Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom
Resources mentioned in Chapter 7 – Fabrication
Thingiverse – Thingiverse is a place to search for or share digital designs with the world for laser cutters, CNC machines, 3D printers, and even automated paper cutters. The site is hosted by 3D printer manufacturer MakerBot.
Make Magazine Annual Guide to Digital Fabrication – Make Magazine publishes an annual issue with reviews and recommendations of the latest fabrication tools. Some of this is not online, so if you are not a subscriber to the magazine, it is worth buying the PDF online or finding this issue at a bookstore near you.
All 3DP – All 3DP has news, reviews, and guides for 3D printers, lasercutters, and other fabrication devices.
Tom’s Guide – Reviews for consumer electronics, but also 3D printers, filament, drones, computers, and more.
All About Laser Cutters – A comprehensive guide for laser cutters: buying, maintenance, setup, and more from Adafruit.
Tinkercad – A free, easy to use, online Computer-Aided-Design (CAD) program. It is a favorite of many schools for its friendly interface, tutorials, and is free. One of the Autodesk line of 3D modeling programs.
SketchUp – A free, easy to use 3D modeling program. There is an online warehouse of models to download or contribute to.
Fusion 360 – Autodesk 3D CAD/CAM design software for students, educators, and academic institutions.
Autodesk Student Software Licenses – Autodesk publishes a wide range of professional CAD and 3D design software tools. They have free student licenses with minor restrictions for many of them.
Inkscape – Free open source vector graphics software.
MeshLab – Free, open source software for editing 3D meshes.
Beetle Blocks – Visual code for 3D design in the Logo tradition. Free and runs in the browser.
Makers Empire – Easy to use software for 3D modeling, design, and printing. Tools for teacher management of student projects. Works on tablets, Macs, and PCs. The app itself is free, but additional features are not.
Blender – Blender is a widely used open source 3D creation tool, free to use for any purpose and supported by a worldwide developer and user community. Blender has a high learning curve but may interest students who are fans of 3D animation or video games.
Maya – Autodesk 3D animation, modeling, and simulation software.