Introducing your 2020 Ultimaker Innovators

Ian Falconer

Founder, Fishy Filaments – Cornwall, UK


Fishy Filaments is an innovator in production of recycled materials for 3D printing. The Cornwall, UK-based company produces 100% recycled Nylon 6 filament from used fishing nets.

“We live next to the sea and can see the immediate impacts of all our activities on the shoreline, with persistent litter of all kinds and an increasing issue with plastics – but an overarching issue of climate change,” Ian Falconer, Fishy Filaments’ founder, says. “In common with many coastal areas, our region is quite remote from industrial centres, so we set out to develop a recycling method at the right scale to bring waste plastics produced locally back into a second use locally.”

Soon-to-be recycled fishing nets
Soon-to-be recycled fishing nets

The logic behind Fishy Filaments creation stems from the idea that a truly sustainable business model could be developed only by reducing the carbon impact of manufacturing. As such, Fishy Filaments’ process has been shown to enable carbon reductions of 97-98% compared to that of virgin nylons.

Ian and the Fishy Filaments team is currenty in the process of bringing its first product to market - Porthcurno, a single source blend that can be traced back to polymer synthesis.

As it progresses, I see the 3D printing industry increasing focus on sustainability, not simply in materials, but in the business models that 3D printing can enable through local delivery and high-quality, personalized solutions.

Discover more Ultimaker Innovators