Josef Dolocek – Fillamentum

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Fillamentum is a brand name of high-quality filaments for 3D printing, developed and manufactured by Parzlich in Czech Republic. The company founded by Josef Dolocek produces filaments in a wide range of colors and special limited editions. Development is powered by experts with many years of experience in the plastics industry and especially with 3D printing technologies. Portfolio includes classic polymers, like ABS or PLA, and also special materials, such as ASA, HIPS, PVA, Elastic&soft and Timberfill.

1. Which are the biggest challenges you face as a 3D printing filament manufacturer?
“Historically the 3D printing was used for prototyping and there was not demand for wide range of materials, even with special properties. Now, also due to high improvement of 3D printers and related software and massive commercialization, there is a number of professional users who demand new materials as well. And the challenge is to bring new functional 3D printing materials on time.”

2. How has your business evolved over the last 3 years and how much do you expect the market to keep growing?
“We actually started production of 3D printing materials 4 years ago, it was in time of early development a 3D printing business. Theree was demand just for PLA and ABS in wide color range – the primal market was just for hobby makers and prototypers. But 2 years ago first demands for technically advanced materials came .. and we reacted developing and introducing ASA filament.The technical filament series now contents Nylon and Nylon composites as well.”

3. Who are your biggest customers: consumers, education sector, professional sector (designers/architects/researchers) or manufacturing sector?
“The biggest sector we serve is still the hobby/makers sector. But we have a certain number of industrial customers, mostly big international companies that use special filaments also in their production.”

4. Which are the materials you sell most of?
“The majority is still in easily usable materials like PLA and ABS, but the biggest hike of sales we recorded from ASA and TPU filament – which were developed together with our industrial partners. We did not consider PETG as perspective material and work on our version of CPE (copolyesters) with improved properties and functionality. However we officially did not introduce our PC/ABS and its variants for retail, we supply a certain amount of these filaments for our professional partner and these materials are used for prototyping in automotive. We have technically solved solutions for high melt engineering polymers like PEEK, PPS and PEI and wait for sufficient demand.”

5. What do you think needs to happen in order for 3D printing (both desktop and professional) to become more widely adopted?
“The most important is education and evangelization of professionals. A lot of especially older engineers in the industrial sphere are skeptical about 3D printing possibilities and it is a bit limit for faster adoption of 3D printing. They were educated by standard processes (subtractive) and the 3D printing is still considered as kind of toy by many of them. And of course reliability of process – there is still a lot of faulty prints today, so further improvement is necessary.”

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