Design of the Week: Skeleton

By on February 2nd, 2015 in Design


This week’s selection is David Hagemann’s multi-piece, snap-together, articulated skeleton model. 

We came across Hagemann’s design on Thingiverse, where it is among the many featured items. It’s a skeleton with a difference: it moves. By hanging the completed skeleton, you’ll see that it wiggles in a way that’s totally appropriate for a spooky skeleton. Each limb, even the finger joints, moves easily once attached. 

But there’s more to this model than it’s looks. Hagemann has put together a truly excellent package for anyone to use. He’s provided the required 3D models for all 41 parts individually, of course, but also has very conveniently organized four print plates with all parts arranged for printing. Not only are these plates set up to include related parts (arms, legs, torso and head), but the individual parts are laid out in a way that’s optimum for efficient and low risk printing on almost any machine – but be sure to use support structures or you’ll have quite a mess on your hands. 

Aside from the 3D models, Hagemann has provided an excellent set of instructions that even children could follow. The “quick instructions” include a one-page diagram of how all the parts fit together, while the full set of instructions goes into more detail of recommended assembly procedures. 

Our print shown above with (banana for scale) was relatively easily produced. Print time will vary by machine, but expect to print for at least 6-12 hours. 

Assembly was not entirely painless, however. While the parts are printed with hooks and loops, it takes some effort to snap the parts together – you have have sore fingers afterwards. Two of our PLA printed parts actually broke the hooks while applying pressure during assembly and this required re-printing a couple of finger joints. If possible, we recommend printing in ABS instead of PLA as this model requires some “give”. 

Finally, please pick a better color than green. While our FoxSmart plastic produced the usual excellent results, this Skeleton does look slightly radioactive. 

Via Thingiverse

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!