You can’t just use any type of wood for, say, 3D printing services (supposing your business is involved in additive manufacturing work). As of this writing, we don’t have the technology yet that will help turn DLP resin printers into or add wood to this type of material.
While an FDM-type filament printer does utilize implanted wood filament, you can use this type of filament with an FDM printer. Find a place where you can get wood filament and then just purchase it along with your usual PLA filament.
Wood filament is often a blend of at least 25% wood fiber and PLA plastic that has been extruded into a filament. It is compatible with FDM filament printers in the same way as PLA is.
The finished product is strikingly similar to genuine wood. You can drill through it, sand it, cut it, or stain it exactly like real wood. The higher the wood-to-PLA ratio, the more challenging it is to print, but the more wood-like the object becomes.
While it is composed of wood fiber and PLA, it is not entirely composed of either. You will need to tweak your printer’s settings to print with wood filament.
Can You Recycle Wood Filament?
The vast majority of wood filament is recyclable. You may want to verify this with the manufacturer’s notes if you want to be certain, but the things it prints out and the filament made from it are generally biodegradable and recyclable. Certainly, this makes the wood biodegradable, as is the PLA filament that makes up the majority of the filament.
Although items printed with the material are not likely to compost right away because the material has a slow decomposition property, it is suitable for inclusion in recycling garbage for up to two years.
Since PLA is also reusable on its own, you may include it in your recycling as well. ABS is a real plastic material that will not decay, yet it is also recyclable. However, returning to the wood filament, there are no issues.
While an item printed with a wood filament will need a considerable amount of time to disintegrate in the environment. However, it will degrade when exposed to the elements, like snow or rain cycles, and UV rays.
Wood Filament, Are They Food Safe?
No, wood filament-printed goods are not food-safe. The wood may capture and absorb food items, as well as organic liquids. If this happens, they tend to settle beneath the surface, enveloped by the PLA plastic.
PLA accounts for more than 50%, but in some cases this would rise to 80% of the wood/PLA composite, indicating that the organic material can deteriorate below the surface of the object.
Therefore, please refrain from printing anything for use in the kitchen, like a new salad bowl. Rather than that, focus on working on ornamental items or practical, non-food things.
This filament is suitable for use in sculptures, light switch plates, cabinet door knobs, or wood-look objects. If you happen to own a business offering 3D printing services, food serving tongs, plates, cups, bowls, cutlery, or jugs are all inappropriate uses for this material.