Automated Fabrication & Design Lab

The Automated Fabrication & Design Lab (Fab Lab) is the College of Architecture’s large-scale research and fabrication lab. The lab is dedicated to the advancement of student, faculty and industry projects.

Utilizing the latest industry and research-driven technologies, the lab provides a hands-on learning environment for our students. We also provide complete project fabrication and engineering services for all colleges within the university system and for outside clientele.

Our amenities include:

  • 15,000 square feet of fabrication & design space
  • 12 acres of open land for large scale projects
  • Indoor assembly/design space

Location
Texas A&M Rellis Campus at 3100 Hwy 47 Building 7007 Bryan, TX 77807

View on Aggie Maps

Hours
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Wednesday: 7 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Contact
fablab@arch.tamu.edu
979.862.3730

  • Six students lift and carry a metal frame at a construction site
  • Two people work on a metal sculpture at the fabrication lab
  • A student works on a metal sculpture at the fabrication lab
  • A CNC router cuts into a peice of wood in the Fab Lab

Equipment

When visiting the lab, you must use the equipment provided and may not bring your own. There is a variety of equipment that is available for use in the lab including:

  • 4-Axis CNC router (Cuts wood, foam, plastic & aluminum)
  • 3-Axis CNC router (Cuts wood, foam, plastic & aluminum)
  • Laser printers
  • Three MIG welders
  • TIG welder
  • Handheld plasma cutter
  • Ironworker
  • Finger brake
  • Cold saw
  • Metal chop saw
  • Roll bender
  • Tube bender
  • 4-Axis HAAS TM 2P Mill (Cuts metal, plastic; cannot cut graphite, cast iron or any sort of organic material)
  • Water jet (Cuts all metals up to 3–6″ thick)
  • Sawstop table saw
  • Oscillating spindle sander
  • Belt sander/disk sander
  • Router Table
  • Miter saw
  • Panel saw
  • Horizontal bandsaw
  • Four vertical bandsaws
  • Two drill press
  • Hydraulic press
  • Various hand and power tools

Requirements for Use

Before using the research lab, individuals must complete all of the safety protocol videos and quizzes. In addition, everyone must fill out and submit a schedule request form before using the facilities.

Policies & Procedures

Safety training is required for everyone.

Safety training is required for everyone to reduce the risk of workplace illness or injury. The following safety training videos and exams must be completed prior to working at the Fab Lab:

  • Hand & power tool safety
  • Welding & hot work safety
  • First aid safety
  • Safe lifting

A safety meeting must be held.

Prior to performing tasks, a safety meeting must be held with all personnel involved and the safety officer/supervisor. The Safety Meeting Form (doc) and Job Safety Analysis (PDF) forms must also be completed.

Review workplace hazards.

Review specific workplace hazards (doc), identify and assess the risks, control the risks and report the hazards to the staff.

Provide and review MSDS.

Everyone is required to provide and review Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for applicable materials & projects.

Complete a project ticket.

Projects that require longer than three days to complete will require a project ticket (PDF). Upon entering and exiting the shop, everyone must sign in and out with management.

Wear appropriate clothing.

Everyone is expected to wear the following at all times while working in the lab:

  • Safety glasses
  • Long pants
  • Closed-toed shoes

Shirttails must be tucked in and long hair pulled back. When performing tasks, refrain from wearing rings, metal watches, and using cell phones.

Project areas must be cleaned up.

Everyone must clean up their project area daily. This includes sweeping and removing leftover materials from the equipment and floor. Projects must be removed promptly upon completion of the tasks.

You are responsible for purchasing and delivering your materials.

Everyone is responsible for the purchase and delivery of their own materials. If you have materials being delivered, please coordinate with management staff.

You must have a designated safety representative.

You must have a designated safety representative present at all times while working on projects in the outdoor areas away from the main fabrication building. No students are to be left alone.


Projects

There have been a variety of large projects that have been completed in the lab. Some projects that have been completed in the lab include:

  • USAA Storm Damage Structures
  • Tiny Houses for the Homeless
  • Earth Day Project
  • CRL Westfield Reconstruction
  • Mobile Medical Units
  • TEEX Sniper

FAQs

Is there a bus that I can take to Rellis Campus?

Yes, route 47 services the Rellis Campus from 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. The bus departs at the MSC, and runs every half-hour. For more information on bus times, visit the bus maps.

Where can I park?

Parking is permitted on the gravel behind the Fab Lab’s addition (north side).

Can I work on my project on the weekends?

No, the Rellis Campus is a secure, gated facility and not open on weekends.

I need a block of time to work on my project and cannot get there during school time. What do I do?

Due to safety requirements, all projects must be completed during normal business hours. Fab Lab staff will work with you on scheduling your required times during regular business hours.

I plan to work at the Fab Lab all day. What can I do about food?

There are no vending machines or eating facilities at Rellis Campus, so please bring your own food and drinks. There is a water fountain, microwave and refrigerator to store food temporarily. The closest store is about 2 miles away toward Bryan on Highway 21. There is also a Subway and McDonalds at the intersection of Villa Maria and 2818.

Can I drop in to do a quick project?

No, all work requires the completion of the safety training and schedule request prior to beginning. You may drop in to discuss any issues with the Fab Lab Manager, Christopher Paulk, but please call or email ahead at 979.862.3730 or cpaulk@arch.tamu.edu.

Do I have to wear safety glasses, long pants, close toed shoes, and have my shirt tucked in and hair pulled back every time I am at the Fab Lab?

If you are dropping off materials or waiting for a project to be completed on the CNC Router, you do not have to conform to the dress code but you must stay in a designated area. If you are going to be doing any work at the Fab Lab the dress code must be followed and is strictly enforced.

I have worked with power tools my whole life; do I still have to take the safety training?

Yes, the required training videos/exams are required for everyone.

Do I have to take the safety training again if I took it last year?

Yes, you must take safety training every year.

Is there a place where I can store my project while I work on it?

You may leave your project out, within reason, for the duration of the time you have designated on your schedule request. Completed projects cannot be stored at the Fab Lab.

I will be back tomorrow morning to work. Can I just sweep up then?

No, please be considerate and keep the shop tidy. Always clean up your messes at the workbench and after all equipment use.

Can I borrow tools from the Fab Lab?

No, we do not let tools leave the lab.

Can I bring my own tools?

No, the equipment at the Fab Lab is inspected regularly to conform to safety codes, so please use the equipment provided.

Are there any free materials for student use?

Not typically, materials are allocated for specific projects. Please purchase and transport project materials yourself.

I have a cool project I want to do on my own. Can I use the tools and equipment at the Fab Lab?

Yes, the facility is available for personal use for $60/hour. You are still required to follow all safety training and scheduling guidelines.