3D Lab Online Course

3D Lab Online Course

3. First steps in 3D printing – models from the database

A good way to start printing in 3D is to use ready models available in one of many different online databases. This approach plays several roles:

  1. 1. It helps to test the 3D printer.

If we are sure that the model was printed before, sometimes many times, and has good reviews, we can be sure that all the problems with the printout are caused by the printer or our actions. If this happens, it is a great opportunity to explain and understand some of the problems and malfunctions possible to happen during the 3D printing process.

  1. 2. It gives a clear, final presentation of the 3D printing process.

We can see, how the printing is going; understand or explain to others, important aspects of the process, like leveling the printer and the bed, positioning the model for printing, and many others.

  1. 3. Searching the databases helps to present different uses of 3D printing, by showing the variety of models and categories. You or your students will be really surprised, how many even complicated objects can be easily printed on your device.


There are many different online databases with ready .stl files which can be printed on any FDM printer. A lot of them are free, for some you’ll need to pay. The most popular one is https://www.thingiverse.com/. We recommend it also for you.

Image 3.1

You can search for models in many different categories and when you become a designer by yourself, you will be able to add yours to the repository. Usually the designers upload not only the files, which can be easily downloaded by users, but also photos, presentations, links to related resources, recommendations for the 3D printer types and filaments, and many more. The users can share and discuss opinions on all of the records in the database.

The other websites you can find for example here: https://all3dp.com/1/free-stl-files-3d-printer-models-3d-print-files-stl-download/ In our lab we explored also https://skrimarket.com/.