A spare room to tow behind a (narrow)boat or leave at a mooring or garden

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Pod Boats for sustainability and recycling

Pod Boats are designed to minimise the wastage during build and maintenance, while also seeking to best facilitate recycling.


The majority of the structure of Pod Boats is made from Aluminium alloy.
Aluminium is widely recycled and 80% of any aluminium sourced in general will be recycled content.
The aluminium used can therefore also be easily recycled at the end of its useful life.
Some metal parts (nuts and bolts) are not made from aluminium but are made from steel or stainless steel and can similarly be recycled.
Coefficient of thermal expansion 21-24m/(mC)
Density = 2.7-2.83 g/cm3 (both pure and common alloys)


Plywood sheets used for fitting out the inside are standard industrial sustainable products and can be recycled through local facilities or natural processes.
Coefficient of thermal expansion 3 - 30m/(mC) (along and across grain)
Density = 0.2 - 1.4 g/cm3


There are many different types of plastic, with several types of plastic used in Pod Boats. Plastics are divided into thermo-set (resins) and thermoplastic.
Thermoset parts can't be reshaped into new moulds without mechanically breaking the original shapes and/or adding new resin to fill the gaps.
Insulation board (PU or PIR) is a thermoset resin. This type of insulation is chosen because it does not allow water (liquid or vapour) to pass through it which also makes it good for buoyancy.

Thermoplastics come in many types and can be identified by their recycling code.
Thermoplastics can be changed into new shapes by melting them into new moulds or melting them while pushing them through an extrusion process.
Mixed plastics are difficult to recycle as the different plastics have different melting temperatures and other properties.
Some products (such as recycled "lumber") make use of mixed recycled plastic or plastics that are otherwise difficult to recycle (such as 6-PS Polystyrene and 4 - LDPE).
This recycled "lumber" is often used to make benches and in marine environments to protect surfaces and vessels from impact.
Pod Boats is working with the local Precious Plastic community to increase the recycling of plastic and the use of recycled plastic products.

1 - PET

Polyethylene Terephthalate
Hard/weather resistant and clear or opaque. Commonly used for fizzy drinks bottles.
Also available in a variety of variations.
PET is known as Polyester in the textile industry, and also labelled as PETE or previously as PETP.
Glass transition temperature (aka softening) Tg=67-81C
Melting point Tm=260C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 20-80m/(mC)
Density = 1.3-1.4g/cm3

Known variations:

2 - HDPE

High Density Polythene.
Commonly used plastic for milk bottles, bottle lids, boxes and toys.
Pod Boats is looking at using HDPE parts and HDPE 3D printing. Widely recycled.
Crystallization point Tc=111.9C
Melting point Tm=130.8C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 100-200m/(mC)
Density = 0.94-0.97 g/cm3

3 - PVC

Polyvinyl Chloride aka Vinyl.
Third most widely used. commonly used for electrical insulation, gloves. Environmental controls are key at any site where it is made or processed.
The monomer (short chains used in polymerisation) is a known carcinogen.
Dioxins and HCl are released in use/if burnt due to the chlorine present.
Many additives are used to change the properties including for UV light stabilisation (uPVC) to make weather resistant windows and doors
Glass transition temperature (aka softening) Tg=82C
Melting point Tm=100-260C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 54-110m/(mC)
Density = 1.3-1.5 g/cm3

4 - LDPE

Low Density Polythene.
Typically used for plastic bags and (stretchy) sheet/film.
Side branches on the polymer decrease its strength and density compared to HDPE.
Methane and ethylene (both greenhouse gasses) are released as it breaks down in sunlight. LDPE break up/down more easily than HDPE
Melting point Tm=105-115C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 100-200m/(mC)
Density = 0.917-0.930 g/cm3 (above 0.930 g/cm3 is HDPE).

5 - PP

Polypropylene (aka polypropene)
Often used in packaging (including bottle caps) and labelling as well as in engineering.
Melting point Tm=130-171C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 72-90m/(mC)
Density = 0.895 - 0.92 g/cm3

6 - PS

Often used to make EPS - Expended polystyrene for packaging..
Environmental controls required regarding the styrene monomer.
(Expanded) corn starch based packaging is a very good alternative to EPS, this alternative dissolves harmlessly in water.
Melting point Tm=240C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 70m/(mC)
Density = 1.04-1.05 g/cm3

9 - ABS

Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene.
Often used for containers, toys (including Lego) and for 3D printing,
Recyclable, but not widely.
A variable mix of the three ingredients in the name. ABS decomposes into the constituent three ingredients at 400C (including known and possible carcinogens)
Glass transition temperature (aka softening) Tg=105C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 72-108m/(mC)
Density = 1.02-1.21 g/cm3
Generally recommended temperature of Extruder (220 - 250C) & Bed (95 - 110C)

43 - PA

Polyamide aka Nylon
Often used for items such as nuts, bolts, gears and fishing nets
Recyclable but not widely.
Becoming popular for high temperature 3D printers.
Melting point Tm=190-350C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 110m/(mC)
Density = 1.02 - 1.6 g/cm3
Generally recommended temperature of Extruder (220 - 270C) & Bed (70 - 90C)

58 - PC

Often used for packaging, glazing and CDs/DVD
Recyclable but not widely. Known to degrade releasing BPA if kept at high temperature.
Glass transition temperature (aka softening) Tg=147C
Melting point Tm=155C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 65-70m/(mC)
Density = 1.15-1.52 g/cm3

92 - PLA

Polylactic acid (a polyester from natural sources)
Degrades/decomposes to natural products by natural processes.
PLA can be recycled but not widely.
Pod Boats is looking at recycling PLA into 3D printer filament. Therefore broken or discarded 3D printed PLA items/filament (and empty spools) can be posted to Pod Boats Limited for recycling. Please label as PLA as appropriate. Please include sender details.
Melting Point Tm=150-160C
Coefficient of thermal expansion 68m/(mC)
Density = 1.23-1.26 g/cm3
Generally recommended temperature of Extruder (190 - 220C) & Bed (optional - 45 - 60C)

Many coefficients of thermal expansion from engineering toolbox
3D printer recommendations from simplify3d
Plastic recycling code numbers currently only go up to "7-other" in Europe but up to 140 defined by Chinese authorities
Updated and © copyright 24/12/2019-27/12/2019 Pod Boats Limited, registered in England and Wales number 8603484