As most sandbox users know, the sole kind of plastic used by our space is PLA (Polylactic Acid). One of the interesting facets of PLA is that even once you’ve made it into something, you can grind it up and re-melt it down into something else. I recently bought a filament recycler from redtec to deal with the failed prints, and support material generated from the printers of the sandbox, my own printers, and the printers of other community accessible printers. I am happy to announce, the first successful print with recycled filament was accomplished.
It’s messy, but it’s a working button. The thickness of the filament is not very consistent, but I expect this will be a matter of learning how to best operate the machine. Once the sandbox is open again, a roll of locally recycled filament will be available for students to test out.
The name of the machine is a protocycler+. An old video, but one that demonstrates the machine and its workings can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWnXlRnijao
If you have questions, or are looking to recycle the PLA scraps from your printer, or your old 3D prints for that matter, send me an email!
One more bit of advice for those interested in environmental protection, or entrepreneurship (or both!), check out the Precious Plastic organization. If you’re looking to clean up your community, or start a business, there is a growing interest both around the world and in the Montreal community!