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The Spark Makerspace

Igniting the imagination through cooperative learning

3D Printing

image of Ender printers that are available for Self Service

3D Printing @ The Spark

There are an ever growing number of 3D printers in todays market. The technology is exciting and the use of the 3D modeling and printing technologies are rapidly growing in to a wide range of career fields. At the Spark we currently have fused deposition modeling or FDM 3D printers in our collection. FDM printers use a material extrusion process which involves the heating of a thermoplastic through the use of a hot end. The thermoplastic is generally referred to as a filament, and once it passes through the heated hot end it melts and is extruded in thin layers on to a printer bed. The Gcode, which is the coded language that tells the printer where to extrude the filament, outlines the steps for the printer building the .stl model layer by layer.

At the Spark we offer two styles of 3D printing services; Full Service and Self Service. Full service 3D printing at the Spark is designed to be a paid service. At $1 per print hour, the Spark staff handles set up of the 3D printer as well as oversite of the job in progress. On the other hand, The Spark offers access to Self Service 3D printers, which require training and check out, but allow for you to set up and manage your print on your own. The flexibility of the set up allows you to choose the service that will fit your needs. More details regarding each service is outlined below.

Full Service 3D Printing

The Full service 3D printing at The Spark, is processed through an online queue. Submission to the queue can be placed at Full service within the Spark generally cost $1.00 per print hour and includes:

  • 3D Model Review
  • Materials Assessment
  • Machine Setup
  • Quality Control monitoring
  • Print options
    • material selection options
    • print bed upgrades
    • specialty printers

Please see the information below regarding the 3D printers we have in our collection.

Self Service 3D Print Queue

Requires training. Schedule an in person training appointment.

The Self Service 3D printers at The Spark are available for trained UNT community members to use. Self Service is for those of you who are already familiar with 3D printers, 3D modeling, .stl file creation, Slicing and gcodes. Self service does require that you go through training, and that you consistently demonstrate respect for the machines, procedures, and best practices for using the printers. Self Service 3D printers are in space circulation items, which means the printer is checked out to you for use in The Spark location. Self Service is provided at no cost to you and includes:

  • Safety and use training
  • Black or White PLA filament only

Circulation Process

The circulation process for the self service printers begin with a safety and use training. If you already have been trained the blue binder is always available at the front desk as a reference or you can request a retraining. Also, the profile for CURA is available for download here. It is highly recommended that you slice your file and have an idea of how many grams of filament you may need to complete your print before coming in to check out a printer/filament. 

  • Checkout
    • Complete a Self Service Print Sheet
    • Checkout the filament and printer from the Spark staff
    • Leave the Self Service Print Sheet with the staff
  • Printer Use
    • You load the filament
    • You load the model
    • You start the print- the printer will give you an idea of how long the print is going to take. If you leave or your print take longer that the facility is open, The Spark is not responsible for the print. The staff will stop a print if it is causing damage to the printer.
    • You are responsible to properly remove print once the print has finished
    • You are to unload the filament and return it to the checkout desk


Ender 3

Ender 3 Self Service 3D Printing

  • Access: Available for use. Important to note:
    1. that we only have PLA filament for the Self Service Printers
    2. Black or White are the only colors available
    3. and training is required before use.
  • Profiles for slicing files
  • Website: Ender 3
  • Print Area: 229 mm x 229 mm x 229 mm (9 in x 9 in x 9 in)

Location Information

  • Discovery Park M130
  • Willis Library 135 
3D printing filament spools
3D orange fish
several 3D items

Ender 5

Ender 5 Information

  • Pricing: Available for a charge of $1.00 per hour for your submitted print jobs.
  • Website: Ender 5
  • Print Area: 350 mm x 350 mm x 400 mm (13 in x 13 in x 15 in)

Location Information

  • Discovery Park M130
  • Willis Library 135



PolyPrinter 229

PolyPrinter 229

PolyPrinter 229 Information

  • Pricing: Available for a charge of $1.00 per hour for your submitted print jobs.
  • Website: PolyPrinter 229
  • Print Area: 229 mm x 229 mm x 229 mm (9 in x 9 in x 9 in)

Location Information

PolyPrinter 229
3D printing filament spools
3D orange fish
several 3D items


PolyPrinter 465DX

PolyPrinter 465DX Information

  • Pricing: Available for a charge of $1.00 per hour for your submitted print jobs.
  • Website: PolyPrinter 465
  • Print Area: 465 mm x 229 mm x 229 mm (18 in x 9 in x 9 in)

Location Information

3D printing filament spools


Additional Links