Recycling our own 3D printer spool?


  • Founder

    3D printing is a very powerful and inspiring technology. The only thing that makes me uneasy about it, knowing what I know about economics - not $, but the laws of thermodynamics - is the wasteful and toxic nature of plastic. Making it easier to fill up the world with more plastic junk may not be a brilliant scheme.

    However, if we can locally upcycle HDPE plastic (bottles) into 3d printer spool, its a win win. An Indian MIT student started a project called “protoprint”, that works with garbage sifters in India, allowing them to add value to the valuable resource they hunt through landfills for, increasing their self-sufficiency and economic opportunity. Such things couldn’t hurt us in the entitled west as far as I can tell.

    http://makezine.com/2014/02/25/wealth-from-waste-protoprints-fair-trade-3d-printer-filament/

    Anybody interested in building a pair of these machines? One to shred bottles, one to extrude printer spool. They are designed to be inexpensive to make, mostly out of spare car parts. I think it would be great promo work for the Makerspace, allow us to offer very inexpensive fillament for member projects, and also we may be able to fundraise some by selling the spools to the community. I think it would also be a great way to empower our own local bottle collectors to add value to their labour.

    Any takers?



  • I signed up for the Strooder kickstarter, so I have one of those coming.
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/omnidynamics/strooder-first-truly-consumer-3d-printing-filament

    I don’t have anything for a grinder, although I’ve heard that modifying a paper shredder might work.


  • Linux

    @Bradley-Maker What do you need to do this? I have the interest, but not the knowledge…

    Learning and working on learning more!

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