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Extruder Development V4

Nate Chandler cymek

Extruder Development V4

30/10/2018 at 00:51

Hello Plastic Precious Community!

My name is Nate Chandler, I will be working for PP V4 in Eindhoven until January. My teammate in this effort is Dutch engineer – @Peter-Bas.

We are working to continue the development of the extrusion machine;
building on the research that the rest of the community has already contributed.

Our material research will be populated on this spreadsheet, which is similar to mathijsstroober’s beam research.

The development plan is going to hit different points, some highlights:

Plastic Preparation – sieve granule size, how will this affect our material output.

Material Testing – MFI (Melt flow index), Tensile testing, HDT / Vicat (Thermo/mechanical properties), and compression capacity.

Dies / Molds – 25MM Square tubing, 25MM pipe, 50MM square tubing,
channel / unistrut, Brick 100x100x300mm, and experimenting with large injection molds. Currently we are using a 15mm NPT pipe fitting for beam extrusion.

–   Nozzle Size – 1mm – 8mm, This will be upgraded to a custom milled part(s).
A >1mm tri hole for fabric / thread(?)
Square nozzle, made by modified phillips(cross-head) bolt.

Performance Monitoring – Adding pressure / heat sensors, this should give us a better perspective on what our speed / heat settings are producing.

Motor – Replacing the current 2.2Kw Motor for a 3Kw motor with higher RPM potential.

Continuous Beam Extrusion Water cooling jacket R+D.

Ergonomics – Variable speed control through the use of a TIG welding pedal / Sewing pedal setup. Temperature controller placement.

These additions / upgrades are directed towards more efficient material output, and ease of machine use for product design.

An area I am particularly interested in are the problems our community is facing when it comes to constructing the extrusion machine. I am eager to hear / field some questions.

Stay tuned!

42 replies
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01/11/2018 at 23:48

Can’t wait to hear how the Thread Extrusion Tests come out. I’m interested in turning plastic trash into new fabrics, garments, and textile products.

02/11/2018 at 00:39

Hi, I have start to build a extrusion machine but the hardest problem for me is to find the right tube (barrel) , I have a 26 mm drill screw and I need to know how the internal diameter could be to work well, 26.1, 26.3, 27? Are you using the 25.7 mm extruder screw with 26.. Tube? Thank youin advance for your answer

02/11/2018 at 19:28

I will stay here to learn, thy for your work!!!!!

13/11/2018 at 13:07



I am interested in helping remotely from here in the Philippines.


Currently building one extruder.  This makes it number 3 that I have built.  Number four extruder is already in the pipeline with parts ordered from China.


I have a full machine shop/sheet metal shop to use.


3 lathes, Hartford mill, 4x8foot CNC plasma, TIG, MIG welding, and a engineer.


I am interested in your thought process and experiences about the motor sizes as well as the extrusion process.


machine number 1 used half horse motor, and belt drive reduction on a Makita auger bit.


Machine number two used a 1.5hp motor, and 50:1 china gearbox with auger bit.

Machine number 3 is upgraded to the extrusion screw, and nicer control box along with 3 zones of heat.


Machine number 4, I was planning on a 1hp 3 phase Sumitomo gear motor (20:1 ratio) with a inverter.


I now am wondering if I need to go larger.  I do have larger motors available, and am unsure if this will be worth it?


you can contact me via facebook at


16/11/2018 at 07:23

still trying to contact you guys.


I turned on a v3 machine with the upgrade screw today.  It seemed that the 1.5 hp motor was struggling a  little bit at 50:1 gear ratio.


It was running 3 zones heat.  HDPE with straight temperature profile 205c all the way thru.

Starting another extrusion machine next week with the upgrade Sumitomo motor.  You think 2hp is enough or should I go with 3hp?


Also the small shaft size of 12mm is concerning to me on the screw.


I have it connected with a impact wrench deep well socket, and impact wrench extension used as the shafting.


However I think that I should change to a proper 20mm or 25mm motor shafting (or imperial size) with a keyway.


What is your thoughts?


16/11/2018 at 08:49

https://www.facebook.com/bt.metz/videos/1929323337137084/  video in operation

22/11/2018 at 11:54

hi, have done updated CAD design on the extrusion screw.  I would like to submit it…  Anyone out there?

22/11/2018 at 13:14

Hello Everyone!

I will do a photo dump here in a few days of how things are looking / any updates we have.

