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50 Best Free 3D Model Download Sites & 3D Archives 2017

free 3D model

50 best sites & 3D archives to download free 3D models (STL, OBj, C4D, ...) for 3D printing, Sketchup, Unity, Blender, Maya, 3ds Max, architecture, gaming, ...

When it comes to 3D modeling, there are very few limitations stopping designers from transferring their vivid imagination to the digital realm. Whether it be a monstrous video character or a magnificent architectural model, there are an endless amount of creative 3D creations out there.

This is a selection of websites, 3D archives, content repositories, and marketplaces that offer free 3D models to download. On each of them, you can browse through a large choice – and, of course, download free 3D models – for use in your gaming, animation, graphic design or 3D printing projects.

Don’t miss: 33 Best Sites for Free 3D Printer Models & STL Files to 3D Print

Some of these sites are marketplaces. They allow users to upload and sell their 3D designs. So if you’re a 3D modeler in need of a revenue source, here are perfect platforms for showcasing your work and selling it.

However, not every 3D design you find on these pages is suitable for every application. Therefore, we categorized the pages according to their intended use, and we added a brief description of the most common pitfalls.

Below we list the free 3D model download sites by application, so you can jump straight to what’s important for you.

If don’t know which free 3D models are suited for your application, please read the addendum.

Have we missed your favorite site for free 3D models? Tell us in the comments and we’ll add them in a future update.

50 Best Free 3D Model Download Sites & 3D Archives 2017

Site 3D Printing Engineering Architecture/ Visualization Animation Gaming Graphic Design Archive/ Documentation
Autodesk Online Gallery
Unity Asset Store
Instructables
NASA 3D Resources
Thingiverse
3D Warehouse
TurboSquid
GrabCAD
Smithsonian X3D
Sketchfab
TinkerCAD Things
CGTrader
Free3D
3dsky
MyMiniFactory
Evermotion
OpenGameArt
Archive 3D
CADNav
Blendswap
Trace Parts
STLFinder
Pinshape
Yobi3D
3DModelFree
3DExport
3DContentCentral
ShareCG
Clara.io
Cults
YouMagine
PixelLab
Kenney
FlyingArchitecture
3D Digital Doubles
Viz-People
Renderpeople
Design Connected
3D Scanstore
Syncronia
Dimensiva
3Delicious
blankRepository
3DShook
Bitgem
Orchard
Human Alloy
gCreate
MorphoSource
GB3D Type Fossils

Autodesk’s Online Gallery is the place where professional designers have a chance to showcase their latest projects. While designers only upload renderings of their work, many give free access to their 3D files. Unsurprisingly, the standard of quality differs widely. On the other hand, there is something for everyone. Apart from free 3D models for animation and visualization, you can find files for 3D printing files and even some engineering projects.

  • Features: Showcase for professional designers
  • Number of 3D Designs: 13,000+
  • Model Licenses: Personal use
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Autodesk Online Gallery

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #2: Unity Asset Store

The Unity game engine is not only a tool for game developers. It is also popular for architectural visualization in the virtual reality environment. The engine’s diverse applications have spawned an industry of its own that supplies professionals and enthusiasts with a never-ending flow of assets, textures, tutorials, and scripts. Its website is packed with free 3D models to use in your game projects and provides over 1000 free 3D models.

  • Features: Lots of high-quality models by professional designers
  • Number of 3D Designs: 15,000+
  • Model Licenses: Various
  • Pricing: Free and paid

Visit: Unity Asset Store

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #3: Instructables instructables

Instructables is more than just a free 3D model repository. It’s also a fantastic community portal where users can share their DIY projects, including things made for 3D printing. Featured on the project pages are the tutorials and instructions on how to build each creation, together with the free 3D models to download where relevant. Plus, most of the designers are helpful enough to answer questions submitted by the public.

