General Use

For information on joining the BDW, see Join Us in the menu!

The BDW working space is open 24/7, but only monitors have keys to unlock tools, and logins for computer access for 3D Printing and Laser Cutting. You can see our monitored hours in Calendar in the menu at top.

Our first priority is Brown students working on course projects. Following this, RISD students working on course projects, Brown/RISD students working on personal projects, and non-institutionally affiliated people. In busy times, namely reading period, we might not be able to accommodate those not working on top-priority projects.

Locked tools require training for member use, and a monitor must be present! If you want to use any of our locked tools, please attend a workshop, simply by showing up at the appropriate time—also visible on our calendar. We do not accept machine training from elsewhere on campus. Workshops end at the start of reading period. Members without appropriate training during reading and finals period will not be allowed to use associated machinery.

We ask you to respect the time of other users when the space is in heavy demand. Laser cutting jobs are capped at 30 minutes. 3D Printing jobs are capped 6 hours before 8 pm, and 12 hours after 8 pm till closing.

By becoming a member of the BDW, you agree to assume liability for injury in the space, in addition to being photographed in the space.

All materials in the space that are clearly unmarked and not in the restricted area in the back of the BDW behind the 3D printers, are free for use.


There is no personal storage provided by the BDW. Projects left in the space will be dismantled and assimilated into the general resource base. Courses taught in the BDW, Monitors, and BDW Maker Grant Recipients are given designated storage space.

Safety & Emergency Procedures

General Spaces (not just Machining):

  • ID Badges must be worn at all times.
  • Sharp objects—those that might puncture garbage bags or injure custodians—should be placed in Sharps containers.
  • Maximum Capacity of 70 people.
  • Clean up after yourself and be courteous!
  • No animals are allowed in the BDW, with the exception of service animals 

Machining Area:

  • Never work alone, at any time. Have a buddy in the area to respond in an emergency.
  • Wear eye protection.
  • Wear closed-toed shoes that provide good, firm grip.
  • Loose or dangling clothing/jewelry should be removed or secured.
  • Hair should be securely tied back / up to prevent hair from getting caught in any machinery.
  • Gloves should be removed, long sleeves should be rolled up.
  • Ask for assistance if anything is unclear.
  • The use of drugs or medication that impair vision or judgement, and/or alcohol is strictly prohibited at the BDW.
  • No food or drink.
  • No earbuds or headphones.

Everyone entering and leaving the space must swipe in and swipe out in order to maintain an accurate evacuation report. Members must wear IDs at all time so as to be identified as trained on a toolset by Monitors.

Safety Procedures for Monitors

  • All Monitors are required to take both Machine Safety and Emergency Action training via Traincaster. Each training takes about a half hour.
  • All Monitors need to attend a Monitor first-aid training at the earliest possible offering. 
  • Monitors should be aware of the locations of first aid kits, fire extinguishers, fire alarm pulls, and fire exits. 

For reference, extended policies on Environmental Health & Safety Policies.