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Articulated Dragon

Creation's quality: 4.7/5 (96 votes)
Evaluation of members on the printability, utility, level of detail, etc.

3D model description

Print-in-place Articulated Dragon!!

Huge, very flexible, and printed in one piece without supports. Just the mustache needs to be assembled after printing (see video example).

It can be scaled up or down as much as you want (the limit is your printer capabilities).

Check my other articulated designs here!

Disclaimer: The Dragon doesn't stand upright. Some pictures have been taken using a metal wire stand for display purposes.

3D printing settings

A good first layer is mandatory for the print to succeed. Be sure your printer is calibrated and you have good bed adhesion. I recommend a slow and thick first layer (8 mm/s and 0.3 mm).
Good layer cooling is also recommended, as it prevents curling and warping on overhangs.

3D printer file information

  • 3D design format: ZIP Folder details Close

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  • Last update: 2021/11/15 at 10:03
  • Publication date: 2021/11/06 at 10:53





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Just curious what your workflow was like designing it? Would you mind sharing a brief description?

What would be the tolerence required to print this ?

Not sure about that, nothing special. It can be printed on almost all the printers out there

Hello Ive been trying to print this on my ender 3 v2 and keep having failures, What is your recommended settings for a successful print?

I've been using the default PrusaSlicer settings for the Ender 3 V2. Just changed the first layer speed to 10mm/s for better adhesion. Hope it helps!

This is a wonderful design. Thank you for creating it.

This files making a name for itself. Good job

This has been not only my firsr purchase on this site, this has been my firsr purchase online. Thank you for this amazing model.

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Thanks....Great test and print for my Ratrig V-Cast at 200mm/s. 3000 Accleration. Should only take 5 1/2 hours. LOL

OMG That's insane!

Dang I thought I asked a question here, I'll email it.

There are some authorized sellers, but I'm not giving new permissions right now

My godson saw this design and loved it. So I made it my first purchase from Cults and I'm planning on giving it to him for Christmas. If all goes well, I'll print a bunch of gifts for my friends at Norwescon in April. We nerd love our dragons! Thank you for the design. Great work!

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Thanks!! ;)

Beautiful design! This was my first purchased stl, and it was worth every cent - keep up the good work!

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Oh, what an honor! Thanks a lot! ;)

Bonjour. A quel pourcentage le remplissage ?

It works with any infill, even at 0%. Feel free to use the one you need ;)

I am having problems getting the upper part of the head printed. My nozzle knocks the horns around. I have done 2 prints, one with a larger scale and lower speeds on the top few layers. I also have z hop enabled on both. Any ideas? the prints are perfect otherwise.

I'm almost sure that's warping/curling. If possible, you need to improve the layer cooling. If not, try to reduce even more the speed on that area. PrusaSlicer has a specific parameter for small perimeters speed. Reducing the temperature also helps.
Good luck ;)

Printed two of these in resin at 80% scale with Creality 006, and they came out perfect. Great model, thank you for this.

Awesome!! Thanks a lot for letting me know ;)

Hey Niholsa, when you printed these did you print direct on print bed (say, if you use a wham bam) or with a support structure? I'm trying to get this one to come out clean on my Phrozen Sonic Mini (admittedly at a fair bit smaller scale than 80%), and I keep getting parts of the model lost to FEP adhesion when trying direct to print bed... so I'm curious if you used supports. :)

(The bits that DID stick moved fine after printing, so that's something. :D)

Nope, no supports or anything, and directly on the printing bed, no quick release or anything. I am using the v2 version of the model, no the 2.3, if that makes a difference. One thing I will note, I have the best luck with the translucent red and green Inland resins, the opaque Inland resins seem to weld themselves to the FEP film when I try them. Of course, your mileage may vary.

Oh, and the first time I tried this, I sliced with anti-aliasing, and the moving joints all fused together.

