3D Printing Files: 13 Best Sites For Free STL Files And Models in 2021

Are you looking for STL files to print? Do you want to know what’s the best 3D model repositories?

An STL (Standard Triangle Language) file is the standard file that is used in 3D printing.

It represents a 3D model which needs to be sliced into many layers, so 3D printers can 3D print it. STL files are the most common 3D printing file formats in the market.

Best Sites For STL Files And Models

If you need STL files to start 3D printing, no problem because there are lots of websites where you can download them.

There are 3D printing repositories, communities, and marketplace that compiled the best websites where you can download 3D printable files.

1. Thingiverse

The biggest repository when it comes to 3D printer models is probably — Thingiverse! The site has over 1.9 million 3D printable models and is operated by MakerBot Industries, the creators of the Replicator and Method series of 3D printers. It now supports 3D printing with metal.

Thingiverse offers you all the STL files you need to 3D print. For fashion, you can 3D print accessories, costumes, and jewelry, for hobby — automotive, vehicles, robotics sports and more. Whether you need models for gadgets, household supplies, kitchen and dining, toys, or furniture, you will find them on the website.

In March 2020, Thingiverse updated its website and improved its design and speed. It also serves as a great community for 3D printer enthusiasts because it offers free STL files in various categories and complexity and users can share and tag 3D printer models in a personal collection.


2. GrabCAD

GrabCAD is another huge online library that aims to “help mechanical engineers build great products faster.” The site claims to be the “largest online community of professional designers, engineers, manufacturers and students.”

It has over 8.6 million engineers in the community and more than 4.6 million free CAD files. The site has over 6,400 models tagged as 3D printable but not all of them actually print.

Aside from offering free STL files, the site offers free 3D printing software, GrabCAD Workbench and the professional 3D printing service GrabCAD Print. It also offers tools that encourage users to collaborate in the development of their designs and a portion includes 3D printer models.

It is easy to navigate and has dedicated sections for tutorials and questions. You will get all the help you need on the site!


3. CGTrader

CGTrader is a popular marketplace where one can buy and sell 3D designs. But, the site also offers a selection of free 3D printer models that you can download for production on any 3D printer from cars to household items. The file formats available include MAX, OBJ, FBX, 3DS, STL, C4D, BLEND, MA, MB.

The site is easy to use and navigate. When you buy or download free 3D models, you can filter them by price/free, format, poly count, attributes and more. In this way, it will be easier for you to find the file that you need.


4. Cults

Cults is one of the leading websites to download free STL files. It’s a digital marketplace that offers you thousands of 3D models that caters to various markets related to fashion, jewelry, architecture, gadgets, tools and more.

It also serves as a community for 3D printer enthusiasts, beginners, hobbyists and pros to discuss their interests or communicate over their shared passion. You will find great support by joining Cults.

To make the whole process fun, they also organize contests and regularly create content for everyone in the community. You can find the top STL files from the site here.


5. Free 3D

Free 3D as its name suggests, offers free 3D models. You can build your own portfolio to show your skills using their STL files and get freelance jobs. They have 3D models for everything you need whether it’s for architecture, vehicles, characters, aircraft, furniture or electronics. They also have 3D models for animals, plants and even foods.

If you are into sports, you will find a sports category that has everything you need from various sports, sports cars to full-fledged scenes like an entire stadium. Free3D Models is available in 14 different languages including French, Dutch, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese and Russian to name a few.

Join the Free3D community and start sharing your 3D models. Plus, you will receive massive support from other members who share the same passion as you in 3D printing


6. MyMiniFactory

MyMiniFactory aims to “enable a decentralized ecosystem for 3D creatives that promotes creativity and freedom through our shared values.” It values “sustainability, purposefulness, inclusiveness and freedom.”

It serves as a community space and repository with 129,000 3D printer files available with a a strong emphasis on gaming and geek culture. The site offers free and premium 3D printer files made by professional designers.


7. Pinshape

Pinshape is a 3D marketplace for makers and designers. It offers curated premium and free STL files from its community with over 70,000 members. Formlabs acquired it in 2016.

You can simply visit the site and find STL files or OBJ files to 3D print and sell or share your design. If you are after free STL files, there are more than enough on the site because it has over 67,000 designs for toys and games, miniatures, home living, jewelry and fashion, gadgets, and more.

Pinshape is also a great resource for 3D printing enthusiasts because it offers 3D printing guides and articles about additive manufacturing technologies and applications. Overall, it is pleasant to use because of its simple and intuitive design.


