Useful Links

This is a continually evolving reference page.  Check back periodically for new links.

Have you ever wondered, “How can I get ahead in class?” or “How can I have more lab time to actually DO my project?” or “How does everyone else know this stuff?”

One of the best ways to get ahead in class is to spend time at home reading the resources and watching the videos linked below to prepare yourself for your group’s upcoming projects.  There’s probably over 100 hours of reading and watching linked below. And if that doesn’t do it for you, an internet search engine is only a few clicks away, and your local library is only a few miles away.  As your teacher, I can’t do the learning for you.  I can lead you to specific places to find information, but you’ll need to research your topic to assess what skills are needed to perform the work I’m asking you to do.  As you become young adults, this becomes an increasingly independent activity, and the responsibility for your learning is shifted from me to you.  I wish I knew who to attribute this quote to, but at some point in the past, someone told me, “Some of the best things you can learn are those that you teach yourself.”  I’m a firm believer in the application of this method for this class.  Years from now, there will be immense value to what you have figured out on your own this year, with a little research, perhaps a little frustration, a little brainstorming, and a little collaboration.

CAUTION – The links below refer to external websites.  Some of the below links are public forums.  Information found needs to be evaluated for accuracy and relevancy.

Have you found a broken link, or do you have a great suggestion for a link to add? Contact us.

*Links to Required reading or viewing for Principles of Engineering class projects are marked with an asterisk (*)

3D CAD Modeling and 3D Printing

How to Print to the Stratasys Uprint SE+ 3D Printers – A step-by-step PDF guide tailored to the Clark Magnet Engineering lab printers.

MakerWare Software Tutorial – A very informative 8-minute YouTube Video.

MakerBot Replicator 2 Startup Process – 6-Minute video coveres how to level the build platform.

MakerBot Replicator 2 User Guide – Required reading prior to printing

MakerBot Replicator 2 Troubleshooting Guide – Check here when you have issues with the machine

Autodesk Inventor 2017 Tutorials – The official help and tutorial reference for Inventor 2017 on the Autodesk Knowledge Network.

TFI CAD Tips (newly added November 2016) – Arguably the best Inventor tutorials on YouTube. Over 100 videos from an Autodesk Expert Elite member. Lots of training and a bit of humor. We make no claims for language or content in these videos.

Autodesk 123D Apps – An awesome variety of different 3D modeling tools including more free-form type artistic modeling programs.  They even have iPhone and iPad apps.  Others are web based and will run in Google Chrome, no install required.  I highly recommend checking these out, even at home, beyond the scope of our class projects.

Thingiverse – View example 3D print projects to get ideas only.  You can download models, but be careful not to plagiarize.  Your design needs to be original.

Instructables 3DPrinting Group – A collection of numerous Instructables related to 3D printing.

Image to Lithophane – This free online tool will create a solid model that is height-mapped to an image. The solid model can then be downloaded and 3D printed as a lithophane. Make sure “positive image” is flipped on in the image settings and print vertically and at a slow speed if possible.

Sheet Metal Sculpture

** If you have a great link to a sheet metal tutorial or project, please share it! **

Kevin Caron Studios – A assortment of excellent how-to videos on a variety of manufacturing techniques from sheet metal forming to TIG welding.  Full video transcripts!

How to use a Sheet Metal Brake

Metal Flower – Instructables

Metal Arm – Instructables – Very complex

Metal Fish Key Holder – Instructables – rather simple

Metal Butterfly – Instructables – rather simple

Toner Pattern Transfer – Instructables

Artistic Ribbon Sculpture

Curve Shapes

Line Shapes

Rolled Spiral

Sci-Fi Sculptures – Very detailed

Microcontrollers and Programming

* – The go-to resource for getting started in Arduino.  Required reading for the Microcontrollers & Programming Project.

*7-segment Display Tutorial – This provides a good overview on how 7-segment displays work, how to make various digits, and how to wire them.

Working with Seven Segment Displays – A comprehensive overview from electronics supplier Jameco.

Electronics Glossary – Definitions of all the major electronics components and concepts from Jameco.

Identifying Resistors – Learn the resistor color band code. Brought to us by Jameco.

Arduino Lessons by Paul McWhorter (newly added Nov. 2016 – A very comprehensive YouTube playlist of Arduino lessons from absolute beginner to more advanced topics. A great place to get started. Thanks to Richard V. for sharing!

Arduino Education on All About Circuits – Another great resource with a plethora of articles and lots of good example projects too.

123D Circuits – Looks like a neat way to visualize breadboard circuits.  I haven’t tried it yet.  Signup required.

