Correct, it can take some money. I made mine entirely out of aluminium so it is solid and rigid but that much aluminium costs a lot of money and needs the right tools to work with.
The working table size on the one I built was around 1500x1200.
Before the CNC I had to use a few things to make patterns for things that had curves etc. Any part of the pattern that had straight lines was cut accurately on a dropsaw or tablesaw and then the curves were cut on a jigsaw or bandsaw and then finished on an oscillating spindle sander. The sander with different sized spindles allowed you to get perfect curves.
Once the template was done it was use with a router to make copies.
The laser costs more than you want to know
It also has a working area of 1500x1200 and I bought that one.