3D Printing Policy and Procedures

The Library’s purpose is to offer the community access to new and emerging technologies such as 3D printing to inspire interest in design and help the community bring their creations to life. The policy establishes how and under what circumstances the public may use the Library’s 3D printing capabilities.

The Library’s 3D printers are available to the public to make three-dimensional objects using a design that is uploaded from a digital computer file.

  1. The Library’s 3D printers may be used only for lawful purposes. The public will not be permitted to use the Library’s 3D printers to create materials that are:
  2. Prohibited by local, state, or federal law.
  3. Unsafe, harmful, dangerous or poses an immediate threat to the well-being of others.
  4. In violation of another’s intellectual property rights. The printers will not be used to reproduce materials that are subject to copyright, patent, or trademark protections.
  5. The Library reserves the right to refuse any 3D print requests.
  • Cost: Similar to other services in the Library, like printing and photocopying, 3D printing is a service that charges a fee for your printed object. The charge is based on weight in grams.  You will receive an estimate of how much the final object will cost.  We include the weight of the supports and rafts in the cost.  Therefore, we cannot give an exact cost at the time of the print order.  3D prints must be paid for at pickup.
  1. Items printed from Library 3D printers that are not picked up within 7 days will become the property of the Library. Items must be picked up by the individual who printed them.
  2. Only designated Library staff and volunteers will have hands-on access to the 3D printers, unless being supervised during a workshop/program.

The procedures for printing from the Library’s 3D printers are as follows:

  1. Design creation:
  2. The 3D printer can be used with basic knowledge of Computer Assisted Drawing (CAD). Creating a new design requires an advanced knowledge of 3D modeling software products.  Video tutorials that accompany CAD programs can be of assistance.
  3. Any 3D drafting software may be used to create a design as long as the file can be saved in .stl, .obj, or .thing file format.
  4. The Library computers have software that may be used to create a design.
  5. Submitting a design for printing
  6. Persons wanting to use the 3D printer shall bring their file (no larger than 25MB) to the assigned location during library hours. Staff will add the model to the printing queue.
  7. If there is high demand, the library will schedule only one print per day.
  8. Wait/pickup time: Items may be picked up at the assigned location. It is sometimes difficult to estimate exact print times.  Library staff will make an educated guess about length of a job upon request.  Once the print job has been completed, patrons will be notified via email.
  • Please note that procedures governing the use of the Library’s 3D printers are subject to change.

Staff/Patron Usage:

  • All staff and patrons that are granted access to the 3D printers are required to complete safety training and sign a 3D printing agreement and d liability waiver. Patrons under the age of 18 years must also have a parent/guardian sign the waiver.
  • Patrons should be familiar with the design technology as library staff members are not experts and cannot offer extended instruction outside of workshops and programs.
  • Print jobs from workshops/programs may take priority over public print jobs.
  • Mass production of designs is prohibited along with use for commercial purposes.

3D Printing @ Your Library

Adopted by the Library Board of Trustees – May 18, 2016