When Howard Wolowitz bought a 3D printer to print figures of himself, Rajesh Koothrappali, Bernadette Rostenkowski-Wolowitz, and other heroes of The Big Bang Theory, he had to be chastised by Bernadette because it was her money and it was $5,000 of them.
(Incidentally, I made some research of the 1200 XT 3D modeler PRO device that appeared in the CBS sitcom and I am pretty confident that it's a renamed 3D Systems InVision XT 3D Printer.)
But an ex-president of the Harvard Funds and the famous Pirate of Prague, Viktor Kožený, a technological enthusiast who has just gotten access to $22 million of dollars from his (mother's) cottage in Aspen, Colorado but who became a target of a new execution in Czechia at the same moment (he once offered me to become a shadow minister of education which I kindly refused), recommended me to check the rather new 3D Printers Category at amazon.com and I was kind of impressed how accessible those things have become.
The FlashForge 3D printer is available for $1,199. This price can't be approximated by infinity too well. It's an accessible price, I would say. And the reviews look really encouraging, averaging at 4.7/5.0 stars.
The Afinia printer for $1,599 is often claimed to be used by professionals who say that it works perfectly - and it's a professional quality printer. Top software included. Alternatively, you may check some free software right now.
Afinia 3D printer is printing a Klein bottle, a closed non-orientable manifold with Euler characteristic \(\chi=0\). Sped up to 1 minute. See a 3-minute presentation of a bigger 3D printer.
Does any TRF reader have real-world experience with 3D printing? If you do, what have you used the gadget for? If you don't, what are your dreams what you could print if you had one? Has someone studied the details of the technology, how it actually works?