3D Printers. Where can I find STL files to print?
All models or printable objects with 3D printers are represented in STL files. An STL file is all that a Stereolithography software needs to generate a three-dimensional model of an object. In the STL file the three-dimensional geometry of an object is described regardless of their other attributes such as color, texture, etc.
Many of these STL files are encoded in binary (the machine readable form) while others are coded in ASCII. Binary files are more compact while ASCII files can be opened with a text editor (like notepad) and can be viewed and edited.
In short, getting an STL file of an object implies knowing its three-dimensional geometry and thus can print on a 3D printer.
There are many websites where you can get free models and non free models. Here are some websites where you can get some of them:
Thingiverse. In this site you can find many objects. No registration is required to download. The site also allow uploading your 3D objects and then creation of apps with their API in order to interact with the site.
GrabCAD. GrabCAD is a CAD user community. This community has over one million registered users and over 300,000 CAD files available including STL files. Registering is compulsory to download models.
TurboSquid. TurboSquid was founded in 2000 and aims to produce 3D models for industry. There are more than 300,000 models to download. Just search by keyword or browse the categories to find the model wanted to download. As in GrabCAD, you must be registered to download models.
SketchUp SketchUp is designing 3D objects software. With this software you can design and share 3D models with the SketchUP community. There are two kinds of software, the SketchUp and the SketchUp Pro. The SketchUp Pro has extra functionality and is recommended for advanced use.
3D Via is a web where more than 350,000 users share STL files collaboratively. There are many models grouped by categories.
The 3D Studio is one of the largest 3D model database. The only problem is that you have to pay for the models that you want to download.
Yeggi is a search engine for STL models. There are thousands of downloadable models and the database is updated daily with more and more models.
STL File is a site where you can find objects to download. We recommend to go to STLdownload.com. STLdownload.com is a search engine of STL files.
STL Download STL is a web where you can download and upload STL models. Currently there are lots but the database is growing.
The STL Library
In this link you will find only some models, but it is an educational site where they explain what an STL file is and how it works.
Written by Juan Carlos Moreno. Revised by Jack Wooley.