Kanesis Hemp Bio Plastic PLA Review

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Italian filament start-up company Kanesis recently approached 3D-PT to test their new hemp based PLA filament.

I have worked with hemp based HIPS from another start-up company before, so I was a bit dubious about mixing hemp with another plastic product.

When I received the filament, my mind started to change. Out of the box I was surprised that this hemp bio plastic (HBP) looked like a composite filament similar to colorfabb WoodFill. It looked more like the brown craft paper that you find in grocery store bags than any other composite filament.

Kanesis HBP filament arrived tied with ribbons, which was a nice touch.

The texture of the filament also felt closer to brown craft paper than PLA, which is unique compared to other composite filaments  that I have worked with.

Kanesis has produced HBP as a biodegradable filament, sourced from industrial hemp waste and PLA. The formulation of HBP is also supposed to be low enough that it uses less energy to 3D print than commercial PLA. The industrial hemp gives it more strength than standard PLA as well. With hemp being a soft material, a hardened or plated nozzle is not required.

Printing with composite filaments takes some adjusting, and this filament was no exception. The instructions claim that a printing temperature of 165 – 185 C would work. I started a test print at that temp, but quickly developed a jam. The jam worked itself  out when I moved the temp to 225 C. Like other composites, some fibers did collect around the nozzle, but even then the amount was smaller than other composites like carbon fiber.

My first print was a prototype fidget  that I am developing for my etsy store.

broken (left) and whole pieces from the first prototype

The prototype did not print well with this filament. The fine details and thin edges were too thin for this composite filament, which requires a thicker printing diameter. The factory recommends a 0.5 mm nozzle, and I can’t recommend any print with a thickness less than 1 mm. When I removed the first prints from the build plate, 3 of 6 pieces broke. The material was just too stiff and brittle to come clean off the build plate. Looking underneath, there were some gaps. The stringing was slight for a composite filament as well.

A second print went better using the information I learned from before. With a thicker part, I was able to successfully print a marble chain fidget  that held together off the build plate.

As I assembled the fidget, I found that it did sand and glue like any other wood based composite filament. I’ll field test the fidget in the future to see how well the material holds up to everyday use.

pieces that did hold together

HBP is an interesting composite filament that has more industrial uses then artistic. The paper bag brown appearance and texture may not lend itself to artistic prints, but I can see this used in industrial setting and for items like custom packing and tooling.

With more time you may be able to put dark and light bands in it to give it a wood-grain appearance like other wood composites, but I did not have time to test that.

The printing qualities are good for a composite filament, with minimal glopping around the nozzle, and a stable print once the right temp was reached. This is a good filament for industrial use and in-house printing, but I can’t recommend it for artistic prints.

Disclaimer: Check all local laws before accepting or 3D printing in hemp products. Kanesis provided the sample with no expectations given for this review.

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  1. Chemy says

    Maybe it’s beause my lack of experience, but I can’t actually think in a practical use right now, also can be I didn’t get totally right how the finished material would be, would be nice to have some video or more test.

    Thanks for the article.

  2. [email protected] says

    I still don’t understand all of the different filaments. I need to sit down a read read read about all of this stuff.

    1. 3D-PT says

      Feel free to read all my reviews and visit my classes on this site as well.

  3. mperkins37 says

    many will be disappointed not to be able to print joints lol

    1. 3D-PT says

      you can print any shape you want… just not smoke it..

  4. Chemy says

    So it’s like cardboard, will it work to make some kind of cases for a lot of stuff, I think some device that comes in boxes has some molded cardboard.

    1. 3D-PT says

      I like that idea for shipping, a compost able print…

  5. Christine says

    more uses for hemp very day

  6. Geordan says


  7. jvastine says

    It is great to see that there are people trying to develop biodegradable and sustainable i.e. environmentally responsible materials. Hemp has so many uses in many areas lie bioplastics, textiles, medicines, building materials, a food source, etc. that it is time to cast down the stigma that governments had assigned to it and begin to make full use of this wonderful plant.

    1. 3D-PT says

      This may be usefull as a utilitarian filament, but its not something that I’d use for a lot of fine arts and craft prints. Please distinguish between your desire to get stoned and hemp.

  8. Matthew Horbund says

    I think some of these filaments are more for the idea of throwing things in to stand out. They’re neat, but I dont see all of the excitement about this one.

    1. 3D-PT says

      I agree, this is more industrial filament than anything artistic. I can see this for custom packaging and in house tooling prints. It printed fine, I can see this for use with a lost PLA casting process.

  9. Sam says

    Hi Stan,

    Im just wondering what printer and print setting you found most suitable in terms of Nozzle and Bed Temps and layer heights?

  10. Juan Solis says

    They should make a Cannabis filament, that way instead of getting intoxicated with the toxic gases as with the ABS, you will have an awesome printing session, just grab some snacks and watch the Simpsons while you print.

    1. Stan Baldwin says

      I don’t see that being a good combination. I can’t see smoking a blend of PLA and cannabis together working out. As is the hemp is fine for industrial prints.

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