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Yet Another Composite Filament Idea: Reflectivity

A 3D print containing reflective plastic being illuminated

A 3D print containing reflective plastic being illuminated

Taiwan-based BotFeeder has launched a new “reflective” 3D printer filament on Indiegogo.

It’s always amazing to me to see the ingenuity in the development of startling new plastic filaments. You’d think you’re just getting plastic on a spool, but various companies have developed and deployed flexible, glow-in-the-dark, metallic, wooden, and even coffee filaments. Truly clear filament seems to be still elusive, but BotFeeder’s new “reFilactive” filament product demonstrates something totally new: reflectivity. 

It’s actually a very simple product: they’ve mixed selective particles with standard PLA plastic. The twist is that objects printed in this material shine brightly when you cast a light on them.

The implication is that you can now 3D print reflectors to be used on bikes, signs, warning tracks, doorways and more. Here’s the video:The material has a stone-like texture when printed, and in fact is actually LESS visible when not in direct light. But when it is, look out! 

This filament is not something you’d be printing all objects with. No, this filament is more of an accessory for those moments when you have the specific need to print reflective objects. 

As such it’s another tool you should include in your 3D print materials arsenal. 

BotFeeder’s campaign provides a wide variety of sizes to choose from, but the “regular” quantity is 2 x 250g spools for USD$80. That’s definitely a premium price at USD$160 per kg, but again, it’s a specialty filament that you won’t use very much of. 

Via Indiegogo

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