  • Features: Extensive how-tos, guides and online classes, thriving community
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Instructables

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #4: NASA 3D Resources NASA

The site looks gray and dull… but don’t let the bland appearance fool you. This is a very cool repository of free 3D models for 3D printing created by none other than NASA. Their free 3D models are made for educational purposes. You can print landmark objects in the history of space exploration like the Apollo 11 landing site, the Curiosity Rover, or the Hubble Space Telescope.

  • Features: Actual stuff, from humanity’s ventures into space.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 298
  • Model Licenses: None
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: NASA 3D Resources

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #5: Thingiverse

Thingiverse is a repository operated by MakerBot Industries, the creators of the popular Replicator series of 3D printers. The website is well established and mature and is the most popular 3D model repository among the 3D printing community. Thingiverse hosts a wide range of dedicated makers who upload free 3D models for 3D printing in varying categories and complexity. If you’re looking for cool things to 3D print, there’s no better place to start.

  • Features: User and platform curated collections, thriving community. The de facto home for free 3D models for 3D printing.
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Thingiverse

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #6: 3D Warehouse 3d warehouse

If you’re looking for architecture, product design, or scale models, 3D Warehouse is the perfect place for you. The site specializes in hosting anything that was created with the popular 3D modeling software SketchUp. You can filter their database for free 3D models suitable for 3D printing by selecting ‘Only Show Printable Models’ in their advanced search function. Since most of the content is created by amateurs, the quality varies greatly.

  • Features: Themed collections, plays nicely with SketchUp
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: None
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: 3D Warehouse

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #7: TurboSquid

TurboSquid is one of the leading marketplaces for high-quality 3D designs. Artists can upload and sell their work. A unique feature of TurboSquid is its quality control, dubbed “CheckMate.” It consists of objective requirements to evaluate the quality of the 3D model (scale, clean UVs, texture resolution specified). TurboSquid also features many free 3D models.

  • Features: Models of exacting industry quality, offers file conversions if you can’t find a suitable file type.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 500,000+
  • Model Licenses: Various
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: TurboSquid

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #8: GrabCAD

The mission statement of GrabCAD is to “help mechanical engineers build great products faster.” Backed by Statasys, who own Makerbot, who in turn own Thingiverse, think of it as the engineer’s version of Thingiverse.  The site offers tools that help users collaborate in the development of their 3D printer models. For the typical 3D printing enthusiast, the best part of the site is the large library of free 3D printer files — available in STL and other formats — created by a community of over a million engineers.

  • Features: High-quality engineering models, engineering challenges, and competitions.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 2,090,000+
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: GrabCAD

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #9: Smithsonian X3D

The Smithsonian Institution recently began 3D scanning and uploading free 3D models onto its website. One of the most exciting 3D models put on display is the Apollo 11 Command Module. This website is essentially a virtual museum: It offers several dozen tours that highlight the historical importance of each and every piece. The free 3D models are available in various versions: in full-scan resolution, low-resolution, and 3D print ready.

  • Features: Models of historic and cultural significance
  • Number of 3D Designs: 51
  • Model Licenses: Non-commercial
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Smithsonian X3D

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #10: Sketchfab sketchfab

Sketchfab is a great source of user-generated 3D designs, with an emphasis on character design and sculpture. Some of the 3D models are available for free. Their downloadable 3D printer files are only a sub-category of a larger collection, and these can be further filtered between STL files and OBJ files (the difference is that OBJ format contains color information for advanced printing). If you’re looking for something unusual, this is the place.

  • Features: Slick 3D and VR model previewer embeddable on social media
  • Number of 3D Designs: 1,500,000+
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Sketchfab

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #11: TinkerCAD Things

TinkerCAD Things is the portal for 3D modeling hobbyists working with Autodesk’s free TinkerCAD software. This page features a gallery that allows users to upload and share their free 3D models with each other. The subject matter is as diverse as the user community; you will find fan art and parts from various DIY projects. Also, not only can you download the files, but have them 3D printed and even import them to Minecraft. Since most of the content is created by amateurs the quality varies greatly – but you will find a handful of gems here. It’s owned by Autodesk, too, so you know the folk running it are vastly experienced in managing 3D model platforms.

