precious plastic

a project by dave hakkens

The Full story

Plastic is one of the most precious materials on earth. It’s lightweight, strong, easy to shape and great to recycle. But it’s seen as a disposable and worthless material, it’s cheap, produced in enormous quantities and shipped all over the world. Of all the plastic we use only 10% is recycled. Mainly because the machines that produce plastic products are expensive, extremely complex and are used very efficient to keep costs low. Working with recycled plastic runs the risk of damaging/polluting machines, which might slow down their production process.

I have developed a series of machines to set up a small scale plastic workshop. The machinery is based on industry standards but designed to build yourself, easy to use and made to work with recycled plastic. You can bring your old plastic to a workshop like this, new products will be made and sold. Like a carpenter or a ceramist, it is now possible to produce plastic locally.

This project is still in progress, I will continue with this and further develop machines and  set up an online community. My goal was to share all the blueprints online by now, but due to my other project Phonebloks haven’t found the time to do this yet. But stay tuned, they will come!


  1. Awesome, keep it up.

  2. can we buy these machines from you? how much they cost? can you provide full information about their uses, etc.?

  3. Keep up the good work :), looking forward to the build instructions.

  4. Hi Dave. Nice work, and very well communicated to. If you consider to hit the road, I would love to host a workshop in September, where you rebuild a full line of your machines together with a team of my design students from the Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen. Skype: Erazmataz. Phone +45 41701887. Hope to hear from you, and I’m looking forward to see you blueprints. Need a helping hand with that?

  5. Great work. If you succeed in making this opensource that will be a great contribution to the world. Thanks for helping changing it!

  6. This is great, I am very excited to see the blueprints, I have a million ideas swimming in my head already. Do you have any thoughts or suggestions to be able to produce transparent films for purposes like greenhouses, or even corrugated acrylic? The machine looks simple and elegant, great work! Thank you for your skills and generosity.

  7. Great project!
    Won’t it be great to make this work for a 3d-printer. I’ve got a vision in wich everybody has a 3d-printer and one of your ”plastic recycle in raw material” machines at home.

  8. Actually interesting comparison, you bring up the fact
    so pass.

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