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Wastestream to Mainstream - recycling into 3D printing's video poster
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The Legacy Benchtop Filament Extruder Machine makes 3D Printer "ink" Read more

Seattle, WA Hardware
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on August 25, 2014.

The Legacy Benchtop Filament Extruder Machine makes 3D Printer "ink"

Seattle, WA Hardware
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About this project

WE FUNDED IN LESS THAN 12 HOURS!

STRETCH GOAL UPDATE:

If we can get to 25K, I will open 2 recycling to 3D printing stations - one here in my neighborhood and one in collaboration with an interested backer.  

Together, we can show the world how to clean up its act!

3D for EDucation - Recycling into 3D printing for schools
3D for EDucation - Recycling into 3D printing for schools
's video poster
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The "ink" for 3D printers is a plastic filament that is continuously heat welded together through a computer controlled process to "print" almost any 3-dimensionally shaped object. (description via David "Analog" Edgar - www.plastiquarium.com )

This is an Open Source hardware project providing the connection between 3D printing and Recycling.  

Introducing the Legacy!

Legacy Benchtop Filament Manufacturing machine
Legacy Benchtop Filament Manufacturing machine

Legacy is an Open Source Desktop manufacturing machine that turns recycled plastic pellets into 3D printer filament. Legacy is based on Lyman's design and includes a self-winding filament spool apparatus so when you have the amount of filament you need for your project, you simply snip the end and put the spool on your 3D printer.

When I first discovered 3D printing, I was amazed at the prices of 3D printer filament. Wow, I thought, we really need to be able to make it ourselves!

Filament Prices as found through Google
Filament Prices as found through Google

In order to make it yourself, you have to build a filament extruder. 

To build a filament extruder, you need a 3D printer, or to somehow manufacture prototype parts.

So, with a chicken and an egg under each arm, I began my journey towards the dream of being able to offer an industrial strength desktop filament extruder machine.

Its started in my local community where I read about Hugh Lyman who had won a contest by building an extruder that turned virgin plastic pellets into usable filament. The key point was is that you could theoretically build it from parts that cost $250.

Hugh Lyman - Click to read the article
Hugh Lyman - Click to read the article
Original Lyman Extruder on Thingiverse
Original Lyman Extruder on Thingiverse

Wow! I thought. That's a great idea!

I researched Mr Lyman and visited him in his workshop in Enumclaw, WA.  He is a very busy man and was gracious enough to demonstrate the machine for me, along with guiding me towards online resources. He also brought the machine to the WOOF 3D print club at the University of Washington

January 2014 - WOOF 3d print club
January 2014 - WOOF 3d print club
WOOF 3D print club
WOOF 3D print club

We hatched a plan to bring the extruder to market, which included his redesigning the machine, and I spoke to potential investors.

Lyman's Extruder V4 on Thingiverse
Lyman's Extruder V4 on Thingiverse

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Wastestream to Mainstream - THE REST OF THE STORY While working on the production prototype, I researched plastic and decided recycled plastic was the only way to go. 

After the rewards descriptions is the story behind this project. 

This is not about becoming an extruder building company - this is about human beings retaining the right to manufacture for themselves without having to purchase proprietary consumables or pollute the planet any further than we already have.

REWARDS:

Eco-friendly 3D printing project
Eco-friendly 3D printing project

For a $15 pledge, you will receive either a 2.2lb / 1kg of ABS filament in Black, or 5 lbs of pellets for your extruder.

For a $10 pledge, you will receive a desktop figurine of our 3D for ED logo or something of your choice from Thingiverse.

3D for ED desktop figurine
3D for ED desktop figurine

For a $45 pledge, you get 3 rolls of colored filament!

For a pledge of $249, you will choose either the KIT (which includes motors & electronics) to assemble the extruder yourself, or a set of parts needed so you can source (or maybe find in your garage) the motors & electronics required to build the Legacy yourself.

For a pledge of $449 or more, you will receive a fully assembled Legacy Extruder.  Please let us know if you want to extrude 1.75mm or 3mm filament.

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Why is using recycled plastic important?

Because Plastic NEVER GOES AWAY and its huge messy issue that (until now) no one had an answer to.

image by Boyan Slat
image by Boyan Slat
photo by Christopher Jordan
photo by Christopher Jordan

Our oceans, beaches & birds are full of plastic.  =(

We ran many tests to see if we could put ground up recycling directly into the extruder. The tests worked BUT the results were not consistent.  Plastic needs to be clean and dry to make a filament that won't jam your printer.  I am happy to share my R&D research for those who want to modify a document shredder in order to put ground up plastic directly into the extruder machine.

I further refined my inquiries to companies who sell preformed plastic pellets made up of recycled plastic.  It made me very happy to discover that there is the potential of 3D printing car parts out of recycled auto bumpers!

Items printed in Polypropylene, and ABS
Items printed in Polypropylene, and ABS

The plastic pellet companies have agreed to trade collected recycling for pellets, eliminating the anticipated cost of additional machinery required to process the plastic.  They take our recycling and we get plastic pellets to pass onto our customers.

Win-win!

I am working on setting up collection sites in all 50 states and worldwide.  The idea is that you can bring your recycling in and trade it for credits that may be used to purchase pellets, filament, or 3D printing services. 

