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3D rendering of a blue 3D printed snake toy. Deep ridges on both sides make the toy flexible.

SNAKE by Zomboe — thingiverse.com/thing:4743

This reinterpretation of a classic wooden toy features flexible ribs that are a great test for both horizontal accuracy on the plate (are the ribs evenly spaced and complete out to their tips?) and vertical registration (does each layer match perfectly with the one beneath?).

3D rendering of a blue 3D printed owl statue, head slightly turned to the left

OWL STATUE by Tom Cushwa — thingiverse.com/thing:18218

Designer Cushwa borrowed stone-cutting techniques to render feathers and character features for this popular owl figurine and modeled them to look great on a well-tuned printer. Printers that choke on these details may not be suitable for character and sculptural work.

3D rendering of interlocking set of two blue 3D printed gears in the shape of nautilus shells.

NAUTILUS GEARS by Misha T. — thingiverse.com/thing:27551

This model gives character to the classic snap-together gears that are a popular test object for 3D printers. It’s quick to print, and you can tell instantly how well the machine reproduced the parts from how accurately the teeth mesh and the snaps snap, and whether the gears can rotate through more than one revolution without binding.

DIMENSION TORTURE TEST by Cliff L. Biffle — thingiverse.com/thing:33902

To create a real “torture test” — a model guaranteed to challenge all FFF printers — engineer Cliff L. Biffle built a Frankenstein’s mon- ster containing all the geometry we needed to see in one small package. Thin and fat features, slopes and overhangs, bolt holes with precise dimensions, arcs, and separate towers all conspire to push a machine to its limits.

 

Printed by the Pros

Craig Couden

Craig is an editorial assistant with MAKE, and among other things enjoys video games and light up clothing.


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