Id-tronics Lab and Prototyping

At the school of Industrial Design at Carleton, I have been asked to help students to prototype mainly with 3D printing. The School bought  4 Type A series pro 3D machine model for students that wanted learn 3D printing Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) process.  Since then Type A company as filed for bankruptcy and the site has been shut down. This page is for students that need information about Type A machines. I have collected information that you may find here to complete the workshops given in class.

1. Export your file in OBJ or STL format from your CAD.

2. Preparing your G-code

3D machines need numerical control (NC) programming language to control automated machine tools. Cura is a free software 3D slicing engine for 3D printers. It generates G-code from 3D CAD files (STL or OBJ) to create your G-code.
Installing Cura software for type A machine. Note that you can also install Cura version 15, but you will have to manually add the machine setting before printing. This version is the latest update and will give you more options for slicing your objects.


3. Connecting to the Printers using wifi.

  1. Power the printer and search for the wifi network with the name of the printer.
  2. Note for PC users, make sure you install Bonjour.
  3. Open your browser and type in: http://series1-10419.local:5000. Change the serial number in the link to match your printer.
  4. Use the control panel to upload your file.

  1. Name your file as such: Student name_Project Name_version number. This will help us keep track of objects that have been printed and to who it belongs to.
  2. Write down the log file ALL printed object, successful or not. This will help us track the usage of the printer and the filament. PAY your printed object to JIM, before you can print. The School charges 15 cent a gram for PLA and 25 cent for flexible filaments and the usage of the machine.

4. Heat the nozzle before changing filament.

When you reach 80C (PLA) remove the current filament from the extruder.

5. Level the bed before printing.

  1. Apply glue before printing. Clean the bed after your printing job for other students.


PLA or Polylactic acid is a thermoplastic polyester. It is commonly derived from renewable resources, such as corn starch, tapioca roots or sugarcane. One of the most attractive things about PLA plastic is that it naturally degrades when exposed to the environment.  For example, an item made of PLA plastic in the ocean has a degradation time on the order of six months to two years.  Compare this to conventional plastics, which take from 500 to 1,000 years to degrade.

If you have printed with ABS filament, you will find PLA filament to be harder, wear more slowly, and be easier to get a nice flat part with. PLA is less thermally contractive and much easier to print big parts with. The thing to consider is that being stiffer and harder also means that it is more brittle.  If the part you’re printing will be used where it might receive a lot of banging or sharp collisions, PLA may not be the best material.

The other important consideration when printing parts with PLA filament is knowing what sorts of temperatures the part will be subjected to.  PLA plastic becomes soft at 70°C – 80°C and will deform if used in environments that remain above those temperatures for any prolonged time. You can find more information on MatterHackers.


  • Type A Solid Colored PLA temperature range between 200°C – 210°C
  • Type A Translucent PLA works best at 190°C.
  • Heated print bed recommended when printing on glass, optional, range between 50°C – 70°C.
  • Note: Borosilicate Glass w / Max temp of 120°C

Note that these setting will change according to different material brand.


  • Temperature range between 230°C – 240°C
  • Heated print bed recommended. Set your print bed temperature to approximately 80°C – 100°C. After the first few layers, it’s best to turn down your print bed temperature a bit.
  • Glow in the dark ABS use 250°C
  • Sticks well to Polyimide/Kapton tape, PET tape, Blue tape.
  • Sticks well to extra strong hairspray (Can not use at Carleton University, FYI only).
  • Sticks well with “ABS Juice” which is scrap ABS filament dissolved in acetone (Can not use at Carleton University, FYI only).

Profile Settings for type A machine.

Download here


name = CopperFill PLA
base_polymer = PLA
layer_height = 0.2
wall_thickness = 1.0
retraction_enable = True
solid_layer_thickness = 0.8
fill_distance = 3
nozzle_size = 0.4
print_speed = 100
print_temperature = 210
print_temperature2 = 0
print_temperature3 = 0
print_temperature4 = 0
print_temperature5 = 0
print_bed_temperature = 70


Image result for flexible shoes 3d print

Print settings: Hot end at 230°, printing at 20mm/sec with .2 layer height. Retraction at 50mm/sec with a distance of 2mm.