So far, my mileage is mostly out of gas! :D Thanks for replying, I'll keep trying... and I appreciate the advice on the resins and model version that worked for you. :) I saw a tiny bit of fusing in the finer tail bits (of the parts that did print okay) when I cured, but a slight amount of pressure got them moving, so I was hoping I wasn't too far off... but sounds like I'm missing something fundamental. I'll try some other test prints, see if it's my FEP going or something. (Also thanks Mcgybeer for the awesome design! :) )

Hi, congratulations on your work! What fill percentage would you recommend using?

I printed them at 0% infill and they are quite sturdy. However, some infill or extra perimeters will help of they are going to have lot of activity

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Curious what the average print time is for this? Cura and Prusa slicers both estimate just shy of 2 days. I used a fine detail setting, which I know plays a role. Curious if that's even necessary?

That detail level is not necessary, unless you want it that way or if printing really small. At 100% scale and 0.15 mm layer it takes about 14 hours in a Prusa Mini. At 120% and 0.2 mm layer it's about 34 hours in a larger printer.
Hope it helps!

Good I want to say that the 3d model is spectacular, thank you. I wanted to ask how I can print it in resin because I tried but it remained rigid and not articulated :S

I haven't printed on resin yet, but I read about several people who did. If you are scaling the model down, you need to precisely tune your printer settings. If you overexpose the resin, the parts have some horizontal expansion and fuse together. I've read also that antialias also affects on this.

Hope this helps!

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I can't get the feelers / whiskers to insert into the holes located on the sides of his nose. Are they supposed to insert into the holes, or are they simply held in place with glue?

They are supposed to insert, but depending on the printer the tolerance might not be enough, or on the contrary, too much. You can try printing again just the whiskers (mustache?) at a slightly smaller scale. Probably 98% should be enough, or even smaller if they still don't fit.
Hope this helps!

LOL! Now that I think about it, I resized the model but never resized the whiskers. This is 100% user error. :)


3mf file cannot be sliced in cura 4.12 with my computer. The file is way to heavy. Hopefully the stl works.

Which one is better to print out? the straight one or the curled one ?

It depends on your printer. The curled one is the original design and fits better most of the printers. The straight one was a request from some users to print it on mill printers (like the CR30)

Is there any way to articulate the STL into a more compact shape for even larger scaling? Think like a paperclip shape. I can fold it to that shape after its printed. I'd like to maximize my print volume.


It needs some gaps while printing for the parts to be printed separately and don't fuse together. And those gaps are that extra mobility you have when printed. But can't be printed already on that shape, it will increase the probability of failure.

Regards! ;)

Great model, im looking for a articulated model of Toothless from movie How to Train Your Dragon. It would be wonderful if you designed one.

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Printed this on a Saturn resin printer at about 65%. Unfortunately the back ⅓ of the tail is not articulating. Might be settings as they are pretty standard for eSun hard and tough Black (looks amazing). Will try a couple of things. Is it possible for you to split the file so that it can be straight and snap the articulation together after printing?

I'm sorry to hear that. I just answered the user below, which has a similar issue (I guess). By not articulating, do you mean they fuse together? As I said to the previous user, you could try printing it in 2 parts and cutting a gap on one of the links with tweezers to be able to assemble it. But I'm afraid it may fall apart.
Good luck!

If the tail was not articulating directly as you removed it from the bed, it likely means you are either a) using anti-aliasing (a bad idea for precise prints), or b) over-exposing your layers with cure times that are longer than necessary. Both of the aforementioned will generally cause expansion of the resin as it prints, often leading to parts that are fused together. I printed this last night on my Saturn at 75% and it worked totally fine. I recommend the XP Resin Validation Test to fine tune your resin exposure settings.

Thanks a lot for the explanation and the tips. I am usually using anti-aliasing, but I'll take that into account next time. Didn't realize it could cause expansion, and it makes a lot of sense.
Have a nice day!

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Do you have the body parts separated into individual files so I can print and snap together? I can only scale to 48% which is too small to print details and loses articulation?

