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Remelting Plastics Answered

Has anyone experienced remelting plastics from around the house/recycling bin in order to cast objects? After reading about the backyardfoundry for aluminun and such, I realized that I'm much more interested in plastic and casting plastic parts and art things. Also, it could be cheap and plentiful. I have the moldmaking knowledge for aluminun and bronze but want a plastic medium for the casting material so I can work at home/backyard without the foundry equipment.

Tags:Plastic

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wocket (author)2008-06-14

I did a plastics workshop in jewllery making earlier this year. number 2 and 4 plastics are the easyest to melt at about 185 celcius, keep it in the oven for about twn mins on either a flt surface or over the top of what you want to cast (plaster works best. ...but don't do it in your own oven! We're talking higly toxic fumes and particles being released into a small space. Prefperably use an old oven outside when it's windy.

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wocket (author)wocket2008-06-14

opps, that should read ten mins. And you can layer plsatic bags within a vice of two peices of WD40'ed metal and make thicker plastic slabs with multiple colours running through them!

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Weissensteinburg (author)2008-05-31

There were a few instructables on making a plastic vacuum molder. He used sections from empty milk jugs for it.

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Victoria J (author)2008-05-31

There are instructables re. vacuum formers - this was the first one I foundthis was the first one I found - and it links to other similar projects.

Would you be able to cut a plastic bottle down the sides and use that in a vacuum press ?

I was looking for similar information - I remember reading about a project where someone was dissolving plastic bottles and using that as a low tech way to help form artificial limbs in the third world. I can google up enough information to show I didn't imagine the project - yet everything I find about techniques for recycling household bottles says you can't do it without hi tech equipment.

I'm hoping to try the potato plastic though.

Victoria J

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Bug2k (author)2008-05-28

Thank you for the two ibles, the comment I found there have some helpful ideas. I leaning towards trying something with a pressure cooker.. after an open pot test of some sort. Also, the comment about softening point is well-taken. I may need a vacuum device to force the mold to fill. That could limit the degree of detail I suppose... Here's another question: Is anyone clever enough to know how to produce a type of "two part" resin and catalyst out of common materials? Of course, there is anyways concrete/cement, a wonderfull material, but I'm looking to branch out-

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Bug2k (author)2008-05-27

I saw a tv show once which showed how a kayak is rotomolded from small pellets inside a hot metal mold. I believe that was polypropylene - the stuff poly fleece is made from. Any one have story about melting a poly fleece jacket too close to the campfire for instance?

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NachoMahma (author)Bug2k2008-05-27

. I think the problem is that most plastics around the house do not flow together when heated without quite a bit of pressure. You can't just melt some on the stove and pour it into a mold. A lot of plastics have "softening points", not melting points.

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NachoMahma (author)2008-05-27

. There is an older post on the same subject. IIRC, the gist of the replies was that most plastics you find around the house are very difficult to impossible for a DIYer to recycle.

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