3D Printing to Help with the Coronavirus Pandemic

We here at 3D Universe have been part of the e-NABLE volunteer community since the beginning. We have thousands of volunteers around the world with 3D printing capabilities, using that technology to help others. Historically, this has mainly been in the form of free prosthetic devices, but now we have a big opportunity to help with the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting shortage of medical supplies.

We are working hard to explore options and figure out how our 3D printing community can best help people in need. If you have a 3D printer and are interested in helping out, please join our discussion on the e-NABLE Hub, here. Another useful resource is the Open-Source COVID19 Medical Supplies Group on Facebook.

Budmen Industries has shared a design for a face shield here. They have also partnered with PaperGala to provide a source for pre-cut and pre-hold-punched plastic sheets for these shields. You can order these in packs of 10 from here. Use discount code COVID19HEROS for a 20% discount.

There are many hospitals in desperate need of protective gear like this, so please help us to produce as many of these as possible.

In the video below, we’ll show you two promising designs you can work on producing with your 3D printer to help those on the front lines, fighting the coronavirus and trying to keep the rest of us healthy.

We’re offering discounts on 3D printer filament for anyone interested in printing these for donation. Email us at info@3duniverse.org for details.

Update, 3/2/2020: Jeremy Simon here, with an update on our recent efforts. I’ve been working closely with a very talented group of individuals based out of University at Buffalo in New York. The group includes medical professionals, engineers, materials experts, compliance folks, and others. We’ve been working to come up with an improved version of the Montana Mask design, and we’re very close to having something ready for release now.

I’ve taken the lead on 3D modeling and design modifications. Starting with the Montana Mask design as a basis, we have modified it as follows:

  • Adjusted scaling to extend the mask depth, allowing more room for the nose and in front of the mouth.
  • Added in a ledge and cross-bars to help secure the filter insert and prevent it from being pushed through from the outside
  • Added divots within the inner walls of the filter insert receptacle to provide a more secure fit
  • Moved the strap connectors down a little bit, allowing room for a gasket lining around the edge of the mask (only needed if not printing in TPU)

Our testing so far has shown this modified design to have significant advantages over the standard Montana Mask design. We are working hard to have formal testing done for both fit and permeability (testing the seal on the face as well as the filtration effectiveness). We will be documenting our findings and sharing the modified design in the near future, along with clear instructions for those who want to make them.

Stay tuned to this blog page for further updates…

Consider making a donation to help those who are 3D printing protective gear for donation. 3D Universe has already sent free filaments to dozens of groups working on producing and donating protective equipment for our medical workers. Your donation will help us to support more of those groups and individuals.

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