  • Features: Tied to an easy-to-use 3D modeler tool with an active community
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: TinkerCAD Things

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #12: CGTrader cgtrader free stl files

CGTrader is a marketplace to buy and sell 3D models. They’re not just limited to STL files, but the site offers a nice selection of free 3D models to download that can be fabricated on any 3D printer. Besides that, you can find scripts and plugins that facilitate modeling. Users who can’t find a suitable free 3D model “from the shelf” can commission a 3D designer in the 3D modeling job market.

  • Features: Community design challenges, 3D design job boards, and original high-quality designs
  • Number of 3D Designs: 550,000+
  • Model Licenses: Various
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: CGTrader

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #13: Free3D

Free3D stands out from many other community driven platform by its clear and structured UI. The free 3D models are easy to find thanks to a sensible category system. 3D designers can open portfolios to showcase their talent. The competition between community members is fueled by a relentless voting feature. You really can find some gems on the most popular free 3D models site.

  • Features: Your all-purpose-free 3D-model-site
  • Number of 3D Designs: 15.000
  • Model Licenses: Vary
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Free3D

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #14: 3dsky

Aimed at architectural visualization, 3dsky offers a large repository of 3D free 3D models and not-so-free 3D models. Behind a not very well explained subscription service, you can gain access to a large library of items ranging from furniture to entire apartment blocks. Some of the 3D models are even provided by the real world product’s original manufacturers.

  • Features: Photo-realistic renders
  • Number of 3D Designs: 185,006
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Freemium

Visit: 3dsky

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #15: MyMiniFactory myminifactory

MyMiniFactory is a community and repository for free 3D models. The site offers 3D printable models made by professional designers, many of whom guarantee that the models have been quality tested. You can also log a request for a specific 3D printable design that MyMiniFactory’s designers will create and then share. A bonus is that the site is available in seven different languages.

  • Features: Guaranteed 3D printable objects, community design challenges and varied model categories
  • Number of 3D Designs: 30,000+
  • Model Licenses: Non-commercial
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: MyMiniFactory

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #16: Evermotion

Evermotion is an VFX company based out of Poland. They specialize in photo-realistic 3D renders and assets, with articles, designer profiles and portfolios making up the company’s website. Dig a little deeper, and you can find free 3D models for download, too.

  • Features: High-quality 3D scenes and objects from a community of specialized designers
  • Number of 3D Designs: 387
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Evermotion

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #17: OpenGameArt

OpenGameArt is a forum for game developer enthusiasts out there. Besides message boards and tutorials, the page also provides a large download section. It features free textures, free 3D models, music, and sound effects from a variety of sources.

  • Features: Robust advanced search that lets you filter by license
  • Number of 3D Designs: 2,500
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons, Public License & custom OpenGameArt
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: OpenGameArt

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #18: Archive 3D

Archive 3D is yet another repository that provides free 3D models for animation and graphic design. The selection is quite impressive: you can find furniture, kitchen and office equipment, clothing, architectural structures, and vehicles.

  • Features: Detailed categorization of models
  • Number of 3D Designs: 45,000+
  • Model Licenses: None
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Archive 3D

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #19: CADNav

True to its name, CADNav features a large selection of free CAD models from fields like engineering and architecture. While this is the bulk of available models, you can also find a broad range of vehicles, humans, furniture, and props that will make a great addition to 3D animation and visualization. But, free 3D models are not everything CADNav has to offer. You can also download texture maps and even Vray maps free of charge.

  • Features: 3D models and textures
  • Number of 3D Designs: 50.000 +
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: CADNav

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #20: Blendswap

Blendswap is a platform for Blender users to upload and exchange their work. Both the quality and type of free 3D models is quite varied. Still, we were very impressed by some of the excellent work! Users who need technical assistance can post in the socalled Blend Request section where community members will help them.

