What is Copenhagen Fablab?

 

Copenhagen Fablab is an open access and user-driven tool workshop situated on 4th floor (and constantly evolving basement area) at Valby Kulturhus. There is no membership. You can use the Fablab for free without making reservations, however, in return you have to follow the Fablab Rules and give back to the community. You also cannot book the machines for yourself only, all open days run on a "first come - first served" basis. The goal is to be a fun open area for creation - Copenhagen Fablab is not a "service" but a community of makers that like to learn by doing and make (almost) anything. 

 

Fablab Rules

 

1. No commercial production

2. Leave the Fablab cleaner than it was before 

3. Share your projects

4. Help others and maintain the tools

We follow the international Fablab Charter which can be found here - http://fab.cba.mit.edu/about/charter/

 

Sharing knowledge!

 

Being a qualified Fablab, in the international Fablab list here - https://www.fablabs.io/ - the lab is reserved to citizens wanting to experiment with personal digital fabrication techniques. You are allowed to make personal fabrication and prototypes - but you are not allowed to produce anything for sale. At Copenhagen Fablab we talk a lot about sharing knowledge - you can think of it as our most valued currency. This is a way to give back to the Danish and international FabLab and maker community that has shared a lot of the skills and inspiration that you and I are using now.  You share knowledge by documenting your project on this domain, on our Facebook group or any sharing media as long as you tag Copenhagen Fablab. So the deal is; free use of the machines for things that are not for sale. You "pay" by teaching other users how to use the machines and by sharing your findings with others. We have our official Facebook group "Copenhagen Fablab", which is meant for user communication and updates on activities and machines. If you post pictures from Fablab or of things made in the Fablab you can tag them #cphfablab or #copenhagenfablab as well on other social media.

Ideas on what to document* -
You do not need to document a finished project on the homepage - you can always go back and add more info. You do not need to include all of the info - but the more you give, the more grateful the community is.

Images - before and after, works in progress
Design files (.ai, .stl, .png, .gcode, .svg etc.) 
Programming files (.ino etc.)
Machine settings - speeds, power, layer height, gram force etc
What material you used? Size, thickness
What tools did you use and its accessories? Bits, blades, adhesives etc?
Where did you buy your components?
What would you do differently? What went well, what did not go so well?
*It is okay to document in Danish on copenhagenfablab.dk

Documenting on copenhagenfablab.dk
By documenting at Cph Fablab you show you are a dedicated user, want to follow the FabLab ideology and in addition can obtain certain benefits such as more access to locked machines etc. If you document or share a link to your documentation on copenhagenfablab.dk - you can earn Badges and become a Superuser (volunteer) - read more about it down below.
To start documenting at copenhagenfablab.dk you should first Register as a user and create a new project under Projects or your Profile page.

Other websites
You can always put a link on copenhagenfablab.dk of your project if you documented it on some other platform or on your own homepage. You still need to Register at the Fablab homepage before you can make a Project.

Here is a list of possible platforms to document (or find your next design to try out) 

Instructables - http://www.instructables.com/
YouMagine - https://www.youmagine.com/
Thingiverse - https://www.thingiverse.com/ 
Github - https://github.com/ 
GrabCAD - https://grabcad.com/ 
etc.

 

Opening hours and Access

 

Monday to Sunday. 8AM - 10:30PM (alarm turns on 11PM)

* IMPORTANT: You need to be out of the lab and on the street before 11PM. The guard comes a bit before to check and the alarm turns on 11 PM.
* When the doors are locked you have to scan your health insurance card (yellow card) in the entrance(s) to get in.
*We are officially only closed 31.December 

After normal working hours of the culture house you can get access to the Fablab by using your Public Health Security Card (CPR card, yellow card) and scanning it at the door(s).  Using the yellow card you can get access to the Fablab 7 days a week. If you don't have a yellow card, you can get a white so called "AEOS" card which gives you access to the Fablab and libraries after-hours.  Ask at the library, and remember to bring some ID. It has to be renewed every three months. 

 

How to use the equipment and machines?

 

Everything that is in the Open area of the Fablab (big room on the 4th) can be used during the whole opening hours. Other tools and machines in the Laser room and Basement are available when there are volunteers (aka Superusers) or staff to give access to it. Have a look under Equipment where you can find the placement of different tools. Have a look at the Calendar tab to see events and when locked equipment is available. The description of the event says which machine is available, for example "Laser open" means you can come by and use the laser cutter and get an introduction how to use it as well. Often you can use other equipment when the Laser room is open as well.

We also post Events in the Facebook group - https://www.facebook.com/groups/copenhagenfablab
Note if the Fablab is reserved we write it in the Calendar as well - best to check the calendar frequently.
 
Our digital production machines have a computer attached to them with suitable software. You are encouraged to bring your own laptop. Most of the software we use is either open source or free which means you can download it yourself and try at home. We do not have Illustrator or Photoshop, but instead use Inkscape and Gimp for example. However, there is a computer with Solidworks! You can also design your things at your local library. The softwares are installed on computers both at Vigerslev Bibliotek, Valby Bibliotek and at the main library in Copenhagen.
 
Which equipment do we have?
 
