Being a secondary school teacher during the CORVID19 crisis has been extremely uncertain. However, one thing is clear everyone needs to do there bit. This is the main reason I decided to start printing 3D face shields on a home 3D printer. I found the group 3DCrowduk who are working collaboratively with other 3D printing hobbits across the country to print the Prusa https://www.prusaprinters.org/prints/25857-prusa-face-shield face shield. Having difficulty printing this version I decided to use the verkstan https://3dverkstan.se/protective-visor/ which is slightly quicker to print. Also ear savers can also be printed that help to stop rubbing and skin breakdown.
I am using the Ender 3 by Creality which is a low cost 3D printer that comes in kit form which is easy to build and there is a video below to help anyone that needs it. For those unfamiliar with this design, the Ender 3 is an FDM (Fused Deposition Modelling) 3D printer that comes with a 0.4mm nozzle and can extrude a variety of 1.75mm plastic filament. … Most 3D printers are either fully constructed or come as a kit, but the Ender 3 arrives somewhere in the middle with some parts assembled and it is easy to put together.
For the face shield I have fount that laminated a4 sheets work well as well as OHP sheets from Amazon. However, the laminated sheets are more cost effective.
I have currently provided shields to B&M stores, Local Health Agency workers and a full set to a local care home and the feedback has been positive. I know it is a small thing but we all have to do our part.
The ear savers have been donated to several wards at a Western Sussex Hospital and have been a big hit especially for workers having to wear a mask for up to 13 hours. It takes just over an hour for 10 ear savers to print and 1 hour for each mask.
They are really good, well done!Staff Nurse St Richards hospital.
Disappointing Response from Officials
Despite several messages to officials within the Western Sussex Hospital Trust including the procurement manager, no response has been received and therefor no official distribution has been able to take place for the ear savers and these have therefor been donated directly to the wards.
I understand that the use of 3D printed PPE may be controversial and These face shields have been printed on a home 3D printer and are not approved for use in a medical setting. However, where no other PPE is available, they may offer some protection and have been approved in other parts of Europe and further afield
There is great technical knowledge within the 3D-printing community but safety comes first, and medical equipment always needs to be approved to be distributed, this could possibly be a matter of life or death. Where it is decided to use the face shields in a medical setting without approval from the authority people do so at their own risk and are advised to follow the guidelines the institution and local authority. However, staff are having to use this equiptment as none is being provided quick enough by the government and any PPE is surly better than none.
A response to the offer ever if to decline would have been appropriate but as of yet the offer to the procurement manager of the Western Sussex hospital trust has fallen on deaf ears.
Keep Calm and Print on …
I will continue to produce both face shields and ear savers as long as I have the filament to do so and I have received contributions through G Fund Me to obtain 3kg of filament along with the 3kg I have provided and I thank everyone who donates as it is a big help as it is not cheap and as much as I would like to not ask for donations I can’t provide it all myself.
I have been contacted by Ambulance crews and additional care homes and will continue to try and meet demand where I can.
go fund me link: gf.me/u/xwb4dr
You can help by donating or if you have your own printer join in the cause through 3DCrowd uk or independently. Please subscribe to my YouTube: www.youtube.com/c/ahcmeuk and follow on Instagram: @ahcmeuk
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