SketchUp & Shapeways

Rendering SketchUp images with free software:
Search engine for free 3D models:!/

Remember that most models in the 3D Ware house were created for use in visualizations, so they’re not built with 3D printing in mind.

If you import a .stl file and open it in Sketchup, there will be triangulated lines on the model. You can use the CleanUp extension to remove the unnecessary lines.

– Shapeways
– i.materialise
– Thingiverse
– Sculpteo
– Kraftwerx


  • Blender is better for organic forms (but a little more challenging to learn)
  • Maya is free with an education license
  • 123D Catch is free (smart phone app) – it captures 70 images of an object in the round and takes about 15 minutes to process a rendering that can be 3D printed after getting cleaned up in Meshmixer
  • Meshmixer imports files from 123D Catch and you can fix/delete/mend holes