CAD Tutorials

Rhino, Grasshopper, Digital Project, etc.  - Taubman College.

Rhino - Otis.



Waterjet cutter

2 CNC Routers

4 laser cutters

TCAUP Fused Deposition Modeling machines

UM3D Lab Fused Deposition Modeling and Zprinting machines

UM3D Lab workstations

CNC mill

PCB mill

A&D electronics prototyping lab

Design Lab 1 DL1

Design Lab 1 electronics prototyping

http://www.tcaup.umich.edu/architecture/resources/workshops_and_labs/digital_fablab/ - The Digital Fabrication Lab (Fab Lab) at Taubman College.

http://art-design.umich.edu/facilities/studios - The School of Art & Design studios.

http://www.mse.engin.umich.edu/research/researchfacilities - The Michigan Ion Beam Laboratory for Surface Modification and Analysis, the Electron Microbeam Analysis Laboratory, and the Solid State Fabrication Facility.

Rapid Prototyping Industry and 3D CAD links

3D Systems


Founded in 1986, with the invention of the first stereolithography rapid prototyping system, 3D Systems has grown into a global company delivering advanced solid imaging solutions to every major market around the world. Today, 3D Systems is the leading provider of solid imaging solutions that reduce the time and cost of designing products and facilitate direct and indirect manufacturing. By helping our customers improve their bottom line, our solid imaging solutions enable our customers to develop and maintain a sustained competitive advantage.

Arcam AB


Arcam (founded in 1997) provides a unique Free Form Fabrication (FFF®) technology for Direct Manufacturing of fully dense parts from metal powder. The technology is based on Electron Beam Melting (EBM) and parts are manufactured by melting metal powder and building up the parts layer-by-layer.

Cubic Technologies


Founded in 1985, Helisys® is one of the early pioneers in rapid prototyping, receiving 5 patents for a process known as Laminated Object Manufacturing®.



EOS is a world-wide operating company producing Laser-Sintering systems for e-Manufacturing, including Rapid Prototyping, Tooling and Manufacturing. We set the standards for the development of innovative systems, materials and software etc. for industrial applications. EOS' customers include companies in many sectors including automotive, electronics, aerospace, telecommunications and household goods.



Begun as a joint venture with the University of Leuven-Belgium, Materialise was one of the first European rapid prototyping service bureaus. It has since grown into a European supplier of plastic prototype solutions, and today is a worldwide leader in the rapid prototyping industry. Materialise offers a broad range of rapid prototyping, tooling and digital CAD software. In addition, Materialise prototypes and software have established a reputation in medicine and dentistry, with clinicians the world over using them in the most complex surgical cases. Its design products division concentrates on the development of rapid manufacturing. The company is privately owned with several subsidiaries in Europe, Asia and the USA, and employs over 300 people in its 4 divisions.



Founded in 1998, Objet is headquartered in the high-tech development center of Rehovot, Israel. The Company serves its growing worldwide customer base through wholly owned subsidiaries in Europe and Hong Kong, and a global network of distribution partners. Objet owns more than 40 patents and patent pending inventions. Objet’s systems are based on its patented, market-proven Poly-Jet™ polymer jetting technology, enabling even the most complex 3D models to be printed with exceptionally high quality, accuracy and speed.



Stratasys, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of in-office rapid prototyping and manufacturing systems for automotive, aerospace, industrial, recreational, electronic, medical and consumer product OEMs.





Solidscape®, Inc. is the leading manufacturer of high-precision 3D modeling rapid prototyping systems worldwide. This technology advances the state-of-the-art for computer-controlled fabrication of solid models. The T612 Benchtop and T66 Benchtop 3D Modeling Systems are true office peripherals—residing on your benchtop or desktop surface and requiring no facility modifications.

Solidscape systems are marketed worldwide and designed for numerous manufacturing applications including jewelry, jet engine turbine blades, medical instruments and prosthetics, consumer goods, automotive parts, electronics and many other high-precision products.



