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Clamp bricks with soul

Recycled toys from refrigerator rABS is possible!

Soulbottles Weiß
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Photo from: Paul Kupfer,

"The collaboration was extremely professional and there was a positive, motivating energy. You can just tell you guys are up for digging in and finding solutions."

Paul Kupfer,

Co-Founder & CEO Soulbottles
Brand mission

New sustainable products, plastic and with soul

Making sustainability easier for people in everyday life with good design - that is the basic idea behind soulbottles. Based on the company's own experience that tap water is practical to drink from old wine or vodka bottles when out and about, the idea to print glass bottles in an appealing way was born. in 2013, the first machine-produced soulbottles rolled off the production line: completely pollutant- and plastic-free glass drinking bottles made in Germany! They are produced in a fair and climate-neutral way, are vegan and with every bottle 1 Euro goes to a drinking water project. The bottles can be individually printed or engraved - meanwhile there are also extra-light variants made of stainless steel.

Paul copper

"We always want to offer a sustainable alternative to the current mainstream, but one that works well enough to become mainstream."

Because Soulbottles was born out of the idea of combating pollution from single-use plastic, the company has long seen plastic only as a problem. But since 2019, a business development circle away from the core glass bottle business has been busy developing new products and business models. In the process, the idea for recycled, high-quality toys made of plastic was born.

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"Startups and small companies have a responsibility to show that we can recycle plastic really well today and make high-quality products out of it. That just hasn't sunk in yet in many people's minds, and we need to work on that."

Paul Kupfer,

Co-Founder & CEO Soulbottles
Project goal

Recycled bricks without compromises

Clamping bricks from various manufacturers delight not only children but also adults, but until now they have been produced from virgin plastic. Soulbottles has developed the vision of clamp bricks made of recycled plastic, which are in no way inferior to those made of virgin material in terms of quality and, above all, safety.

Paul copper

"It quickly became clear to me that I had zero knowledge of the technical part of this challenge, neither the tools nor the necessary material quality. I could have researched all this, but that would have taken at least half a year."

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That's where HolyPoly comes in

The questions that arise around a possible product development are manifold: Which material is certified for use as a toy? What tolerances and surface qualities are needed to achieve the highest possible compatibility of the bricks with products from other manufacturers? And: Which tooling concepts can be used to produce different parts at the lowest possible unit price?

Paul copper

"Of course you showed me a fancy power point, but I realized: I can ask about any point at any time and get all the background information. That really strengthened my trust in you guys."

In order to preserve the sound of the familiar terminal blocks, and above all to strengthen a new high-quality material cycle, we decided very early on in the project that we would use recycled ABS. In order to source it in sufficient quality, old refrigerators are a good choice.

ABS Granulat
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"You guys give me the great feeling of a full service agency! We could also ask you to do a crowdfunding campaign or a video and you would write me the text to say into the camera. It's really convenient, I love working that way."

Paul Kupfer,

Co-Founder & CEO Soulbottles
Power

Product development from concept to compliance

Material, development, completion - we identified potential stumbling blocks, ensured feasibility and evaluated implementation options. We looked at the advantages and disadvantages of different types of plastic, measured existing bricks in 3D to derive necessary measures in toolmaking and production, and calculated options for manufacturing. The result was various concept variants with binding prices. In short: A clamping brick in the unique marble look, made of ABS recyclate and compatible with common systems, is feasible!

Paul copper

"You come from a design background and approach the task holistically. That's a big difference from many engineering suppliers, especially in Germany, who are absolute experts in their field, but have zero interest in what you're actually up to and therefore make offers that don't even come into question. You, on the other hand, think and develop in our interest."

What brands that are new to the subject have to spend time learning is written into our DNA: We know which material is suitable for which product, how it can be recycled and what tooling and unit prices are called for. The communication channels to our network, to suppliers and processors of plastics are short and we can offer the first steps of implementation in-house and overnight on our own machines. This leads to significant time savings in conception and development for our customers.

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Project history

Timeline Soulbricks
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Our services

Scoping circular product

  • Task definition and sharpening, identification of stumbling blocks
  • Benchmarking and competitive analysis
  • Tooling concept
  • Scouting of high-quality ABS recyclate, material testing and preparation for toy approval according to DIN EN 71
  • Establishment of European supply chain, preparation for series production
  • Project priorities workshop with decision bases for all important questions
  • Planning in iterative project concept and detailed calculation (6 steps)

Product development circular series

  • Creation of CAD model suitable for production
  • Validation marbling by means of 3D-printed injection molding tool
  • Design of aluminum pre-production tool
  • Manufacturing tool (2 iterations)
  • Sourcing masterbatch + rABS
  • In-house pre-series manufacturing
  • Toy component testing according to DIN EN 71
Paul copper

"The scoping was easy and smooth: we had hardly any work with it, you delivered everything we wanted without constantly asking new questions. You explained to us exactly what the challenges and sticking points were. From you came the basis on which we can now decide on the product."

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Partner network

Partnernetzwerk Soulbricks 01
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"This was a very streamlined, focused process with little effort on our part. As a result, I now have information and clarity about costs and risks. Now we have everything in hand to decide if and when to move forward with the project."

Paul Kupfer,

Co-Founder & CEO Soulbottles
result

The first market-ready plug-in module made from post-consumer ABS

The initial question was whether soulbottles would like to enter development at all. And if so, on which path. With the completion of the scoping process, we provided all the necessary framework conditions in terms of concept, feasibility and profitability to make this decision in an informed way.

Paul copper

"The great added value for us was your knowledge and your network in the plastics supply chains and with the plastics processors. So that you really know what material is suitable for what and how it can be sourced recycled, and just also gets into the tool and unit prices."

In order to validate mechanical properties and full toy suitability, we decided to go into in-house pre-series implementation and can now proudly announce: Our market-ready series clamping component is made of 99.7% PCR ABS from the electrical appliance collection, works flawlessly and shines in Marble Plastics!

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Result

What we have learned

Refrigerators for Future

Using recycled material instead of virgin material is always good for the climate, but in the case of refrigerator ABS the balance is particularly good: here you save 2.5 tons of CO₂ per ton of recycled material!

WEEE can toy approval

With proper quality control, it is also possible for material from waste electrical equipment to obtain toy approval, despite any concerns.

Better no PET for clamping bricks

While we were already in the middle of the process, it became public that LEGO would also like to offer Bricks made from recycled material in a few years. The world's largest toy company, however, uses elaborately modified PET from old disposable bottles for this purpose. Even if we can understand this approach, which is designed for a scalable, continuous supply of materials, from the point of view of a large corporation, it must be emphasized that the use of recycled materials here does not tend to do a circular economy any good - the bottle2bottle system is a showcase cycle for plastics that works in many places and is improving all over the world. If this is now deprived of material, it will only exacerbate the problem of material availability for food packaging. At the same time, vast quantities of unused material streams continue to go untreated into incineration, landfill or the environment. If you really want to advance the circular economy, you have to deal with it, including the impasses it entails.

Result

Brand Journey

Client Industry

Consumer Products

Cooperation with HolyPoly

Since 2021

Mattel Circularity Level

Seasoned Radical - soulbottles is built on the principles of the circular economy, but has so far focused on reusable rather than recycled materials.

Brand Journey Soulbottles
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Jonas G Holy Poly 2066 (please Use This)

Your contact
Jonas Götz

is Project Owner Soulbottles #goodbrick and is happy to answer all questions about the project

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Let's talk!

No matter how numerous and big the challenges are - at HolyPoly every project starts with a good conversation.