Can't Afford A 3D Printer? You Could Always Get One Of These Pens

The future may see a 3D printer in every home, but until then, we'll have to make do with... Play-Doh? No, that's not right. A proper alternative doesn't easily come to mind, at least, not until you've seen the "3Doodler" from WobbleWorks.

The 3Doolder is a rather chunky pen-shaped device, weighting 200g and measuring 180mm x 24mm. You plug it into a power socket, feed it some ABS plastic, press a button and out of the tip (which can get to 270°C) erupts gooey plastic goodness, which solidifies quickly into a thin, flexible strand.

The pen takes 30.5cm plastic "leads", which transform into 3.35m of moulded material, however, you should be able to pick up 1kg "spools" for less than $US55.

The bad news is, you can't buy a 3Doodler right not -- it's just a Kickstarter, but an extremely successful one. With $US1.7 million in the kitty as of writing, it's already blown its $US30,000 goal by a great many zeros. On top of this, it still has 29 days to go, so who knows what the total amount will be.

If you do end up pitching in, you'll need to contribute at least $US75 to guarantee yourself the final product. At one stage you could have paid $50, but the allotment at this tier has been expended.

If $US75 is too much, you could attempt to build one yourself, if you're technically inclined (and don't mind running the risk of melting your skin off with napalm-like plastic).