FabLab services during a time of remote learning: update

We currently offer remote consulting for the UVM community: The FabLab team is available to consult with students, faculty, staff and K-12 educators about the prototyping services of the FabLab that include 3D printing, laser cutting and engraving and more (for a listing of equipment see uvmfablab.net). Students may also contact us to get advice about 3d model designs; while the FabLab is not currently fabricating academic projects in the lab the FabLab team can offer advice around the viability of models and make suggestions that would improve 3d models and make them suitable for 3d printing in the future. To contact the UVM FabLab email fablab@uvm.edu.

Regarding local manufacturing and needs for the COVID-19 crisis: UVM’s Instrumentation and Model Facility (IMF) is leading UVM’s response to these needs, addressing medical equipment needs, repair and fabrication. UVM Risk Management and UVM IMF are working closely together and with the UVM Medical Center; the UVM FabLab is supporting their efforts. Thank you to everyone who has shown concern and sent us DIY patterns and models.


Drop-In Soldering Workshops

On Friday (12/6) from 6-8pm and on Wednesday (12/11) from 2-4pm we invite you to drop in for a soldering lesson. We’ll have a variety of kits available and our FabLab technicians (Fabbers) are enthusiastic about sharing this skill. This is for those who have never soldered before and beginners who want more practice.

In addition, on Wednesday (12/11) from 2-4pm we invite you to drop in for laser cutting snowflakes.

Please look at the ‘Workshops for the UVM Community’ page for more information.

UVM FabLab staffer Matt Argraves uses 3D printing to enable tractor safety

By Sarah Tuff Dunn

Nearly as much as maple syrup and ski slopes, tractors are a motif of Vermont—but driving one safely is more complicated than some might think. So UVM had a unique opportunity lately when Liz Kenton at the Center for Sustainable Agriculture reached out to the school’s FabLab for help ensuring safety among young tractor drivers.

“It started during a conversation at the Vermont Farm Health and Safety Coalition, and I mentioned offhand that I’d love to have a model of a tractor hitch printed,” says Kenton, who received the name of CEMS Director of Communications and Lecturer Jenn Karson from Philip Jones of Project WorkSafe and the Vermont Department of Labor. Karson, in turn, introduced Kenton to Matt Argraves, a staffer at the FabLab.

The most interesting part of the project, says Argraves, was going to the UVM farm and testing out different tractors. Then came building the model, no small feat. “It was really challenging taking this fairly large device and miniaturizing it down to one-sixteenth scale,” he says. “They’d be so small that they would break.”

Eventually, Argraves was able to build a successful model, one that Kenton now uses in teaching tractor safety. “Matt went the extra mile in spending time on the farm and learning about tractors; the details he put into it are just great,” says Kenton. “Now, the model is an attention-getter. It really helps students who are new to tractors become more comfortable.”



FabLab participates in Champlain Maker Faire and the Illuminated Forest

On September 22, 2018 the UVM FabLab had the great pleasure of participating and contributing to the 7th Annual Champlain Maker Faire (CMF) This years was the debut of CMF’s evening program Illuminated Forest. Both the evening and day event were located in the stunning beauty that is Shelburne Farms.

Fabbers had a booth as part of the daytime Maker Faire and demonstrated 3D printing for engineering.  The evening Illuminated Forest featured 16 light and sound installations in woods next to the Coach Barn. Fabbers created a zoetrope kangaroo carousel for the ocassion! See video and pictures below.



FabLab booth inside the Coach Barn during the day event – champlain Maker Faire



A pensive moment…trying a few things out for the lighting of the carousel…
Congratulations to graduating engineers and Fabbers Brianna, Carlo, Taylor and Claudia! Your contribution to the UVM FabLab over the past few years will be remembered and…Ouch! We will miss you!

Fall 2017 Update

Happy fall to y’all! Here are a few highlights from the lab this fall:

class of art students in fablab
Professor Midred Beltre recently brought her printmaking class to the FabLab to work with laser engraving on wood.

Moved into our new space in Votey, over twice as big as our original space.  This was a big and exciting transition for us, as we were closed over the summer for the Votey renovations.

Participated in the UVM STEM Complex Open House, the UVM Innovation Slam, Essex Mini Maker Faire, Champlain Mini Maker Faire, Admissions Tours, and other outreach events

Organized a new drop-in soldering program and a suite of workshops for the UVM community. Workshops will be taught by our very own “Fabbers”

On December 2, as part of the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences we are excited to host the Aiken K-12 Maker Faire and Engineering Challenge!

Drop by during our regular hours, join us for a workshop and bring the whole family to the Aiken Maker Faire and Engineering Challenge. We look forward to seeing you soon.


Maker Metrics: Measuring the Impact of Academic Makerspaces

By Jenn Karson

We know that academic makerspaces create meaningful experiences for students, yet how do we measure this meaningful impact? Where do we start?
Last fall on behalf of the UVM FabLab I attended the first International Symposium on Academic Makerspaces (ISAM) at MIT. Organizers for the symposium came from MIT, Yale, Stanford, Olin, Carnegie Mellon, Case Western Reserve, Georgia Tech and UC Berkeley.

I specifically attended the conference to learn how to better use metrics to measure the impact of academic makerspaces. The big idea emphasized by Malcom Cooke of ThinkBox at Case Western was  Keep Calm and Collect Data – collect as much data as possible and start today! Collect data that you can assess and measure over time, look to metrics and outcomes, quantitative and qualitative outcomes.

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Student Research Conference Presentations

On Thursday April 27 students from Interactive Design and Prototyping and the FabLab presented at the UVM Student Research Conference.