It’s difficult to scan the internet these days and not come across a list of practical devices and techniques designed to make daily life a little bit easier. These ideas, or ‘life hacks’ are normally small changes or alternate uses for everyday objects. But there is a better way to go about this assuaging of tedium, and that’s by 3D printing useful objects to help you around the house.

Useful 3D Print Measuring Tool

3D printing useful and practical objects and devices is an efficient and frugal way to get rid of small annoyances or even just improve your life in small, or not-so-small, ways. It’s actually amazing just how useful even household 3D printers can be, ever proving how technology enriches and simplifies our lives in ways we may never have even considered.

There are a lot of ways 3D printing can improve our lives, and here we’re going to look at the simplest and most useful 3D print files to keep the little things running as smoothly as possible.

Tools

3D printing your own tools and toolsets is a practical use for your 3D printer that will make printing and other creative pursuits easier and cheaper. Many of the smaller, simpler tools we can buy are often overpriced and even break too easily.

Organizer 2

So here are some tried and tested 3D printed tools that will prove invaluable to anyone who likes working with their hands and wants to save money.

Three Axis Ruler

  • Where to Download: MyMiniFactory
  • Designer: StarLabs3D
  • Price: Free
X Y Z Measuring Tool

A simple and very useful 3D printed tool is this ruler, designed to measure X, Y, and Z axes in centimeters. Naturally, this is a practical print to keep around for a multitude of reasons, including helping you with 3D printer calibration, as axis alignment is imperative for successful prints.

The Y axis is even designed to be double-sided so you can easily read the measurements in any orientation.

Of course, this isn’t a print you’ll want to fiddle with. Scaling the files up or down will give you inaccurate readings and render the three-axis ruler useless, so it’s important you stick to the measurements already programmed into the file above.

Precision Measuring Tools

  • Where to Download: Printables
  • Designer: petrus2999
  • Price: Free 
Useful 3D Printed Tools

As useful as the three-axis ruler is, it may be lacking or awkward to use if you don’t need to measure 3D objects. And that’s where this varied, and free, array of 3D printed measuring devices comes in very handy.

Including but not limited to simple rulers, these files contain just about any measuring device from calipers, fillet gauges, protractors, and speed bevels.

If you still don’t think these 3D prints are useful or worth it, the designer has uploaded the average cost of a lot of the tools offered in these files for free. Not accounting for the relatively small amount of filament you’ll need to use,  this set could save you up to $100 and a trip to the hardware store.

Sanding Tool

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: Perinski
  • Price: Free
3D Printed Sanding Tool

Anyone who works in carpentry, DIY, or even just 3D printing itself will know how important sanding is as one of the final steps to getting whatever project you’re working on to look smooth as well be aesthetically pleasing and safe to touch.

This sanding tool is a multi-piece 3D printed tool that will require some outside supports and assembly, but your hands will thank you for the effort when you end up with a slick, useful sanding tool that makes smoothing surfaces a breeze.

Sanding 2

Not only will this make post-processing your prints easier, but will aid in any household DIY projects, CNC machining, and carpentry, making it one of the most useful things to 3D print if you happen to like working with your hands, and also like your hands.

Express Screws Measure

  • Where to Download: Cults3D
  • Designer: JUMPINGJACKFLY
  • Price: $0.75
Useful 3D Print Nut and Bolt Measure

While it may seem like a basic tool, this express screws measure can be a lifesaver for anyone who works with projects, 3D printed or not, that require screws to fit together.

Even if your experience goes no further than building flatpack furniture, you’ll still know how frustrating it is to check and double-check screw sizes only to worry that you still picked out the wrong one.

Screw Measure

With this useful 3D print, you’ll never have to second-guess again when using any size of the screw from M3 to M10. It’s an essential addition to any workshop that’s easy to print and very light on filament usage, making it a cheap and efficient tool you’ll always want to have nearby.

If you need something a little more detailed, however, then you can instead go for this nut and screw measuring tool instead. It’s a little more hard work to print, but should prove infinitely useful to any handy person.

Organizers

Now that you’ve got your tools printed, you’re going to want an efficient way to store them. One of the many bugbears of the work-from-home or DIY lifestyle is the scattering of various tools and parts.

