Feb 8, 2019

3D Printed Lab Equipment – 10 Great Curated Models to 3D Print

Thanks to ridiculously high prices, extra laboratory supplies are often hard to come by. Not anymore! Presenting some of the coolest 3D printed lab equipment.

3D Printed Lab Equipment Lab Equipment Doesn't Grow on Trees

These 3D printed syringe pumps help stretch research budgets. Source: polymersolutions.com

Although it may at first sound unbelievable, many items in a typical biology or physics lab can be 3D printed and assembled. Examples include materials such as holders, dishes, and other low-cost supplies.

The main benefit to 3D printed lab equipment is that it tends to be many times cheaper than conventionally produced supplies. Many times, this will be well worth the small amount of precision lost.

Let’s go through some amazing applications of 3D printing to produce laboratory equipment

3D Printed Lab Equipment 1. Biropette – The Customizable Pipette

The Biropette can be used with multiple pipette tip sizes. Source: Baden Lab / Thingiverse

What is it? The Biropette is a customizable 3D printed pipette created at the University of Sussex in the UK. Its accuracy and range can be customized for each print. Additionally, a tip removal button is included, allowing for safe removal of the tip without potential contamination concerns.

Who created it? Baden Lab

Who printed it? At least four Thingiverse users have reproduced this model in various materials and on a variety of printers.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 2. Dremelfuge – Rotary Tool Centrifuge

The Dremelfuge is capable of spinning up to six tubes at once. Source: cathalgarvey / Thingiverse

What is it? The Dremelfuge converts a rotary tool into a fully functional centrifuge. Unbelievably, this item can spin 1.5-milliliter tubes at greater than 50,000 times the force of Earth’s gravity. This ability is similar to the low end of an ultracentrifuge. Laboratory grade centrifuges typically cost a few thousand dollars. Ultracentrifuges can cost more than $17,000!

Who created it? cathalgarvey

Who printed it? Twenty-five Thingiverse users have reproduced and remixed this model in the non-printed and printed chuck versions.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 3. Parametric 3-Axis Manipulator

This manipulator can be used for biological manipulation on a very small scale. Source: Baden Lab / Thingiverse

What is it? This manipulator is another piece of 3D printed laboratory equipment from the Baden Lab. Although some parts aren’t 3D printed, most of the frame is, which lowers the cost. To demonstrate the device’s capabilities, the lab shows a glass pipette being manipulated in steps smaller than the eye of a fruit fly. This may not be the same precision as with automated manipulators, but those can cost over $5,000!

Who created it? Baden Lab

Who printed it? Besides the Baden Lab, one Thingiverse user, senecahws successfully made this print.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 4. Linear Translation Stage

Compared to a fully metal version, this stage demonstrates very little difference in function. Source: Musti / Thingiverse

What is it? One of the drawbacks of 3D printing with fused deposition modeling printers is their relative lack of precision. Despite that drawback, Thingiverse user Musti has managed to create a functional linear translation stage with micrometer precision. Similar stages from Thorlabs cost nearly $300. These stages work great for moving materials around in a lab that requires high precision.

Who created it? Musti

Who printed it? Next to Musti, brucesdad13 has also printed this translation stage.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 5. Computer Fan Magnetic Stirrer

This magnetic stirrer has an adjustable knob for various mixing speeds. Source: F. Lab / Thingiverse

What is it? When it comes to making laboratory equipment, the F. Lab is a great resource. Their magnetic stirrer, which operates using a computer fan, works great as a small, speed-adjustable magnetic stirrer. A staple in many biology labs, these stirrers typically cost around $200.

Who created it? F. Lab

Who printed it? Three users on Thingiverse printed this magnetic stirrer successfully.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 6. Filter Wheel Changer

This filter wheel holds up to eight filters at once. Source: Jpearce / Thingiverse

What is it? An automated filter wheel changer normally costs over $1,000, but this model, which can hold eight square light filters, is quickly and easily 3D printed! This could be quite useful for adjusting the output strength of a laser or some other light source.

Who created it? Jpearce

Who printed it? Alongside the original designer, Zen1 also successfully printed this automated filter wheel.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 7. Water Turbine

This water turbine can power a 3-W LED when running at full power. Source: elkayem / Thingiverse

What is it? In case green energy is your kind of science, check out this 3D printable water turbine. Aside from being a great teaching tool, it can drive a 3-W LED. In addition, the maker gives a short description of the lesson plan and activity to explore the science behind hydroelectricity.

Who created it? elkayem

Who printed it? Although no one has posted any makes of this device, other than the author, it has been downloaded 2,307 times as well as liked 21 times, indicating that it’s likely a simple project to make.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 8. Pipette Rack (for the Biropipette)

This pipette rack holds up to three Biropipettes. Source: Baden Lab / Thingiverse

What is it? To stay organized, you should check out this rack for the abovementioned Biropette. This tool will go a long way toward achieving that goal of doing biological experiments. Conveniently, there are many more pipette racks on Thingiverse (in case you’re not so keen on the Biropette).

Who created it? Baden Lab

Who printed it? ScienceLinX also made this pipette stand.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 9. Origami-Inspired Forceps

These forceps are perfect for a lab where small amounts of material are frequently manipulated. Source: BYU CMR / Thingiverse

What is it? To avoid contamination, scientists don’t typically touch things directly with their hands. Therefore, you’ll definitely need a pair of forceps to do your experiments. BYU_CMR has created origami-like 3D printed forceps that can help keep your experiment safe. Conveniently, this toofoldsd flat for easy storage between uses.

Who created it? BYU_CMR

Who printed it? mdcaptures printed these forceps.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

3D Printed Lab Equipment 10. Multipurpose Laboratory Holder

This multipurpose holder accommodates almost all types of laboratory equipment in small quantities. Source: LoupAndSnoop / Thingiverse

What is it? Last on our list is this multipurpose laboratory holder. Created by LoupAndSnoop, it contains a small number of differently sized crevices to hold an entire experiment at once. This is a great idea to do a specific experiment that doesn’t take up an entire work bench.

Who created it? LoupAndSnoop 

Who printed it? highenergycompound printed this multipurpose laboratory holder.

Where to find it? Thingiverse

License: The text of "3D Printed Lab Equipment – 10 Great Curated Models to 3D Print" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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