In the mean time I can answer your questions, thank you for your patience.

@ fabirihotmail-com
– The extrusion screw we have is 23mm, and the barrel ID is 24.

@ btmetz
– Glad to hear you have a well equipped shop / are pumping out machines.
We just upgraded to a much larger motor, but for V3 we had a 1.5Kw motor, or about 2HP. Max RPM at 50Hz was 138.

This setup handled everything fairly well. Beams were a little slow, but no issues with filling molds until we tried large beam fills (110MM x 110MM).

We now have put the same extrusion screw setup on a larger motor, 3Kw…
Max RPM is 400 at 60Hz, though we will not be extruding anything at that speed.

Key way is the way to go. The old setup was extrusion screw to coupling > coupling to 24MM key way shaft. Now it is the same, but we have the 24MM key way shaft coupled to the new motor, which has a slightly larger key way shaft. We use a jaw coupler for this.

Sit tight on the CAD drawing, I will find the best email for you to shoot it over to, and then we can discuss further.

Take it easy in the mean time, and goodluck with the build!

22/11/2018 at 13:29

thats a lot of RPM.  Is that with HDPE?  last machine was with a 35rpm speed and increased the heaters to 7 vs the PP 4 heater bands.


I noticed some bits of unmelted plastic coming out of the extrusion at this slow speed.  I am using virgin HDPE for melt tests as it was free donation.


Next machine using a Sumitomo 3 phase 3hp with 20:1 gearbox which should run at 87rpm although with the inverter I can run it higher.


I also have a 10:1 sumitomo available same 3 phase motor.


You guys think I should go with which one?  getting towards crunch time as I have to mount the motors monday, and send to paint department.


I will use the 12mm shaft unit this time but future builds I need better.


found a quick and dirty way of connecting the shafting.  I use a deep well 12mm impact wrench socket and half inch drive extension turned down to 3/4 inch thru the flange bearing to the chain flex coupler.


Although next unit really want a proper shaft with keyway.


Do you have numbers on kilos per hour output with your machine?


Also have you thought about dies for pipe, some cheap irrigation grade water pipe would be awesome made from scrap HDPE.


Final note, have you sectioned your extruded output and checked for air bubbles?  Speaking to the local engineering plastic guy, he informed me that he previously bought recycled HDPE rod from China but it had bubbles so he switched to virgin stuff from Korea.  HDPE engineering plastic is a very sellable product for the small producers.  Maybe more so than art stuff.



22/11/2018 at 13:41

Both PP and HDPE, however, HDPE was not shrinking as much, and was breaking molds. Continuous extrusion development has been going along well, so we hope to have tackled that small issue.

Were are still getting numbers for kilo output, but Mattias sheet I previously linked has some handy information for extrusion times / beam sizes that you could get that from.

I think either motor is a fine choice, really whatever you want to part with.

Still working on air bubbles. If you have very fine shredded plastic going in (1 – 3MM) and no pause in material flow (power shortage, materials gets stuck going into barrel from hopper) we get limited / no air bubbles.

28/11/2018 at 21:38

Hi do you have already some pictures?
Let’s say at the beginning ng only from your workplace…

02/12/2018 at 19:02

Hello Everyone!

I am happy to see lots of interest in the current development. This last month has been spent working on upgrading the machine with a new motor 1.8KW >> 3KW, and trying to develop continuous extrusion with water cooling.

Originally when we were doing beam extrusions, we were using 3 meter lengths, and waiting for the plastic to cool before being able to slide it out of the mold.

These days we are using a water pump system which sprays cold water on the entire mold, and slightly slower speeds, to be able to continuously extrude out of the mold without taking it off the machine.

This has had varied success, with 30x30MM square tubing it works well, and produces smooth beams after the inital 1/2 a meter or so.

When you try to move up towards 50x50MM the material becomes to thick to cool the center (the plastic flows through the center and hits the walls over and over as it fills the beam mold) and fails as soon as it reaches the end of the mold.

So maybe water cooling is not the option. This is where our new setup comes in.

The new motor has a higher gear ratio, so we are able to get much faster output. At max speed, we are turning the extrusion screw at 440 RPM. We are outputting material into molds at that rate.

This has resulted in filling meter long lenths of 65MM round tubing in 10-15 minutes. They weigh in at 9 kilos.

