The idea of being able to manufacture goods from the comfort of your own home was a dream just a decade or so ago. Now, though, it’s possible to live this sort of life. Modern machines have shrunk over the last few years. As this advancement has occurred, a market for home factories have become extremely popular.

A lot of brands have taken advantage of this trend, selling machines which are small enough to be used at home, but big enough to create usable items. To help you in choosing some gear for your own garage manufacturing plant, this post will be going through some of the best options you have. As a reminder, though, it’s always important to do plenty of research when you’re buying items which cost this much.

Laser Cutter

Used for: woods, plastics, metals, and engraving.

Price range: moderate.

Laser cutters have been used for years to create objects from a range of different materials. This sort of tool is perfect for creating items which are flat or made from panels, like boxes or signage. Over the years, laser cutters have reached the point that they can be affordable enough for homes, while also providing good ventilation options and easy installation. Getting your hands on a laser cutter won’t set you back as much as other machines. But, if you want to cut metal with it, you might have to look at some of the higher end options. You can get extreme budget options for items like this on websites like eBay. Just make sure to read plenty of reviews before you decide to buy one.

3D Printer

Used for: plastics and foods (chocolate).

Price range: low to extremely high.

If you’ve been on the internet over the last few years, you’ve probably heard of 3D printing. This technology has been around for a long time, but only recently has it become affordable for home use. 3D printers come in loads of different shapes and sizes, with budget options coming in at less than a cheap TV, and others costing more than most people’s houses. With a device like this, you can create 3D objects from models you make on your computer. This can be great for businesses offering custom services, or for those lacking the space for a vacuum molding machine. Some of these machines can even print using chocolate. So, it’s worth keeping your eyes open for the options you have access to.

CNC Machines

Used for: metals and woods.

Price range: very high.

This is probably the most versatile option on this list. And, it comes in a huge range of different varieties. CNC machines are usually used for metals, though they can be used with wood, too. They work by spinning the material their machining at high speed while touching them with a special tool. Starting with a block of metal or wood, the machine will cut away layer after layer only leaving the parts you want to stay. The end product is designed using CAD software like CorelDraw or 123D. A lot of modern products are made this way, though machines are still very expensive, even for home use. This sort of machine can be used to make nearly anything you’d like, as long as it doesn’t require electrical components.

General Tools

Used for: everything

Price range: low to very high.

Finally, it’s time to think about the general tools you’ll have lying around. Not all of the jobs you’ll want to do will be able to be handled by a machine. Instead, you’ll need to put some elbow grease into it. A hand drill and a pillar drill will provide you with everything you need to cut holes in this. Along with a couple of small saws, some sandpaper, and a screwdriver kit, you’ll have almost everything you need. You can’t forget a hammer, though. With these tools, it can also be worth having a backup of assorted nuts, bolts, screws, and nails to make sure you never have to take an emergency trip to the hardware store. With all of this, you’re on your way to a fully-fledged garage factory.

Hopefully, this post will inspire you to bring out a bit of your industrial side. A lot of people love the idea of having these resources at home but are put off by their complexity. This is a shame, though, as a lot of these machines can be operated with just a little bit of learning. This sort of investment can be truly freeing. So, it’s worth making the most of the space you have out there.