I know I’ve regularly fallen victim to never being able to find that one thing I need, be it a USB stick with an important document on it or even just a simple pen (which I swear Toy Story their way around my apartment when I’m not looking).

So here are a few useful 3D printed organizers to help you keep track of your various bits and pieces.

Inlay for Screwdrivers

  • Where to Download: Printables
  • Designer: Enable3D
  • Price: Free
3D Printed Screwdriver Organizer

This simple caddy designed for tool trolleys and drawers is a great way to keep your various screwdrivers in order and easy to find. If you’ve ever had to dig through your toolbox or drawer to find the right-sized screwdriver, you’ll know the frustration of never lifting the right one on the first try.

This labeled caddy is an efficient and easy print that will help you organize your workspace and even save you a lot of time. It requires no supports to print and will prove a useful addition you’ll be glad to own.

Multi-Tool Holder

  • Where to Download: Pinshape
  • Designer: MakeThings3D
  • Price: Free
3D Printed Desktop Caddy

This multi-purpose tool holder will be the lifesaver your workstation needs. Designed to hold an array of useful gadgets and DIY necessities, it’s a versatile and extremely useful 3D print for anyone wanting to get rid of clutter while streamlining any creative project that needs more than just 3D printed parts.

There is an array of slots and places for screwdrivers, glue sticks, tweezers, pens, hex keys, and a host of other tools you’ll want to keep both nearby and easy to find, making this an essential 3D printed organizer for any creator.

Desktop Organizer

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: bayramov
  • Price: Free
Desktop 2

It’s not just DIY enthusiasts that need some extra organization in their lives, which is where this customizable desktop organizer comes in extremely handy as a useful 3D print for anyone who, like me, spends a lot of time at their desk.

As well as the standard pen and pencil holder, there’s a slot for a smartphone to stand upright so you don’t miss a notification even when working hard on your PC. This also helps for video calls and meetings to make sure you’re always ready for a conference call (or a personal one, but I won’t tell if you don’t).

Desktop 3

Just be sure to alter the print to make sure your own cell phone fits into the slot comfortably, as there’s nothing more frustrating than a slot that’s too small and therefore useless, or one that’s too big and can’t hold your phone steady.

There are also slots for liquid paper or other useful desktop additions like business cards for those quickly checking out important contact details. The simplicity of this file makes it a versatile and highly customizable print, meaning you can easily change the design to fit whatever it is you like to have on hand when at your desk.

If you’re looking for more creative and fun desktop organizers, then you can check out our extensive article on pen and pencil holders here.

Cosmetic Organizer

  • Where to Download: Printables
  • Designer: PIZZA_CAT
  • Price: Free
Useful Cosmetic Organizer 3D Print

It’s not just professional creatives or work-from-home desk jockeys who need some extra organization. This cosmetic organizer is a useful tool for anyone who wants to streamline their makeup routine, be it getting ready for a full day or a fun night out.

With slots for blush, eyeliner, concealer, foundation, lipstick, and even some spaces for earrings and bracelets, this is a very useful 3D print for any bedroom or bathroom to help speed up whatever your skincare or cosmetic routine is.

Hanging Bathroom Organizer

  • Where to Download: Cults3D
  • Designer: SALOMEA
  • Price: Free
Bathroom Organizer

Cosmetics aren’t the only things that have more varied products than you’d initially think. And that’s why so many bathrooms throughout America are cluttered with shampoo bottles, body wash, deodorant, toothpaste, loofas, sponges, soap, conditioner, and many more essential bathroom items that are easily lost or spread out too far.

This hanging bathroom organizer is a useful print to keep everything in one place without taking up any more space than is necessary. So you can forget having to reach into the cold from your nice warm shower to find the bottle of conditioner your roommate inexplicably left by the sink ever again.

Tidy Up Helpers

It’s insane how even a little bit of clutter can make even the cleanest of homes look messy and disorganized.

From wires haphazardly strewn across the carpet to books that just don’t seem to want to stay upright on the shelf, there’s nothing quite as off-putting to the average neat freak as one too many things being out of place, ruining an otherwise ideal aesthetic.

So here are some 3D printed life hacks to keep your home neat and tidy, or at least create the illusion of tidiness.

