WASHOE COUNTY IS RESPONDING TO COVID-19
All Washoe County Libraries are closed until December 1, 2020. Hold pickup service is currently suspended to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

 

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Maker Services

COVID-19 Update: All Quad, virtual reality, Tech Café, and Idea Box events have been suspended until April. Read the full Washoe County Library System announcement.

Most Washoe County Library locations provide weekly and monthly maker and STEAM activities. You will find Idea Boxes, coding classes, STEAM spaces, Tech Cafés, DIY Repair Clinics, and a variety of hands-on activities. Eight of our libraries offer 3D printing.

For a complete listing, please see the Calendar of Events.

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Located on the fourth floor of the Downtown Reno Library, the Quad is Washoe County Library System's flagship makerspace.

A library makerspace provides an environment that nurtures learning and exploration, fosters innovation, and inspires creativity while cultivating 21st Century skills such as critical thinking, creativity, communication, and technical expertise. It is a social space where makers of all ages can gather, create, and invent in a collaborative environment.

The Quad features tools and materials that patrons can use free of charge. Patrons may also bring their own materials. Every Thursday from 3 to 6 pm the Quad is open to the public and is staffed by library employees and volunteers who offer assistance and instruction. On these afternoons we focus on projects using the heat press in combination with either the vinyl cutter or sublimation printer (on alternating weeks). Additionally, the button machine, leather working tools, and laminator are usually available.

We also offer appointments for individual and small group trainings on all the Quad equipment.

Community groups, schools, and organizations of five or more who would like to schedule a tour or participate in Quad activities should contact library staff at least two weeks in advance.

Please email Brent at bcollamer@washoecounty.us to make arrangements.

 

See Upcoming Trainings

 

 

 

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Get hands-on experience with our Lulzbot Taz 6 3D printer, located at the Quad. Choose a design from a website or create your own. Or you can submit an object file online to any of our eight libraries that have 3D printers and pick up your project once it is completed.

 

Learn More or Submit a Project


Button Machines

Use our designs or bring your own printed images to cut out and create buttons or magnets. There are two sizes of round button machines and punch cutters: 1.25 and 2.25 inch diameters. There is also a two inch square machine and punch cutter with square and diamond backs.

Cutting Machine

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The Silhouette Cameo 3 can cut a variety of material, including vinyl, paper, cardstock, and fabric, in sizes up to 12 inches wide and 10 feet long. Use your designs to create cards, vinyl logos for your car windows, and much more. With the auto-blade system, you can let the machine set the correct blade depth for your project. Simply select your material type and let the Cameo do the rest.

 

Heat Press

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This HPN Signature Series heat press includes a digital timer and temperature gauge, gas shock opening mechanism, slide-out lower platen, and a magnetic auto-open release. Bring a T-shirt, towel, or canvas bag with a blank surface; print a graphic using our Roland vinyl cutter, and use the heat press to apply the design to your item.

 

Leather Working

Our leather crafting station includes decorative and alpha-numeric metal stamps. Using a mallet, the stamps can be used to create designs on leather. Use the stamps to create a sample project, or bring your own leather supplies and use our tools.

 

Mat Cutting

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Framing your photos can be an expensive project. Save money by using our tools and mat cutters. Bring in a picture and the frame you intend to use.

 

 

Mug Press

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The HPN Signature Series mug press can be used in combination with the sublimation printer to transfer full-color images onto a variety of metal and ceramic mugs. It accomodates standard 11 and 15 ounce mugs, as well as tall 17 ounce latte mugs.

 

  

Sewing Machine

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The Brother CS6000i is designed for ease of use, with its automatic needle threader, clear threading diagrams, adjustable sewing speed control, and easy-to-read LCD display. Work on an easy sample project to learn simple sewing techniques.  

 

Soldering Station

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The Aoyue 968A Soldering Station features a 70 watt soldering iron and a smoke extractor that reduces the fumes produced by soldering. It can be used to repair musical instruments or electronics or to create jewelry or other art projects. Practice your soldering skills with our sample project, or bring your own project.

 

Sublimation Printer

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The Sawgrass Virtuoso SG400 dye-sublimation printer can be used to print vivid designs that can be transferred to fabric, ceramic, metal, and other materials using a heat press. Bring a flash drive with a .jpg of your favorite photo, and create a coaster, metal bookmark, or mug.

 

Thermal Laminator

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The Ultima 65 makes laminating easy. The maximum document width of 27 inches can easily accomodate most classroom charts, certificates, and artwork. The built-in trimmer eliminates the need for scissors. Safety features include an attached protective shield, auto standby mode, and auto shut-off. Bring your own document, photo, or other paper item to laminate.

 

Vinyl Cutter

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Capable of cutting self-stick vinyl up to 24 inches wide, the Roland GS-2 can be used to make decals for car windows, walls, and almost any other surface. Or you can create a design that can be applied to a T-shirt or tote bad using the heat press. Vinyl is available in black, white, yellow, blue, orange, red, gray, green, and purple. Bring your own .jpg or .bmp image on a USB drive, or select one of our designs to try.

 

Designed to spark creativity, our Idea Boxes are self-contained kits that have the materials and instructions needed to complete small projects. Each of these eight boxes is available at a library for two months before rotating to a new location. View or download the schedule on the right of this page for current locations. Please call the hosting branch to make sure the idea box is available.

Bead On

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Beading provides a sense of accomplishment that contributes to creativity and self-expression. Besides being a creative leisure activity for all ages, beading also contributes to children’s development of fine motor skills, visual perception, and social skills. 