Z Corporation develops, manufactures, and markets the world’s fastest 3D Printers - machines that produce physical prototypes quickly, easily, and inexpensively from computer-aided design (“CAD”) and other digital data. Z Corp.’s 3D Printers are used by companies to make prototypes ranging from toys for market feedback to fan blades for functional testing. In the same way that conventional desktop printers provide computer users with a paper output of their documents, 3D Printers provide 3D CAD users a physical prototype of real world objects such as a mobile phone, an engine manifold, or a camera.

3D Software

Alibre http://www.alibre.com/

Autocad, Alias Studio, 3DS Max, Maya, Softimage XSI http://www.autodesk.com/

Blender http://www.blender.org/

Catia http://www.3ds.com/

Cinema4D http://www.maxon.net/

Deskartes http://www.deskartes.com/

Digital Project http://www.gehrytechnologies.com/

Electric Image Animation System http://www.eitechnologygroup.com/

Form Z http://www.autodessys.com/

Lightwave 3D http://www.newtek.com/

Modo http://www.luxology.com/

Pro Engineer http://www.ptc.com/

Project Messiah http://www.projectmessiah.com/

Rhinoceros http://www.rhino3d.com/

Silo http://www.nevercenter.com/

Sketchup http://www.sketchup.com/

Solid Works http://www.solidworks.com

Vue http://www.e-onsoftware.com/

Wings 3D http://www.wings3d.com/

Z Brush http://pixologic.com/

DIY Machines



The goals of The CandyFab Project are to reduce the costs associated with three-dimensional solid freeform fabrication, and to promote the use of fabrication technologies for culinary, educational, and artistic purposes.

Cupcake CNC


This is the whole kit of all the parts you need to build yourself an awesome CupCake CNC machine. This machine is what the RepRap community calls a 'RepStrap' machine, meaning it can be used to print out a 'real' RepRap machine. With this machine you can print out additional 3D printers to build you stuff.

DAVID-Laserscanner Low-Cost 3D Laser Range Scanning for Everyone


DAVID-Laserscanner is a freeware software for 3d laser range scanning. All you need to build a 3d scanner is a PC, a camera (e.g. a webcam), a background corner, and a laser that projects a line onto the object you want to scan. So everyone can use it to scan objects without high costs; this is the big advantage over commercial solutions which are rather expensive.

Fab @ Home


Fab @ Home is a website dedicated to making and using fabbers - machines that can make almost anything, right on your desktop. This website provides an open source kit that lets you make your own simple fabber, and use it to print three dimensional objects. You can download and print various items, try out new materials, or upload and share your own projects. Advanced users can modify and improve the fabber itself.



Printers are a common everyday machine. They use ink and technology to make things in 2 dimensions. Imagine if instead of printing on bits of paper, you had a printer that works in 3 dimensions. You would have to use a solid ink, but you would be able to print real, robust, mechanical parts. To give you an idea of how robust these parts could be think of Lego bricks and you're in the right ballpark. You could make lots of useful stuff. Interestingly, you could also make most of the parts to make another 3D printer, but not all of them. That would be a machine which could make itself.

Other Kit

Desktop Factory


Until now, 3D printers have been large, expensive machines confined to the shops and design departments of major corporations and elite design firms. With the introduction of the Desktop Factory 3D printer, priced disruptively lower than the nearest competitive offering, Desktop Factory becomes the leader in high performance low-cost 3D printing technologies.

Roland Milling Machines


Roland ASD milling machines let engineers and designers mill 3D prototypes quickly and inexpensively. They are also used for creating wax models for jewelry design.



Universal Laser Systems, Inc. is the pioneer and highest volume manufacturer of unique computer peripherals used for laser engraving, marking and cutting. Universal has worldwide distribution and services thousands of customers in hundreds of different industries.



Priced at $9,900, the V-Flash™ Desktop Modeler allows you to affordably build 3-D models whenever you need them.




