To better serve and invest in our local community the Fab Lab has partnered with several anchor institutions to help introduce people (especially kids) to the process of making. We are helping them to set up their own maker spaces as well as coordinating a variety of collaborations, including workshops, outreach events and consultation. We also continue to retain connections to the global and national Fab Lab community.
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Q: Do all Fab Labs have exactly the same equipment?
A: All Fab Labs use the same basic equipment although most Fab Labs may not have things such as the 3D printer and ShopBot, not all labs will have the space or funding for the larger or more expensive equipment.
Q: How much space does the CUCFL occupy?
Q: Who uses the CUCFL?
A: Our Fab Lab is open to the general public and we literally have folks from 8 to 80 years old using the lab. It also helps that we have a diverse group of patrons and volunteers who work with the Fab Lab.
We also reach alternative parts of the community through mini lab sites at The Urbana Free Library (teen open lab) and Tap In Leadership Academy, as well as through specific events and workshops held off-site.
Participants on-campus are roughly 50% students and 50% community members, including a mixture of artists, entrepreneurs, and hobbyists. Families are welcome though generally kids under 10 will not be able to get much out of a visit.
Q: What does it cost to operate the CUCFL?
A: Our Fab Lab is a combination of UIUC staff and volunteer-run, which means our budget is unusual. As a component of the public engagement arm of the University of Illinois we run under a kind of non-profit model, operating mainly on grants, gifts, funds from consulting and earnings from classes, workshops and materials sales. There are no membership fees of any kind, though specific site labs may require other criteria (teens only at the library, Tap In Academy scholars in the school system, etc...). For a specific estimate on our current operational costs come in to visit us and ask.
Q: Is the Champaign-Urbana Community Fab Lab affiliated with a university?
Q: What does it take in terms of IT equipment and internet bandwidth to establish a free standing Fab Lab?
A: We currently employ the following IT solutions:
Below are answers to some common and/or interesting questions that have come up when talking to people who are starting new Fab Labs.
Klondike Kate almost threw away this biscuit, but Yukon Johann grabbed it and engraved it on the laser cutter.