Question about 3D printing

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Toddy

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Jan 21, 2005
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S. Lanarkshire
Recycling seperation is a work in progress. The best is still hand sorted. We have four seperate bins here, and the local recycling depots do an awful lot more categories.
I think (and hope) that it will get better, but I think the most hopeful progress is that we are becoming aware of the issues and finding alternatives for non re-cycleable when at all possible.
Carrier bags, straws and cotton buds are a case in point. Wet wipes seem to be next on the agenda.
In my youth there was very little waste in the bins, and what there was, if folks didn't garden, was mostly ash. But the air was filthy in the towns because folks burned everything they could.

We live and learn, thankfully :)

M
 

Janne

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Feb 10, 2016
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Grand Cayman, Norway, Sweden
I am afraid/ashamed to write this down, but we only have voluntary recycling of Al cans and glass bottles here.
We take them to a collection point.

Not sure what happens next with them.

Everything else ends up on Mount Trashmore, as we lovingly call it.

Yes, the environment in our countries is much, much cleaner in many aspects.
I recall in my youth, the areas lose to where people parked were full of bottles and cans. No birds of prey, very few other birds.
Towns smelled horribly bad.
That was in sparsely populated Sweden, I can not even imagine how cities type London were.....

But we must do everything we can!
 

Robson Valley

Full Member
Nov 24, 2014
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McBride, BC
3D Printing: suppose I get the machine up and running.
The moment that my back is turned, the machine crashes and ruins the print.
Can I recycle the printed material?
 

Toddy

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Jan 21, 2005
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S. Lanarkshire
No. It's scrap as far as I know. I do know that if I can't cut and use bits of the models that don't come out 'right' then they're binned.
Himself has just said though that some folks have a machine that recycles the stuff, but it's only worth it if you're generating a lot of scrap; kilos of scrap.
I know we don't scrap that much.

M
 
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C_Claycomb

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Oct 6, 2003
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Universal truths about all recycling:
All the stuff in a pile must be known
All the stuff must be the same or similar
All the stuff must be capable of being re-processed

Sure, you can grind up a bunch of random non-biodegradable stuff and use it as filler, but you still need to know what it is, and that isn't what most people want for recycling.

Plastics are a problem because there are so many kinds, they can look very similar to each other, the different kinds behave very differently and do not mix. Thermosetting plastics, the hard brittle stuff is nearly all non-recyclable. Thermoforming plastic, like the stuff used in 3D printing, can be recycled, but it has to be identifiable as to what it is so that it can be segregated properly, this is still not easy, especially when packaging often bonds two different types of plastic together. There also has to be enough of it going through the process for it to be worth the effort.

This is an interesting read on the matter.
https://3dprintingindustry.com/news/is-recycling-pla-really-better-than-composting-49679/

If you were really clever, you could probably find things to do with something like PLA scrap by casting or moulding the material manually. I mean, the stuff goes as malleable as wet tooling leather when you pour boiling water on it, then sets hard again when it cools.
 

Toddy

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Jan 21, 2005
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I know that some folks were melting down plastic and using the resultant block for turning handles, etc., It was interesting to see some of the creative uses they made of the plastic. Somewhere I have a big pot that someone made for me using the scrap plastic. It's full of tent pegs iirc.

M
 

Woody girl

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Mar 31, 2018
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I know that some folks were melting down plastic and using the resultant block for turning handles, etc., It was interesting to see some of the creative uses they made of the plastic. Somewhere I have a big pot that someone made for me using the scrap plastic. It's full of tent pegs iirc.

M
Yes I've seen something on you tube about melting down plastic milk bottles to make slabs of plastic that can be used for projects. It was a while ago and I've forgotten most of it, but I think it was done with a heat gun thingy. (Wallpaper stripper perhaps) interesting idea.
 

Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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McBride, BC
There is a business in Trail BC which buys dead car & truck lead/acid batteries from Manitoba to the east and California to the south.
Trainloads of them.
They sell the acid to a fertilizer plant.
They wash and sell the pure lead to a smelter.
They wash and crush all the plastic to melt and cast it as beads
which are used for vacuum-molding things like tool boxes and truck bed liners.
They smash 5,000 dead batteries, 24/7.

Locally, junk plastic is spun into fiber to enhance the structure of a low density construction concrete.
 
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Jared

Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Sep 8, 2005
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3D Printing: suppose I get the machine up and running.
The moment that my back is turned, the machine crashes and ruins the print.
Can I recycle the printed material?
There are recycling services that you can buy a box from, and throw your bad prints into it, and send it back when full.

Seems like a service local maker spaces should provide.

Here's another machine to recycle plastic into filament.


$1700 little steep for home use perhaps, but a maker space should be able to raise that you'd think.
 
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Stew

Bushcrafter through and through
Nov 29, 2003
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stewartjlight-knives.com
Yes I've seen something on you tube about melting down plastic milk bottles to make slabs of plastic that can be used for projects. It was a while ago and I've forgotten most of it, but I think it was done with a heat gun thingy. (Wallpaper stripper perhaps) interesting idea.
It's something I've played a little. The how-to I used had the shredded bits heated in oil then compressed. Got a nasty burn from hot oil ejecting when the bits squished! A lesson learned but I'll be doing more as I plan to make some mallet heads.

Trickiest bit is how to efficiently make the bits smaller. I did try with a paper shredder but not good enough to chop.
 

Woody girl

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Milk bottle mallet what a great idea! Wonder what else could be made. Why we're you using oil? That wasn't in the video I saw. Won't it mix in with the plastic and alter the structure of it? Sounds messy and dangerous .
 

Stew

Bushcrafter through and through
Nov 29, 2003
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Milk bottle mallet what a great idea! Wonder what else could be made. Why we're you using oil? That wasn't in the video I saw. Won't it mix in with the plastic and alter the structure of it? Sounds messy and dangerous .
This was some years back and earlier days of people doing home reuse of them. I've seen the ones since of using a hot air gun. The oil is to heat it all over and no it doesn't change the make up. The idea is that the oil is ejected, though not at speed!
 

Janne

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Feb 10, 2016
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Grand Cayman, Norway, Sweden
I have seen on Youtube guys using a sandwich oven to melt the plastic bags and so on.
I did it once, wanting to make a multicoloured block for a knife handle, but my result had airbubbles so unusable.
 

spandit

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 6, 2011
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East Sussex, UK
I admit that the difficulty in recycling 3D printing waste doesn't sit too well with me. They're great tools and extremely handy for certain applications. I generally print useful or replacement parts, rather than ornaments (although I did print some Christmas tree baubles, which will be reused this year). IYou could argue that by fixing otherwise broken things, you are saving on landfill overall. Also, if you think about the carbon footprint of delivering individual items that can be made from a single kg spool of filament, there is potentially a saving there too. Not trying to promote it as a planet saving, green solution but the amount of waste I accumulate, compared to what gets thrown out from normal packaging etc. is miniscule.

If it gets burnt in power generating facilities that have the ability to properly filter the exhaust, then that has to be a better outcome than landfill. It's a fatuous argument that such power stations are just moving the point of pollution - with industrial, heavy filtration that would be entirely impractical on a car, for example, the emissions can surely be vastly reduced. I'm digressing from the original topic.