Image source

Adjusting Z-Hop

It increases the Z-height when moving over already printed areas to avoid hitting the surface finish. Nozzle moves upwards when moving over the print and then, moves back down to the current layer.


Here is a great reference published by Simplified 3D worth looking for troubleshooting common mistakes.


Technical Specifications

  • Technology: Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF), 1.75mm, No Restrictions on Source Material.
  • Build Volume: 305x305x305 mm (12″x12″x12”), Axial Diagonal: 528.28mm (20.8 in)
  • Build Platform: Heated Borosilicate Glass, Max Temp: 120°C
  • Layer Resolution Range: 50-300µm
  • Maximum Extruder Temp: 300°C
  • Feedrates: Extrusion 15-100 mm/s, Travel 30-250 mm/s
    Maximum rate is specific to each material.
  • Software: Cura Type A, Series 1 Pro Interface (Octoprint-based)
  • Other: On-Board HD Camera, Wi-Fi, Ethernet

Hot End – 0.4MM Stainless Steel

The “needle-based” hot end for our G2 extruder is the most affordable and reliable hot end we’ve ever produced, and we think the most reliable hot end ever made. Link to buy new hot end online.

The Fully Assembled G2 Hot End Assembly consists of the following parts:

  • Stainless steel needle
  • Retaining ring
  • Heater block clamp
  • Set screw
  • Heating element
  • Spade terminal with bolt and temperature sensor.


Fab Lab Presentation at Digihub

Last April 2017, I presented possibilities of creating a fab lab at DigiHub Shawinigan. A fab lab is a workshop offering (personal) digital fabrication. A fab lab is typically equipped with an array of flexible computer-controlled tools that cover several different length scales and various materials, with the aim to make “almost anything”.

More information on the Fab Lab Foundation, the Fab Lab Network and the Fab Academy.



Les laboratoires de fabrication numérique en pleine émergence ici et ailleurs dans le monde!
25 OCTOBRE DE 16H30 À 19H

Propulsés et démocratisés par le MIT depuis 15 ans, l’utilisation des outils de fabrication numérique que l’on retrouve dans des espaces collaboratifs tels que les Fab Labs sont maintenant au cœur du développement territorial, économique, social, environnemental. Aux quatre coins du monde, ces outils de fabrication numérique et leur mode de fonctionnement en réseau font éclater les modèles en place en ouvrant des opportunités jusque-là inexistantes

L’impact social, les opportunités économiques, les avancées techniques que l’imprimante 3D, la découpe laser ou la CNC engendrent se comparent à l’apparition de l’ordinateur personnel et d’Internet.

En obtenant une partie du financement d’un projet total de plus de 400 000 $ pour concevoir un FabLab à Shawinigan, le DigiHub continue de participer au tournant de l’économie du numérique.

Lors de ce cocktail, vous aurez l’occasion de :

    • découvrir ou connaître la vision et les détails du projet à ce jour et les étapes à venir (entre autres une journée de codesign pour concevoir le lab à l’image du milieu) ;
    • Découvrir ou d’en apprendre plus lors d’une présentation sur l’état des FabLab de Shenzen à Shawi! ;
    • Socialiser avec l’équipe, les partenaires et l’ensemble de l’écosystème.

Information logistique

En participant à cet événement, vous acceptez d’être photographié et consentez à ce que ces images soient utilisées dans différentes formes de communications publiques.

En participant à cet événement, il se peut que certaines informations récoltées soient utilisées par Phonesavanh Thonsgouksanoumane dans le cadre de sa maîtrise au département de Design & Engineering de l’Université Carleton, dirigée par le professeur Bjarki Hallgrimsson, Ph.D. Cette recherche vise à comprendre « Comment un processus de codesign peut-il aider les parties prenantes à implanter avec succès un laboratoire de fabrication numérique? ».

