Menger Menagerie

Menger Menagerie

Menger Menagerie 1024 768 mathgrrl

I swear that this blog is not going to be only about Menger sponges. However this One Last Post About Menger Sponges is about Menger sponges. Lots of them, in fact. And we’re going to put our 3D-printing boots back on!


Today’s models are collection of Menger sponges with different Levels and slices, designed to print effectively on various types of printers. Download the files directly below and/or go to our One-Stop Menger Shop on Thingiverse and drop us a “like”.

1. Menger sponges on stands for supportless printing on filament printers

First, plain old Menger sponges, Levels 0 through 3, for printing on filament/extrusion printers like MakerBots, Afinias, and Printrbots. You can scale these to any size you like, but be careful about making the high-Leveled designs too small. I’ve had success with 20mm Level 2 sponges, but for Level 3 I’d suggest not going below 30-40mm. These files are modified/repaired versions of the genius custom-standed Menger models by owens. To print these models I recommend using a raft, but you have to have supports turned *off*.

Level 0 with stand –
Level 1 with stand –
Level 2 with stand –
Level 3 with stand –

 2. Menger sponges without stands for printing on fancy printers

These files are for printing on FormLabs resin printers, Statysys/3DSystems powder printers or printers with dissolvable support material, or Shapeways.  On the FormLabs you’ll need to use exterior, but not interior, supports; in oriented position the model will hang upside-down at an angle so you won’t need a stand. On a powder printer you’ll be able to just shake the powder out of the holes (as long as you don’t make them too small). With dissolvable support material you can probably manage a 30mm-sided sponge and still be able to see through the smallest channels. With Shapeways things should work beautifully except that sometimes cleanup is required if you make the channels too small. General theme: Don’t make stuff too small.

Level 0 plain sponge –
Level 1 plain sponge –
Level 2 plain sponge –
Level 3 plain sponge –

3. Menger sponges sliced in half to see the inside, with stands

These print with stands for filament printers. You could technically print these without supports even without stands, by putting the sliced side down on the platform (as done by Gaya). However, I’ve had problems with that sliced half sticking to the platform and breaking when I try to pull it off. Or, when my printer is in a mood where it refuses to print without a raft, then the sliced half doesn’t look at nice after printing on top of that raft.

Level 0 sliced sponge –
Level 1 sliced sponge –
Level 2 sliced sponge –
Level 3 sliced sponge –

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking that you would like to print a Level 4 Menger sponge. But you really don’t; Level 4 designs take way too long to compile, slice, and print. Maybe someday but not today.



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