Build a Tiny T-Rex




About: Find me on Reddit, Tumblr and Twitter as @KitemanX. Buy my projects at

I decided, for no particular reason, to make a small kit of a dinosaur, and came up with a design* that ends up standing just over 40mm tall (about an inch and three-quarters).

This is how to assemble it.

Update: working on the theme, I have designed a whole herd of dinos (triceratops, ankylosaurus, stegosaurus) and a pterosaur. Kit versions of these will also be available soon.

My source material for Rex was a photo of somebody's 3d print, which did not have the varying thickness of my version, and was made of several parts balanced together. It turns out (thanks to commenters) that the original version came from Thingiverse:

Step 1: Needful Things

I have attached a copy of the file to this step, or you can buy a set from my Etsy store (LINK)

You will also need glue (I use PVA wood glue). To make things easier, you might find it handy to work in a tray (I use the lid from a shoe box, and maybe a pair of tweezers if you're a bit fumble-fingered.

If you cut your own parts, you'll find it easier to lift them from the cutter if you cover it in masking tape - if you order the parts from me, that's how they'll come.

Step 2: Knolling

Peel off the tape, and lay out the parts so that you know what goes where.

There are a total of 23 parts, that go together into five layers, with the "spine" part in the centre.

Step 3: Gluing the Ribs

Glue on the first set of "ribs", and one side of the skull.

I have glued the whole thing in the photo, so that you can see where to glue, and how much you need, but that's just to save photos. It is easier to glue and attach each piece in turn, and press each piece firmly in place for a few seconds. The tip of the tail is probably the hardest part to keep in place at this stage.

Turn the spine over, and repeat the process for the other side.

Now leave the dinosaur "clamped" for a while - the easiest way is to leave it under a couple of books or a small box for half an hour.

Step 4: Head and Legs

Now you need to repeat the process with the last parts of the head (the parts with the teeth and eyes) and the legs.

Again, I've glued the whole thing for demonstration purposes, but you'll find it easier to glue and fix each piece in turn.

And, again, you'll need to leave the parts "clamped" under a weight for at least half an hour before you stand it up.

Step 5: Done!

There you go!

Rex will stand anywhere you like, and join in with any of your games. He's not suitable for small children, but absolutely fine for kids of any other age...

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13 Discussions


5 months ago

This is a really great Instructable. I'm glad you're finding new and interesting ways to remix my original design, and hope that it brings you happiness and maybe even a little profit.

The Creative-Commons Attribution license included with the original design asks that any derivative works credit the original designer. Please add a link to the original download page: and a credit to Jim Rodda.

Thanks, and have a great day. Let's keep the CC designs flowing so that everyone can benefit.

4 replies

Reply 5 months ago

Ha ha, I was coming into the comments to write about this and then was going to send you a link and here you are, already on it.

I really love the laser cut version but yeah the least the creator of this instructable could do was credit you by following the license, especially when they are trying to sell it.


Reply 5 months ago

Ooo, also Kiteman published this CC-BY-NC-SA which is another violation of the copyright. Change your license to CC-BY-SA Kiteman. Share Alike!


Reply 5 months ago

CC-BY-NC-SA is the default setting here.

It should be changed now...


Reply 5 months ago

As I said elsewhere, I clean forgot to add it - I was working from a photo of a print, not from the original build, and spent so long remaking it to be laser-cut, it simply slipped my mind to go back and hunt for the source of the photo.
The link is now added.


Question 5 months ago on Step 5

What did you use for the material? It appears to be cardboard but could be wood. Also how thick is the material?

1 answer

Reply 5 months ago

Because I forgot - I spent so long making and remaking it into a version that worked as a laser-kit kit, I clean forgot about the source (I have a pile of failed versions sitting by my laser).

Thanks for including the link now.

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Reply 6 months ago

Oh, good catch - there were hiccups when I published, but I've added the file now.