Interview with Tyler McNaney
Founder @ Filabot, Forbes 30 Under 30

Our equipment enables the cost-effective extrusion of custom filaments and is deployed to recycle 3D printer waste into new material. Filabot is committed to developing ecologically responsible and sustainable solutions for the 3D printer market.
How has being nominated for the Forbes 30 Under 30 list influenced your career?
Being nominated for Forbes 30 Under 30 has been a definitely interesting experience. Really thankful for the opportunity to be on the list. It's really been the team and us all working together to build the products and the systems that are needed in the world. So while the award does have my name on it, or the recognition of the nomination it's really the team who's built this and allowed this amazing opportunity to happen. So as we move forward, I think it will be a great foot in the door to companies that need help recycling plastic and really expanding on our influence and impact that we're trying to meet.
Who are the main clients of Filabot? How do you conduct client outreach?
Our main clients are customers who need a creative filament that doesn't exist in the market, a filament that certain properties out of work for their specific application, whether it's a medical or has different properties such as a wear or abrasion resistance. Companies that have a base material, that's in pellet form or shavings can use our systems and convert it into the feedstock for 3D printers. As we've developed our hardware further to recycle more plastics, we've seen a lot more customers who are focused on utilizing our systems for recycling plastics, waste plastics into the feedstock so that they can close the loop on plastic.
How has the 3D printing industry changed since Filabot was founded in 2012?
3D printing has changed a lot since 2012, printers have come down to a price point that is really accessible to anyone. We've seen an expansion of materials, to some really neat materials that allow for some really neat printing applications, flexible materials, electrically conductive materials that really expand what 3D printers can do. So let's change and that's really been down to the price point and then the materials that are available to 3D printing users.
From idea to prototype to factory, how long did it take to establish Filabot?
From idea to prototype it took about two and a half years for us to figure out how to build our systems. It was right after a Kickstarter campaign when we realized OK we have these 67 systems it's probably time to go and build them. So we went and built them, and we had to make dozens of different changes, dozens of redesigns but we finally had something in the end. Those two and a half years and then we were able to move to the factory. Onboarding onto the factory or giving it off to our assembly company. It was a very simple process once we did have our design nailed down.
Could you please introduce Filabot and what led to your founding the company?
Hello, I'm Tyler from Filabot. Filabot is a company that builds closed-loop recycling systems that allow people to take waste plastic and into the feedstock for 3D printers. It's found around that simple idea in 2011 and since then we've been developing our hardware to work with the widest range of plastics so we can recycle and reuse plastic that's littering the environment.
What's next for Filabot, as well as your own career?
What's next for Filabot? The next thing for Filabot is customer outreach. We're really excited to go out into the world with our systems and see how our customers are using our systems to recycle waste plastic. We're really excited to see what it's like. You know how do you take a plastic off a beach and turn it into something useful. How do you process it through our system then 3D print it into something useful? How do you close that loop? So we're really excited about that. As for my own career, I hope I can continue doing what I'm doing and be inspired and wake up every day ready to tackle a problem and solve our mission. Our mission of utilizing the widest range of plastic.