  • Features: Engaging community with artists for hire.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 18,731
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Blendswap

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #21: Trace Parts

Trace Parts is a B2B plattform that connects vendors and buyers of electronic components. The website allows CAD designers to quickly access exact free 3D models of components that they can use in their engineering work. The page of every item includes a technical data sheet. Users can either download the files for free. However, there is more to this plattform. Business clients can subscribe to Trace Part’s supplier parts management to direct their designers to approved components to save storage and accounting costs.

  • Features: Facilitates workflow for 3D designers and saves costs
  • Number of 3D Designs: 100+ Million
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: Trace Parts

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #22: STLFinder

The name is pretty self-explanatory, right? STLFinder is another simple search engine that will crawl the Web, bringing up hundreds of results for free 3D meshes from a variety of sources. You can also create an account to bookmark your favorite models for future reference.

  • Features: Also crawls 3D printing news sources for a handy overview page of what’s going on in 3D printing.
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: n/a

Visit: STLFinder

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #23: Pinshape free 3d models

With a mission statement to “make 3D printing simple and fun”, Pinshape places emphasis on high-quality designs and an easily navigable platform. Acquired by Formlabs in 2016, it’s an open marketplace stuffed with paid and free 3D models that are arranged by a handful of filterable categories. For creators, there’s even the option to sell original designs, too.

  • Features: Monthly community competitions, Ambassador programm
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: Pinshape

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #24: Yobi3D Yobi3D's filter options are pretty useful.

Yobi3D is a cutting edge search engine that amalgamates free 3D models for many other file repositories, and then offers comprehensive features like 3D visualization, sharing, and even one-click 3D printing via 3D Hubs.

  • Features: Search tool allows you to filter by file type
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: n/a

Visit: Yobi3D

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #25: 3DModelFree

3DModelFree is a repository of free 3D models with a focus on interior design, architecture, and appliances. Don’t let the dated web page fool you though, it contains a vast library of models for architectural visualization and animation.

  • Features: Wealth of high-quality interiors and architectural models
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Non-commercial
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: 3D Model Free

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #26: 3DExport

Aimed at professional designers and 3D artists, 3DExport is a marketplace for premium 3D models that can be bought and sold. You can also filter your search to find a small collection of free 3D models for 3D printing, particularly with an emphasis on jewelry and ornaments. In case you don’t find what you need, you can commission a 3D designer to create something from scratch.

  • Features: Broad marketplace with diverse categories
  • Number of 3D Designs: 100,000 +
  • Model Licenses: Non-commercial
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: 3DExport

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #27: 3DContentCentral

This repository is a service for engineering companies by Dassault Systèmes, owner of SolidWorks. Users can configure, download and request 2D and 3D parts and assemblies, 2D blocks, library features, and macros. This is a great way to showcase your portfolio. 3DContentCentral boasts some 1.5 millions CAD users that actively contribute their free 3D models to the page. The online viewer features advanced options like exploding and sectioning the free 3D designs.

  • Features: Highly engineering focused library of CAD models
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: 3DContentCentral

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #28: ShareCG

ShareCG is a portal for 3D modeling enthusiasts. You can upload, share, and most importantly, showcase your work. The free 3D models range from cars and spaceships to furniture. Also, the site provides materials, scripts, and plugins for various 3D modeling programs.

  • Features: Wide variety of resources beyond  free 3D models
  • Number of 3D Designs: 8,744
  • Model Licenses: Various
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: ShareCG

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #29: Clara.io

clara.io is not only a repository for free 3D models, but it is also a completely self-sufficient online tool that covers 3D modeling, animation, and rendering. While the Basis account gives you 5GB of cloud storage, there are professional solutions that are tailored to the needs of industry professionals.

  • Features: Cloud-based file management system with generous storage allowance
  • Number of 3D Designs: 100,000+
  • Model Licenses: Various
  • Pricing: Freemium

Visit: Clara.io

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #30: Cults free 3d models

A French file repository that “connects designers and people who want to 3D print some objects”. The site’s name hides a playful twist — read backward your get St. Luc, patron saint of the arts. Wordplay aside, the platform prides itself on quality and originality. You’ll find some doubling up from creators hosting their work on other file platforms, but dig through and you’ll find pleasantly original creations here.

