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Special Collection at Hialeah Learning Resources: 3D Printer

MDC Hialeah Campus, 3D Printer Guide

3D Printing Guidelines

Updated as of January 19, 2024.
Guidelines are subject to change. Re-read the guideline again if you notice the date has changed.

Learning Resources (LR) aims to provide a safe and inclusive space for all students to explore the possibilities of 3D printing. To achieve this, we have established the following guidelines below for what can be printed on our station.

What CAN be printed?

Your print job must use no more than 175 grams of PLA filament.

To know how much PLA filament you are using is simple. When using the MakerBot Print software to export your print job, after your export completes a window should appear that displays the "Material Estimate" and "Time Estimate". Under the "Material Estimate" will display the grams of filament your print job will be using to two decimal places (as seen in the image below). You can also find this information when you click "Print Preview", and it will display the same estimates under the "Material Usage Estimates" header.

A screenshot of the window that pops up after an export completes. Within the window, the grams needed for the print job is displayed as "29.69g Needed" underneath the title "Material Estimate".

We will also be allowing our printers to be used for the following projects:

  • Academic Projects: Our printers can be used for academic projects, such as engineering prototypes, architectural models, and scientific visualizations.
  • Artistic Development: We encourage students to use our printers to create models and prototypes as part of their artistic development.
  • Other items as approved by the Learning Resources Center (LRC).

What CANNOT be printed?

To ensure the safety and well-being of all students and staff, we prohibit the printing of items that are illegal, harmful, or violate the college's policies. To ensure the safety of the MDC community and adherence to the specified guidelines, LR may refuse the printing of an object. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Weapons
  • Ammunition
  • Drug paraphernalia
  • Explicit content (unless approved for academic purposes)

Intellectual Property

Students must respect the intellectual property rights of others when using our printers. Printing items that are protected by copyright, trademark, or patent laws without permission is strictly prohibited.

If you have any questions about what can be printed, please don't hesitate to ask. Email


Welcome to the Hialeah Campus Learning Resources 3D printer station, where students can bring their ideas to life. We are a resource for all students who are looking to incorporate 3D printing into their academic and creative projects. Whether you're an engineering student looking to create prototypes, a fine arts student looking to create sculptures, or just someone with a passion for making, our 3D printer station is here to help you achieve your goals. We strive to provide students with access to the latest 3D printing technology, offering a range of high-quality 3D printers, materials, and software, as well as training and support to help students get started. We look forward to helping you turn your ideas into reality!

To submit 3D print requests, click here: 3D Print Request Form

For help creating MakerBot file(s) for submission, see the How to Use Our MakerBot Printers section on this page, or speak to the front desk MDC Hialeah Learning Resource (Building 1, Room 1400).

For the guidelines on what requests we accept, see the 3D Printing Guidelines section on this page.

A picture of both 3D Printers available at the library.
A 3D Print of the Ark of the Covenant to hold small items, like jewelry.
A 3D Print of a scraper tool being scraped off the print board by a similar 3D printed scraper tool.
A 3D Print of a holder for art supplies, printed in parts.

How to Use Our MakerBot Printers

Step 1: Find/Create your 3D Model

If you have experience in 3D modeling, it is recommend to research how to design models for 3D Printers as there are some factors to consider in the modeling process. Whichever software you choose to create the 3D Model, make sure to export in the STL format. Have fun creating!

If you have no 3D modeling experience, then here are some websites that we recommend you check out, ordered by level of experience:

  • MakerBot Thingiverse - The official site for MakerBot projects. Projects found here are free to use, are backed by the Thingiverse Creative Common License guidelines, and are designed to work with our MakerBot printers. All original creator must be given credit if designs are put on physical display or displayed in an audio/visual format.
  • MyMiniFactory - A resource for 3D files that are ready to print. The website offer both free and paid 3D files to download. Recommended for patrons who like to cosplay or play board games.
  • SketchFab / TurboSquid - Resources for 3D files that are ready to use for your next game project. Unless otherwise specified in the project description, you will need to examine and prepare the models for printing using a 3D modeling software. The website offer both free and paid 3D files to download. Recommended for patrons with experience in 3D printing and are looking for video game inspired designs in their prints.
  • Tinkercad - Website to create 3D models through the browser. No additional software needed to download. Recommended for patrons with experience in 3D printing and experience (or interest) in 3D modeling.


Step 2: Set-Up MakerBot Print

Click here for a link to the MakerBot slicer software: MakerBot Print.

Download and Install the MakerBot Print application on a computer (Windows or Mac) for the best performance. You can also use their cloud service if needed (for under-performing / unsupported computers).

When you try to use either the app or the cloud, as well as downloading projects on Thingiverse, they will require a MakerBot account. It is not recommended to sign-in using the quick Google Sign-In option, as this sign-in option does not work for the application. Instead use their sign-in page here: Create a MakerBot account.

Once you are logged-in within the application, click the "Add a Printer" button at the bottom-right corner of the app. Next you will click "Add an Unconnected Printer" and select the "MakerBot Replicator+" from your options. The "Add a Printer" button should have changed to an "Export" button which you will use to generate your MakerBot files that will be submitted with your request.


Step 3: Learn to Use MakerBot Print

Here are some links to resources to get you started on using the MakerBot Print software:


Other Resources

Here are some links to other resources relating to 3D Printing for those interested in learning more:

  • 3D Material Information - Website that describes the different types of 3D printing materials used, applications, and pros/cons.