Equipment in the Tinker Lab:

1. NC Mill
2. Manual Lathe
3. Band Saw
4. Drill Press
5. 3D Printers
6. Scroll Saw
7. Belt and Disc Sander
8. Bench Grinder
9. Manual Mill
10. Tap and Die Set
11. Oscilloscope
12. Power Supplies
13. Desktop Computers with Various Programs
14. Power Tools
15. Hand Tools
16. Circular Saw
17. 3D Scanner

18. Other

NC Mill

The NC mill is most commonly used to machine parts out of wood, plastic, aluminum and steel. NC stands for Numerical Control, which allows the user to program tool path functions that will guide the tool as to how to machine the part. This machine can travel in 3 axis, and can also be operated as a standard manual mill.

Manual Lathe

The manual lathe is used for turning cylindrical objects into a variety of shapes. This machine can handle wood, plastic, aluminum and steel. The machining process is called turning as the tool is stationary while the part spins in the chuck (opposite to milling).

Band Saw

The band saw is used to make straight cuts on wood, plastic, aluminum and steel. The blade is actually all 1 unit that spins on wheels inside the machine. This is not for precision cuts, but rather cutting down stock to then be machined using other processes.

Drill Press

The drill press is a standard machine shop machine that is used for simply drilling holes in various materials. This is used when greater precision is needed rather than using a cordless drill. Holes will be perfectly perpendicular to the surface of the part.

3D Printer

We currently have two, 3D printers in the Lab. The first is a MakerBot Replicator 2x, and the second is an UP Mini. Both use ABS plastic to print parts, although the UP also has the capability to use PLA. These are rapid prototyping machines that are great for visual models and prototyping designs before conventional machining processes.

Scroll Saw

The Scroll Saw is similar to the band saw, although for more precision cuts. This saw can handle materials up to about ¼ inch thick, and can make curved cuts unlike the band saw.

Belt and Disc Sander

The belt sander is used for sanding and finishing purposes. Wood, plastic, and aluminum can be sanded down using this machine. Great for applications where conventional sand paper would be time consuming.

Bench Grinder

The bench grinder is used to mainly grind down rough edges on steel parts. It can also be used to sharpen steel blades and tools. It is important to only use steel on this machine. It is normal for sparks to be present when grinding steel, so it is important to take proper safety precautions.

Manual Mill

The manual mill is similar to the NC mill although without the added computer control. The machine moves in 3 axis, and can machine wood, plastics, aluminum and steel. Ask an advisor if uncertain about what speeds and feeds to use when machining parts.

Tap and Die Set

The Tap and Die set is used for making internal and external threads on various materials (usually aluminum or steel). We have many different sizes including metric and standard options.


An oscilloscope is a device that is commonly used to display and analyze the waveform of electronic signals. In effect, the device draws a graph of the instantaneous signal voltage as a function of time. This is located in the electronics section of the lab.

Power Supplies

The lab has both AC and DC power supplies to service all of your electronic needs. Ask and advisor if you are not sure how to operate these devices, as they can be very dangerous if used incorrectly. These are located in the electronics section of the lab.

Desktop Computers with Various Programs

There are 2 desktop computers in the tinker lab for use by any students in the lab. Programs include Solidworks, Creo, and Arduino to name a few. The computers are especially useful for setting up CAD models for 3D printing.

Power Tools

The lab has many different power tools for a variety of applications. These include: drills, heat guns, disc sander, buffer, rotary saw, and dremel to name a few.

Hand Tools

The lab is always stocked with just about every hand tool that you may need to work on your project. These include wrenches, screwdrivers, chisels, and hammers to name a few. Ask an advisor if you are having trouble locating a particular tool.

Circular Saw

The circular saw is mainly used to cut large pieces of stock down to sizes that are easier to work with. The circular saw can only be operated under the supervision of a Lab Advisor. If interested in using this piece of equipment, speak with an Advisor.

3D Scanner

The 3D scanner in Tinker is the Makerbot Digitizer, and available for students to scan parts into 3D printable files. For an object to be scanned, it must fit within a cylinder with a diameter of 8″ and a height of 8″, (20.32cm and 20.32cm). The scanner will not scan objects that are transparent or reflective, and has difficulty scanning parts that are dark in color.

Miter Saw

The miter saw is used to cut

wood. It does straight cuts and has a laser light attached to it to help pinpoint the location at which the cut needs to be. It can also readjusted to cut a various angles ranging from 0-90 degrees. Be sure to clamp the piece of wood with the provided clamp on the machine before cutting. The machine has a very powerful recoil so be extremely careful when operating it.



The jointer is used to create flat surfaces and straight edges on the wooden stock. Apply as little pressure to the board as possible as the feeding technique is mostly directional. Use hold-downs to feed the stock onto the machine.


The planer is used to create boards with even thickness throughout. Simply feed the wood stock into the machine and have a push block push it to the other side. Repeat this process until the desired thickness is attained. Be careful to not stick your hands inside the machine at all times.

CNC Mill Machine

The CNC mill is used to machine only foam. CNC stands for Computer Numerical Control, which allows the user to input STL files into a computer program and the tools will machine the part. This machine can travel in 3 axis. It has its own proprietary software from Roland so GibbsCAM is not necessary.


Stocked Supplies

  • Sheet metal
  • Plywood
  • Assorted Dowels
  • Lucite
  • PVC Pipes
  • Metal Rods
  • Assorted electronic parts
  • Assorted wire
  • Assorted batteries & motors
  • Assorted nuts, bolts, screws, and fasteners