Parallax “What’s a Microcontroller?” Text (Large PDF) – The code is different, but it’s still a good reference for the electrical schematics and concepts.  Lots of examples of how to use sensors.

Getting Started with Arduino Link to Google Books, showing the first 30 or so pages. Printed books available in class.

StackOverflow Arduino Tagged Questions – Search here for any arduino issue you may be having

Welding Processes

*Lincoln TIG Welding Safety – Required viewing for the welding project

*Lincoln Tips from the Experts: TIG Welding Aluminum – Required viewing for the welding project

*Miller Welding Resources – Safety guides and skills tips.  Required reading for the welding project.

*Miller TIG Welding Techniques – Required viewing for the welding project, up until the Stainless Steel part

*Miller TIG Welding Aluminum 1: Keys to Puddle Control – Required viewing for the welding project

*Miller TIG Welding Aluminum 2: Coordinating Movement & Filler – Required viewing for the welding project

*Miller TIG Welding Aluminum 3: Forming and Controlling the Puddle – Required viewing for the welding project

*Miller TIG Welding Aluminum 4: Introducing Filler Metal to the Puddle – Required viewing for the welding project

* How to Weld Aluminum for Beginners – Required viewing for welding project

TIG Welding Aluminum – A lengthy but good Youtube video from the Eastwood Company.

Types of Weld Joints (PDF Slides) – A chapter of a textbook from Goodheart-Willcox publishing.

Manual milling and tapping

How to use a Milling Machine – A VERY comprehensive resource originally compiled by the US army, and made available for use by the American Machine Tools Co.

MIT Tech TV Machine Shop Collection – Lengthy but VERY detailed videos on operating a mill, lathe, and other machine shop tools.

*Using an Edge Finder (Youtube) – A 5 minute video showing how to approach the workpiece, find the edge, and compensate for the radius of the edgefinder using the digital readout.

*Using Taps and Dies (Youtube) – Required viewing

*Climb vs. Conventional Milling (Youtube) – Required viewing. A good explanation showing what can go right and wrong with each technique. Many of the other videos on this channel are worth watching too.

*Power Tapping on a Manual Bridgeport Mill (Youtube) – A short 22 second video showing the process. Note, the operator starts the quill feed, then the tap pulls itself in, while the operator is careful to quickly reverse the machine after the tap reaches depth.

*How to Power Tap – Toms Techniques (Youtube) – A comprehensive 11 minute video in which holes of several sizes are drilled and tapped on a Bridgeport-style milling machine.

Computer Aided Manufacturing & Mosaic Tile Project (using Autodesk CAM)

Inventables Mosaic Tile Examples – Many great design examples!

Autodesk Inventor HSM 2016 Help and Tutorials

Autodesk HSM CAM Youtube Channel Playlists – Very informative instructional videos for Inventor HSM and Fusion 360 CAM.

Lars Christensen Youtube Channel Playlists – A great series of videos tutorials on Fusion 360 CAM and tips and tricks for CAD and CAM.

NexGenCAM Youtube Channel Playlists – A good set of instructional videos on HSMWorks CAM covering tool libraries, job setup, and more.

Computer Aided Manufacturing (using OneCNC XR 5)

OneCNC Australia Youtube Channel – Contains tutorials on OneCNC XR5 CAM software and examples of machines in action.  A good place to see what the software is used for in production environments.

OneCNC CAD / CAM Training Youtube Channel – A series of 20 short training videos.

OneCNC XR5 Features Overview – Short video clips demonstrating features of the software.  Highly recommended viewing.

OneCNC XR5 Features Overview (Flash) – Same as above, but in a different web UI.

OneCNC XR5 Training Videos – Concise videos that are a few minutes long.  Start from the last ‘Design’ video if short on time, but try to watch them all from the start if you can.

HAAS CNC Mill – A great little website that renders perfect on a mobile browser. Features charts and calculators, G and M code reference, and learning resources including short videos.

HAAS Mill Control Workbook (PDF)

HAAS Mill G-Code Workbook (PDF)  – Do the Interpolation exercise on PDF page 49

G and M Code Quick Reference – A handy chart listing the functions of all the G and M codes – Haas Automation Resource Center.  This is an excellent place to learn anything and everything about operating and programming Haas machines in an easy to use indexed guide.

HAAS Mill Operator’s Manual (Large PDF) – In depth control reference for the CNC milling project

HAAS Programming Manual (Large PDF) – In depth code reference for the CNC Milling Project

CNC Dictionary – An AWESOME collection of all the vocabulary terms used in CNC machining, with easy to understand descriptions and visual diagrams.

