9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it

If you've got a 3D printer and a little bit of imagination, you can make pretty much anything. While these machines are still too expensive to be completely ubiquitous, early adopters are making some really amazing things. We got a look at a few of these objects at the 3D Printing Expo in New York this week. Here are the most unbelievable items we saw.


3D System's adorable 3D printer—the Cubify—would fit right in with other home appliances. From a design standpoint, it looks just like a little sewing machine. And the company is using its machines (not just Cubify) to create some pretty neat stuff, like this platform shoe.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


And this purse.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


Or this chain-like belt.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


It's not exactly a Fender, but the 3D-printed guitar we saw at the 3D systems booth was awesome. Bonus points for the patriotic design.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


There are certainly a lot of random, useless 3D-printed tchotchkes. But the wine opener we saw at 3D Systems' booth is something you actually need!

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


Form Labs showed off an incredible chess set. The Rook you see is so very detailed, it even has a spiral staircase inside.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


To see the detail on other objects from Form Labs, we looked at them under a magnifying glass.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


Doesn't this vase look like it was formed on a pottery wheel? Nope. It was printed on Sculpteo.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


These creepy 3D-printed busts—including one of Tom Hanks—were churned out by an MCor machine, which prints using paper.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it


This 3D printed bangle is something you could actually see someone wearing, not just as a novelty. For a long time, 3D-printed items *screamed* 3D-printed. But as the technology improves, design quality is improving along with it.

9 Incredible Objects That Prove 3D Printers Are Totally Worth it

Photos by Nick Stango