Welcome to MakerSpace USNA

Design, Build, Perform

MakerSpace USNA is a 3D printing laboratory space at the United States Naval Academy providing 3D printing capability for classroom and laboratory instruction as well as project support for students, faculty, and staff at USNA.

MakerSpace USNA is a (1) modern, (2) open, (3) student oriented, and (4) adaptable design space where students can design, build, and evaluate engineering projects within Engineering and Weapons Division at USNA.

All students, faculty, and staff are welcome to make an account on this website and utilize facilities in the MakerSpace.  Guests outside of USNA are also welcome to create an account, provide comments, and participate in our discussion of 3D printing.

Please use the links below or the menu above to join in on the discussion.

Enjoy your visit to MakerSpace USNA!

I love and hate the beginning of each school year... I love it because of the excitement that everyone has and when everything is working like it should. I hate it because we always learn the same lessons over and over and over again....

So ask yourself this question: if you have never 3D printed something, what should be your 1st 3D print job? It is super easy to find models on the internet (www.thingiverse.com is a gold starting point) but not all of these models are good starting points.

So rather than starting with that cool X-wing model with tons of small detail pick something more practical. I am fine with user picking "toys" to learn how to 3D print, but pick reasonable sized models (not too small and not too big). Pick models with some detail but not too much detail - really avoid models with lots of small detail. Avoid jobs with multiple parts that have to be assembled. Normally I tell users that any fine detail less than 1/4" will be a problem. Lastly, avoid overhangs like the plague to start with.

Also during your first few prints, watch the printer in action. Observe any startup alignments the printer does; see what it does to "clean" the nozzle; watch how it makes the first few layers. 3D printers are not magic boxes. If you put in a crappy model or do not watch what you are doing, you will get crappy results.

The MakerSpace folder on your desktop has many great examples of models. Don't try and start with a part that will make its way into the MakerSpace Hall of Fame! Start simple.

Happy printing!

Updated: Aug 15, 2019

Major changes complete in preparation for Fall AY2020. Recent changes include:

- Grand (Re-)Opening complete (see photos). Thanks to Northrop Grumman Mission Systems and the Naval Academy Foundation for making this a reality!

- MakerSpaceUSNA.com is now mobile friendly (for the most part).

- LulzBot Mini2 is operational (currently only with SD card).

Please sign up as a member on this website to get information on how to use the MakerSpace and its resources.

Lastly, thanks to 2nd Lt Colin Kelly '19 and other TADs, 2nd Lt Joel Austin, 2nd Lt Caleb Lucero, ENS Chance Davis, ENS Alex Ostrander, and ENS Anne Richter for the fantastic support over the summer. Fair winds and following seas!

Happy Printing.

We are finally fully operational following a very productive summer and look forward to many 3D printing projects in Academic Year 2020!

If you have visited before, please take another look around as we have updated almost everything on this site. This website is intended to help educate the next generation of AM warfighters and is intended for students and staff at USNA as well as our supporters and collaborators.

Please feel free to sign up and contribute. Please send any comments or suggestions to bbaker@makerspaceusna.com or any of the methods listed on the website.

Lastly, thanks to several members from USNA Class of 2019 including Colin Kelly, Chance Davis, Joel Austin, Caleb Lucero, Anne Richter, Alex Ostrander, Preston Webb, and may others who helped get this website off the ground. Good luck in your careers!

As always... Happy Printing!

Recent Blog Comments from the MakerSpace

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MakerSpace USNA Highlighted Videos

For a full list of videos check out our video page

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590 Holloway Rd, Annapolis, MD, USA