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Our trash, their treasure

Our trash, their treasure

Back in February, Adam wrote a blog article on how green rubber is – and it wasn’t a straightforward answer.  However, when he talked about ‘scrap rubber’, and when many people think about the topic, the image is one of piles of used tyres, or the waste left over from a moulding process; unshapely lumps of unuseable moulded compound. However, when you consider that the ‘scrap’ product from a punched adhesive-backed washer is in fact the centre of the washer – much like the famous polo-holes that Rowntrees started selling as the inverse to the ‘mint with the hole’, this could in itself be considered an equally useful product.  The problem we end up of with, of course, is that the resulting ‘left-over’ parts are quite specific in size – and the likelihood of us finding an industrial recipient just looking for the component as we create it is slim. So, what to do with these potentially useful but somewhat odd off-cuts and left-overs?  Well, we found just the place in the local charity, Southampton Scrap Store, who take all sorts of unwanted and left-over parts from local businesses and use them in educational arts and crafts activities. We keep a bin in our cutting shop, fill it with off-cuts of rubber, cork, pvc and other sheet material (they especially like the self-adhesive backed materials), and as soon as it is full they are here to collect it. Everybody’s a winner – and we’re happy in the knowledge that our waste isn’t going into landfill (at least, not directly).  Imagine the fun they had with the centres of these: Punched gaskets from rubbers, reinforced belting material and paper.

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