CNC Handbook by HSMWorks – An excellent guide for getting started in CNC, that very closely matches the CNC Machining for Engineers and Makers textbook by Charles Davis that we use in CAM class.

Autodesk Fundamentals of CNC Machining Page on the AU Workshop – Be sure to scroll down to the Attachments section for the textbook, powerpoints, and videos. We use these resources in CAM class.

Titans of CNC Academy – A great collection of CNC machining videos and projects primarily using Haas CNC machines and Autodesk CAM software. Free signup may be required.

Haas Automation Youtube Channel – Tons of awesome videos including feature overviews, how-to instructions, and machining demonstrations.

Haas Tip of the Day – A YouTube playlist of 60+ videos with excellent little tips and tricks applicable to mill, lathe, probing, and more!

How to Square a Vise on your CNC Mill – A single 8-minute YouTube video addressing how to use a dial test indicator to align a vise parallel to the mill’s X axis.

Intro to pull-studs (retention knobs) – A four-minute Youtube video.

G-code simulator – A free online web tool to graphically plot CNC G-code programs for verification. – The best online NC-code backplotter interface that we’ve run across, all in a familiar Autodesk style. Excellent for checking hand written programs such as the NIMS part.

Manual Lathe Operations

* Operations – A straight-forward beginner’s resource on metal lathe operations and workings of the machine.  Intended for the home hobbyist.  Required reading.

*Lathe Diagram – A good diagram of a traditional manual metalworking lathe, brought to you by the American Machine Tools Co.

*Basic Turning Video (Youtube) – This 5-minute video put together by the Western Washington University Engineering & Design department gives a good brief overview of facing, turning, and parting operations on a manual lathe.

*Standard Operating Procedures for Manual Toolroom Lathes (newly added Nov. 2016) – Brought to you by the UC Riverside Mechanical Engineering Department. Although this lathe features a collet closer which ours does not, the information contained in this document is essential to successfully operating any metalworking lathe. Thank you Elizabeth M for sharing this link!

*Operation of the PM-1440E-LB Lathe – A 13 minute YouTube video giving an overview of the various controls. Required viewing before operating this machine in our lab.

PM1440 Lathe Walk-Around and Review – A 33-minute in-depth walk-through and review of the machine’s features. Note, the BV model is slightly different than our 1440E-LB, which does not have the electronically variable speed. Mechanically, they are very similar if not identical.

Lathe Tutorial – A 10 minute YouTube video from the Colorado School of Mines giving a basic overview of simple operations on a metalworking lathe.

How to Use a Lathe – A VERY complete and comprehensive guide covering lathe setup, tooling, and most types of lathe operations including threading. Originally compiled by the US Army and now made available online by the American Machine Tools Co.

MIT Tech TV Machine Shop Collection – Lengthy but VERY detailed videos on operating a mill, lathe, and other machine shop tools

CNC Lathe Operations (General Info)

Engineer’s Guide to CNC Turning Centers – A comprehensive article covering all the basics.

CNC Lathe Operations (Tormach SlantPro 15L)

NYC CNC Youtube Channel, Tormach SlantPro 15L Playlist – A fantastic collection of videos on how to set up, program, and operate the Tormach SlantPro 15L CNC lathe.

Tormach SlantPro 15L Setup and Operation Videos – A great collection, produced by Tormach themselves, on how to use the various features and accessories on the SlantPro 15L lathe. Includes a couple projects such as a camera ring.

Tormach SlantPro 15L Videos on Youtube – Same videos as the link above, but straight from YouTube, instead of embedded in Tormach’s website.

General Metalworking & Machine Shop Resources

NYC CNC Carbide Tooling Video Series – A great set of videos from John Saunders covering everything you ever wanted to know about carbide tooling and feeds and speeds.( Added February 2017). – An entire online class made available free by Sandvik Coromant.  Videos on milling, turning, drilling, etc.

MachiningCloud Courses – A great set of 4 PDF documents on selecting milling and turning tools. They also have an app available for Android, iOS, and Windows

Machinist’s Tables – Older, low resolution scans, but a very comprehensive set of informational lookup tables for milling, drilling, and lathe operations as well as threads.

How to use a Band Saw – A great informational guide originally prepared by the US Army and now made available by the American Machine Tool Co. Covers both horizontal and vertical band saws as well as blade selection and application.

PocketNC Quickstart Guide for Windows and Mac – An instructables article showing how to set up the PocketNC 5-axis CNC machine.

Engineering Concepts

Outstanding Professor on YouTube – The famous Dr. Jawa from Cal Poly Pomona University has recorded a series of excellent videos on fundamental engineering concepts such as forces, motion, and statics. A must-see for AP Physics students. Dr. Jawa was one of Mr. Black’s professors!

