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IDEAStudio Member Course Descriptions

There are several ways to develop your maker knowledge and skillset as an IDEAStudio Member. From tool trainings, to design courses, to individualized workshops, members can follow their own personal pathways to learning.

Tool Training Courses

IDEAStudio members gain access to tools and equipment by completing training sessions taught by our trained staff. Open training sessions are offered each month for current members. Group trainings for classes, student organizations, and departments are also available by reservation.

Introduction to 3D Printing (CMED 1147)

Learn the basics of fused-filament fabrication (FFF) using our Ultimaker and Prusa 3D printers in this one session training workshop. You will learn how to acquire a 3D model, prepare it for printing, set up and run your job, and post process your finished object. Note: You must be a current member of IDEAStudio to complete this training.

Advanced 3D Printing (CMED 1151)

This advanced course builds on the knowledge and skills developed in the introductory training. Members will learn how to acquire and prepare 3D models to print using our Formlabs Form 2 stereolithography (SLA) printers and Markforged Mark Two printer. Note: You must have successfully completed the Introduction to 3D printing training before attending this workshop.

Introduction to Electronics (CMED 1152)

This introductory course provides members with the basics of soldering as well as an overview of our Electronics workstations, available features and tools, and safety guidelines when working with electronics.

Introduction to Laser Cutting (CMED 1148)

Learn how to use the studio's Epilog M2 laser cutters. Training covers the safe use and operation of the laser cutter, preparing images for cutting, and etching or cutting on materials such as wood, acrylic, and textiles. Successful completion grants members access to use the laser cutters during open hours. Note: You must be a current member of IDEAStudio to complete this training.

Introduction to Vinyl Cutting (CMED 1149)

Learn the basics of vinyl cutting using our US Cutter machines. Learn how to prepare a 2D design, choose the right kind of material for the job, and use the vinyl cutter to produce your finished product. Note: You must be a current member of IDEAStudio to complete this training.

Metal Shop Essentials (CMED 1150)

Metalshop Essentials gives you an introduction to IDEAStudio’s metal shop safety, basic tools, and resources that might be applicable to your metalworking project. In this workshop we will go over the safety standards, use, and operation of the following pieces of equipment: Chop Saw, Drill Press, Bench Grinder, Bench Brake, Combination Notcher/Bender/Shear.

Wood Shop Essentials (CMED 1153)

IDEAStudio has a variety of stationary power tools available to members. The training for these tools have been split into several groups based on level of difficulty and popularity. After completing this workshop, you should understand the functionality associated with the following tools: Planer & Jointer, Drill Press, Miter Saw, Band Saw, Scroll Saw, Disc & Belt Sander.

Introduction to Desktop CNC Mill

Learn the overall steps to the CNC milling process.  CNC milling is one of the most traditional forms of industrial subtractive manufacturing.  Training covers how to set up a project, then creating the tool paths, and finally setting up & cutting out the project from the desired material. 

Introduction to Embroidery Machine

A potentially popular tool in the Textiles area is the CNC Embroidery machine.  It has the ability to stitch up to 16 different colors.  You will learn the design setup process in the software as well as stitching your design on to a variety of items such as shirts, hats, bags, and more.

Design for Making Courses

Design for Making is a series of courses that provide basic instruction in the design thinking and doing utilized in makerspaces and digital fabrication. Participants will learn the design skills needed to create original designs for use with 3D printing, vinyl and laser cutting, and more. Those who complete the entire series will have the knowledge and skills to work through their ideas from conception to realization in a makerspace or fablab environment.West Houston Institute IDEAStudio's Design for Making Spring 2021 courses are now open for registration. These sessions are offered without cost to HCC students, faculty, and staff.

Introduction to 3D Design Using Autodesk Tinkercad (CMED 1157)

Learn how to 3D model using Autodesk Tinkercad, a free web-based design application! This course is suitable for anyone wanting to learn the basics of 3D modeling from hobbyists or those taking their first step to more advanced study. This is a hands-on course where you will learn the basics of the software as well as the design considerations for 3D printing by working on multiple projects.

Drawing & Modeling in Autodesk Fusion 360 (CMED 1158)

Autodesk Fusion 360 is a powerful tool for creating 2D and 3D designs that can be fabricated using a number of digital tools including 3D printers, laser cutters, and CNC machines. In this course you will be introduced to the basics of creating original models using this multi-faceted and flexible tool.

Introduction to Vector Graphic Design Using Inkscape (CMED 1159)

Learn how to design your own graphics using Inkscape, a free and open source vector graphics editor. This is a hands-on course where you will develop your skills through working on practical projects, including making a logo, creating custom artwork, and designing a poster. You will learn the basics of vector design as well as how to prepare your designs for a variety of digital fabrication methods, including laser cutting, vinyl and desktop cutting, and CNC machining.

Designing for 3D Printing in Autodesk AutoCAD (CMED 1156)

Autodesk AutoCAD is an industry standard computer-aided design and drafting software application. Although many students and professionals regularly use the software, their skillset does not always translate to successful design for 3D printing. In this course, those already familiar with the popular Autodesk will get a refresher in the basics and then learn specific techniques to effectively create designs that take advantage of the 3D printing process.

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