Generic questions and answers to the mechanical workshop can be left here, we try to answer them as opportunity and need arises.
Q: Can I get access to the workshop facilities? A: This is a somewhat contentious issue, and involves both aspects of safety and responsibility to keep the workshop and its resources in a good state. Current practice is that for members of the physics department, this is possible in principle, but workshop staff and overlooking committees need to be convinced that such access does not pose a safety risk for anyone, nor makes the university liable in case of any problems. It also requires cooperation in keeping workshop resources in good order. Specifically, that includes cleaning up after work and responsible use of tools. When in doubt, contact workshop staff and/or overlooking staff in the physics dept.
Q: Why do I need to provide a CAD drawing for my parts? It was not necessary before... A: In the same way that most of us don't live on trees or in caves anymore, time has moved on with mechanical part specifications. Using CAD systems helps not only with preparing useful drawings that can be manufactued on CNC machines (so you get it faster), it also helps you to avoid problems of not specifying aspects of it and suffering from disputes about interpretation of drawings later. If you see the part you design in a computer first, you probably avoid many mistakes, and save a lot of time later on. And the workshop staff knows exactly what you mean very quickly. Plus, you can use the fancy 3D drawings of your design later e.g. in a presentation.