While 3D printers have gotten less expensive in price – some table-top models are now in the sub-$1000 range – the 3D print media remains fairly expensive. Now there’s a new way to make your own filament for your 3D printer: Filabot. The Filabot, developed by college student Tyler McNaney of Milton, VT, got crowd funding from Kickstarter – garnering more than $32,000 in the month that it was on that site.
The Filabot (www.filabot.com) is capable of grinding, then melting down and extruding almost any household plastic from PET to PP to HDPE and even Nylon-101. The new filament is then air-cooled to a certain extent and wound on an empty spool and doesn’t require any additional finishing or treatment. The machine is even capable of recycling broken, failed or obsolete 3D parts, making the development of prototype parts less expensive.
The Filabot Wee comes either assembled ($749.00) or in kit form ($649.00). A spooling system sells for $58.00. McNaney also sells filament from $12.00 depending on the diameter of the filament, or the filament and the recycling service for $29.90 for 1 lb of ABS 1.75-mm filament, or $36.90 for 1 lb of ABS 3-mm filament.