Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Precious Plastics, a good idea that falls a little short

This is a cool idea. Simple machines that enable home recycling of thermoplastics. A grinder, an exturder, an injection molder, and a, uh, molder, non injection style. Very cool stuff. And to make it better these guys are releasing the files open sourced do that anyone can make these machines for only a few hundred dollars each. Well what am i waiting for? I'm going to start making these right now.

I just need an arc wielder, lots of metal, an a ready source of salvaged motors and heating elements... hmm. This might be slightly out of my reach.

The Precious Plastics people appear to be the same folks who a few years ago were promoting the idea of a modular phone with parts that you can replace on the fly, a good idea that was only several million dollars of R&D away from being viable. Going even further back they had the idea of a vacuum sphero. And where are these great ideas now? Listen, I'm not going to judge them for unfinished projects. Heck, if I were judged by unfinished projects I shudder to think of the ramifications. I just point this out to illustrate that these guys are big on ideas, but tend to ignore some rather large details that stop their efforts from being fully realized.

Do I want to do something like this? Oh, yes. But if I did I'd probably get myself a filastruder ($300) with automatic winder ($170) and a cheep wood chipper to do my grinding ($130), and skip the molding systems since making molds are way outside the scope of my life. So I guess the only thing stopping me from doing this right now is $600.

Of course there's another problem.
With the move I finally decided to let go of the hope that I'd be able to scrape together 600 spare dollars and finally threw the years of scrap plastic I've been saving. Failed prints, failed prototypes, all sorted by type and color and just waiting for the day that I can recycle it myself. I figure if I ever did get anything together I wouldn't need to buy new filament for at least a few months.
So many TARDISes. But at least blue bin recycling is offered in my area, so I can at least hope that this is going to be made into something good in the future.

1 comment:

  1. I would've loved to have those scraps! Unfortunately they are probably headed for the landfill. We are working on recycling scraps back into filament.


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