Because of the COVID crisis, there is a shortage of personal protective equipment like face shields. While the manufacturing industry is tryng to cope up with demand, there is another untapped source of supply - personal 3D printers. But there is an issue - the time required to 3D print parts is high - it takes around 2.5 hours to print a face shield.
What it does
We approached the problem with revamping the current design for a face shield. current popular design of a face shield takes nearly 2 hrs to print & cost ~ 2$. Now here is our optimised design (Show our design). Its takes 28 min to 3D print & cost around $ 0.30. That is 80% cost saving & 75% time saving. We have achieved one success, but this is not it! The next step is to bring scalability & product availability at mass. For this, we have designed a 3D Printing community app, anyone who has a 3D printer could be a supplier and anyone can register and buy 3D products they need. We have onboarded 2 individuals with 3 3D printers in Pune & Hyderabad, India. Also we have orders for 5 shields from residential societies for their security staff and several enquiries.
How I built it
Our team of 5 people were split into two tracks - one was working on optimising the design for 3D printing and the other on building the community app.
Challenges I ran into
Non availability of technical specifications of commercial medical devices like ventilators.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We were able to build a more efficient design, build an app and get orders for the part all within 36 hours.
What I learned
Our original idea was for community 3D print only. With inputs from the team members and others we also went ahead with part design optimisation. A lot of good feedback is available if we are willing to listen. One of the feedback was to get early buyers to test out the idea. That helped a lot in ironing out teething issues and a glimpse into hat we had to do for marketing.
What's next for 3D Print for COVID
Onboard 20 3D print owners and get 5 critical parts optimised for faster printing in next 3 weeks. We will launch the community platform and get the end to end result in 3 weeks.
3dprinting, android-studio, flutter, octopi, php, raspberry-pi