Pour vous inscrire


Some bits on the path taken into the Maker Movement and involvement in the Fab Lab Network

While many arts and visual designer students have found a way to contribute to society after their studies, I found my way in the department of New Media at CBC/Radio-Canada. My work consisted mainly to provide visual design for the web portal. From the Olympics events, sport or cultural events and the wide range of news we had to cover, the Iraq war really took a toll on me. Every morning, I would have to go through the photographic news database to search for a picture that would serve the daily news of the war. Pictures had to be true enough to the storyline but not “deliberately offensive” (not sure of the right term). One of the pictures portrayed a parent holding his child, both died frosted with a biological chemical weapon. They lay there with the rest of the village that was attacked. Another picture showed pieces of human bodies scattered around the building crumbles after a bomb had exploded. I could only imagine how it was like in Laos during the Vietnam war. How orange chemical ravaged the people’s humanity and how, today still, have negative effects on the people and on the land. How devasting war can be and how little we are against such atrocity. Delivering news has its own honour in fighting against the war but I felt my role was too minuscule.

As I go through life, from trying new start-ups and capital ventures funded projects to better the world, between many failure and cases of success, I was lucky to find the right environment to make a contribution towards a difference in the world: The Maker Movement and the fab lab network. Below is a description by authors Troxler, Gourmand and Labrune, that defining what I mean.

“Maker practice is as much about building something yourself than building something for yourself – that is to say, a demonstration of skills and the expression of one’s autonomy: I shape objects, therefore I act on the world. Autonomy is a form of liberty in action that we can exercise to work out or define our relationship with everything around us and the way we act in their midst. It has nothing to do with the realisation of a certain isolation that privileges self-sufficiency, in which case we could just as much talk about autarchy. Autonomy is a practice of empowerment, the development of a relationship with the world and with others which converges towards collective formations. A complex togetherness where our perspectives overlap and we recognise the necessity for certain affects and obligations.” – Troxler, Gourmand and Labrune.

As my design practices changed from creating artefacts to designing experiences and services, creating space for meaningful conversation that would shape the way we live and inhabit our space, I needed a way to also shape my world.

In the Fab Lab network, I found not only the means but a way to grow, learn, live my passions and connect with people that shared the same mindset. I learned to use machines tools that can revolutionize our way of producing, collecting data and interacting with the world. In a Fab Lab, I feel everything is possible. As Neil Gershenfeld, Director of the Center for Bits and Atoms at the MIT and founder of the Fab Lab movement, I could now practice that “possible is a mindset”. I went from knowing to practising and that made all the difference.

That led me to participate in events across countries (Canada, Laos, Spain, France, US, China) connecting with extraordinary people that would later help me shape policies for new digital labs in cultural places in my province (QC). This summer, I have gone with an amazing team across Canada to connect all the labs together. More information can be found at This same summer at FAB13, the 13th edition of the International Fab Lab conference was held in Chilli. Marc-Olivier Ducharme, my Fab Labs Nation colleague and friend was there with me. We proposed to host the International Conference in Montreal and we got selected for the year 2020! Communautique, founded the first fab lab in Quebec, échoFab, and had done tremendous work throughout the Province and lately in Canada for the movement. We could not have done it without the support and implications of all team members and all our partners. We are growing stronger. Things are moving forward for the movement in Canada and there is a lot of work to do!

As Cindy Kohtala said: “as people, as fabbers, as managers, we need to look at the stars and our feet and the road all at the same time. The Impact is part of this.” That is why I have started a research thesis to look deeper into the what is happening with digital fabrication spaces. With name brand TechShop and many other going out of business, we can not help but wonder about their precarious future.

My research at Carleton University, School of Industrial Design is to see how co-design processes may help stakeholders make a successful digital fabrication lab. While writing my thesis, I have been contracted by Digihub in Shawinigan, in Quebec Province, to design the new Fab Lab. I shall be publishing more updates about this project soon…



Troxler, P., Fourmond, T., & Labrune, J. (2016). Digitally-operated atoms vs. bits of rhetoric: a mash-up, (5), 11–14.