If you have been 3D printing you may notice that 3D printing practice often will leave waste like from using supports, skirts, rafts, failed prints, or even a successful prints that end up broken or not used anymore, like Benchy.
You may also notice that these print waste makes 3D printing more expensive because you literally burning money for each print waste you make, especially if you use exotics FDM filaments or print with SLA & DLP machine, those resins aren’t cheap.
Meanwhile, the MRF (Material Recovery Facility, or recycle plant) on your country may also have difficulties to sort 3D print waste due to its size (that often can be small enough to be classified as microplastics) and there are lots of plastic types that proper recycling isn’t exactly viable.
I’ve been 3D printing for almost 2 years now and made lots of waste. Knowing these problems, I decided to just collect all the waste instead throwing them right in the bin, but I’m not sure what to do to with it. Doing DIY filament recycling isn’t exactly an effective solution for most of us folks because it took much money, effort, and time with so little rewards.
Below is some of my print waste.
So from this problem, i’m trying to test an idea that could make 3D printing more environmentally sustainable and also more economical. I named this idea “Filagain”.
Filagain is a prototype of an eCommerce platform for selling 3D print materials with integrated recycling platform where we will basically buy 3D print waste from our users with points that can be used to purchase new 3D print materials again; meanwhile the collected 3D print waste will be processed into shreds and pellets and sold back to various producers and makers to create fresh 3D print materials again or other plastic products.
It’s basically ‘Amazon’ for 3D print materials, with MRF function where people can sell their 3D print waste instead throwing it away.
You can see the prototype platform on filagain.com
It’s not operational yet, i’m still trying to test this idea by asking 3D printer users directly. If you are interested with this idea, you can help by filling a mini survey on the website @ filagain.com . I need to review this idea first to know if there’s enough demand for such thing.
If you have any question, ask that on comment.