9 Best Uses of a 3D Printer (So Far)

By on May 16, 2013

The 3D printer is, like, the coolest thing ever. Really.

3D printers are controversial, too, which naturally ratchets up their coolness vibe. Yes, they can make real guns (Brazilians love it), but they still can’t make building bricks as good as LEGOs. Go figure.

Now here are nine of the most awesome uses of a 3D printer… so far. And, I promise, no iPhone cases on this list—the world has enough of those!

1. Gastronomic Delights

Like the food machine in The Jetsons, the 3D printer uses raw ingredients to create cool-looking food. Let’s hope the operators are wearing hairnets.


Yes, that is a miniature space shuttle made of scallops.


2. Model Cars

This 1:3 scale model of James Bond’s signature Aston Martin DB5 was made by a 3D printer, then blown up in Skyfall.


Printer… 3D Printer.


3. Musical Instruments

Music demands unique voices and even more unique, um, spider guitars.


Does what a spider can.

4. Clothing

In addition to food, the 3D printer can provide other basic needs. It just may be clothing you’ll never wear. Ever.

3D printed clothes

It’s not too late to return the printer.

5. Bicycle

You have not lived until you’ve been seen flossin’ on your 3D-printed ride.


The seat could use some work.


6. 3D Photos

3D Photo Booths are here. (Guess where. Yeah, Japan.) You can be made into a little action figure. And… this technology will soon be horribly, horribly corrupted.


You know people will collect these things.


7.  Beaks (And Other Prosthetics)

Beauty the Bald Eagle got a prosthetic beak a few years back. Just think what it will do for human rhinoplasty.


Before… and after. Sign us up!


8. Combs

Who uses a comb, you say? Pets? Well, dear hipster, you might start if you had one of these beauts.


Wait till the Fonz gets a load of these!


9.  Grumpy Cat Figurines

This 3D-printed Grumpy Cat figurine graces our reviews on The CheckOut. Shapeways sells many other artist-designed creations, including our very own Sad Keanu and Success Kid who’ve also appeared on our reviews.


Grumpy Cat hates 3D printers.

About Joe Warner

I'm the senior editor of The CheckOut. I am an aficionado of shiny gadgets and classic Hollywood movies and can also tell you the names of the late '80s Swedish Davis Cup team members.


  1. Trust Me

    October 15, 2014 at 12:50 am

    AND… it’s totally legal to take a 3D printed gun on a plane, because its not metal. I called my friend at the NRA and it’s true. Be prepared for anything my brothers – pack heat when you fly and prevent the next 9/11.

  2. Trust Me

    October 15, 2014 at 12:46 am

    Well I heard that if you make a gun, or even any gun parts on a 3D printer that they will work great to protect you from the government, but that it’s impossible to shoot yourself in the foot with them. It’s a cool safety feature and it really works!

  3. bob

    December 28, 2013 at 1:19 am

    Go figure, they left out gun. You can make your own lower receiver, even one that is full auto. That is by far the best use of a 3d printer. The online community is huge for online, free, 3D models and they have tons for guns and gun parts. Food, beaks and cat figurines above the most noted use: guns?! Really?! Joe Warner (author) is utterly retarded.

    • antibob

      August 8, 2014 at 4:28 pm

      Wow bob with social skills like that I can see why you need a gun.

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