Idea Lab FAQs

What are the policies & procedures to use the Idea Lab Makerspace and Media Lab?

To use the equipment in the Idea Lab, you will need a valid card in good standing.

  • A signed Idea Lab Agreement is required of all users and visitors to the Idea Lab Makerspace and Media Lab. Exception is given to individuals or groups on staff-lead tours of the space.
  • Users (or if minors, their parents/guardians) are responsible for any fees incurred for loss or damage to ECPL property, not associated with normal wear and tear, that is the result of inappropriate or unauthorized use of tools, equipment, or consumable materials, or for clean-up of the tools, equipment or the space. ECPL is not responsible for any damage to, or loss or theft of, users’ personal property including electronic files left on ECPL computers.
  • Equipment and tools in the Idea Lab are available at no charge to library card holders, generally on a first-come, first-served basis during open hours.

At its discretion, staff reserves the right to disallow the use of any tools, equipment, or consumable materials, or to halt, delete, or disallow the creation of items that violate any library policy. Projects must be approved by staff prior to use to ensure that proper file format, size and materials are being used. Approval to use the Idea Lab does not constitute endorsement by ECPL of the uses to which the space is put or the products produced therein.

What equipment is in the Idea Lab?

The Idea Lab has two kinds of equipment: open access and limited access. Open access equipment can be used during open hours by anyone on a first come first served basis and can also be reserved for up to one hour a day. Limited access equipment can only be used by those who have attended a program featuring the equipment, those who have worked one-on-one with staff with the equipment, or those who have completed our safety certification (coming soon).

Open access Hardware

  • Sewing Machine, Husqvarna Viking Emerald 118
  • Cricut Maker, Easy Press, and Easy Press Mini
  • Button Maker
  • Serger
  • Basic Drawing supplies: paper, pencils, stencils, compasses
  • Basic adhesives: tape, glue, super glue, wood glue, mod podge
  • Vinyl Cutter, US Cutter2 SC Series 32”
  • Fiber Art Supplies: needles, thread, seam rippers, crochet/knitting needles
  • Large Format Printer, HP DesignJet T520 32” x 72” maximum print size
  • Laminator, 8 ½”x 11”
  • Label Maker

Open Access Software

  • Adobe Creative Cloud Suite
  • Tinkercad
  • Sculptris
  • Cura
  • Microsoft Office 2016
  • Vinyl Master 4

Limited Access Hardware

  • 3D Printers, Ultimaker 3
  • 3D Scanner, Matter & Form
  • Soldering equipment
  • Vacuum Former, Mayku Formbox
  • Soldering equipment
How can I reserve equipment?

You can reserve equipment here.

What equipment is in the Media Lab?

Open Access Hardware

  • Windows 10 PC, dual 27” monitors
  • Green Screen, Chromakey 10’x13’
  • Camera, Canon EOS Rebel T6 Digital SLR
  • Microphones, Lavalier (2), Condenser (3)
  • Monitoring Headphones
  • Channel Mixer, Yamaha MG10
  • Softbox Light, LimoStudio 700W 24”x24”
  • Camera tripod
  • HD Video Camera
  • Sound board, PreSonus Studio1810c
  • Keyboard, Akai Professional MPK 249
  • Podcast Mixer, RodeCaster Pro

 Open Access Software

  • Adobe Creative Cloud
  • Audacity
  • Studio One
  • Microsoft Office 2016
  • OBS
  • Fruity Loops Studio, Signature Edition
How can I reserve the Media Lab?

You can reserve the Media Lab here.

What materials do you have and is there any charge?

There are no fees to use any of the equipment in the Idea Lab and Media Lab. There are fees for consumable supplies:

  • 3D Filament............................ $0.10 per gram
  • Vinyl........................................ $0.50 per 12"x12" sheet
  • Heat Transfer Vinyl………………. $0.75 per 12"x12" sheet
  • Transfer Sheets........................ $0.50 per 12"x12" sheet
  • Laminating Pouches................ $1.00 per pouch
  • Large Format Printer.............. $5.00 per page
  • Buttons………………………………… $0.25 per button


  • Your first print is free after taking the Learn to 3D Print class.
  • Total grams for 3D print jobs will be verified prior to printing a job to allow for design manipulation.
  • Users may bring and use their own vinyl and paper for the Cricut and Vinyl Cutter.
  • Drawing paper is free for use in the Idea Lab.
  • Users may bring and use their own materials subject to Idea Lab staff approval.
Can I donate items to the Idea Lab Makerspace?

Yes, donations are greatly appreciated! ECPL accepts new or gently used donations of the following items by appointment:

  • Tools in clean and good working condition
  • Consumable material that is relevant to programs being offered in the space

Staff reserves the right to decline donations, as well as remove those that no longer support makerspace activities. If requested, staff will provide a letter of receipt that donors may fill out for tax purposes. Staff is not qualified to determine the value of any donation. It is up to the donor to assign a value for tax purposes. Please email library staff to set up an appointment.

You used to have a VHS to DVD converter – where did that go?

The VHS to DVD converter is now located in the Heritage Room.

I want to teach a class. Can I?

Yes! We’d love to have you teach. Email us at idealab@eriecountypa.gov and we will send you a class proposal form. We review class proposals once a quarter and add in new classes as best we can.

How can I 3D Print?

To use the 3D printers you must complete our Learn to 3D Print class. View available classes and sign up here or call 814-451-6927 to register.

To submit a 3D print job after having taken the Learn to 3D Print class, please use our Submission Form. Submissions via email are not accepted.

For specific questions related to 3D printing in the Idea Lab Makerspace, please call 814-451-6939.

What are Collaboratories and how can I reserve one?

Collaboratory 102 & 103

Collaboratory Rooms are available for small groups to meet and work collaboratively on projects in 1-hour increments. The rooms comfortably seat up to five people. They are available on a first come, first serve basis.

Reserve a room online, or call 814-451-6927.