Desktop Scalpel Station with Auto Blade Extract & Capture

I have to admit this is one of those unnecessarily complex designs that border on a “contraption”. But my intentions were good… I wanted to make a fun desktop scalpel station as a kind of desktop widget. And, I wanted it to achieve the following:

  • Hold a scalpel
  • Automatically remove and capture the scalpel blade
  • Assist with the blade installation,
  • Provide somewhere to store scalpel blades, and
  • Be a fun desktop widget all at the same time.

I think I have achieved all my design objectives. The end result is fun and very useful but also a great way to show off your 3D printing skills. This is quite intricate and demonstrates interesting features of 3D printing.

In the course of designing this and my folding scalpel, I learned quite a bit about scalpel blades and have now changed my preferences. But I wanted this to be able to accept any blade and still work reliably. Although I now prefer #22 and #24 blades I have tested this Scalpel Station with #18, #20, #21, #23 and also 60A (and switchback blades). Now that I know all of these blades work in the Scalpel Station I suspect all blades for #4 handles will work. If you find one that doesn’t please let me know.


Using the Scalpel Station is pretty easy and straightforward. Maybe not intuitive but easy nonetheless. Simply make sure the scalpel is fully inserted, squeeze the Station together (you should feel a click) and then pull out the scalpel. In order to pull out the scalpel you will need to hold the Base. This is easiest done by simply placing one finger on the Base to hold it down.


I have tested this in PETG and ABS+. I have designed into place supports where needed and also added extra size to some of the supports to assist in build-plate adhesion (for ABS+ and PLA) printing.

I have tried to make my main print settings visible on the Cura screenshot but in case they are difficult to read I have summarized them again here…

Material: I choose to use PETG for its durability and flexibility.

My Setup:
Nozzle = 0.4mm

My Settings:
Layer height = 0.2mm
Line width = 0.4mm
Wall count = 4 (1.6mm)
Infill = 40%
Ironing = ON

Designed to print without additional support. All required support is incorporated into the design.

Print Orientation: As shown in the screenshot(s).

Post Print and Assembly Notes

There are several small supports that are built into the design and need to be removed post printing. They are all shown in the accompanying illustration.

Assembly is straightforward as illustrated in the accompanying image. The Release must be installed before the Receiver. But both the Receiver and the Release can be removed fairly easily if needed. However, the Slide is designed to stay on the Base with about 10mm of free play. Removing it is possible but not recommended.


I think I could experiment with a magnet in the Base near the blade storage area to help hold spare blades into the Base. However, it will take some care because I would need to be sure the same magnet would not prevent an extracted blade from falling out of the Base when the Release is pressed. We will see.

Where to Get My STL Files

I am now posting all of my new designs on and plan to continue to do so for the foreseeable future. Some of my older designs may not have been migrated over yet so if they are not available on please check on Thingiverse.

Use, Licensing, Comments and Feedback

My primary distribution site for my design files is is, in my opinion, leading the way in promoting designers and competition amongst designers which in turn fuels the growth of high-quality 3d printable designs for the benefit of our entire community. However, as a result, some of my designs are only available for free for 1 week from when first posted, so please download them when you see a new file available that you are interested in. Also, please like and save to help me with the competitions.

I do not permit the use of my designs for commercial purposes (i.e. you can not sell my design(s) or products printed from my design(s)) without first acquiring a commercial license from me. On I offer membership accounts for access to all my design files as well as a membership for commercial licensing which allows subscribers to sell printed products using my designs.

I welcome comments and feedback as we as requests for customization of designs. I will do my best to accommodate those requests.


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