On-Demand 3D Printing

MCPL provides 3D printing services at some locations. Fill out the form, upload your design, we’ll print it. The library will contact you when your submission is ready for pickup. Here's how it works.

Step-by-Step Process

1

Create

Design a 3D object or download an existing design. Learn how to use a 3D printer or design objects to be 3D printed.

2

Submit

Send us your 3D object computer file by completing the 3D Print Request below.

3

Make

We use our 3D printer to print your object in plastic.

4

Take

Pick up and pay for your finished object at the appropriate library branch.

Submit a 3D Print Request

Complete a 3D Print Request Form to upload your 3D design file in .stl or .obj file format for printing. You can choose a color for your object and the pickup branch, depending on 3D printer availability. You must read and agree to the MCPL 3D Printing User Agreement.

Submit a 3D Print Request

When we receive your design, we will review it to ensure it complies with our Printing Policy. After the printing is completed by library staff you will be notified when you can come to pick up your item.

A $1 fee will be charged for each file you submit for 3D printing. Additionally, you will be charged $0.05 per gram (5 cents per gram). All costs are payable when you pick up the item.

3D Printing MCPL User Agreement

  1. The 3D printer may be used only for lawful purposes. Library users may not create material that is:
    • Prohibited by local, state or federal law.
    • Unsafe, harmful, dangerous or poses an immediate threat to the well-being of others.
    • In violation of another’s intellectual property rights, e.g., a 3D printer may not be used to reproduce objects which are protected by a copyright, patent or trademark.
    • Acceptance of customer designs to be printed on the 3D printer by Library staff does not constitute knowledge, or acknowledgment, of any unapparent final use of the 3D product and the Library specifically disclaims knowledge thereof.
  2. The Library reserves the right to approve or deny any 3D print requests.
  3. The Library is not responsible for the functionality or quality of content produced on the 3D printer. Refunds are not permitted.
  4. Only designated Library staff and volunteers will have hands-on access to the 3D printer.
    • A $1 fee will be charged to submit a file for 3D printing. Additionally, the customer will be charged $0.05 per gram (5 cents per gram).
    • All costs are payable when the item is picked up.
  5. The Library reserves the right to photograph any 3D printed items and use those photographs at our discretion.

If you agree to the 3D Printing User Agreement, complete the 3D Printing Request form.

New to 3D Printing and 3D Design?

3D Printing is the process of making a 3 dimensional object from a digital design file. This process can also be called additive manufacturing which involves laying down successive layers of material until the object is complete. Each of the layers is a thinly sliced cross-section of the object.

3D-printed objects are designed using computer-aided design (CAD) software. We recommend the online apps Tinkercad and Clara.io for beginners to learn how to create 3D designs. Other downloadable apps like Blender, FreeCad, OpenSCAD, and SketchUp can also be used to create objects.

Or you can download a ready-to-print design from websites like Thingiverse and YouMagine, which feature objects created and shared by the community.

Adobe Photoshop Creative Cloud, which is available in the Digital Media Lab at Silver Spring, can also be used to design 3D objects.