Outstanding Professor on Facebook – Follow Dr. Jawa to get the latest new videos as they’re posted.

eFunda – Engineering Fundamentals – “The Ultimate Online Reference for Engineers.” Tons of helpful conversion calculators among other things.

General Resources

3DContentCentral – A huge library of CAD models of commercially available industrial components. Free registration required.

ChiefDelphi Technical Forums – Frequented mostly by FIRST Robotics teams, the Chief Delphi forums have become a popular resource for technical subjects from CAD to Programming.  The members are generally rather nice and helpful.

CNC Zone – A huge number of sub-forums for any and every machine, software, and topic related to CNC machining, and then some.

GCC Course Schedule – A handy tool for finding GCC courses and schedules

GCC Jump Start – Jump Start is a program for high school juniors and seniors that wish to take classes at GCC while they are still in high school.

GrabCAD – A huge collection of some amazing 3D models. Free registration required.

Instructables – An online repository of DIY project instructions

Kevin Caron Studios – A assortment of excellent how-to videos on a variety of manufacturing techniques from sheet metal forming to TIG welding.  Full video transcripts!

McMaster Carr – An industrial supplier with am amazing catalog and assortment of just about anything from tools to fasteners.  The catalog is a good educational resource too.

Practical Machinist – “The largest manufacturing technology forum on the web”

Welding Web – A popular online welding forum/community

Sandvik Coromant Youtube Channel – A variety of videos related to the latest and most advanced technologies and trends in manufacturing and tooling.

SME – High school students can join SME for free to access a wealth of resources including scholarships

Autodesk Resources

Autodesk Design Academy – This is a good place to start your learning in mechanical design using Autodesk software. The content is presented in the style of guided online courses.

NYC CNC Fusion 360 Tutorials – A great set of tutorials from John Saunders ranging from beginner techniques in CAD all the way up to advanced techniques in 4th and 5th axis CAM.

Autodesk Knowledge Network – The starting point for all help for all Autodesk software products.

Autodesk Education Community – For students, Autodesk offers 3-year licenses of almost every professional software product such as Fusion360, Inventor with HSM Pro, and more! Take advantage of this incredible opportunity to install and learn the software on your own computer at home! Register and download for FREE!

Autodesk Fusion360 Tutorials – Covering a range of topics from getting started to rendering, sculpting, animation, and even CAM.

Autodesk Fusion 360 Foundational Concepts – A great place to start if you’re just getting started in learning the Fusion 360 software.

Autodesk University (AU) Workshop – A large set of online courses and library reference materials including instructional texts, tutorials, and videos for a variety of different industry sectors and Autodesk software products.

Autodesk AREA – A great collection of learning paths, tips, tutorials, and videos related to Autodesk software products such as 3ds Max, Maya, Mudbox, and Showcase. I’m going to take a wild guess and say AREA stands for Arts, Rendering, Entertainment, and Animation, as that is what this website seems to be all about.

PocketNC 5 Axis Engine Block Demo – A 3-minute YouTube video showing an engine block model being machined on the PocketNC 5-axis CNC milling machine.

Artistic and Graphic Design Resources – newly added section, December, 2016

Vecteezy – thousands of free scalable vector images including clip art, page borders and backgrounds, and more. No signup required for most vector art on the site! – thousands of free fonts available for download. No signup required!

Brands of the World – Scalable vector artwork for most major brands.

Inkscape – A fantastic open-source vector art program that is available for free download and runs on Mac, Windows, and Linux. A great alternative to Adobe Illustrator, and better in some ways.

Resources for designers – A great collection of several resources compiled by MDG advertising. (Thanks to Stacey M. for submitting this link!)

Suppliers and Vendors

Lakeshore Carbide – This link takes you directly to the 3-flute variable helix endmills for aluminum that we use primarily in our lab. – Contrary the name, they sell also sell some high quality mill tooling.


HSM Advisor – Arguably the best speeds and feeds calculator program available for CNC machining. Includes more features than FSWizard. Available locally on the T: drive for Clark students.

FSWizard – A great tool for calculating feeds and speeds for CNC cutting. Available as a web app as well as iOS and Android app. Free!

Interesting Videos and Things

CNC Technology Youtube Channel – Videos of multi-axis and very large CNC machines

Titan American Built Youtube Channel – Manufacturing-related videos from “Titan” featuring Haas CNC machines.

thang010146 YouTube Channel – an amazing collection of over 1,000 types of mechanisms involving linkages, cams, gears, and more, all modeled and animated in CAD