  • Activities: Make a button necklace or bracelet or a bookmark; try the lacing activities for toddlers.

Duct Tape Creations

Duct tape's use dates back to WWII, when it was used to keep ammunition dry. It has also been used by NASA as a tool on space missions. Today duct tape is in every home repair kit and is also used for creative projects.

  • Activities: Make a duct tape bookmark, library card wallet, or pencil pouch.

Mad Mattr®

Mad Mattr® is a super soft modeling compound that can be shaped and molded, that also “flows” when slowly pulled apart. Create, build, or simply squeeze some stress away.

  • Activities: Make LEGO®-like bricks or use the other molding tools provided to make a castle or whatever your creative mind imagines.

Miniature Gardens

Zen gardens are traditionally carefully composed landscapes with arrangements of rocks, water features, moss, pruned trees, and bushes. Some also incorporate gravel or sand that is raked to represent ripples in water. Since we don’t all have the time or patience to create a beautiful zen garden in our backyards, try this tabletop version.

  • Activities: Create a small zen garden out of sand and colored glass stones. Use the bamboo skewers to draw patterns in your sand, or place some colorful stones in your zen garden.

Origami & Paper Art

Origami, derived from the Japanese words oru (to fold) and kami (paper), has been a recreational and ceremonial art tradition in Japan since the early 1600s. The purist origami artist does not use tools to cut or glue the paper being worked with, but relies on oftentimes intricate geometrical folding to create delicate mathematical works of art.

  • Activities: Fold a Peace Crane: Patrons may refer to printed directions on how to fold a peace crane and add it to a growing string of cranes to travel along in the system, or take your crane home.

Sew & Stitch, Wrap & Weave

Explore textiles by weaving, sewing, and quilting. Use burlap, feathers, yarn, fabric, and your imagination. Make a colorful craft to take home, or experiment with a simple table top loom.

  • Activities: Make a mini quilt with fabric squares and backing fabric. Make a coaster or a mini potholder on the loom. Create a cute owl with burlap and buttons.

Sound of Science

Learn how sound waves create different tones. Make new sounds with a variety of singing bowls, wooden percussion instruments, and tuning forks. Experiment with a theremin, an electronic musical instrument that you play without actually touching the instrument.

  • Activities: Make a straw oboe and a craft stick harmonica.

Zip, Zap, Zing

Explore electricity and create LED paper lanterns, Circuit Bugs, and more with this family friendly kit that promises to light up your life.

  • Activities: Make a simple circuit, an LED greeting card, a paper lantern, and more.

 

 

Print

Digital Magazines

Instant access to your favorite magazines, now with thousands of new titles

OverDrive Ebooks and Audiobooks

Our main digital collection, with thousands of ebooks and audiobooks

The New York Times

Complimentary digital access to The New York Times

Reading Challenges

Participate in all our reading challenges with the Beanstack app

TechBoomers

Learn popular technology, apps, and websites with a senior focus

Small Engine Repair Reference Center

Detailed, user-friendly repair guides for all manner of small engines

NoveList Plus

Reading recommendations, series information, and more tools for readers

Mango

Learn one of 70 languages, including Spanish, Mandarin, and even Pirate

Lynda.com

Creative, business, and technology courses for in-depth learning

Computer Skills Center

Video courses to learn popular software and computer basics

1,000 Miles Project

The first-hand account of a 1914 prospecting trip across Nevada provides an engaging way to study history

WorldBook Online

With activities and a suite of research tools, it's more than an encyclopedia

TumbleBook Library

A collection of talking, animated picture books and ebooks for kids

TeenTober

Special events for teens for the month of October

Virtual Story Time

Washoe County Library story times, right in your home, every day

OverDrive Ebooks and Audiobooks

Our main digital collection, with thousands of ebooks and audiobooks

Teaching at Home

Help your child's education continue even when the schools are closed

1,000 Miles Project

The first-hand account of a 1914 prospecting trip across Nevada provides an engaging way to study history

WorldBook Online

With activities and a suite of research tools, it's more than an encyclopedia

Teaching at Home

Help your child's education continue even when the schools are closed

Brainfuse HelpNow

Live homework help, writing lab, test prep, and other student resources

Explora

Research resources and tools for students and teachers

Virtual Story Time

Washoe County Library story times, right in your home, every day

STEAM

Science, technology, engineering, and art resources.

Reopening Plan

See our plan for a safe, responsible reopening of our physical locations.

Teaching at Home

Help your child's education continue even when the schools are closed

Family Engagement and Literacy

Cultural and educational resources for kids of all ages

Get a Card

Sign up for an instant digital card to get access to all our online resources.

Community Resources

Resources and support during the coronavirus outbreak

Back to Work Nevada

Links to resume help, unemployment insurance, and business loan providers.

Apps and Tools

Many of our most popular resources have apps for easy use on mobile devices.

TumbleBiblioteca

Disfrute de más de 50 libros, libros de dibujos, y libros con audio para niños de todas las edades.

Referencia Latina

Texto completo cubre una amplia gama de temas dentro y fuera de la academia.

RBdigital

Más de 200 revistas que puede leer, y hasta descargar, en su computadora, teléfono o tableta.

OverDrive

Colección de libros electrónicos y audiolibros descargables en inglés o español.

The New York Times

Acceso gratuito en línea al New York Times, tanto de forma remota como en la biblioteca.

Mango

Aprenda inglés en línea con cursos completos y películas para ayudarle a aprender.

HelpNow

Tutoría en vivo en español o inglés está disponible con Brainfuse HelpNow.