Intelligent Modeling and Generative design technologies will soon allow customers to design.



OGLE (OpenGLExtractor) is an open source software package by the Eyebeam OpenLab that allows for the capture and re-use of 3D geometry data from 3D graphics applications running on Microsoft Windows.



MeshLab is an open source, portable, and extendible system for the processing and editing of unstructured 3D triangular meshes. The system is aimed to help the processing of the typical not-so-small unstructured models arising in 3D scanning, providing a set of tools for editing, cleaning, healing, inspecting, rendering and converting this kind of meshes.

Moment of Inspiration


MoI is also a fantastic complementary tool for a polygon-based artist since its CAD toolset and advanced boolean functions enable extremely rapid creation of mechanical or man-made type “hard surface” models. The icing on the cake is MoI’s unique polygon mesh export that generates exceptionally clean and crisp N-Gon polygon meshes from CAD NURBS models.

Pepakura Designer


Pepakura Designer allows you to create paper craft models from 3D data. Pepakura Designer does not contain software to create the original 3D models, but instead translates them to a 2D printable format.



Viewstl is an open source way to view STL files as shaded on-screen images.

Online Fabrication

Big Blue Saw


Big Blue Saw  is in Atlanta, Georgia and brings together the Internet and computer-controlled rapid manufacturing. A part file can be uploaded and it will be fabricated and shipped out in 14-21 days.



eMachineShop pioneered online machining. We have made it more convenient and easier than ever for both engineers and non-engineers to make custom parts. You begin by downloading the free eMachineShop software. Then you draw your part in our easy-to-use free 3D CAD software. When you're happy with your design, you simply click for instant pricing and ordering.



Have your electronic characters made into incredibly detailed, full color, real-life statuettes.



Fluidforms offers everyone an individual Design. Our website enables you to design according to your own preferences with but a few clicks of the mouse. Create your own unique forms, an bring to life your own individual Design.



Ponoko is the world's first personal manufacturing platform. It's the online space for a community of creators and consumers to use a global network of digital manufacturing hardware to co-create, make and trade individualized product ideas on demand.

TechShop (ok, so it's not online but we need more of these...)


TechShop is a fully-equipped open-access workshop located in Menlo Park, California that allows users to drop in any time and work on their own projects.




Instructables is a web-based documentation platform where passionate people share what they do and how they do it, and learn from and collaborate with others.



MAKE Magazine brings the do-it-yourself mindset to all the technology in your life. MAKE is loaded with exciting projects that help you make the most of your technology at home and away from home.

Prototype Magazine


Prototype provides independent news coverage, hardware and service provider evaluations and stimulates discussion of the hot topics within the rapid prototyping industry - with reference to both mainstream rapid prototyping technology, and emerging areas such as direct manufacture.

Rapid Prototyping: An Overview


Rapid Prototyping (RP) can be defined as a group of techniques used to quickly fabricate a scale model of a part or assembly using three-dimensional computer aided design (CAD) data.

Rapid Prototyping Homepage


This document is updated frequently in an effort to keep up with the latest developments in the fast paced field of Rapid Prototyping (aka Solid Freeform Fabrication, Rapid Manufacturing, Desktop Manufacturing, Direct Manufacturing, or Layered Manufacturing).

TCT Online


TCT Magazine (Time-Compression Technologies) is the longest established title in the Rapid Product Development and Rapid Manufacturing sector.

Wohlers Associates, Inc.


Wohlers Associates, Inc. is a 21-year old consulting firm that provides technical, marketing, and strategic advice on the new developments and trends in product development, rapid prototyping, 3D printing, additive fabrication, tooling, and rapid manufacturing.


Digital Fabrication Flickr Group


This group is for images related to digital fabrication techniques, such as rapid prototyping, laser sintering, stereolithography, laser cutting. Also known as fabbing, these methods enable the production of physical objects directly from digital models, allowing for new forms and aesthetics.

Rapid Prototyping Electronic Mailing List