The usual way to put a durable threaded interface into a 3D print is to use a heat-set insert, but what about other options? [Thomas Sanladerer] evaluates a variety of different threaded inserts, none of which are actually made with 3D printing in mind but are useful nevertheless.

There are a number of other easily-available threaded inserts, including the rivnut (or rivet nut), chunky hex socket threaded inserts intended for wood and furniture, heli-coils or helical inserts (which resemble springs), self-tapping threaded inserts (also sold as thread adapters), and T-nuts or prong nuts. They all are a bit different, but he measures each one and gives a thorough rundown on how they perform, as well as offering his thoughts on what works best.

[Thomas] only tests M5 fasteners in this video, so keep that in mind if you get ideas and go shopping for new hardware. Some of the tested inserts aren’t commonly available in smaller sizes. Self-tapping threaded inserts, for example, are available all the way down to M2, but the hex socket threaded inserts don’t seem to come any smaller than M4.

These threaded inserts might be just what your next project calls for, so keep them in mind. Heat-set inserts are of course still a great option, and our own Sonya Vasquez can tell you everything you need to know about installing heat-set inserts into 3D printed parts in a way that leaves them looking super professional.