Machine Shop


Established in 1924 by an Instrument Maker from England named Albert Cox, the Physics Machine Shop has been vital in many breakthroughs in research and education at the U of S for many generations.

Our shop is operated by three highly skilled Instrument Makers experienced in machining, welding, computer design, woodworking and general craftsmanship. We can assist in troubleshooting and solving difficult situations. We also have access to an electronics and controls technician to assist you with a wide array of projects.

We stock many materials, fasteners and fittings. We are also able to order any additional parts, materials or tools which your project requires.

Feel free to come and discuss your projects with us. We can assist you in the selection of materials, dimensions, tolerances and processes, and therefore help to meet deadlines and funding restrictions. Our aim is to accelerate the concept-to-realization process.

Allow us to continue to contribute to your success.

Services and Rates

Services We Provide:

  • Modification and repair
  • Machining
  • Welding (MIG and TIG)
  • Sheet metal fabrication
  • Plastic fabrication
  • Woodworking
  • Prototyping
  • Electronics and computer work
  • GibbsCAM (Computer-Aided Manufacturing)
  • SolidWorks® 3D modelling
  • Project Management
  • The Physics Machine Shop is equipped with a computer numerically controlled (CNC) mill capable of machining parts of vast complexity in three dimensions.
  • The shop also has three manual lathes of various sizes to meet all your needs.
  • The welding shop is equipped with MIG and TIG welders. The MIG welder is used for steel fabrication. The TIG welder is used for welding aluminum and stainless steel as well as vacuum parts and for repairs.
  • We can build or repair any of your woodworking needs and have the capability of working with plastics and a variety of other materials.

Project Management:

We will coordinate your project from start to finish. We can build and outsource components as needed.

For your project:

When you come to discuss your project with us, bring along any of the following items if you happen to have them:
  • Computer Assisted Design (CAD) drawings
  • Photographs
  • Hand-drawn sketches
  • Verbal descriptions of required modifications, repairs or new parts
  • Related information on selection of materials or processes
  • Actual parts that are significant which will be helpful for sizing and referencing
  • Your CFOAPAL if you work on campus and your unit uses UniFi

Shop Rates, as of Aug. 27, 2023:

  • $40.00/hour for Arts & Science undergraduate student support
  • $40.00/hour for Arts & Science undergraduate laboratories and demonstrations
  • $50.00/hour for Arts & Science research
  • $70.00/hour for non-Arts & Science departments and units on campus with chart "1" CFOAPAL
  • $100.00/hour for off-campus clients and on-campus clients with chart "2" CFOAPAL
  • 4.5% for sundry (shop supplies, etc.)
  • $7.00/hour for machine time on the 3D printer
  • 15% for materials markup


Shop Foreman Machinist Ted Toporowski
Machinist Jon White
Machinist Larry Fast
Accounts Debbie Gjertsen
Administration Mark Wurtz

Location and Hours

8:00 am – 4:30 pm

Monday – Friday

Walk-Ins welcome