NextFab
NextFab 2025 Washington Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19146 +1 (215) 921-3649

FAQ

Membership, Fees and Courses

Where are you located?

2025 Washington Ave. Philadelphia, PA 19146. (MAP) Public transportation is available nearby. For more info please visit SEPTA.

 

Can I get a tour of the facility?

Yes. You are welcome to stop in anytime during open studio hours (Monday - Friday : 2pm-6pm). For larger groups, off-hours, and all other specialized tours, please schedule a tour by contacting us at 

 

How old do you need to be to become a member at NextFab?

There is no age requirement for signing up to be a member. However, kids (under 18 years of age) are required to be accompanied by parents or other adult members at all times.

How do I sign up?

You can start by filling out our "sign-up" form online and paying the initiation fee HERE. Then you will have to come in for safety training before you can start using our facility. Don't forget to reserve your spot for safety training HERE.


Once I sign up, what's the next step?

In order to have access to the facility and use the equipment, you'll need to take New Member Orientation, Wood Shop Safety and Metal Shop Safety. These are offered every weekend -- you can see the current schedule on our Classes page.


Can I change my membership type? Upgrade? Downgrade?

Yes. You can upgrade your membership type at any time. If you decide to change the status of your membership to a part-time option in the middle of the month, the changes will take effect on the first day of your next billing cycle.

 

Can I pay month by month?

We do not currently offer a month-to-month payment option. We kindly ask you to sign up for autopay and your card will be charged monthly on/from the date of signup. This helps us reduce our accounting costs, allowing us to focus our resources on providing you the best possible facilities, training, and amenities. We appreciate your understanding and support.


What if I want to suspend my membership?

You can downgrade your membership to our most affordable option, Community Membership. This way, your membership status remains active so you don't have to repay the initiation fee when you resume. 

 

What is the initiation fee for?

This fee partially allays the cost of producing ID badges, setting up accounts, and providing orientation and safety training for new and rejoining members.
 
 

Which membership option is best for me: Standard, Weekend, or Community?

Depending on your needs, interest, or availability, NextFab has an option for you. 
 
Standard membership: is a great way to start — take lots of classes and immerse yourself in everything NextFab has to offer. If you want to use the space regularly, this option is right for you. 
 
Weekend membership (part-time option): is a great option for those who are enthusiastic about our facility, but are unable to make it to the studio during the week.
 
Community membership (part-time option): is designed to allow existing members who are in-between projects to partially suspend their membership until they are ready to tackle something new. It is not intended for members who will use the space regularly or take lots of classes. In order to gain access to the studio and attend a class, a community member must obtain a day pass. Use of the space is then permitted all day, including prior to and after the class. They may use their single free pass, or purchase one from the front desk for an additional $30.
 
Part-time and full-time members can participate in selected events free of charge (show and tell, company demos, guest lectures, getting started at NextFab).
 
 

What is a Keystone Member?

After a full one-year membership at NextFab, you will become eligible for Keystone membership. With Keystone membership, you will be able to enjoy the exactly the same benefits as the Standard membership but at the lower rate $109 permonth and $1,104 per year.
 

Student, Senior, Military discount?

Yes. With a valid ID, your rate will be offered at $99 per month, $1,013 per year.
 
We now also offer the same discount to first responders. Paramedics, EMT’s, firefighters, and local or federal police officers - present your ID to join as a member at our discounted rate.
 

I'm not a member. Can I still take classes at NextFab?

Software classes (e.g. Rhino, SolidWorks, Adobe CS, etc.) and introductory classes for certain technologies (e.g. Intro to 3D Printing) are open to non-members, and spots can be reserved here. Non-members pay an additional studio access fee due upon arrival, and will not have access to the software or facility at any other time than during class.


How do I protect my idea from being exposed or stolen?

NextFab is a membership based community where we share space and tools with other members. It will be up to you to protect your ideas and keep it away from other members. For contract services, we have Non-Disclosure Agreements upon request and work on the project in staff-only areas so it will not be exposed to anyone.

Can I buy materials for my project at NextFab?

Yes. We do have raw materials for sale including wood, metal, print media, hardware, etc.

Contract Work / Prototyping / Consulting

What are your contract services business hours?

NextFab's contract services hours are Monday through Friday 10am-6pm. We will make every effort to respond to your inquiry within one contract service business day.


What’s the difference between design, engineering, consulting, and fabrication?

