These 5 Gadgets Make DIY At-Home 3D Printing Super Simple

3D printing can seem complicated, but it doesn't have to be.

More and more companies are focusing on affordable and easy-to-use 3D printing toys that anyone, even kids, can use at home to make gorgeous creations. These are some of our faves.

1. 3Doodler: $99

This 3D pen started it all, and with its versatility and totally reasonable price point, it's still one of the most popular.

3Doodler works kind of like a hot glue gun, rapidly heating and cooling plastic strands to allow the user to create incredible sculptures and drawings in three dimensions. It's a cool idea, and we're not surprised that it's inspired imitation after imitation.

 

2. ThingMaker: $299.99

Back in the '60s, Mattel's Thing Maker was a tool for making plastic toys in molds at home. This fall, a new ThingMaker will bring that idea into the 21st century.

This home 3D printer will print customized toys based on your own mixed-and-matched creations, and it's all controlled with a simple app. It's not available just yet, but we can't wait to get our hands on one.

Thingmaker home 3D printer for kids

(via ThingMaker)

3. Polyes Q1: $129

Polyes Q1 does what other 3D pens do, minus the heat. It uses a special plastic that hardens when exposed to a special light it emits, and no heat means no chance of burning yourself, plus no funky plastic smell.

Polyes also has different inks that change color with temperature, glow in the dark and put out lovely scents. Who doesn't love cool stuff that smells good?

 

4. Awamoko 3D Foam Pen: $39

3D pens can be pricey, even before you start buying expensive ink refills, but Awamoko 3D Foam Pen uses hand soap to create its adorable sculptures.

It's safe for kids, surprisingly easy to use and cleans up pretty much all on its own. The only downside is that you can't keep these cuddly critters around forever!

Awamoko 3D foam pen bunny

5. Renegade: $99

Want a 3D pen that's also eco-conscious? You'll love Renegade.

Most 3D pens have pricey plastic refills that are only good for one thing, but Renegade melts down plastic bags and bottles for its 3D plastic ink. It even comes with a specialized cutter to turn all of the plastic waste you have lying around into strips for the pen.

Renegade is still in funding on Kickstarter, but it's super close to reaching its goal and we hope to get our own soon!

 

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