With larger mold filling at high speed, we are not water cooling. We wait for the mold to fill, then stop the machine for about 10 minutes, then turn it back on; The new material pushes out the now cooled material, and we can just pull it out after a few seconds. This makes workflow easy, as there is no water, and no need to pull the mold off of the machine.

Thats all for now, see y’all soon!

03/12/2018 at 02:36

have you sectioned the output at the higher speeds to determine the presence of bubbles?


Is this with HDPE?  I am very interested in seeing if the output would be suitable for use as a engineering plastic for use on a lathe and mill.

Second, when working with a filastruder, I came up with a idea of using a e3d cold end with a teflon insert as the die.  Basically the die would be teflon and the cooling would be via a heat sink and fan.

Looking forward to seeing your results.  My own 2.2kw extrusion machine will be done in the next few days.  Some delays as I had to go out of town and train the precious plastic setup in another town last week.


Here is the link to my revised screw file with the bigger shaft.  I did not add in the keyway.


https://www.dropbox.com/sh/4449oapi94esoco/AAAG8J4nbZd67mPrs-fsSgOga?dl=0  Sorry no layout drawing…





03/12/2018 at 04:43

got in the shop this morning.  took a couple photos of progress since last week when I was out of the shop.


This unit is getting the current extrusion screw design.


The coupler is a 12mm deep well impact wrench socket with a collar on it to make it stronger.

The shafting connecting to the socket is a impact wrench extension turned down to 16mm


As you can see the bigger 3hp motor (2.2kw)




05/12/2018 at 18:05

@cymek Do you have a video? for the process please share to me!!!!

17/12/2018 at 17:35


Nice! looking good / nice fix for the screw coupling, makes sense. We have essentially the same thing (hex hole) but with some set screws, just to make sure.

We have sectioned every beam we produce to check out the inside. We have mixed results, but this can be the product of many different variables, such as plastic used (because beams require bulk amounts, we use what we can get, this is sometimes mixed material / material that has non plastic things in it), speed is another variable, as is heat and pressure.

But pressure in my opinion is the greatest factor. If you can put resistance on the plastic as it forms in the mold, you get less air bubbles. We just use a wood plunger that fits the mold, and hang weights on the tail that sticks out.

17/12/2018 at 17:42

Update to whole thread: I am working with talented designer / maker from South Africa – Tim Slab

He will be populating a topic on extruder products with all the things we are making.

Here is the link:


28/12/2018 at 13:10

Great to see these updates. The power rating of the motors you’re using is much higher than the 375W that was in the old designs; this makes me think that it would be worth considering using the same motor as the shredder.
I’m almost finished making a shredder with a 2.5kW single phase motor (based on this post http://onearmy.world/community/forums/topic/shredder-bulid-idea/ )
If you’re now using a 2.2kW motor for the extrusion machine then I’m thinking I could save money, resources and shipping weight by using the same motor for both. Of course, the energy consumption will be a little higher, but from what you’re saying, it sounds like the productivity of the machine increases too. Unless anyone here can see a flaw in this approach I’ll crack on and let you know how it goes…

29/12/2018 at 16:36

Hey @ewanenj!

I am a big fan of having one motor for both machines. Would you think up some easy detachable coupling method? Or have a transmission turn both things at once?

I could see this being very annoying, but if you have a small space / motor budget, maybe it makes sense.

02/01/2019 at 18:29

mybe you can use a hidraulic join!!! for use one motor for 2 machines.. mybe.. y can’t probe !!! in spanish its called “manchon hidraulico”

02/01/2019 at 23:40

Thanks cymek. For my project I’m planning to transport the machines for the UK to Uganda, so saving weight and size is very helpful.
I’m thinking through some different options to use the same motor for both the shredder and the extruder. My current plan is to use a very simple gear box with 3 gears, one on the main axel, one on the drill and a third in between then which can be moved in and out of alignment with the other 2. This would start and stop the extruder. To star and stop the shredder I’m thinking about sliding the shredder box (possibly on drawer runners) back and forth to engage and disenegage with the main axle. It should be possible to connect the shredder box to the middle gear so that it is not possible to have both machines running at the same time. I’m not sure if that is desirable or not.
I wondered about using a bike chain rather than gears, but I suspect that the torque would be enough to stretch or possibly snap the chain?
To connect the shredder to the axle I’d imagined something like the “manchon hidraulico” but I don’t know the english term for them (does anyone here know?). My plan is to make amould for one so I can make it on the injection machine. The idea behnd this is:
1) I can design the connetor to break at a given torque so that the shredder doesn’t break.
2) If/when it breaks I can make another one with the injection machine.

