I saw a RepRap at Linux Conf AU some years ago, Its a computer controlled printer that uses ABS or PLA plastic to create 3d parts. I’ve been following it off and on for a while. Its getting cheaper and more reliable all the time, and the resolution of the prints and print speed has improved as it has evolved. There is also a range of models for 3D printing on Thingiverse.
It looks like everyone recommends the Prusa Mendal at the moment, with either RAMPS or Gen6 Electronics and Brass Bushings (or Linear). While its not clear on the best hotend, nosel size should be 0.35 for beginners, A Makergear Kit is by far the better way to start, and upgrade it from there. Prusa is also working on Iteration 2!
Be prepared to have a few failures while its being calibrated. Filament size doesnt seem to matter, possibly 3mm as its easier to get good results, but alot seem to be switching over to 1.75 as it melts in the hothead easier, but can be stringy. Ultimachine seem to be recommended and carry a resonable supply of ABS and PLA, and in AU Bilbycnc have ABS, with PLA on the way and Lybina seem good too.
There is a Melbourne Users Group with some useful posts.