WillowFlex: Flexible, Friendly Filament

By on August 16th, 2015 in materials

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Berlin-based BioInspiration has produced a new flexible 3D printer filament that has an unusual property: it’s compostable. 

This filament, WillowFlex, can be considered environmentally friendly, as it will decompose after use. It’s made from non-GMO corn starch and has passed both EU EN 13432 and USA ASTM D6400 compostability standards. So, it’s official. 

The target market for the company’s filaments is environmentally sensitive locations such as schools, which often do not have suitable ventilation for using in-room 3D printers, particularly if they are printing with smelly ABS plastic. WillowFlex is said to have very little aroma when heated. 

The company hopes to build on their current crowdfunding campaign by adding a series of non-flexible, but similarly environmentally friendly filaments in the near future. 

We’ve begun to see a series of new 3D printing materials that specifically address the environmentally friendly market. Evidently someone’s realized that after a few years of owning a 3D printer, your shelves begin to fill with far too many plastic dragons. All of this must be dealt with somehow, and BioInspiration believes it can be done with composting. 

But for now, the best way to get some of this unusual printing material is to head to their Kickstarter page, where you can order various quantities and sizes of WillowFlex. You can get a 300g sample spool for €26 (USD$29), or up to five 1Kg spools for €365 (USD$406, or about USD$81 per kg). 

Via BioInspiration and Kickstarter

By Kerry Stevenson

Kerry Stevenson, aka "General Fabb" has written over 8,000 stories on 3D printing at Fabbaloo since he launched the venture in 2007, with an intention to promote and grow the incredible technology of 3D printing across the world. So far, it seems to be working!