About

What is a FabLab?

A small-scale workshop offering digital fabrication. It’s an open access, not-for-profit, community resource where anybody can invent and make just about anything.

What’s in a FabLab?

An evolving array of flexible computer controlled machines that allow you to invent, make and share. You could print t-shirts, produce electronic circuit boards, program a computer or CNC machine an electric guitar.

Who can use a FabLab?

FabLabs are open to anybody who wants to learn about digital making to invent, create and design, and turn ideas into reality. The facilities are often used by makers, designers, local businesses, inventors, artists and entrepreneurs. We welcome school and group visits too.

For further information, please email fablab@librariesunlimited.org.uk

How do I become a member?

Please see our membership page for more details.

How do I become a volunteer?

Volunteering in the lab is all about learning, teaching and helping others to create and understand. We ask all our volunteers to be available for 2 half days per month and we are always keen to hear from people with Engineering, Art & Design and Teaching backgrounds.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer please join our newsletter and in the ‘interested in volunteering’ field briefly tell us your relevant experience/qualifications and availability. Or you can email us at fablab@librariesunlimited.org.uk and we can send you an expression of interest form.

How can businesses use a FabLab?

Commercial activities can be prototyped and incubated in a FabLab, but they must not conflict with other uses, they should grow beyond rather than within the lab, and they are expected to benefit the inventors, labs, and networks that contribute to their success.

Our aim is not to compete with local businesses offering similar services but we would be happy to help with prototyping and primary product development.

Where are the FabLabs?

Exeter FabLab is on the ground floor of Exeter Library next to the Business and Information Hub. It was the first to ever open in a UK public library.

Barnstaple FabLab is on the first floor of Barnstaple Library, next to the computer training suite.

When is Exeter FabLab open?

  • Tuesday                       10 am – 4 pm
  • Wednesday                 10 am – 4 pm
  • Thursday                     10 am – 6:45 pm
  • Alternate Fridays       10 am – 5 pm
  • Alternate Saturdays   10 am – 4 pm

When is Barnstaple FabLab open?

  • Monday                       10 am – 5:30 pm
  • Wednesday                 10 am – 5:30 pm
  • Thursday                     10 am – 5:30 pm
  • Alternate Fridays       10 am – 5:30 pm
  • Alternate Saturdays   10 am – 4:30 pm

Please note that opening times are subject to volunteer availability and sometimes the FabLab will be closed to the general public for events, workshops and member inductions.

Who supports the Fab Lab project?

The FabLab project is funded by Devon County Council, the ACE Bridge Challenge Fund run by the Real Ideas Organisation and the Digital Makers Fund (run by Nesta and Nominet Trust, in partnership with Autodesk).