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Best 3D Printing Tools and Hardware Everyone Should Own

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Here is a list of some 3d printing tools and hardware for 3D Printing enthusiasts that can sometimes be too obvious or hard to find. One thing is for sure they will make your life a lot easier and you’ll be prepared for anything.

A Good set of digital calipers

There is legitimately nothing I use more than my calipers when 3D printing. If you’re planning on designing your own parts or models – you’ll use these things nearly every day.

You’ll also use calipers when printing calibration cubes or other calibration parts when dialing in your printer.

Get a decent pair of calipers – you’ll thank yourself later.

On sale! Save $6.00
Digital Caliper, 8' Caliper Measuring Tool Extreme Accuracy Waterproof Electronic Vernier Caliper Industrial Stainless Steel Digital, Durable Measuring Tool with Large LCD Screen
29,118 Reviews
Digital Caliper, 8″ Caliper Measuring Tool Extreme Accuracy Waterproof Electronic Vernier Caliper Industrial Stainless Steel Digital, Durable Measuring Tool with Large LCD Screen
  • 【Precise & Accurate】 Digital caliper has a measuring range of 0~8inch/200mm, accuracy to ±0.001”/0.03mm and resolution to 0.0005″/0.01mm. Extreme precision measurement for professional use
  • 【4 Measuring Ways】 Caliper measuring tool comes with two sets of jaws and a probe, which are easy to measure depth, step, external and internal diameter, making all your objects measurable
  • 【3 Units Conversion】 You can switch 3 units: inch, mm and fraction based on your habits with the push of a button. A unit conversion chart on the back of the vernier caliper for your further use
  • 【Auto-off & 2 Batteries】 We provide 2 batteries, one installed and the other as a spare. The electronic micrometer caliper will automatically turn off after 5 minutes of inactivity, made to save…

3D Print Removal Tool

3D Printer Spatula
See price on Amazon

A.K.A. Spctula, Paint Scraper, Wall Scraper, Joint Knife, Putty Knife, Scraper or whatever you want to call it. This tool is very useful when using print surfaces like BuildTak, Glue Stick, and other sticky surfaces.

Get ones that have a little bit of flex to prevent damaging your prints. This tool can often be overlooked or be overpaid.

Open-ended combo wrench

3D Printer HotEnd Wrench

These open-ended combo wrenches are perfect for changing HotEnd Nozzles.

Get one that features a 7mm side for MK8 nozzles and a 9mm side for MK10 Nozzles.

Or get fancy with this torque wrench kit and know you’ve tightened your nozzle correctly (and stop getting burned by swapping hot nozzles).

WANGYOUCAO Preset Torque Wrench 1.8Nm 2.5Nm Nozzle Hex Socket Torque Wrench 3D Printer Parts DIY MK8 MK10 V6 Volcano Nozzle Kit 7/8/9MM 3D Printing Accessories (Color : 2.5Nm)
3 Reviews
WANGYOUCAO Preset Torque Wrench 1.8Nm 2.5Nm Nozzle Hex Socket Torque Wrench 3D Printer Parts DIY MK8 MK10 V6 Volcano Nozzle Kit 7/8/9MM 3D Printing Accessories (Color : 2.5Nm)
  • Preset Torque Wrench
  • Type: 1.8Nm/2.5Nm
  • Compatible: V6, MK8, MK10 , Volcano Nozzle,etc
  • 100% brand new and high quality. Useful 3D printer accessory for 3D printing

Digital Depth Gauge

3D Printer Caliper
See price on Amazon

This can be very helpful to level your bed. There are many printable STL files on thingiverse.com for clipping these gauges to your printer’s carriage. This makes bed leveling quick and accurate. Check out this thing by cgcrute for a great example of how this looks in action.

Metric Hex Screwdriver Set

EKLIND 92400 PSD Hex (allen) Precision Screwdriver - 8pc set Metric MM sizes 0.7-4
451 Reviews
EKLIND 92400 PSD Hex (allen) Precision Screwdriver – 8pc set Metric MM sizes 0.7-4
  • MADE IN AMERICA- High quality, Industrial Grade Professional Tools made in the U.S.A.
  • Contains MM Sizes: 0.7, 0.9, 1.3, 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, & 4
  • EKLIND hex keys (allen wrenches) are used to drive internal hexagon socket (allen head) fasteners
  • OPTIMUM STRENGTH- These EKLIND tools are made with EKLIND Alloy Steel that is heat treated, quenched and tempered for optimum strength, torque and ductility for safety and coated with a rust resistant…

You’ll thank me later for this one and it’s well worth the price for a good set that will last. I can’t count how many times I dropped those “L” Hex Keys that come with 3D Printers and Parts. These Screwdrivers really speed things up and make it easy to work on your 3D Printer.

Rod and Bearing Lubricant

Super Lube 51010 Oil Super Lube,Translucent white
2,384 Reviews
Super Lube 51010 Oil Super Lube,Translucent white
  • Synthetic Oil With Suspended Syncolon (Ptfe) Particles
  • It Is Waterproof
  • Usda/Nsf Rated H-1
  • Reduces Friction And Wear

I see this request all the time on Social Media “what kind of oil or lube should I use for my 3d Printer?”

This question is totally overthought. Really any machine oil or lubrication will work just fine, such as sewing machine oil or gun oil. I use Super Lube because it had PTFE in it and it seems to last really long. It is also thick enough to not drip all over everything when I put a dollop on the rods.

Raspberry Pi (OctoPrint)

3D Printer OctoPrint
Note: DON’T BUY THESE ON AMAZON. As of Oct 2022 sellers are gouging the market and charging 3x the actual price.

