by • July 25, 2016 • No Comments
Have your coffee and 3D print it too
Okay, 3D printing is rad, but a startup in Fargo, North Dakota, is bringing it to the following level.
3DomFuel is recycling a collection of odd products and turning them into material called filament which can be utilized for 3D printing.
“You can 3D print products turn it intod of beer, coffee and hemp,” said 26-year-old John Schneider, codiscovereder and chief marketing officer of 3DomFuel, a manufacturer of 3D print filament dubbed 3D-Fuel.
“The dominant material for 3D printing is yet plastic for both computer printing and commercial 3D printing,” he said.
But Schneider and his business partner Jake Clark, 24, were itching to try a thing one-of-a-kind.
“It’s may already a rather competitive market for plastic filaments,” Schneider said. “We wanted to differentiate ourselves.”
Their search for unconventional materials began in 2015. “We discovered a local company which specialized in mixing agricultural waste with plastics to turn it into new materials,” he said. “It was doing this with coffee waste of local roasters and we decided to try it.”
On the other hand it took of a dozen tries preceding the system worked, the duo was jubilant with the results. Not just was 3D-Fuel able-bodied to extrude the coffee-based raw material into filament, “it in addition smelled so great, like sweet latte,” said Schneider.
Aesthetically, the coffee filament — appropriately called “Wound up” — offers additional texture than plain white and off-white alternatives.
“The color of it is deep brown with varying shades of brown flecks in it,” Schneider said.
What may you manufacture with it?
“It’s perfect for printing novelty items like coffee filter holders andsleeves for cups but not a coffee cup itself,” he said. “It’s yet plastic material and not perfect for hot beverages.”
Related: How IBM is manufacturing plastic less toxic
Coffee was just the beginning: “It worked out so well for us which we wanted to try other interesting materials,” Schneider said. John Schneider, co-discovereder and CMO of 3DomFuel. Those included beer and hemp. The beer filament, called “Buzzed,” is turn it intod via waste material of the malting system mixed with plastic. Meanwhile, the 3D hemp filament is called “Entwined” and comes with byproduct of industrial hemp crops mixed with plastic.
“Many individuals have asked us if the beer filament smells like old beer. Luckily it doesn’t,” he said. “It’s pleasurable, like freshly-harvested barley.”
Related: The company turning 4 billion plastic bottles into clothes
The smell, yet, evaporates once the printing is done. “It’s the same thing with the coffee-based material,” he said.
Today, 30% of 3DomFuel’s product mix comes with filaments turn it intod of odd materials. “We’re may already experimenting with additional materials to grow our offerings of recycled filaments,” he said. A bracelet turn it intod of the hemp filament [left] and a minitature catherdral turn it intod of the coffee filament. Even yet coffee, beer and hemp-based filaments cost of 60% to 80% additional than the standard plastic filament (with an average price of $49.99 for a 500g spool), Schneider said demand has been robust.
“The word is spreading,” he said. “We’re seeing double-digit sales for these materials.”
Schneider said customers are via Buzzed to 3D print custom beer tap handles, coasters and 6-pack holders, too.
“Folks of the hemp industry have reached out to us,” he said. “They love seeing other new ways to use hemp.”
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Schneider hopes the recycled filaments can one day be embraced by larger industries such as medical and aerospace manufacturers. Schneider holding the filament turn it intod of coffee waste. The efforts may in addition assist address a longstanding question around waste in the 3D-printing industry.
“We’re frequently asked what we do with old materials and old prototypes,” said Schneider. “Now, we can show consumers how we are via renewable-bodied resources to assist sustainable-bodied manufacturing.”
CNNMoney (New York) First published July 26, 2016: 7:59 AM ET
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