NextFab provides a variety of services, and large projects can involve both design/engineering work, as well as fabrication. For our purposes, we break these services down as follows:
 
Design, Engineering, and Consulting are grouped as services with a $100 hourly rate. These services involve high-level creative or evaluative work on your project. This might involve developing a concept from a napkin sketch to a product ready for fabrication, or testing and developing an existing design. Essentially, the client provides NextFab with an idea or set of requirements and asks NextFab to create a solution to meet these requirements.
 
These services typically will include gathering a set of requirements from the client and establishing a scope of work before proceeding with design and possibly fabrication.
 
Fabrication is a different category of service, with a $75 hourly rate. In this case, the client provides us with a complete design and asks NextFab to execute it to their specifications. This may be as simple as uploading to our Quotes page a file to be laser cut, or providing us with a drawing or CAD model to work from. For any work that falls under the fabrication category, NextFab staff are not actively evaluating, refining, or changing your design, but are simply producing your parts according to your specifications.
 
Larger projects often involve both design and fabrication services. When we agree upon the scope of work for a project, NextFab staff will clearly identify which parts of the work fall under design/engineering rates, and which fall under fabrication rates.
 
 

Do I reserve machine time if I want you to run the job?

No. If you hire us for contract work, we will take care of all necessary work.  Please only reserve machine time for work that you will personally do.

Facility and Equipment Use

Do I have to be a member to use the equipment?

Yes. You can either join, take the appropriate class, and become certified to use the equipment, or you can hire us on a contract basis to do the work needed. Please also note that even if you are a member, you will need to complete our Orientation and Workshop Safety Training, along with our Machine Shop Safety Training, in order to take most courses offered by NextFab.

Can I bring guests?

We love having you here as our guest and you are welcome to visit, observe, and stay for occasional social or business meetings with members or staff.  If you’d like to do more, please consider a NextFab Membership or join us for any of our public events or classes!
 
Guest Rules:
  • You must be accompanied by your NextFab member or staff host at all times
  • You may not use any tools or equipment, including our computers
  • You must obey all safety rules and NextFab staff instructions
  • Please respect the boundary between being a guest and being a member
  • No more than 4 hours per visit per guest
  • No more than 2 visits per week per guest
  • No more than 8 hours per month per guest
  • You are welcome to use our guest WiFi on your personal devices
  • SSID:  nextfabguest
  • PWD:  nextguest

Process:

  1. Please let the receptionist know that you are a guest.
  2. If this is your first visit, please fill out the Guest Waiver Form (on the iMac)
  3. Each time you visit NextFab, please immediately sign in here using the clipboard form.

Will I be able to reserve the machine? 

Yes. Members who would like to reserve machine time may do so online. The reservation calendar should only be used by those who have obtained unsupervised access on that particular machine. Please note that based on power consumption, operating costs and maintenance some machines require hourly reservation fees.

What level of access to equipment do I get?

Members can learn and use the equipment via tutoring, supervised use, and unsupervised use — based on their needs and level of training. Members or non-members have also access to our consulting and contracting services.


Does NextFab  have storage for in progress projects?

Yes. In addition to locker storage, we offer larger storage areas for keeping your works in progress, tools, and materials for a fee. You can rent a storage space on a monthly basis. The fee varies depending on size and any special requirements. For pricing and more details, please contact us at info@nextfabstudio.com.


Can I bring my own tools?

You can bring in your own hand tools if you like. However, you will need to obtain permission from a manager to bring in power tools or anything unusual. Please also keep in mind that if you are looking for a particular tool that we do not have, other members may also find it useful -- if you let us know what tool you want to bring in, we may decide to purchase it for the facility.


What kind of tools do I have access to at NextFab?

We have almost any type of tool or machine you might need to turn your dream project into a reality! From basic woodworking and metalworking tools to high-tech digital fabrication machines such as 3D Printers, CNC routers, CNC milling machines, CNC waterjet cutter, laser cutters/ engravers, we have what you need to develop your ideas. For a complete list of our equipment, please visit our facility information HERE.


When can I start using the tools and machines at NextFab?

Completion of safety training grants you access to our facility, including basic tools and software. To gain access to more advanced, specialized tools, (i.e. all of the machines and printers), you will need to take a class and be certified for each piece of equipment. If you are already familiar with certain equipment, you have the option to demonstrate to our expert staff your ability to safely use the machine, without having to take the class. To make an appointment for machine certification, please contact us at info@nextfabstudio.com.