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Plastic bottle strip 3D printer project

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Wanted: Students to make a distributed future with solar-powered open-source 3-D printing.
Contact Dr. Joshua Pearce or Apply here

MOST: Projects and Publications, Methods, Lit. reviews, People, Sponsors
Twitter updates @ProfPearce

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Idea: Open Hardware for High Value Recycling of PET Bottles[edit]

Use simple 3D printable+utility blade stripper (like this one) to turn PET bottles into strips, microweld them together and then make a 3D printer extruder/driver capable of printing with the strips automatically. This will cut down on the embodied energy of 3D printing with recycled materials even further - as you can cut out the filament forming step with the recyclebot used for normal cylindrical FFF printing.

Background on strippers[edit]

Commendably awesome Russian instructional video of PET strip making and applications
Uses heat gun to apply strips as binding for construction.
Even more awesome
6 washers, 2 wood screws, scrap wood and a razor blade.

To do[edit]

Machine building[edit]

  • automate stripping and spooling (consider simple single motor assembly for doing both
  • create microwelder to butt weld the end of the strip to the beginning of the next one
  • create a direct drive extruder capable of printing PET that can handle PET strips
  • 3D print demonstration object from bottle

To be really awesome

  • automate end detection and isolation (See MOST Quality Control on Recyclebot)
  • solar power it

Data to collect[edit]

  • measure total mass of bottle and percent recovered in strips
  • measure energy use for all steps
  • measure time for all steps