Thingiverse is a platform that lets users create their own digital design files. Users can accomplish this using 3D printers, laser cutters, milling machines, and more. They can also utilize many other technologies to create the physical version of their shared files. The design of Thingiverse facilitates the easy printing of 3D materials. Additionally, Thingiverse prides itself on being completely free and serves people who are keen on 3D printing. This article will give you a Thingiverse review and some of the best Thingiverse alternatives.
What is Thingiverse?
Zach Smith created the Thingiverse app in November 2008 in partnership with the 3D printer manufacturer FDM MakerBot. In 2013, Stratasys acquires MakerBot and Thingiverse. Since then, makers and DIY fans have used the platform. However, not only are DIY fans limited to Thingiverse users, but it has proven to be helpful for youth education too. This way, students of various standards can take advantage of this for the completion of projects that need 3D printing.
It is mostly used for repair, decoration, and organization. This is a money-saving platform, as users can create their own products rather than buy them commercially.
Is Thingiverse Safe/Legal?
Thingiverse is a safe and legal platform, and you do not need to be uncertain about its safety and security. It is the first stop for most printers. However, it is advised not to include any financial information, as it has faced some server security problems previously. Moreover, if you want to see the items after printing them yourself, you must get a license to do so. It is fine to commercialize these products; however, you must get copyright permission from the original creators of the design.
Best Thingiverse Alternatives
Many alternatives to Thingiverse allow users to create 3D models on their own. Some of them are listed below.
Cults3D is an online platform that gives users a huge variety of options to select from and create their 3D models. It contains various 3D models from the Cults community and other models from various artists. These models include furniture and others, among others. Moreover, they are combined into various categories, making it easier for users to browse and select what they want.
Furthermore, it has 3D models in various models, such as OBJ, STL, and more. It is easy for users to download and make use of these 3D models for different projects. In addition, it also gives details about the size and the software used to create the models.
GrabCAD is one of the best Thingiverse alternatives in the market. At first, it was only used as a platform to exchange 3D drawings. However, it now serves as a forum for professionals to work together on a 3D project. Users find its interface user-friendly and use it for 3D modeling, development, and design.
However, it mostly carries models of bike frames and sports cars, and while it is easy to print in a small size, you cannot use 3D printers to create a commercial version. The GrabCAD community consists of professional engineers and students and offers many 3D models that can be printed for free.
Printables is one of the most popular websites, like Thingiverse. In 2022, the printers made by Joseph Prusa started using PrusaPrinters as the repository for their file collection. Later, they changed the name, and one of the first steps toward expanding its audience was the brand’s rebranding to Printables. It aimed to increase the global audience and remove any limitations on the audience base.
They are known for their high-quality printers and organized repositories. The categorization and filtering make it easier to locate the 3D models of your choice. Not only this, you can also search for the printer type, substance, pipe diameter, print time, and the amount of filament used.
Pinshape is another website like Thingiverse that allows users to download free and premium designs. The collection of these designs is continuously updated. Additionally, the website hosts many 3D printing competitions and provides reviews for various printers. Moreover, the website allows you to choose the sample projects according to their popularity and ratings. It can help users improve their skills by selecting designs from different themes and executing the process. Furthermore, you can learn about the hardware and software along with lessons to help you choose the most suitable models for you.
Gamers prefer another site like Thingiverse, named MyMiniFactory, to develop many miniatures and models. However, it primarily focuses on paid files, offering very few free downloads on its website. The launch of this UK-based website happened in 2013, and it made its mark in the market in 2018. An examination of all files takes place before making them available for public download. Moreover, the paid version also offers many advantages to the users, along with global discounts. The website has also introduced a PDF hosting feature and has been increasing its user base exponentially over the years.
To sum it up, many Thingiverse alternatives allow users to access them both for free and with a subscription. Users can create their own miniatures and 3D models for use; however, we recommend gaining proper authorization from the original creators of the design before commercializing those products.