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I'm sorry to hear that. Do you mean they broke or get fused together? The parts can't be printed separately, because the links are closed loops. One thing I did while testing the model is print some parts individually, so I can see how they look, and then I cut a small gap on the vertical link with tweezers. However, it ended falling apart. I haven't printed it myself in resin yet, but I've seen several people printing it at 50%. Maybe you can reach them to ask for printing parameters.
Good luck!

How large is the file?

The STL is 33MB, and the 3MF is about 10MB

Which software do you use to make those dragons?

I use Blender and a graphic tablet

Which software do you use to make those dragons?

If I buy the file do I have permission to sell these online?

I'm sorry, my designs have non-commercial license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)
Thanks for asking ;)

no problem. thanks for responding. if you decide to sell commercial licensing for it let me know. I realy like your designs.

Just to be sure. This design too is licensed CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 ? Because there is no license information at the top of the page, implying All rights reserved.

Can you explain what you updated in a little more detail, please? I’m not sure if I want to reprint or not.

I just added a straight version of the model. The design is exactly the same, so no need to reprint ;)

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Great.. printed without any issues. I used Layneer Bedweld because some of the parts have a small surface touching the bed. I normally print on bare glass.

Wonderful project! I have printed different sizes, without any problem!
Request: Why don't you also design the stand? Thanks


Sincerely, I didn't think about that XD
That's a good suggestion, thanks!


Hi McGybeer,
congrats for this work. This is a BIG BIG work!!!
What software did you use for 3d modeling?
Have a nice day,
Ocrobus 3D Maker

Thanks!! I use Blender

Printed this at the request of my niece. It just came off the printer (CR6 SE) and at 0.12 layer height, it took 26h26m58s and it looks amazing, she’s gonna be so stoked.

Awesome! Glad to hear that ;)

Don't know if you've realised but the back legs are arms when they should be legs. Would buy if you fixed this.

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Well, it depends on the reference picture you look at. Dragons are fantasy creatures that have been represented many different ways. I chose some classic Japanese painting where the difference between arms and legs is negligible, and that's the way I wanted to design it.


What weight does it print out to at 100% scale?

Oh, I'm not sure, I didn't check that. It's not much for sure, but I'll check it ;)

According to PrusaSlicer it's just 70 grams ;)

I printed it at 0.12 layer height and ended up with a printed weight of 75g.

super j'aime j'en chercher un comme ca depuis longtemps merci

Thaks! Glad you like it ;)

I love this dragon and purchased the file. I have a question, you mention 3 sizes of prints but I only see 1 file. Which size is the stl? Small, medium, or large? I'm on my 9th try of printing this but I am new and learning.

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Glad you like it! There's only one file, the one I call "medium" because it's printed at 100% scale. On the slicer you can change the model scale and print it bigger or smaller. I've printed some of them at 120% scale, and others at 70% (which I called "large" and "small" respectively). Sorry for the confusion, hope this solves your doubt ;)

P.S: Remember to apply the same scale to the mustache!

What filament are you using in the timelapse video? It's a great color.

That one is Wizard's Voodoo PLA, from Fillamentum. It's probably my favourite filament so far

bonjour imprimer en 0.2 ?

Yes, the big one is 0.2 mm layer resolution, and the medium ones at 0.15 mm

Will it print in resin?

It should because I've tested that kind of articulations before. But I'm not 100% sure because my resin printer is too small for this model.
Which printer do you have?

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Did you test it @mdgaskell?

Not yet! It's on my list!

Uncle Jessy just posted on printing this in resin. Gonna try it on my Saturn.

I printed it on my Mars 2 at 50% and it looks great. the legs and the very end of the tail lock up with my current settings/resin but I am pretty confident that it is possible to resolve that and get it functioning.

Printed and all joints working on my Mars 2 at 50% in grey. Transparent blue needs some tweaking with the legs locking up too.

Thanks for all the feedback ;)

can you please share the setting. im trying to get this dragon working on the Photon S. but after 2 prints. the dragon looks create. Only shatters like class when you want to remove it from the buildplate.

just amazing! 10/10



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