Fab Lab

Fab Lab

The Fabrication Lab at DC Public Library

Fab Lab
Equipment reservations are temporarily unavailable while an interim space is set up. Fab Lab classes began on June 26, 2018 in the NoMa neighborhood, and classes and reservations will be available at the Reeves Center at 14th and U St. NW later in 2018.

Sign up for email updates at bit.ly/labs-email and check the MLK Interim Services page for updates on the Martin Luther King Jr. Library modernization and interim services.

The Fabrication Lab -- or "Fab Lab" -- offers programs for all ages in emerging and computer-assisted technologies, along with "maker" tools old and new.

Interim plans for the Fab Lab include two spaces:
Fab Lab Pop-Up at NoMa
1150 First St. NE, Washington, D.C. 20002

The neighborhood North of Massachusetts Avenue (NoMa), is host to the Fab Lab Pop-Up, a maker space housed in a shipping container. It offers classes and workshops involving 3-D printing, jewelry making, sewing machines and more. Please note that equipment reservations are not available at the Pop-Up. The Fab Lab at NoMa opened its doors at 11:30 a.m. on June 26, 2018, thanks to the generous support of NoMa BID, The Institute of Museum and Library Services, Uber and the DC Public Library Foundation. Space for the project was provided by Tishman Speyer.

Fab Lab and Passport Office
2000 14th St. NW, First Floor, Washington, D.C. 20009

The Fab Lab, a Do-It-Yourself fabrication space, will be located in the Franklin D. Reeves Municipal Center. Equipment includes: 3D Printers, a CNC Machine, Laser Cutters, Hand Tools, IoT (Internet of Things) Devices and Sewing Machines.
The Passport Office, co-located with the Fab Lab, will process new passport applications. The design for this space is underway. This location is anticipated to open in 2018.

Check the MLK Interim Services page for updates on the Martin Luther King Jr. Library modernization and other interim services.
Institute of Museum and Library Services
The technology in the Digital Commons, Fab Lab and Studio Lab are made possible in part by the Institute or Museum and Library Services. 

Membership Process | Age Policy | Release Form | Safety Guidelines
Sign up for Classes and Orientations

Membership Process

1. Sign a release form. If under 18, parental consent is required.

2. Attend 30-minute orientation. The orientation gives an overview of the space, equipment, and safety guidelines. Upcoming orientations can be found in the library's online calendar or the schedule at the bottom of this page. To use specific equipment without supervision, you must take an individual equipment orientation. Equipment requiring certification includes:

  • Universal Laser Cutter
  • DIWire Bender
  • 3-D Printers
  • Sewing Machines
3. Make things! Staff-instructed classes or demos may or may not require a Release Form for any orientations, depending on what tools and equipment are being used.

Age Policy

The Fab Lab is designated for use by people ages 13 and older.

Children ages 6-12 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian at all times. Children under the age of 6 are prohibited from entering the space.

Parental consent is required for ages 18 and younger.

Release Form

You can download and sign your Release Form before coming to orientation. 
Download as Word document | PDF

Safety Guidelines

  1. Do not use any machine until you have signed the Release Form and/or have taken the orientation class.
  2. You must abide by the DC Public Library’s Rules of Behavior.
  3. Never work while while you are impaired, stressed, tired or otherwise unable to work carefully.
  4. Always wear safety glasses around equipment, even if you are not using the equipment.
  5. Always wear close­-toed shoes. Sandals, clogs, and high­ heels should not be worn.
  6. Always tie back long hair, including long beards, such that it is not able to hang in front of neck/face.
  7. Always dress appropriately. Never wear loose­-fitting clothing, headphones, jewelry, or anything else that could get caught in machinery.
  8. Portable music players with headphones are prohibited in the lab.  
  9. Never place hands in the area of any cutting tool or machine.
  10. Never leave machine while it is running, unless allowed by staff.
  11. Ensure all guards and shields are in place prior to operating machines.
  12. Never interrupt or distract an individual using machinery.  
  13. Always check material for metal, such as screws or nails, before using on machinery.
  14. Alert staff to malfunctioning machinery.  
  15. Always keep work area clean.
  16. Report all injuries to staff immediately.

Sign up for classes and orientations

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