New Certification Requirement for 3D Printers (Not the Polar)

With the pending (re)arrival of the Gigabot’s availability and the recent issues we’ve had with the Ultimaker, we feel it is necessary to institute a certification requirement for these two machines. They’ve both proven to be very unreliable except when handled with extreme care and understanding. So, to make sure everyone knows the proper way to use them, we are developing a simple to use, easy to follow set of guidelines and tests to confirm everyone can enjoy their use now and into the future.

In the upcoming few days, Ryan and I will be working with others to develop some simple procedures, guidelines and tests. Dustin will be our first guinea pig since that they follow under his purview as area warden. Basically, we’re thinking of something simple… simply prove you can design a part, slice it correctly (with an understanding of your settings) and then loading it the printer. (Currently, the Ultimaker is SD card based and the Gigabot will be Octoprint based.)

We’d love your input as well.


(Please note, the Polar 3D printer is not included in this requirement, feel free to use it at will. Simply log onto the polar cloud, upload your object and hit print.)

Thanks Bill and Ryan,Gigabot certification sounds great! I could help write up guidelines with some basic Do’s and Don’ts for 3D printing in general.

I’ll note that Lorin has already been doing training for the Ultimaker, which is required to use the machine (at least in theory). I went through one of his training sessions, and it was quite helpful. Possibly this could be turned into a more formal certification.

Even trained people f* up the printers sometimes…I know I have. To some degree this is inevitable, but could definitely be reduced:

  • would be great if we had more rules and guidelines on the wiki for each printer
  • if you’re unsure about something, take the time to look it up or ask for help.
  • don’t hesitate to ask for retraining if it’s been a while since you used it
  • if something does break, report it promptly to the warden or on the mailing list


Perhaps videoing some of this training and making it available on a hive13 youtube channel would be a good idea? It would take a little bit of the training load off warden/instructors if absolute beginners could have some solid study material to look at before bothering a person.
We did this at work with one of the last training classes I taught and have received so much positive feedback, even with relatively unedited rough videos. It’s a clear case of something being much better than nothing.

just a thought.

Yes this is something I’ve been wanting to incorporate with the laser cutters for awhile now. My thoughts are the video would not replace a certification process. However, it will be a good point of reference if you have been certified, but its been awhile since you’ve used the machine and there’s a few details that might have slipped your mind.

I will talk to Ryan to get retrained and (its been so long that I’ve forgotten a thing or two about operating the gigabot) and hopefully have a form of training procedure for the gigabot.

Thanks for suggesting a certification process Bill, hopefully this will keep the gigabot running for much longer between breakdowns =]