  • Features: Curated collections, custom 3D model commissions
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: Cults

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #31: YouMagine free 3d models

Backed by Ultimaker, it’s little surprise that YouMagine is a 3D model community dedicated to open-source projects, encouraging its users to share, remix and work together. You’ll find all manner of free to download STL and CAD files hosted here, including your run of the mill 3D printing knick-knacks. However, these trinkets rub shoulders with projects with a little more purpose. One example being OpenBionics’ Brunel Hand, a fully printable prosthetic hand designed to improve the lives of amputees.

  • Features: Curated collections, backed by Ultimaker
  • Number of 3D Designs: 12,000+
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: YouMagine

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #32: PixelLab

PixelLab is a publisher of plugins and extensions to Cinema 4D. The second hat it wears is creating high-quality 3D models and textures. But more than that, the web page is literally a textbook on 3D modeling, scripting, and rendering. Join the newsletter for a ton of high-quality free 3D models.

  • Features: Informative resource for Octane 3D modeling app
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: PixelLab

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #33: Kenney

Kenney is a Dutch game developer that specializes in low-poly games. In a truly unique move, Kenney has made its gaming assets available for download. While downloading the 3D models is free, the developers certainly appreciate you buying the asset bundles. If you’re into game development, you also check out their 2D sprite editor Kenny Studio.

  • Features: Professional game assets crafted by a working game studio
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Creative Commons (CC0 01.0)
  • Pricing: Paid and some free 3D models

Visit: Kenney

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #34: FlyingArchitecture

FlyingArchitecture is a portal for architectural visualization. While basic membership is free, there’s also bonus material available for a fee. Besides 3D models, you can access PSD files that will show you how to prepare your raw renders for publication. FlyingArchitecture offers extensive 3D modeling online tutorials as well as workshops.

  • Features: Sharing-centric portal for architectural visualizations
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Personal, Commercial
  • Pricing: Freemium

Visit: FlyingArchitecture

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #35: 3D Digital Doubles

3D Digital Doubles is a service that provides high-quality 3D scans for 3D character creation in gaming, animation, and graphic design. The commercial 3D characters are available for reasonable prices. You can judge the quality of this company’s work for yourself by downloading the free 3D models. In case you like their work, you can book their 3D scanning services for further use.

  • Features: Higher degree of control, with full photogrammetry sets and meshes available too
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a, 4 free 3D models
  • Model Licenses: Personal, non-commercial
  • Pricing: Paid, and some free 3D models

Visit: 3D Digital Doubles

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #36: Viz-People

VizPeople is a 3D/2D content seller that offers a wide range of 3D models suitable for graphic designers and animators. These products can be bought in packages with prices ranging between $130 and $220. Such packs include the likes of home gadgets, cars, trees, and furniture. Take note of the wide selection of textures, sky backgrounds and 2D cut out people.

  • Features: Photo-realistic 3D models + more free 3D models found on the sites’ blog.
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Paid, some free 3D models

Visit: Viz-People

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #37: Renderpeople

Renderpeople sells high-quality 3D models of people. Some of the models are fully clothed and posed. This makes them suitable for setting up photorealistic scenes in graphic design and architectural visualization. The technology behind these models is photogrammetry scanning, which results in high-resolution 3D models. The small selection of four free 3D models — in many file types — showcases what you can generally expect from this company. You can download 4 free 3D models in various format.

  • Features: Eerily photo-realistic models ideal for scene setting
  • Number of 3D Designs: 4
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: Renderpeople

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #38: Design Connected

Design Connected offers a large collection of furniture 3D models for sale. The focus is clearly on designer items. Thankfully, the site does not leave you alone with the task to rummage its large repository. It is broken down into expedient categories and even features curated collections of 3D assets. In case you are still not impressed by our description, download one of the 190 free 3D models and see for yourself.

