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Topic Tag: heatable

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I think a lot of biodegradable materials work the same: They need heat, pressure and a way for water to evaporate. So the plan is to build a stand-alone machine that is able to process a lot different raw materials. A heatable mould might be an important part for this machine. 
Building a Heatable Mould Designing a mould that can be heated up by itself allows us to keep it hot throughout the time we are producing stuff with it. That’s handy, since biomaterials don’t need to cool down to harden and enables us to produce many objects in a short time (The bowls take around 2 minutes for example). Moreover it saves energy by only heating up what really needs to be hot and nothing else. We designed our moulds in Fusion360 (a free program for students and small businesses), got used aluminium blocks from the scrapyard (cost us 3€/kg) and CNC-cut them with the great help of @friedrich and his self-built CNC. In addition to the two parts of the mould, we also cut some aluminium cases to attach a old kitchen stove hotplate to each side, as our heating elements. You might be able to make these from other materials than aluminium as well though. Moreover we changed the hotplates a little bit by taking them apart and cutting a hole in the middle. We did this to transport the pressure through the hotplate onto the mould, rather than squeezing the hotplate while pressing it. Since most hotplates have a thinner steel part in the center, it wasn’t to hard to cut this part out.After drilling holes through the cases and tapping threats into the mould, we attached the hotplates to the mould parts. Moreover we attached the insulation to the mould which you can find out more about here. Last we connected everything to a PID Controller like in most of the other machines, hooked the sensor up to one half of the mould and connected it to the power.
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