Need a UV lamp for curing purposes? Consider buying a commercial product for curing nail polish. Amazon has a whole category just for UV Nail Dryers !
Some cardboard and tinfoil does a good job of isolating UV rays, and a nice hinge can be made with Velcro.
The world of scientific funding is just unfair. The old guard get richer and us up-and-comers are at each others throats for scraps of funding. We need revolution in our funding procedures, in our publish-or-perish industrial outlook on science, viva la revolution!
But no… that’s not very practical. The NSF gonna NSF and Nature gonna Nature, so what can us little people do if we just want to progress the knowledge of human kind?
One thing that might help is finding cheap alternatives to prohibitively expensive lab equipment. 3D printing lab parts, buying public consumer alternatives to standard scientific equipment, and a little bit of DIY can help start a smaller, more practical movement. The kind where you don’t need the mountains of start up money only R1 universities can afford, you just need a humble hill of money, and an eye for alternatives.