  • Features: Meticulously curated collection of models, some exclusive to the platform
  • Number of 3D Designs: 6312
  • Model Licenses: Varying Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Paid, some free 3D models

Visit: Design Connected

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #39: 3D Scanstore

3D Scanstore provides reference scans of humans for character development. Other scans are in different poses wearing a variety of clothing. While the scans are reasonably priced, commercial use costs extra. The site offers some free 3D models for evaluation. Also, the makers share their 3D scanning wisdom in a free tutorial on how to tackle reflective objects.

  • Features: Special focus on full human scans and anatomy
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Paid, some free 3D models

Visit: 3D Scanstore

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #40: Syncronia

Syncronia is a repository 3D designs brought to you directly by the manufacturers. As is often the case on these pages, the focus is on designer furniture, kitchen appliances, and bathroom equipment. The site also prides itself on its collaboration with Autodesk. Together they are promoting BIM (Building Information Management) technology that strives to facilitate planning.

  • Features: Specialized repository of professional CAD and BIM modeling
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: None
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D models

Visit: Syncronia

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #41: Dimensiva

Dimensiva is an excellent source of assets in the field of architectural visualization. The page exclusively features free 3D models of designer furniture, some of which have even won prestigious awards.

  • Features: High-quality product models from recognized brands
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Personal and Commercial Use
  • Pricing: Paid and free 3D Models

Visit: Dimensivia

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #42: 3Delicious

3Delicious is a vast collection of free 3D models particularly suitable for architectural visualization. But the meshes should work for graphic designers and animators as well. The subject matter ranges from designer furniture and plants to various sorts of vehicles and people. The free 3D models are mostly high quality. Despite the pleasingly no simple layout, the pages are stuffed with false download link ads, so be cautious where you click.

  • Features: Simple, frustration free design
  • Number of 3D Designs: 1,900
  • Model Licenses: n/a
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: 3Delicious

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #43: blankRepository

blankRepository truly found its gap in the market: they provide 3D scans of food (vegetable, fruits, bread and processed food). The free 3D models are of the highest quality – the texture maps come at a crisp 4K resolution. Registered users can download 5 free 3D models a day. For a bigger selection of food, take a look at blankRepository’s commercial site brxtended. Note the tutorial section for tips on how to improve your 3D scans.

  • Features: High-quality 3D models filling a specific, yet essential niche.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 139 paid, 45 free 3D models
  • Model Licenses: Personal use
  • Pricing: Paid and some free 3D models

Visit: blankRepository

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #44: 3DShook 3dshook free stl files

The business model for 3DShook is a subscription service for those who want a steady stream of quality 3D printable files. Package deals range from $25-$50, as well as monthly, educational, yearly, and commercial subscriptions. The 3D printing designs are uniformly excellent, and to help convince you to purchase a subscription, they offer a trial gallery of free 3D models to download.

  • Features: Quality-driven fountain of guaranteed 3D printable files
  • Number of 3D Designs: 68 Free 3D models &  6.000 Paid
  • Model Licenses: None
  • Pricing: Paid and some free 3D models

Visit: 3DShook

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #45: Bitgem

Bitgem is an innovative 3D modeling studio for 3D games. They offer 3D models in a variety of styles, though pixelated and low poly are the most frequently found kind. According to the website, all the 3D models are compatible with the major game engines like Unity, Cry, Source and Unreal. If you need quirky, carefully designed 3D assets for your game project, you should definitely check out Bitgem’s merchandise. Download the small but exquisite free 3D models to find out if this studio has what you need.

  • Features: Sorted collections, tie into major game engines
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • Model Licenses: Royalty Free Use
  • Pricing: Paid and 3 free 3D models

Visit: Bitgem

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #46: Orchard free 3d models

A rather novel take on 3D modeling that streamlines the concept of remixing designs that sites like Thinigverse handles somewhat clumsily. Crowd-sourcing designs through its browser-based modeling app, any modifications made to a design are viewable on the original’s page, visually represented as a branching tree of derivatives. It’s a cool concept but it appears a little barren right now, propped up by the founders and a small handful of designers. Once you’re signed up, you can download STLs of the free 3D models to print for yourself (though there’s no printability checker, so best to run it through a repair tool first).