07/01/2019 at 23:58

OK, so “manchon hidraulico” in english is “jaw coupling” (the literal translation from spanish comes out as “hydraulic stain”). Anyway, from what I can tell, they aren’t designed to be used as a clutch (pleae correct me if I’m wrong about this). I guess they might be OK if the machine was stopped each time they were engaged or disengaged…. Any thoughts?
This video shows something that would work well, but I can’t find anyone selling these, so I’d have to make it from scratch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z93j7EaOV6Y Does this mechnaims have a name? It’d kinda like a dog clutch I think.

08/01/2019 at 00:00

OK, so “manchon hidraulico” in english is “jaw coupling” (the literal translation from spanish comes out as “hydraulic stain”). Anyway, from what I can tell, they aren’t designed to be used as a clutch (pleae correct me if I’m wrong about this). I guess they might be OK if the machine was stopped each time they were engaged or disengaged…. Any thoughts?
This video shows something that would work well, but I can’t find anyone selling these, so I’d have to make it from scratch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z93j7EaOV6Y Does this mechnaims have a name? It’s kinda like a dog clutch I think.

08/01/2019 at 19:40

I need to make time to check in here more often. It’s exciting to see your efforts towards continuous output extrusion, this will be an important improvement.

I started building a water-cooled beam mold as well but haven’t had the time to complete and test it. Rather than drip cooling I made a jacket through which water can be circulated.  I wasn’t sure whether I was on the right track but your results are encouraging.
I’d be happy to share any information with you on the machines I have been building, if that would be helpful.  Feel free to send me a message.

Keep up the good work!

11/01/2019 at 14:48

I have found this design of an extruder head for PVC Pipe .
I think this is something what we are looking for

here is the link to 3d file : https://drive.google.com/open?id=1l7LEAG41lSeJOvc44x8T490YhYfEEkLa

take care

18/02/2019 at 08:42

i used that system for my sawmill carriage. It can be replicate at any scale and can move 2 machines with 1 motor. very eficient and easy to make

18/02/2019 at 17:57

Hello everyone, sadly @cymek has had to return to the US of A. The main man working on development of the extrusion machine is now @peter-bas, who has been making some improvements to monitor the machine.

If you’re curious to see or have any ideas / suggestions with regards to the  techniques – check out these topics:

Extrusion Moulds
Beam Production

15/05/2019 at 14:41

Extruder Development V4


Hello Everyone,

My name is Vincent, mechanical engineer just arrived 2 months ago in PP V4. I am working currently with dutch engineer @peter-bas on the extruder V4.(Nate @Cymek left for PP pilots in Maldives).

The current V2 extruder has been designed with an emphasis on low-cost to build, ease of finding parts and basic tools. The extruder V4 will be designed with an emphasis on reliability, predictability in function and build quality in mind.

15/05/2019 at 14:50

The current extruder is built with a 3kW motor, a screw speed controller and an exchangeable nozzle to have various output orifices.

The goal in this phase is to determine the required temperatures, speeds and other processing parameters to optimize the melt quality and extruder output. We also want to size the geometry of the nozzle through different orifice size (6-8-10-12mm) and see the output and quality on different orifice on the nozzle.
For at least a month and a half we made test by extruding beams 40X40 mm with different orifice size on the nozzle . Around 120 beams (60 PP/60PS) made with the famous @timslab.

We will finish, group all we got, and then introduce you the results we got at the end.

So stay tuned 😉

15/05/2019 at 15:52

To build the V4 extruder, a bit more knowledge and experience will be required in machine building, but should still be able to be done by the majority of machine shops worldwide. The tools required to make the extruder V4:

– Conventional lathe (up to 100 mm stock size, +/- 1m between the centers)
– Conventional milling machine Metric taps (M4 up to M12)
– Metric pipe tap (G1/4)
– Basic hand tools
– Welding machine Brazing torch (acetylene or similar)
– Bending machine

The outline of the extruder V4 will be:

– New Screw ⌀30 mm
– Bigger Hopper
– Cooling zone for the hopper and two parts barrel to avoid melting in the hopper.

I am eager to hear / field some questions. Tell us about what you think about the outline and the tools required to make the extruder V4.

See you soon fellow PP Community 🙂

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