The Physics Machine Shop provides many services for all departments on campus, including:

  • A library of materials and parts suppliers
  • Arranging for off-campus services such as plating and specialized machining services
  • Design help with laboratory and research apparatus and repair of existing equipment
  • Complete designs, from sketches to final assembly by mechanical means (welding, brazing or soldering)
  • CNC (computer numerically controlled) mill and lathe, as well as EDM (electro-discharge machining), programmable from a separate workstation, allowing the shop to machine shapes which are not possible with conventional machining methods.

The shop also maintains and supervises the Physics Student Shop, which is equipped with one 2-axis CNC mill, four manual mills and four manual lathes, drill presses, sheet metal shear, bender, roller, and numerous punches. Anyone wishing to use the student shop needs to complete a shop course (offered annually for 6 weeks starting in early April). For further information on the shop and the services we provide, please contact the Shop Supervisor, Karlheinz Merkle (, 650-723-2679.

Work Order forms are available on the web:

Approvers please use this form in place of an SU-13:

Other information and links:

Rates as of Sept. 1, 2011:

  • Machine Shop: $76.00 per hour
  • Student Shop: $16.00 per hour
  • Shop Certification Course: $320.00 per student