Worldwide, there are many organizations who have wanted to connect recycling to 3D printing and these partnerships enable us to close the loop on the flow of ethical or "free trade" filament.

Projects such as Protoprint in India work directly with waste pickers to create income for impoverished people.

Click photo to visit Protoprint - empowering the waste pickers socially and financially
Click photo to visit Protoprint - empowering the waste pickers socially and financially

Most important, there is the Open Source component. Being able to successfully bring Open Source hardware to the world is vitally important to improving the lives of people who depend on recycling plastic for income.

As the demand for Open Source 3D printers, supplies and software rises, supporting this Open Source - Ethical free trade filament project enables people all over the world to benefit from 3D printing.

For every 5 extruders that are pledged for, we will send one to Protoprint in India, Africa, Haiti and many more places.  If you have a suggestion as to an organization that might benefit from Recycling into 3D printing, please send me a message!

I've worked very hard to bring this project to its completion and we need your help in getting the word out... please share this with your family, friends and followers.

I will answer all questions as asked in our FAQ.

Thank you! - Liz Havlin

Recycling Rainbow Picture courtesy of ThingThing
Recycling Rainbow Picture courtesy of ThingThing

Risks and challenges

We were challenged by the fact that the filament extruders who came before us delivered their versions months after the promised delivery dates. Backers were disappointed & frustrated.

Hence, it was definitely harder to pitch this sort of desktop manufacturing machine to investors, and we had to bootstrap it ourselves with assistance from many helping hands along the way.

We made sure that we did everything we could to be prepared and partner with experienced manufacturers to prevent delays.

We are building the extruders during the campaign, and expect to be able to meet or beat our time estimates!

Although we cannot predict every little obstacle in front of us, we will be updating the videos DURING the campaign and will be transparent every step of the way.

The biggest risk of this project is that potential backers won't see the benefits to manufacturing Open Source machinery that will serve the world!

Here is my very amateur first attempt at making a video with me in it!

https://www.youtube.com/watch…

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    8 backers

    You will receive a Thank you on our website and also a 3D for ED printed figurine for your desk! All funds received go towards R&D to further refine and improve the Legacy filament extruder machine and create jobs for people of all abilities. Shipping anywhere in the world included!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $15 or more

    4 backers

    2.2 lb / 1 kg Roll of 1.75mm or 3mm ABS or PLA filament in your choice of color: Red, Blue, White, Black, Green, Yellow, Purple, Orange

    Shipping included!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $15 or more

    0 backers

    5lbs of ABS pellets or PLA pellets in your choice of color:Red, Blue, White, Black, Green, Yellow, Purple, Orange - Mix & Match in 1 lb / 2 kilo increments.

    Shipping included!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    0 backers

    USB filament dryer. Includes 1 assembled unit and the files + instructions to make as many as you need. Here is an example of what you will be getting: http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:35710

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    0 backers

    PLA conversion kit - use this kit to change your extruding capabilities from ABS to PLA. Includes additional replacement parts and installation manual. STL files included for the plastic upgrade parts.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $38 or more

    3 backers

    DIY Filament Winder Kit - all the plastic and electronic parts you need to assemble your very own filament winder. Includes non-digital length counter.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $45 or more

    15 backers

    3 rolls of colored filament. We will do our best to honor preferred color choices: Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Natural (no color), or Surprise me! Shipping included to anywhere in the world! Filament made in & shipped from either USA or an International partner.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    2 backers

    10 lbs of colored pellets in 2.5 lb units

    Choose up to 4 colors, or all one color

    Black, White, Natural, Red, Blue, Green, Yellow, Purple, Pink, Orange

    PLA or ABS

    Free shipping in the northern 48

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $99 or more

    3 backers

    Fully assembled, tested and shipping for a Lyman Filament Spool Winder. 'Works great to retighten filament on the spool. Working on adding an oscillator so it feeds on & off perfectly!

    http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:30705

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $99 or more

    0 backers

    PARTS KIT - non electronic kit that has all the parts you need to build your Legacy filament extruder.. Includes everything but the electronics. DOES NOT INCLUDE WINDER.

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $249 or more

    17 backers

    KIT - This is a Kit which means you will receive all the electronics including motors & controllers needed to assemble your extruder along with the set of STL / 3D files to print your own parts. We will also include filament to print the parts with!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $299 or more

    3 backers

    Fully assembled & tested Original Lyman Extruder - includes ground shipping in the lower 48 states. This will be version 1.1. I look forward to seeing everyone's improvement ideas! I am also adding the stand alone Lyman Winder for $99. This way you can have a fully functioning tested extruder and add the parts you want without having to deal with electronics you don't want. To see what you are getting, please click this link http://www.thingiverse.com/thing:30642

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $499 or more

    10 backers All gone!

    The early bird gets the worm! Be one of the first to get a Legacy extruder. This is a fully assembled machine and comes with 5 lbs of black ABS pellets made from recycled plastic. Choose this reward to have your extruder for the start of the school year!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $549 or more

    4 backers Limited (6 left of 10)

    Be first in line for our second production run! This is a fully assembled Legacy extruder machine and comes with 50 lbs of your choice of colors in 5 lb increments

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world

Funding period

- (32 days)