Workshop offers insight into 3D printing

Natalie Sanders, a fifth grader at CSA Lincoln, puts a 3D printer together during a 3D printing workshop at Purdue Polytechnic Institute in Columbus, Ind., Wednesday, March 14, 2018. Natalie attended the workshop with her grandfather Mike Engelstad, an engineer. They built the printer together. Mike Wolanin | The Republic

A dozen students in the Columbus area used their spring break week to get hands-on experience constructing a 3-D printer that could spark some personal creativity. The week-long workshop at Purdue Polytechnic Columbus gave participants an opportunity to build their own 3-D printer from scratch and take it home with them, said Matt Ferrell, metrology laboratory manager at Purdue Polytechnic Columbus.

The $400 workshop was designed to give exposure to the 3-D printing process, Ferrell said. Many individuals who sign up often don’t have experience using tools or buildings things, but that’s not an impediment for a course that welcomes beginners, he said. “They don’t need a mechanical background,” Ferrell said. A display table in the workshop area gave students some ideas on what they could create with 3-D printers from plastic materials.

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