3D printers are great. You can design almost anything and have a copy of it within hours. That is if you have the filament to print with. At the moment you have to order filament from a (normally) mail order source and that takes time. Step in ‘Filabot’.
Manufacture you own
A while a go – I missed it at the time – there was a Kickstarter campaign to help the dream of manufacturing your own filament at home come true. Now the project has been funded and the final steps seem to be near. There has been an update to their website giving out the details of 3 versions of the Filabot and one version of the – yet un-named – grinder.
Filabot Wee – this is the kit version, it doesn’t have the grinder and will rely on pre-munched plastic or pellets. Probably the cheapest of the lot as you will have one build it yourself. Great to see how it all works though.
Filabot Reclaimer – totally complete and with the grinder. If you have wanted on use up those old prints or HDPE milk bottles straight out the box then this is the one for you. totally enclosed and with a carbon filter, which I assume is to help with those nasty smells from some plastics – I’m looking at you ABS!
Grinding your way to success
The first two variants don’t have a grinder so you would either have to use pellets or buy the extra grinder attachment and grind up separately.
The team at Filabot seem to have also found some form of conductive filament, this is interesting for anyone wanting to print out their own PCBs. My only thought on this is how much resistance there is in the filament, I look forward to being able to buy some and put it to the test!