How to 3D Print a Pot
If you’re tired of the same old pots or want to try something different, why not 3D print a pot? With 3D printing, you can make some really interesting planters! There are also free planter designs available at Thingiverse.com, so even if you don’t know anything about 3D design, you can use others’ designs to make fun plant containers for yourself or for friends.
Who can do 3D printing?
If you’re looking to 3D print a pot, you have to ask yourself a few things. Do you want to do this yourself or commission someone to do it for you? If you’re confident with computers and making things work, you can likely do it yourself! However, you’ll have to get access to a 3D printer, either by purchasing one, or seeing if a local library, university, or Makerspace has one that you can use.
Along with that, you’ll need to get filament to use in the printer. Which filament should you use? There are a number of types of filament with different properties and materials. A popular option is PLA, polylactic acid, which is made from plant-based starches. This is industrially compostable and biodegradable. Other options include ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene), which we don’t recommend because it releases toxic fumes, and PET (PolyEthylene Terephthalate), which is what plastic bottles are made of.
Here at Print A Pot, we use either PLA or a combination PLA/PHA, which is a stronger combination that is more shatter-resistant than PLA and offers UV-resistance. If you would like the filament that we recommend for 3D-printed pots, shop our 3D printing filament store.
Alternatively, if you don’t want to do the 3D printing yourself, you can look for 3D print services locally or shop on specific marketplaces like Shapeways. You can also contact us to 3D print a pot for you, as it’s our specialty!
Where to get 3D designs
You can find planter designs for free on Thingiverse and a few other websites online. One of our favorite designers on Thingiverse is Qrome, who has a series of architectural planters. All of his pots have drainage and some form of water reservoir or tray.
Want to try to design your own pots? You can do it even without ever having used a design program before! Websites like Tinkercad will let you design using premade shapes. Group them, subtract them, and customize as much as you want to create the planter of your dreams. Remember to include drainage holes!
If you don’t have enough time to do that, we can custom design and manufacture the pots for you.
The 3D Printing Process
After you have your planter design ready, you have to slice it for the 3D printer and transfer the information to it. Load the filament into the printer and let the 3D printer do the rest of the work!
3d printing pots with ultimaker
Once the print is done and you remove it from the printer bed, it may need a bit of finishing. You can also customize it further by painting the exterior.
To tell the truth, the next part is our favorite: the planting! Put your desired plant into the planter and enjoy it in your home decor or garden.