3D designing and printing is one of the gifts of modern day innovation and technology. It has become so mainstream that companies are now selling handy 3D printers for personal use. However, just owning a 3D printer won’t get you anywhere. You need to have the material and, above all, the blue-prints in the form of STL models.
Before you get into digging the internet for useful STL files, take a look at this list of websites that allow you to download STL model – all for free. Read on to know more.
A powerful search engine for 3D models, STLFinder has an index of more than 2.5 million 3D models from a large number of model repositories. You will find lots of exciting designs like mobile phone cases, cool glasses, game pieces, and lots more.
GrabCAD is a community for sharing CAD files. It has a 3D model repository of over 2.63 million designs, which are suitable for many scenarios. The models are available in multiple categories like aerospace, architecture, aviation, engineering, etc.
Thingiverse showcases beautiful and innovative models that you can use in your projects or print them to gift someone. For instance, few of the flower designs can be ultimate to gift as presents. Also, it features the models in categories and collections.
IFind3D is one of the web’s largest search engine for 3D models, where you can find a vast collection hosting more than 904 thousand models. It also features the best and trending 3D models, which are handpicked by its team.
This site lets you search among hundred thousand designs for 3D printers, allowing you print them for any purpose. Moreover, you can also browse the site for models in categories like fashion, medical, leisure, and more to get some inspiration.
CGStudio includes 500+ 3D print-ready models available in multiple formats. The models are available in various categories such as animals, electronics, humans, etc.
A marketplace of high-quality 3D designs, Pinshape hosts thousands of models in numerous categories like art, home, gadgets, toys, and games, etc. You can search the models, browse, or even sort them to find the popular or trending ones.
Cults 3D avails plenty of 3D models arranged in numerous categories and collections. It specifies the printing settings along with a 3D view of the model to help you choose a model based on your needs. Also, you can search for them quickly.
A repository of more than 40 thousand 3D printable models, MyMiniFactory lets you explore the models arranged in different categories like gadgets and electronics, toys and games, home and garden, and so on. Also, you can search for them.
YouMagine hosts over 13 thousand open-source, print-ready 3D images. You can browse the latest as well as the featured designs or browse the models directly in categories. The models are available in numerous collections for easy navigation.
Autodesk 123D is a suite of computer-aided design (CAD) and 3D modeling tools aimed specifically at hobbyists. Along with the suite of tools, it also has a website where users can upload their creations and share them with other users. Many of the models can be downloaded and printed, using Autodesk as a utility to interface with MakerBot 3D printer.
Shapeways is mainly an online shop where you can purchase 3D printed items or have your own 3D model printed by them. But if you look close enough, you can find the people who sell their wares also offering the files required for you to print them yourself.
RascomRas is a Spanish website that allows users to upload and share 3D model files. RascomRas at one point ran an Indiegogo campaign to fund their very own 3D printer. The campaign unfortunately, didn’t get funded.
Repables is a very simple site that aims to be a repository of 3D printed model files, nothing more. It is a barebone website that allows users to upload their files to share, and download files they want to use. The site contains a lot of small, simple 3D models to print, with a nice selection of everyday items and even replacement parts for printers.
Another online community for 3D printing hobbyists, showcasing interesting items from 3D printers, electronics and most importantly, 3D models is 3D Hacker. There are a lot of very cool model vehicles and buildings to print, along with add-ons and parts for your 3D printer.
While primarily a place to buy and sell 3D models of all kinds, not just those for 3D printing, CGTrader does offer a selection of free models that can be used on a 3D printer.
Yeggi is a search engine that will search major 3D printing websites for files that are compatible with 3D printers. You can also look up some of the popular searches to get an idea what the community is currently interested in.
XYZprinting has a collection of 3D models uploaded by its user community. You can sort the models per downloads and date of upload or filter them by category.
3DShook owns a catalog of 3D printable designs, which are organized under fashion, icons, office, and many more categories. The models can be downloaded for free from the trial gallery, and the others can be purchased for a one-time fee.
A marketplace for free and paid 3D models, Threeding.com brings you printable models for helping you with your school assignments or office projects. You can browse through its categories or search for models using keywords to find the right model.
At NIH 3D Print Exchange, you can discover, learn, and create 3D models. This site offers a set of tools suitable to build and share your models as well.
Redpah offers a wide variety of free and premium 3D designs in multiple categories like art, jewelry, vehicles, and a lot more. You can search for any particular model and also filter the results by price and category to get your model easily.
A featured collection of 3D printable objects, 3Dupndown hosts both free and paid sets of 3D models. It has professional-looking designs that are perfect for industrial as well as personal projects – especially for gifting to your kids and friends.
3dfilemarket is an emerging community of 3D models, where you can browse through the community-promoted models in several categories. The site lets you download as well as upload models. Also, you can search the models directly.
Another search engine for 3D models, this site lets you search for free as well as paid models using specific keywords. However, it neither lists models in categories or collections nor shows latest or featured models, like few other platforms.
Another search engine, Yoni3D is somewhat better than Tridimensia because it offers searching the models using a model, just like Google Images allows to search using images. You can also find models using keywords, like the above tool.
3DExport is another marketplace for buying and selling 3D models. You can also download free models and search or browse through their categories. Interestingly, you can also avail customized 3D models for your projects.
STLHive.com has a collection of free and paid 3D objects for everyone – hobbyists, students, professionals, and inventors. What I find unique is, on this site, you can also request a custom model for your next big project.
3DaGoGo is another portal that showcases exclusive designs for printing in 3D. You can search for models or browse the models directly through categories. Surprisingly, some of the designs are very beautiful like cars, ships, etc.
Pileprint is a handy resource to find and share best-quality 3D-printable models. The site presents the latest designs in various categories like toys, sculptures, bags, robotics, etc.
3D Resources by NASA is a small site to find 3D-printable models of astronomical objects including satellites and telescopes. These models are perfect for scientific and space projects or merely gifting them to your astronomy-loving kids.
A 3D printing marketplace, Rinkak lets you download and upload models. The site features various cute and trendy 3D objects for kids, hobbyists, and students.
3DKToys features 3D-printable toys and test kits that are perfect for gifting to kids. The models are available under various collections, and some are available for free too.
Another search engine for 3D models, Aipos3d lets you discover a lot of 3D images from all over the web. You can also find models in various collections like most searched, most viewed, etc. or check them out through their categories.
Zortrax Library is a compilation of the top most 3D models from a range of categories like architecture, art and design, education, medicine, robotics, and lots more. Though it does not host many models yet you will find few sophisticated ones here.