I have 3D printers at my school, but unfortunately they are not super high quality. I want to try 3D printing a model I made on google sketchup, but I would like for it to be fairly accurate.

What measures can I take to prevent error in the model? I understand that I need to export the file as an STL; is there anything I can do to the model before hand to ensure accuracy?

What can I do to calibrate a 3D printer for best results?

  • $\begingroup$ What kind of 3D printer is it? $\endgroup$
    – Joe Baker
    Feb 5, 2013 at 7:42
  • $\begingroup$ I wish I had more details on the specs. I will know more tomorrow $\endgroup$ Feb 5, 2013 at 19:01
  • $\begingroup$ You might want to check out 123D (123dapp.com). It is a lightweight CAD package and set of tools for rapid prototyping (i.e. 3D printing) oriented for non-engineers. $\endgroup$
    – Ben
    Feb 15, 2013 at 2:32
  • $\begingroup$ When exporting to .stl a resolution can be set, it is effectively the number of triangles/subdivisions. Dunno about Sketchup though. $\endgroup$ Feb 28, 2013 at 18:11
  • $\begingroup$ With 3D printing, there are many advantages this thing can do. 3D Printing To Heal Skull Fractures $\endgroup$ Mar 29, 2018 at 4:00

1 Answer 1


What I've found 3d printing with SketchUp:

  • Use good geometry. Free Drawing should pretty much never be used. Make sure all of your arcs & angles are clean.

  • You can not have unclosed areas. Some programs are very good about this. Sketchup is not. Lines that go no where should be removed, and all lines should be connected to the model.

  • Pick a good ruby script for exporting as an STL. There are many free scripts available, and any of them should work if you do what is mentioned above.

Good Luck!


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