May 13, 2021

Come on in!

Rain or shine, pandemic or not, the Makerspaces at William & Mary are open and ready to help support you on your journey to create that next project, assignment, or personal learning adventure. Although we’re slightly more limited due to spacing and social distancing requirements, there’s still a whole lot going on around campus. In the past week we’ve had Tribe members come in to learn how to operate a LASER processing system, a CNC embroidery system, CNC lathe, and much more! We’re excited and here to help, so come on in.

Open Source Syringe Bot

The Makerspaces at William & Mary have many projects underway, one of the more interesting is the creation of an open source syringe bot design that is ultra-low cost and high resolution. The concept is that there are so many instances when we need a simple robot to move around a syringe and squirt some goop for us; either to 3D print from viscous fluids and epoxies or to perform automatic titration and chemistry a robot can be useful. If we can make one that is ultra-low cost, as in a couple hundred bucks at most, and yet can maintain micrometer level positioning accuracies and micro (or even nano) liter level dispensation volumes, that robot could be truly useful!

Introducing syringeBot v0.1.

This is the basic head for the open source, 3D printable, syringe bot that we’ve completed, tested, and deployed. Here you can see it in action as used by Doctoral Candidate Stapel as it is being used to 3D print diatom-filled biogel structures:

Stapel & Advisor Dr. Hannes Schniepp continue to move forward with their cutting edge research into the 3D printing of biological structures, having now built this new expanded bioreactor to generate custom materials.

We will keep pushing forward with working on and improving ultra-low cost, high resolution, syringe bot design.


This version (0.1v) was designed and produced from scratch by Aidan Connor (Computer Science, ’21) and the Director of the Makerspaces. If you would like to become part of the open source design effort please contact the director at jfrey@wm.edu.

Pumps Galore

There comes a time during every semester of APSC251, Introduction to Engineering Design, wherein the students are expected to design, print and assemble working, fully 3D printed, water pumps. Some recent examples provided for them include a piston-style water pump and a centrifugal-style water pump as seen below. Checkout their operation and more videos on our YouTube channel here.

The World at 25,000x Magnification!

We hosted our first electron microscope livestream yesterday. Although there were some technical difficulties, eventually we were able to see some very interesting structures on black flies, a spider, snake skin, and zinc. Watch the live stream to see what we saw! As a reminder, the electron microscope is open for use with curricular endeavors or individuals with training as part of the Makerspaces at William & Mary. Contact us to learn more.

https://youtu.be/sWE3VvxUrJw

Drive to Subscribe

We thank you for doing your part to support the Makerspaces by subscribing to our YouTube Channel.

Did you know there are certain caps associated with YouTube accounts’ subscribers? As we drive to build a better website and offer more content including live streams, recorded how-tos, and more; we have discovered that we need to get over the first couple hurdles of having a set number of subscribers.

For example, right now we can embed recorded videos here for you to watch (like this clip of CNC milling the W&M logo for use in an injection mold):

However, we cannot embed live streams and other content from our YouTube channel until we get more subscribers. Moreover, until we get more subscribers we cannot rename the channel to something (anything) better than:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxZLJZ46cAGjlIhdqnEUqQA

So, long and short, we thank you for doing your part to help us out by subscribing to our YouTube channel.

Building a better website (we hope)!

We’re working to setup a better looking and more friendly website experience at the Makerspaces at William & Mary. There’s a myriad of different projects in process that the current site isn’t doing it justice. Hence, time to build. That said, the service desk is operational and the makerspace student engineers are ready to help you figure out your next build!

So if you haven’t yet, make sure to start your makerspace adventures using the Service Desk button in the menu above!