Teignbridge Propellers has partnered with South Devon College, both based in the UK, to 3D-print face shields for the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) staff and key workers to combat the spread of the Covid-19 virus
The project to 3D-print face shields began at South Devon College before a Teignbrdige employee, engineer Jack Ellis, got Teignbridge involved. Teignbridge now plans on printing 120 frames a week with their BigRep and Creality Ender-3 3D printers.
Explaining the printing process, Mr Ellis said it takes 45 minutes to print each upper frame of the face shields using the BigRep printer and the lower mask frames are being printed on the Creality Ender-3 which will turn out 8 lower frames every 4 hours.
The frames will use Polylactic acid (PLA) material, which is a standard in 3D printing. These frames are essential in providing protection from infectious droplets from entering the eyes, nose and mouths, crucial ways in which the Covid-19 virus spreads.
A statement by the company said “Many of the staff at Teignbridge have family and friends who are on the frontline battling Covid-19, and with increased demands for PPE (personal protective equipment), it is paramount that face shields are not only produced to save lives of those working with the infected but to be produced quickly and efficiently.”
Teignbridge Propellers is working in partnership with South Devon College, Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, various care homes, health centres and funeral directors on the project.
South Devon College Hi Tech & Digital Team have released their 3D print file, adapted from an original open source file for anyone wishing to assist in the effort. Further information can be found here.
The company is still operational and aims to fulfil its production targets amidst restrictions put in place by the UK Government to combat the spread of Covid-19.