Feb 15, 2018 | By Tess

While 3D printing can be used to create almost any type of object, sometimes the handiest things to 3D print are for 3D printing itself. Check out some of the best 3D models for improving, organizing, or spiffing up your 3D printing work station.

All-in-one 3D printer test

Working with a new 3D printer or even just a new material? You might want to test a few things to see how well it works before undertaking your next make. This 3D printable all-in-one 3D printer test is the perfect tool for breaking in your new machine.

Designed by Thingiverse user [majda107], the 3D model includes a support test, scale test, overhang test, diameter test, bridging test, and hole test.

3D print the model with 100% infill and you’ll be able to see how well-equipped your 3D printer is to undertake more projects.

3D printed filament clip

As simple as it may be, a filament clip can make a world of difference in your 3D printing materials storage. And what better way to make a filament clip than to 3D print it using…filament!

This small clip, designed by maker [walter], can be downloaded for free on Thingiverse and comes in a variety of different brand-specific variations. It is designed for 1.75 mm filament, though scaling it should present few problems.

Using the 3D printed filament clip is even easier than making it: simply snap the clip over the edge of a spool and feed the end of the filament through so it doesn’t unravel.

3D printed visual displays

While experienced makers might not feel a need for such an accessory, novice makers or 3D printing teachers might see the value in these 3D printing terminology displays.

The 3D prints, designed by [okayauco], visually demonstrate what bridging, supports, shell thickness, and infill percentages are. They even show the difference in different infill rates!

3D printed soldering station

On the opposite end of the maker spectrum, advanced users might prefer to add a 3D printed soldering station to the 3D printing workspace. This Proteus Solder Station (with fan), designed by [ProteanMan] is a fine example of a DIY assembly that will enable you to carefully solder and connect your more complex makes.

[ProteanMan] recommends 3D printing the soldering station parts with strong materials (especially for the ball joints) to ensure the make is stable and durable. You can find detailed assembly instructions on Thingiverse.

3D printer tool stand

Another extremely useful accessory for a maker's workstation? A tool stand, of course! This 3D printed tool stand—designed specifically for 3D printer-related tools—can hold flush snips, long nose pliers, a digital caliper, a scraper, a brush, a glue stick, and a glass jar for holding ABS Juice.

The 3D printed tool stand, designed by [rndste002], also comes with a removable pen and hand tool holder. For precise dimensions of the stand, see the make’s Thingiverse page.

3D printed organizer box

Seeing as the maker community is all about creating rather than consuming, why go out and buy an organizer box for your small tools and bits when you can make one? This 3D printed organizer box, designed by [cruzher], consists of four drawers and multiple compartments perfect for holding nails, screws, nuts, bolts, and whatever small pieces your maker heart desires.

With over 50 makes on Thingiverse, the 3D model is a trusted one. Check it out!

3D printed spool holder

A simple but infinitely useful thing to have in your maker space is a well-functioning spool holder. This particular 3D printed version, cutely dubbed TUSH (for The Ultimate Spool Holder), was designed by [filamentry] and promises easy unraveling and stability. As the maker claims, TUSH is “simple, easy, sexy, and comfy.”

A single 3D printed spool holder consists of four parts and will require four 608 bearings (which allow the spool to roll in its base). Once the parts are 3D printed and you have your bearings, you can assemble the holder easily thanks to its press-fit construction.

For variety, you can also 3D print the popular Phil, the filament holder, designed by [TheNewHobbyist].

3D printed filament enclosure

If you’ve suffered through moisture-ruined filaments, you might also consider 3D printing a full-on filament enclosure. [SpannerHands] has designed an elaborate spool system that not only houses your filament spool in a completely enclosed casing but can also be wall mounted.

The 3D printed filament enclosure is a multi-step project and requires some additional parts. When all is said and done, though, you can simply stick a desiccant sachet in the 3D printed box and protect your filaments from moisture and humidity damage.

If you don’t have the time to make a filament enclosure yourself, there are a variety of multi-purpose filaments casings that can be bought.

3D printed filament filter & lubricator  

This 3D printed filament filter is a remarkably easy 3D print that could vastly improve filament feeding. Uploaded onto Thingiverse by [CreativeTools], the make basically consists of a tubular 3D printed cylinder that can be filled with a small piece of sponge.

With the sponge inside the 3D printed device, you simply have to feed your filament through the cylinder and it acts as a filament cleaner, removing any dust on the plastic feed as it passes through.

Moreover, [CreativeTools] suggests applying a few drops of household mineral oil onto the sponge, which helps to lubricate the filament and can improve extrusion.

“Lubrication is especially useful if the filament needs to travel through long tubes before it enters the extruder. But it also helps to reduce the friction inside the extruder below the drive-wheel, where the filament is in compression on its way down to the hot-end.”

3D printed 3D scanning platform

Last but not least is this DIY 3D printable 3D scanning platform designed by [daveyclk]. The make, which has been featured on Thingiverse and Pinshape, consists of a manual rotating platform connected to a smartphone stand.

As the maker behind the innovative 3D print explains: “The idea is that you use your phones onboard camera to take the pictures while the turn table rotates.” Pretty ingeniously, the platform is also designed to use Apple earphones in order to automatically trigger the smartphone’s camera.

All you have to do is 3D print the parts, assemble the stand with integrated earphones and smartphone, and turn the crank. For every full rotation, your smartphone should take 50 photos of whatever is placed on the platform.

You can find the step-by-step guide to the 3D printed scanning platform here.

These models are just the tip of the iceberg for DIY 3D printed 3D printer accessories. You can find many, many more examples and versions of filament spool holders, filament clips, tool boxes, soldering stations, and more on platforms such as Thingiverse.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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