The Library will be closed on Monday, May 27, 2024, in observance of Memorial Day.

Octavia Lab - FAQ


Where is the Octavia Lab located?

The Octavia Lab is located inside of the Los Angeles Public Library’s Central Library. We are on the second Lower Level, just across from the Science, Technology and Patents department.

Our street address is:
630 West 5th Street
Los Angeles, CA 90071

How do I become a lab member?

You can only apply for lab membership in the lab during our open hours. You will need:

  • A complete lab membership form.
  • A valid California photo ID with your name and address.
  • We will accept valid out of state ID (or passports) so long as you provide any of the following as proof of address:
    printed personal check
    credit card statement
    rental or property tax receipt
    business mail with current postmark
  • Please note that your proof must contain a California address.
  • A valid LAPL library card in good standing.
  • We will accept the LAPL mobile application’s digital barcode in lieu of the physical card.

How much does it cost?

Access to the lab’s software/equipment/tools is free, but limited to lab members only. Lab membership is free. However, you will need to purchase your own project materials.

Do you give classes/Can someone teach me how to use the lab?

No, we do not currently offer classes. As a “do it yourself” makerspace, we expect that most members have a passing knowledge of how some of the software/equipment/tools works. For those members who do not have any experience with our offerings, the Octavia Lab provides the perfect venue for self-guided learning. Lab members will have access to a small library of instructional materials such as books, user manuals, in-software tutorials, as well as online classes through LinkedIn Learning and NicheAcademy. Be advised that lab staff do not provide one-on-one instruction. However, staff will set-up, maintain, and troubleshoot lab equipment. The lab does offer programming where demonstrations are given on how to use lab equipment for certain projects. A list of our upcoming programs can be found on the Octavia Lab’s Calendar.

What do I need to bring?

It is recommended that lab members bring a storage device to save their projects. All lab computer hard drives are wiped between each session to ensure patron privacy. The size of the storage device you bring is up to you. Most lab projects will fit on a standard flash drive. Be advised that most video, and motion graphics projects may require a large capacity external hard drive. If you do bring your own storage device, please make sure that it is formatted properly. If you have any questions regarding which drive formatting will work best for your project, please contact the lab.

In order to use some lab equipment like the laser cutter or sewing machines, you will need to provide your own material. The Octavia Lab will provide the consumables and tools needed to operate and maintain lab equipment, but we do not provide the materials for projects. Information regarding what materials are required will be found on our equipment pages. If you have questions regarding any materials that are not listed on the equipment pages, give us a call at (213) 228-7150 before purchasing. We wouldn't want you to purchase material that can not be used. Please note, some materials must be approved by lab staff before they are allowed to be used on certain lab equipment.

Can I bring a guest?

Yes. Users are allowed to bring guests into the Octavia Lab. A guest is a person who does not have a signed user agreement. Users in the main lab space can bring one guest. Users of the Studio are allowed to have three guests. A guest cannot be in the space at any point without the Lab User.

Do you have _____?

You will find a list of the currently available software, equipment, and tools on our website. We are constantly updating and improving our offerings, so feel free to contact us if you have any questions. We would love to hear your suggestions for what the lab should offer next. To suggest a piece of equipment, software, or tool; email us at


Do I need to be present to start a 3D print job or Poster print job?

Yes, you need to be present for us to print your poster or 3D object. Lab members must be present to verify that lab staff is printing the correct submission at the correct size. Submissions will not be printed until the lab member has signed an invoice confirming those facts.

Can I choose the color of the filament?

We are currently in our “re-opening phase”, where all 3D prints are free. During this phase, lab members will be restricted to whatever colors are currently loaded onto the 3D printers. When the lab resumes charging for 3D prints, lab members will have the opportunity to choose their filament color from the available stock.

How long do 3D prints usually take?

3D print times can vary based on the size and surface detail of the model that has been submitted. Even relatively small objects can take 2-3 hours to print. If you would like an estimate for how long it would take to 3D print an object, feel free to send your STL file to the Octavia Lab’s email address: Please note, it may take up to a full business day for lab staff to respond with your estimate.

Can I videotape myself in the Studio?

You may record yourself in the Studio provided that the content you record is not:

  • Prohibited by local, state or federal law.
  • In violation of another’s intellectual property rights; for example, materials that are subject to copyright, patent or trademark protection.
  • Unsafe, harmful, dangerous or that may pose an immediate threat to the well being of others.
  • Inappropriate for the library environment.

What can I cut on the laser cutter?

You will find a list of acceptable materials on the laser cutter page . If you have questions regarding any material that is not on this list, give us a call at (213) 228-7150 before purchasing. We wouldn’t want you to purchase material that can not be used.

Do I have to bring my own materials for the embroidery machine or sewing machines?

Yes, you will need to bring your own fabric, thread, and stabilizer (for embroidery). The Octavia Lab will provide the consumables and tools needed to operate and maintain the equipment, such as replacement needles, pins, bobbins, etc. If you have any questions regarding whether the lab has a specific tool or piece of equipment that is needed to do your project, please call or email us prior to your visit.