LeTourneau University to host workshop for public to build 3D printers

3D Printer Workshop

LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - LeTourneau University is giving non-students a chance to build their own 3D printer.

The university will be holding a workshop complete with kits from which people can assemble a 3D printer.

“So these are some kits we’ve put together. We had a few extra, and we’d like to offer them to the public to get to have some fun like our students do,” said Shelli Starrett, a professor at LETU’s School of Engineering and Technology.

The three-day workshop is from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 1 and Friday, Aug. 2, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 3.

The workshop costs $500 and is fashioned after LETU freshman engineering classes that teach students to understand, build and operate 3D printers. Groups or families can register together to build a 3D printer to share.

The technology allows users to build three-dimensional objects from a computer-aided design model.

“We will take them through the steps of how to put each piece together, all the stages and also show them how to use some of the software, how to fine some of the things they might want to print and hopefully have a of fun with it,” Starrett said. “They’re going to take a bunch of pieces and parts and then they’re going to end up with a working printer.”

In April of 2014, LeTourneau University engineering students set a world record and were featured in the Guinness Book of World Records for the most individual 3D printers operating simultaneously.

In January of 2015, one LETU student presented a three-foot long, 1:176 scale 3D printed model of the Atlantic Mercy hospital ship to Mercy Ships, a nonprofit humanitarian organization founded in 1978 that provides free, world-class healthcare services to people in the developing world.

“Your imagination is your limit when it comes to building things with a 3D printer," Starrett said. “Anything you can imagine really you can probably make it in someway with a 3D printer.”

Anyone interested in the upcoming workshop can contact Starrett at ShelliStarrett@letu.edu or by calling the LETU School of Engineering at (903) 233-3910.

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