When 3D printing first started, it was a DIY sort of thing. One of the first companies to launch 3D printing was Makerbot. Makerbot still exists, and one of their newer versions is in the Learning Lab. Their first product was a kit printer you bought and had to assemble. It was called the CupCake because the print area was approximately the size of a cupcake.

Once built, it was incredible finicky. The print head would leak, parts would stick to the print surface. It quickly became uncalibrated. I did successfully print a working whistle, though. What is remarkable is that the Makerbot kit was actually cheaper than most 3D printers available today. Today’s printers just have more features, are more reliable, and of course come pre-built.