Printable AND articulated heroes in a half-shell.
When I started working on the designs, I didn’t realize that we were coming up to the 30th anniversary of the first film, but I’m really glad that the timing worked out so well!
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I love the TMNT. I have since I first heard that sweet-sweet theme. I’ve been slowly introducing them to my kids via my old Mini Mutants toys from the 90’s, and letting them watch age-appropriate clips from the original series, and they are now more or less hooked as well.
To further fuel this passion, I decided it was high time to make some articulated action figures for them (and if I’m honest, me) to play with. Dealing with post-processing is my least favorite things to do, so the goal was to design the full team (and gear) to print cleanly without support, or the need for painting. This led to an aesthetic that’s part-way between blocky and organic, and flexible-filament shoulder/hip joints that provide a fairly wide range of motion.
They are ninjas, after all…
3D Printer (or printing service) capable of printing flexible materials
Modifi3D Pro (or other heating tool capable of melting the ends of some filament. My wife got me one of these from their Kickstarter and it arrived some time in the last month… it’s a neat little tool)
1. Print out Parts
Files are available for free at MyMiniFactory.
March 2020 UPDATE: Files can be downloaded directly from this site at the bottom of the page. They are also available on Prusa Printers!
ArticulatedFlexJoint, Donnie-Belt, Jennika-Belt, Leo-Belt, Mikey-Belt, Raph-Belt, TMNT-Belt
Material: Matterhackers Pro Flex
Literally everything else
Go ahead and use colors accordingly, or however you see fit.
For each turtle, you’re going to need:
ArticulatedFlexJoint – x5
XXXX-Belt – x1
TMNT-AssemblyPin – x2
TMNT-Bandana – x1
TMNT-Body – x1
TMNT-Head – x1
TMNT-LeftArm – x1
TMNT-LeftLeg – x1
TMNT-RightArm – x1
TMNT-RightLeg – x1
TMNT-Shell – x1
And whichever weapons are appropriate (if you choose to print those out)
For the sake of these instructions, we’re going to look at assembling Mikey, who is technically the most complex thanks to his nunchakus.
2. Assemble Joints
Press-fit the ArticulatedFlexJoint components into the corresponding slots of the limb components as shown.
3. Assemble Head
Press-fit TMNT-Bandana onto TMNT-Head. Use a little glue if necessary.
Using pliers, press-fit the final ArticulatedFlexJoint component into the corresponding slot of the head.
4. Assemble Body
Press-fit TMNT-AssemblyPin into the corresponding holes of TMNT-Shell and then press that into TMNT-Body as shown. Use a little glue if necessary.
Fit whichever belt component you’re using into the mating features of the body assembly. It will flex a little and then snap into place.
Press-fit the limbs and head joints into the corresponding sockets of the body assembly.
Cut two same-sized lengths of flexible filament so that they will be as long as both nunchaku and some extra for in-between.
Using pliers, force the ends into each nunchaku. Pull each end of flex material out from the base enough to melt. Melt the ends of the flex material to a larger shape and pull the nunchakus over the ends while they are still cooling. If all goes well, the ends of the flexible material should pull into a larger ID chamber inside the end of the nunchakus.
6. Turtle Power
Donatello does machines.
Raphael is cool, but rude (gimmie a break).
Michelangelo is a party dude!
And Jennika is a new member in the current IDW comics. I actually don’t know a lot about her yet, but I have gotten to the point in the series where she has been introduced (that is all I will say). My kids (my daughter especially) were very excited that there was a female turtle, and I am on board with that energy.
I’m looking forward to reading more about this character.
Like what you’re seeing here? Leave me a comment here, follow me on twitter @DragonMtnDesign, or say “hey” if you ever see me or my work around on Reddit (u/DragonMountainDesign).
March 2020 UPDATE: Files are available here! Click the Download button below for a zip file.
Files are available under the Creative Commons BY-NC-SA license.