Date:31 August 2017
Out of the factory and into your home – here’s to recycling your own plastic with Precious Plastics.
Think of plastic as a precious commodity that, like the oil it’s made of, might not be around for ever. Now, how would one preserve this commodity and increase its lifespan?
Well, the team behind the Precious Plastics project spent two years developing machines. They help people to recycle waste locally and get the most out of plastic products. Once recycled, people can use the plastic to create new products through processes such as 3D-printing and injection moulding.
The machines are easy to build. The machines can be built with basic tools and materials available to the average consumer. The blueprints are even free to download from the Precious Plastics website.
The Precious Plastics machines include (from left to right):
Injection machine: It heats plastic flakes and is ideal for recreation of small projects with injection moulding.
Extrusion machine: This machine creates a continuous line of plastic and can create 3D-printing filament.
Shredding machine: Tears up plastic waste into small pieces for use with the other machines.
Compression machine: Heats and mould presses plastic for the creation of large objects.
Different types of plastic
PET – polyethylene terephthalate
Uses: Soft drink and water bottles, platter domes, biscuit trays, food containers.
HDPE – high-density polyethylene
Uses: Shopping and freezer bags, milk and juice bottles, ice cream containers, hair product containers, crates.
PVC – polyvinyl chloride
Uses: Cosmetic containers, electrical conduits, plumbing pipes, blister packs, roof sheeting, garden hoses.
LDPE – low-density polyethylene
Uses: Cling wrap, garbage bags, refuse bags, mulch film.
PP – polypropylene
Uses: Bottles, ice cream tubes, straws, flower pots, dishes, garden furniture, food containers.
PS – polystyrene
Uses: CD cases, plastic cutlery, imitation glass, foamed meat trays.
OTHER – all other plastics
Uses: Automotive parts, electronics, packaging and many more.