and suitable for moderate use.

3D-printed letter Q
3D printers

The Objet260 Connex3 prints photopolymer resins that are cured by UV. Print resolution is much finer at 0.045mm and the printer offers three material builds which can include transparent resins, flexible resins, multiple colours, and gradients of the of the loaded materials. What is gained in resolution and multi-material is lost in relative durability and sensitivity to heat. Objet260 parts are more generally suitable for display and light uses only.

Both printers offer a 250 mm x 250mm build size with the Dimension at 300 mm high and the Objet at 200 mm. Build time is dependent on model size and may range from 2 hrs to 22 hrs. All builds will require a degree of support material. The support material is required to support void spaces and overhangs in the model and is removed post-print.

The ILC offers the use of the 3D printer to any project student requiring a prototype. The cost of a model is $9 per cubic inch of material (both modelling and support material) for undergraduate academic use. For all other end-users, the rate is $12 per cubic inch. Custom material requests will incur additional charges due to waste material generated during cartridge changes. Designs must be saved as .STL files, which is a solid modelling format available in most CAD programs. Solid Edge, SolidWorks, and AutoCAD are available on all ILC computers.

3d layered model in software

Designs can be sent to Mike Vanberkel or Steve McNally for a materials cost and time estimate. While most models can be completed overnight, please allow a few days for estimates and setup. Tall, thin objects require more support material, which adds to the cost of the object. Also consider the required mechanical strength; the machine draws upwards in horizontal layers, so parts can break if enough stress is applied along those layers. If a specific strength is required please specify which axes are most important; the object's orientation can be easily changed for a better finish or for part strength.

  • The size of the object can be no more than 250 mm x 250 mm x 300 mm (Dimension) or 250 mm x 250 mm x 200 mm (Objet),
  • Please convert the file to STL format before sending,
  • Please make sure that the scale is correct