Currently we have a vinyl cutter for cutting signs, antennas and flexible circuits, an X-Carve CNC mill, a laser cutter to make 2D press fit elements which can be assembled to larger 3D structures, two 3D printers (UM Go and UM 3) , soldering machines, Arduino projects and sensors. We also have a drill press, a scroll saw and various hand tools. We do not plan broken machines thus some tools may be under maintenance. Some machines are locked away and thus you need to check in the Calendar when volunteers are present to give access to the locked machines. 
See more info under the Equipment tab - http://valby.copenhagenfablab.dk/equipment
* IMPORTANT If you bring your own materials for laser cutting you have to know what it is made of (for example what type of plastic) since some materials can ruin the machine or worse. Try finding materials similar to what we sell or ask in writing (fx on the Facebook group) if what you are about to cut is safe.
 
Materials?
 
We normally sell HDF, cardboard, EVA foam, plywood and acrylic (PMMA) sheets. List of materials - https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/12DzadXEAfGViDSwBDlmUaXCBem5xFja48nI6xwbVbzw/edit#gid=0

You are welcome to bring your own materials, as long as you know that they are safe to use with certain machines. You can also buy some materials on the ground floor(stueetagen) at Mæt cafe during their opening hours - http://maetcafe.dk/

Mæt cafe usual opening hours -
Monday to Friday. 8AM - 9PM
Saturday to Sunday. 9 AM - 5PM 

Mobile Pay number - 24647204

 

How to join Copenhagen Fablab?

 

No membership - drop by and use the space! 

The awesome thing about Copenhagen Fablab is that there is no membership and you can use the space on a drop-in basis. The Open area is always available, however some equipment and facilities are locked and require Superusers to give access. If you feel like improving your skills as a maker and want to become a more dedicated user of the Fablab then here are some options :

 

1) *New system* Earn Badges! Here is how:

A Badge is a symbol on your profile that shows that you have gained the required skill level to operate a (locked) machine or tool on your own. You still need a Superuser (volunteer) to unlock the door, but it is proof that you do not need supervision to use the specific machine and have gotten the general introduction to the Fablab as well. This is one step closer to becoming a volunteer if you wish.

You do not need a Badge to operate a machine that is in the Open area, however, with a Badge could come the possibility of locked storage or other perks - so start collecting Badges already now!

Badges are visible on your user Profile page here on copenhagenfablab.dk 
 

4 steps to earn a badge:
1. Register as a user on copenhagenfablab.dk
2. Learn to use the machines by attending machine open days to a level where you know the essentials and safety, basic troubleshooting and could help others with the basics
3. Document at least one project with that machine on the homepage
4. Once confident with a machine - get a recommendation from one Superuser/staff

Currently you can collect the following badges:
Laser cutter, 3D printer, X-Carve, Heat press, Printmaking, Sewing machine, Vinyl cutter Roland, Vacuum forming machine

 

2) Become a volunteer aka Superuser?

A Superuser is a Fablab volunteer that wants to use the Fablab frequently for their projects and in addition want to help make it a fun and inspiring place for everybody by maintaining tools and improving the facilities, teaching other users and taking shifts to open locked equipment.

Benefits of being a Superuser -
Access to locked machines 7 days a week
Locked storage on 4th floor and basement
Have a say in which machines or tools to buy
Be a part of the Cph Fablab community and get invites to meetups
Meet and network with lots of people doing interesting things who visit the Fablab from all around the world 

How to become a Superuser -
Have at least one machine or skill Badge
Have time and the willingness to volunteer at least 5 hours a month - minimum 3 hours shift + once a month 2 hour meeting on a Wednesday 6-8PM
Get a recommendation by two current Superusers (or Fablab staff)
Have read and agreed with the Superuser Charter which can be found here - Link: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1e8GtniS3XbGNqt46BSfagt5eUJis6R0aX0KSKQHQSbA/edit?usp=sharing (March 2018 edition)

What could be a 3 hour volunteering shift?
A shift can be anything that benefits and strengthens the Fablab community - from hosting an open machine day for everybody or Badge owners, helping manage the homepage, doing a workshop on a specific skill or tool, fixing a machine or improving the facilities, representing Fablab at a local event etc. 

If your volunteering is not a calendar event - remember to register your activity by taking pictures and sharing what you do in the Superuser-only Facebook group which you will be invited to once you join the Superuser team.

 

3) Want to host an event at Copenhagen Fablab?

You can also host events without being a Superuser. You can find a guide with more information here - https://docs.google.com/document/d/17XX0djWFd5nl4EIY2L5a4qAqMxhQrkzBCfJKO4ShTFw/edit?usp=sharing

 

Questions or project ideas?

 

The Fablab is largely run based on users helping other users. So if possible, direct your questions to the Fablab Facebook group -

However, if you want to meet the staff, here is how to normally contact them -
Liisa, assistant
Contact about Badges and volunteer/Superuser system
E-mail: liisa.fablab@gmail.com, Facebook user: Liisa Fablab

Rasmus, Fablab coordinator
Contact if you are a part of an institution (school, library, museum etc.) or have plans for larger projects, educational tracks or professional visits
E-mail: Y70X@kff.kk.dk

 
How to find us?
 
Happy Hacking!
 
!!!! ONCE MORE - IMPORTANT !!!!
To be a user of the Fablab it is required that you at least share pictures of your projects in the Facebook group or homepage. No matter how big or small the project, everything has to be at least documented by taking a picture.