Has anyone here actually printed with recycled PET bottles?

Has anyone here actually printed with recycled PET bottles? I can not find anything via searches in the typical places.

@Vik_Olliver was going to experiment with some PET, but I don’t think it ever happened.

We ran some PET on our laser cutter for someone, and it discolored horribly and smelled even worse. I’d love to be able to print PET, but it I don’t think it will turn out to be a good printing material.

I expect that you will need to use it in a ventilated location or have ventilation. Yep, laser cutting it is a bad idea. I’m just curious of the other properties, if it is similar to ABS when printing as far as shrinkage, etc. One material I would love to be able to use is PP, but I think that will be a nightmare.

The melting temp is around 250-260 degrees , so it’s comparable with abs.
What temp does a laser have for cutting ?


The problem with laser cutting is that you know you will be breaking it down, which produces potentially bad stuff, see page 3 here: http://www.plasticsmadesimple.com/DataSheets/PET_MSDS.pdf

@simon_litwan1 has experimented with PET, shredding and separating paper from PET pieces, if he actually fed the filament extruder he is working on I don’t recall - perhaps he can reply himself.

I’m not 100% sure what they print, but they definitely have vast experience with this or at least an educated opinion about it: http://www.perpetualplasticproject.com/Perpetual_Plastic_Project/Project.html

I’d like to run some shredded bottles through my extruder at some point - the only problem is that almost all PET bottles are marked up with 15€ct Pfand, which makes them a very uneconomical source of PET :frowning:

Looks like the Perpetual Plastic project used PLA drink ware for stock.

In HK, we have no deposit on plastic bottles, which makes it a very cheap source.

I am also curious about polystyrene, cd case and bic razor are made of the stuff and thermoplastic properties similar to abs.

I’ve recently done some printing with high-impact polystyrene. It performs similarly to ABS, less a few quirks that I haven’t yet taken the time to iron out. The interesting thing about it is that it dissolves nicely in limonene, making it useful as a support material that is much easier to print with than PVA.

I’m also curious about that. I’m not sure why it never came up before in products I worked on. One interesting property is that it is easier to make optically clear.

Also polystyrene is no very biodegradable so recycling it would be nice. And limonene is renewable as a solvent. It could be distilled at home from oranges if you have some since of adventure. I am curious about other properties of it but for now it seems really useful.

I’m using PETG which is slightly different. Lower melting point, more flexible.