8. Instructables

Instructables is a community for people that love to explore, document, and share their 3D printed creations. The site is huge but started humbly from modest hundreds of projects to over a hundred thousand of projects today.

It’s not exclusive to 3D printing because it’s open for all craft including DIY projects. It also offers tutorials and instructions on how how to build 3D creation along with the 3D printer files to download.


9. Sketchfab

Sketchfab is the “leading platform for 3D and AR on the web.” It helps you manage 3D assets, distribute your experience in the market, collaborate with others, and show off your work. If you are a designer and into selling your designs the platform will work well for you.

It has millions of 3D creators that will surely get you inspired in improving the craft even more. If you do not want to spend a dime on the site, no problem, you can download free 3D models under the Creative Commons license.


10. Turbosquid

Turbosquid has the 3D models for every project you have in mind. Its 3D models are best for VFX studios, game developers, architects, ad agencies, CR/R projects and more. The files available for downloads include major formats like stl, max, fbx, obj, c4d, and maya to name a few.

TurboSquid is “the world’s source for professional 3D models.” The 3D models on the site are used by game developers, news agencies, architects, visual effects studios, advertisers, makers, creative professionals and 3D artists worldwide! There are a lot of customers who pay them for 3D models, but there are also free 3D models available on the site.

You can check this page to see the various free 3D models available and filter them by format, choosing STL, to get the model you desire. You can also format by quality, poly count, and license.


11. 3DExport

3DExport is a marketplace where you can buy and sell 3D models, 3D print models and textures to use in CG projects. It offers free and paid 3D printing models, so if you do not want to spend a dime, it’s still a great repository to check out just filter it to find a free 3D model.

Their free 3D models are available in popular formats like max, cinema3d, obj, fbx, and stl to name a few. You can visit this page and filter it by format and choose “free products only” to only see those models that are free. You can also filter by relevance, views, rating, votes and comments.

There are over 8,700 free 3D models on the site from various categories including melee, buildings, table, chair, cookware, household items, jewelry, cartoon and more.

The site was launched in February 2004 and is available in 15 languages. It’s now one of the world’s largest providers of high quality 3D content.


12. STLFinder

STL Finder is the “search engine for free 3D models.” You can find free 3D models from the major repositories on the site and online. There are already over 968,000 free 3d models on the site and many are designed by professionals.

The site is very easy to navigate and use because it is very basic. There is a filter at the top right side of the page with three choices — all, free 3D models and for sale. It’s more of a search engine that allows you to compare all the designs available on the web.

It helps you save time from searching on 10 sites at once! For example, you can search for a car and you will find over 61,500 free 3D models related to “car” from Thingiverse, GrabCAD, and more. So if you want to search for a particular 3D model, this is the best website to visit.


13. Youmagine

YouMagine is a community website and file repository that started in 2013. Ultimaker, a popular 3D printer manufacturer and the creator of the popular slicing software, Cura, is behind the site.

The site offers over 18,000 open designs that are ready to print. It has solid designed items and free STL files that you can download and they work on any FDM or fused filament fabrication (FFF) printing.

There are thousands of designs on the site curated by the community members. The categories range from art, education, fashion, gadget, games, jewelry, miniatures, home equipment and more!

If you are a designer or you want to design a 3D model for others, you can find potential customers using the platform.


Conclusion

The websites above offer various types of 3D printing files that are free, so if you are looking for a 3D model or 3D file to 3D print, don’t look elsewhere because they are the best resources to check out.

If you are willing to shed extra cash to get the exact 3D printable or 3D model you desire, most sites above have designers that offer paid services to deliver the 3D file you need.

3D printing is made easier and more enjoyable with the free 3D printing files and models that are accessible and free to download online.

Also, some websites allow buying and selling of 3D printable files and models, so if you are a designer or you design 3D models you will find the website above profitable! And if you are new to 3D printing, the website above will be very helpful to you.

If you wish to learn 3D printing or 3D printers, feel free to check our home page.

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References

  • 3dnatives.com/en/top-10-websites-stl-files-161120174/
  • all3dp.com/1/free-stl-files-3d-printer-models-3d-print-files-stl-download/
  • aniwaa.com/guide/3d-printers/best-sites-download-free-stl-files-3d-models-and-3d-printable-files-3d-printing/
  • 3dhubs.com/knowledge-base/3d-printing-stl-files-step-step-guide/#step-1