Startup idea : make 3D printing more economical and sustainable with recycling

Hey lads,

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.
Thanks all!

There are some companies which already doing this.
Some make new Filament out of it.
Some make the spool for the filament out of the old plastic.

LOL that is nothing I have 3 Bins worth of Scrap this is why I have a Filastruder and a Modified shredder and a chipper shredder for the big fails… still working of a puller that can do the job Gearing is my stumbling block I am trying to use a geared motor it stalls just it the right speed… :upside_down_face:

1 Like

I make my own Once I have it all up and running I can make it from Industry scrap. you know we make ABS,PETE,PVC here in Alberta… they are made from NG or Methane gas Reformation.

Yes, at the moment there are similar service like Replay and Refilament, and some companies like Felfill & Redetec only sells machines to process filament waste. Lots of DIY people also make products from plastic waste, like the Precious Plastic movement.

Problem is, these existing 3D print recycling companies have a rather small operation scale, and I haven’t seen one here in Asia.

Well I’m not rich enough to 3D print all the time :kissing:

Though, it’s cool to have your own recycling machine, however I don’t think many 3D print users would want to have their own recycling machines on their garage because those cost thousands of bucks total and requires some space to operate, and time and energy to use the thing.