Abstract

The Michigan furniture industry produces >150 tons/day of wood-based waste that can be upcycled into a wood–polymer composite (WPC). This study investigated the viability of using furniture waste as a feedstock for 3-D printer filament to produce furniture components. The process involves grinding and milling board scraps made of both LDF-MDF-LDF (where LDF is light-density fill and MDF is medium-density fill) and melamine-particleboard-paper impregnated with phenolic resins, premixing wood-based powder with the biopolymer polylactic acid, extruding twice through open source recyclebots to fabricate homogeneous 3-D printable WPC filament, and printing with open source fused filament fabrication–based 3-D printers. The results indicate that there is a significant opportunity for waste-based composite WPCs to be used as 3-D printing filament.

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