If you’re just seeing this for the first time or you’re like what the heck is OctoPrint? You are seriously missing out on controlling your 3D Printer. Buy yourself a Raspberry Pi and head over to http://octoprint.org/ to install OctoPrint on your pi. This little single-board PC will let you control your 3D Printer through a web interface remotely. You can hook up a webcam and connect to your home wifi. Plus, there are many extensions to extend the power.

Alternatively, if you are looking for a less technical solution you can also check out https://www.astroprint.com/, which is a more beginner-friendly setup or you can even buy pre-installed raspberry pi’s.

Either way, once you buy your pi you should print one of the many cases or thingiverse. I recommend this one by 0110-M-P.

by 0110-M-P
Raspberry Pi 3 Case

Metric Fasteners

Comdox 500Pcs M3 M4 M5 Stainless Steel Button Head Hex Socket Head Cap Bolts Screws Nut Assortment Kit
699 Reviews
Comdox 500Pcs M3 M4 M5 Stainless Steel Button Head Hex Socket Head Cap Bolts Screws Nut Assortment Kit
  • ✅【High Quality Material】High Quality Stainless Steel Hex Socket Button Head Bolts Screws Nuts. The socket cap screws are made from high quality 304 stainless steel known for its dependable and…

If you’re into upgrading your 3D Printer with STL files from Thingiverse or other sites this kit will save you a bunch of trips to your local hardware store.

I find the M3-M5 kit to be the most useful for 3D Printing Components and Printed Parts.

Other fasteners I’ve bought include:

  • These M3 Socket Head Cap Screws:
VIGRUE 304 Stainless Steel Screws and Nuts,300PCS M3 Hex Socket Head Cap Screws Assortment Set Kit with Storage Box
920 Reviews
VIGRUE 304 Stainless Steel Screws and Nuts,300PCS M3 Hex Socket Head Cap Screws Assortment Set Kit with Storage Box
  • Drive Type: Hex Socket; Head Style: Socket Head.
  • Many various sizes of M3 screws (Drive Type: Hex Socket; Head Style: Socket Cap Head) with matching nuts and flat washers meet different people’s demands, the necessity of your home life.
  • Nuts and flat washers expand the contact area and reduce the pressure in order to protect the screws and parts.
  • Package Quantity: 300PCS. All of screws nuts and washers will be packed in a sturdy convenient case, can be use for a storagebox, is organized to you.

Snap Ring Pliers

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WORKPRO 4-piece Snap Ring Pliers Set - Heavy Duty 7-inch Internal/External Circlip Pliers Kit (Tip Diameter 5/64'')-Straight/Bent Jaw - Cr-V Steel - For Ring Remover Retaining- Storage Pouch Included
2,947 Reviews
WORKPRO 4-piece Snap Ring Pliers Set – Heavy Duty 7-inch Internal/External Circlip Pliers Kit (Tip Diameter 5/64”)-Straight/Bent Jaw – Cr-V Steel – For Ring Remover Retaining- Storage Pouch Included
  • ✅ Premium Construction – All the tools are made from hardened CR-v steel with a fully polished, electrophoretic coated ,black finish which makes them extremely durable, long-lasting.
  • ✅4 Piece 7-inch Snap Ring Pliers – Our 7-inch Snap Ring Plier Set includes External and Internal Straight Jaw Snap Ring Pliers, External and Internal Bent Jaw Snap Ring Pliers, and compact storage…
  • ✅ Highly Durable, Secure and Safe to Use – The snap ring pliers feature premium spring-loaded, bi-material ergonomic handles which provides overall control, makes them more comfortable and secure…
  • ✅ Ideal for Multi-applications – Our snap pliers set is ideal to remove and install externally placed retaining rings. It also provides instant holding power and is easy to reposition during…

If you’re looking at changing your bearing or want to upgrade to IGUS Style bushings then this tool will come in handy.

This helps remove the Snap Rings in the Pillow Blocks that hold the bearings without the ring flying across the room.

Thermal Paste

Noctua NT-H1 3.5g, Pro-Grade Thermal Compound Paste (3.5g)
24,833 Reviews
Noctua NT-H1 3.5g, Pro-Grade Thermal Compound Paste (3.5g)
  • Renowned premium-grade thermal compound for optimal heat-transfer from the CPU or GPU to the heatsink; more than 150 awards and recommendations
  • Easy to apply (no need to spread before heatsink installation) and easy to clean with dry paper towel or tissue (no cleaning alcohol required)
  • Not electrically conductive and non-corroding thermal grease: no risk of short-circuits and safe to use with all types of heatsinks
  • Trusted Noctua quality with excellent long-term stability: recommended storage time up to 3 years, recommended usage time on the CPU up to 5 years

It’s a little overkill but I always like to apply thermal paste to the parts of the hotend such as the heater cartridge, nozzle, and heat-break. This provides a much more uniform heat distribution throughout the components. The cheap stuff works just fine.

Conclusion

Overall, there are a lot of accessories you should own for your 3D printer – many that no one else talks about.

There are other tools like calipers, blue tape, multi-meters, and other common tools to have as well.

Photo of author

Garrett Dunham

A trained Mechanical Engineer and lifelong tinker, Garrett chose to attend Cal Poly San Luis Obispo's engineering proram because they had a 3D printer... back when they were called "rapid prototypers". "The first time I held something I designed and 3D printed, my mind exploded. Just hours earlier my idea was just a thought - and now it's a thing I'm holding." Now, years later, Garrett brings his love of tinkering, inventing, engineering, and 3D printing to the Makershop community.