  • Features: Feature rich 3D modeler, engaging collaboration tools
  • Number of 3D Designs: n/a
  • License: Non-exclusive license to access, use, edit, download, alter, change, modify, distribute
  • Pricing: Free (registration required)

Visit: Orchard

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #47: Human Alloy

If you need human 3D models of the highest quality, Human Alloy is possibly the site for you. Its 3D models consist of up to 20 millions polygons. But you can choose from 6 mesh resolutions to balance quality and rendering speed. The textures are broken up into 10 separate masks – allowing you to completely recolor the models (see above). Test drive Human Alloy’s two free 3D models to work out if that sort of setup suits your workflow.

  • Features: Astonishingly high quality renders of people.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 75 objects/packs, 2 free 3D models
  • Model Licenses: Personal use
  • Pricing: Paid and some free models

Visit: HumanAlloy

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #48: gCreate

The 3D printer manufacturer gCreate has designed a series of drop dead cool home decoration accessories. Our personal favorite is the fruit bowl, pictured above, but a bonsai planter is an outstanding second place. You can download and print off these free 3D models on any 3D printer.

  • Features: Quality home decoration for your 3D printer
  • Number of 3D Designs: 11
  • Model Licenses: Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: gCreate

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #49: MorphoSource

Originally launched by Anthropologists, MorphoSource is a project centered online platform enabling researchers to upload and share their 3D models. Users can browse the files by scientific taxonomy, anatomical region, data type, or bibliography. The data comes from high-resolution 3D scans of extinct and and extant species. It can be cited in journals using DOIs. The free 3D models are also organized according to the projects of the contributing researchers.

  • Features: Become a scientist from the comfort of you home computer!
  • Number of 3D Designs: 19,000+
  • Model Licenses: Non-Commercial
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: MorphoSource

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Best Sites & 3D Archives to Download Free 3D Models #50: GB3D Type Fossils

GB3D Type Fossils is a catalog of 3D scanned fossils housed in various British collections. The entries provide information on the animal’s zoological classification and visual representations. Recently, the documentation was enhanced by uploading free 3D models. You won’t find a 3D print-ready dinosaur skull on this site, but the scans are still fascinating enough.

  • Features: Puts the planet’s natural history at your fingertips.
  • Number of 3D Designs: 1,800+
  • Model Licenses: Various Creative Commons
  • Pricing: Free

Visit: GB3D Type Fossils

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Which Free 3D Models are Suited for My Application?

Free 3D Models for Architecture/Engineering

You want to ensure that the 3D models are true to scale. They should be accurate and provide documentation on the materials to be used and to clear up any potential misconceptions. The CAD models used for planning are not to be confused with the ones for architectural visualization. Architects design buildings down to the tiniest detail, stuffing them with kilometers of wiring, heating and everything else that makes skyscrapers, hospitals function. The 3D models used for visualization are downgraded to the facade and some key interior spaces.

Free 3D Models for 3D Printing

If you intend to 3D print a 3D model, make sure the mesh is watertight, and its vertices are non-manifold. Also, check the wall thickness for efficient use of material. You want a sturdy print, but don’t waste precious filament.

Free 3D Models for Gaming

Video games try to square the circle. Their ambition is a high degree of realism, but they also utilize real-time rendering. One way to achieve this goal is to lower the polygon count. So 3D modelers often remove parts and hide them from the player’s point of view.

Free 3D Models for Graphic Design/Visual Effects

Visual-effects artists and graphic designers aim at a high degree of realism. But as their works are pre-rendered, they are in a very comfortable position. They can allow themselves a substantially higher polygon count. In CG-animation the quality of the bone structure is paramount. You want to configure the kinematics of your mesh without encountering any issues.