Warhammer miniatures present a fun challenge by coming in several pieces that you need to assemble. However, the plasting framing that holds these pieces, the sprues, can quickly pile up. It may be tempting to throw these away, but can you recycle Warhammer sprues?
Yes, Warhammer sprues can be recycled, but it is difficult to do so properly. Throwing these in the trash or into a regular recycling bin will ensure that the sprues end up in a landfill or an incinerator, both of which are bad for the environment. Some plants and recyclers will reuse sprues, as can you.
Keep reading to learn more about how to recycle Warhammer sprues properly, as well as what else you can do with them.
How to Recycle Warhammer Sprues
Though it is difficult to recycle Warhammer sprues in a way that will not hurt the environment, recycling them properly is possible if you are thoroughly invested in doing so. To recycle Warhammer sprues, consider these options:
Always be sure to snip off any excess plastic/sprue from your models for a smooth finish. We recommend using Fine Detail Cutters like this pair by Citadel, which can be found on Amazon.
Send Sprues to the Manufacturing Plant
Some Games Workshop manufacturing plants will accept your sprues and melt them down to make new Warhammer minis. This option for recycling sprues appears to be most commonly offered in the United Kingdom, but you could always call the nearest plant and ask them if they would accept your sprues.
Send Sprues to a Local Polystyrene Recycler
If Games Workshop does not have a manufacturing plant nearby that might want your Warhammer sprues, you can check to see if any local recyclers have a way to recycle polystyrene.
Ask specifically if they will recycle polystyrene, the mix of plastic that Warhammer sprues and minis are made of. In the United States, many local recyclers will accept polystyrene, but they will not recycle it.
Instead, they often send it to get incinerated, which releases harmful substances like carbon into the atmosphere. This is the most harmful way to get rid of sprues, so do not recycle them if your recycler cannot properly recycle polystyrene.
Send Sprues to a Landfill if You Have to
While it is better to send your sprues to a plant or recycler that can properly reuse them, or to reuse them yourself, if you have too many sprues to hold on to and no where else to take them, sending them to a landfill is better than sending them to a recycler that will incinerate the sprues.
At least the polystyrene will be locked into the landfill, which creates a carbon sink and stops those harmful gases and other substances from entering the atmosphere.
What Can You Do with Warhammer Sprues?
Many Warhammer players prefer to simply hold onto their sprues and find ways to reuse them. These are a few of the things you can do with Warhammer sprues:
Use Sprues to Make Terrain
Making terrain is the most common use of sprues for Warhammer players. Sprues are fairly easy to cut into small pieces, and many players add crumbled sprues to the bases of their minis to make them look like they are covered in gravel, for example.
Use Sprues to Make Props
Aside from adding to the texture of their terrain, some Warhammer players also use their sprues to make props like fences, weapons, planks, bricks, barricades, crystals, etc.
The only real limit to how sprues can be reused is your imagination, so if recycling them without releasing harmful gases is too much of a hassle, you can always keep them and brainstorm some fun ways to include props in your Warhammer games.
While sprues can be recycled or thrown away, they should only be recycled if you can send them to a plant that will do so properly. Also, sprues should only be thrown away if you do not have a means of recycling them correctly, as putting them in a landfill is not as harmful as sending them to an incinerator.
Do a little bit of research to see if there are any local polystyrene recyclers in your area. A quick search on google should show if there are any in your area.
If you want to avoid the issue of disposing of sprues altogether, and potentially harming the environment, you can always keep them and use them to enhance the terrain or make props for your games. This is the route that most Warhammer players opt to take.