MIT-TIM Ice Tray


  • Formech 450DT or similar vacuformer


  • PETG panel (food safe) that works with your vacuformer

Step 1: Preheating

  • Please read through the entire guide before getting started.
  • Turn on the vacuformer.
  • Start heating the cores by tapping the first icon.
  • This preheating takes about 15 minutes. Feel free to prepare by reading through the rest of the steps while you wait.

Step 2: Layout and Materials

  • Choose the 3d printed parts you wish to use for your Ice Tray.
  • Practice the configuration for your objects and decide how big of a panel you will need to fit all your pieces.
  • Leave space between the parts and between the parts and edges of the frame.
  • Choose a plastic panel that can fit all your pieces and resize the frame on the vacuformer by swapping the metallic reducing windows.
  • Make sure to follow all safety and operation protocols.

Step 3: Vacuform

  • Place all your parts onto the mesh table (under the frame) and lower the table.
  • Place your plastic panel right onto the white seal and close the top frame while activating the clamps.
  • With the table lowered, bring the heater forward by pulling the blue handle.

Step 4: Vacuum and Air

  • Wait for the timer to ‘beep’ and push the heater back .
  • With a stick-like object quickly tap on the plastic to check for it to be soft and bendy.
  • Once your plastic is warm enough, quickly push the heater back, pull the table upwards , and press the vacuum icon to form the plastic.
  • Pull the table lift handle all the way until it locks in place.
  • This step must be done quickly to prevent the plastic from solidifying before vacuforming.

Step 5: Removal

  • ap on the air icon and the vacuformer will push your part upwards to loosen all pieces.
  • Remove your piece from the frame.
  • Return the vacuformer to a ready to use state.
  • Make sure you turn the heat off, and turn the machine off.
  • Carefully remove all your 3d parts from your mold.


  • Your panel has sharp corners.
    • Round these by cutting them down.
  • If your objects were placed too close together, the plastic probably ‘webbed’ together or became too thin in some parts.
  • As long as there are no punctures in the plastic, it is safe to use. Otherwise ask a mentor for help in creating a new mold.

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