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Use the 3D printers

Detailed Instructions

3D Design Files and Conversion for Printing

The Workshop's 3D printers can fabricate 3D models from any 3D design software that is capable of exporting the file as a .stl, .obj or several other 3D file formats.

The files must be converted to a G-Code using the proprietary slicing software for each machine, found on the associated workstations in The Workshop's makerspace.

Software and Resources

Sites with downloadable designs

The most widely used 3D model repository in the Maker and 3D printing enthusiast community. Dedicated to sharing user-created digital design files under the GNU General Public License or Creative Commons License. Free
National Institutes of Health 3D Print Exchange
3D-printable models related to biomedical science Free
My Mini Factory offers a large range of downloadable 3D printable objects. Each object has been test printed and comes with a how-to section that explains how to achieve the best print. Free
3D Warehouse
Sketchup's searchable design library Free
A 3D printing Wiki with designs and steps to build different kinds of 3D printers Free
Open source 3D models Free
A search engine of available 3D printable files Free
NASA 3D Resources
3D models of asteroids, landing sites, the Curiosity Rover and more Free

Design tools

When you want to design your own objects. Computer stations at The Workshop also have more powerful commercial 3D design software, including Maya and 3ds Max.

A powerful, free and open source 3D animation suite you can use for 3D models. Enable the 3D Printing Toolbox. Free
Similar to Zbrush or Mudbox but easier to learn. Geometry-independent (uses dynamic tessellation) so ideal for someone with no prior experience with modeling. Free
Originally developed by Google. Good for practical and architectural design. Free or pro versions.  Free /
Free software for creating solid 3D CAD models. Good application for applications like 3D models of machine parts. Free
Browser-based 3D design platform, now part of Autodesk (free version available). Free /
123D Design
Free, powerful, yet simple 3D creation and editing tool from Autodesk Free


Object integrity tools

To make sure your design has the structural integrity and completeness needed for 3D printing

powering the cloud-based Microsoft 3D Model Repair Service Free