Cable Organizer

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: ostap167
  • Price: Free
3D Printed Cable Organizer

Just about everything nowadays is powered by electricity, meaning even some of the least technology-filled homes are still subject to rogue cables running all over the place. Not only are these cables unsightly, ruining the look of an otherwise neat home, they can also be quite dangerous.

And so, many people have found cable organizers to be very useful prints to help keep the various wires from all your devices together and out of the way. As someone with two ethernet-connected computers, two 3D printers, a TV, and just about every videogames console ever made, I can’t even begin to tell you how many cables and wires are snaking their way around my apartment.

There are plenty of these organizers to choose from, and so this weightlifter-shaped organizer should be seen as a simple example. With the hands acting as a distribution aid and the larger tube on the torso being wide enough to hold a few different cables, it’s an efficient way to keep these cables out of the way with a quirky and creative tool.

Paper Towel Holder

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: Jbrow532
  • Price: Free
Useful 3D Print Kitchen

Paper towels are an important kitchen helper to deal with unwanted spills and stains, though they can be quite bulky and take up more space than maybe you can spare. This paper towel holder is designed to hang from a shelf, taking up very little room while being easily accessible.

This frees up your kitchen counters for easier recipe preparation and also keeps the paper towels away from the splash zone, meaning they’re guaranteed to stay dry and ready to help you deal with any unforeseen spillages.

Bathroom Towel Holders

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: MMDK
  • Price: Free
Towel Holder

It’s not just paper towels that need to be kept high and dry, but regular bathroom towels too. These flower-shaped towel holders are handy prints for anyone who needs a place to store their towel while it dries off ready for use another day.

These towel holders aren’t only useful to print for the bathroom, but can be added to any bedroom or even hallway to accommodate bath robes, coats, hats, and anything else that may otherwise end up crumpled and forgotten on the floor (an act of laziness I’m ashamed to admit I’m often guilty of).

Helpful Additions

Sometimes the most useful things you can 3D print are additions or augmentations to things you already have that you think need a little improvement. This could be just about anything that you can use in tandem with something else to make it easier to use.

So here are a few 3D print files that you can use to improve your experiences with everyday tasks. They may seem small and simple, and they are, but once you’ve printed these little wonders, you’ll wonder how you ever did without them.

Toothbrush Travel Case

  • Where to Download: Printables
  • Designer: JamesThePrinter
  • Price: Free
Useful 3D Print Toothbrush Caddy

As someone who’s had the same backpack for half his life, during which time all manner of things have been in and out of it, I’m not exactly comfortable just tossing my toothbrush in there every time I go away for a few days.

Oral hygiene is an essential part of everyday life, so it’s important to make sure your toothbrush stays as clean as possible. And it’s always a bother to buy a new toothbrush every single time you go on a trip.

This is where this easy toothbrush travel case comes in very handy.

As a simple hinged case, it protects the head of the brush from outside dirt and debris while you’re traveling. Anyone who partakes in frequent overnight stays outside their own home will love how useful this print is in making sure your smile stays beautiful no matter where you go.

Modular Phone Holder

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: rovanni
  • Price: Free
Modular Phone Holder

Video tutorials have made so many aspects of our lives much simpler. No matter what it is you’re attempting, there’s bound to be a detailed instructional guide somewhere on the internet. But for tasks like cooking or tying a bowtie, you’re going to need both hands, which makes following the video playing on your screen more difficult than it needs to be.

This modular phone stand is but one of the several kinds you can download and print to help make watching and following these videos much easier while accomplishing whatever task you’re learning about.

Numeric Bookmarks

  • Where to Download: Thingiverse
  • Designer: les_kaye
  • Price: Free
Useful 3D Printed Bookmarks Numeric

Bookmarks are the silent heroes of any bibliophile. And if you’re a big reader, then you probably already have one or more favorite bookmarks that you use all the time (I myself use a Vulpix trading card).

So instead of discussing how useful generic bookmarks are to 3D print, I’ve instead found these numbered bookmarks that are more useful if you’re reading for more than just pleasure.

Because they’re numbered, they help you keep track of important notes or passages for easy referencing. This is extremely useful either for studying or for finding particular parts to discuss at a book club meeting.

While a simple touch on a well-known tool, these numeric bookmarks make calling back to whichever section or paragraph you need to talk about without needing to write or keep particularly detailed notes.

Related Articles: