Huntsville techies unite to print 3D face shields for area hospitals

Coronavirus
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – 3D printers are working non-stop across north Alabama after a local YouTube star put out a call for help.

Destin Sandlin, the man behind the Smarter Every Day Youtube channel shared a video to his 7 million plus subscribers, showing people who have 3D printers how they can help make face shields for doctors and nurses on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It’s time for the nerd and engineering community to step up and help the medical community. This is something we can do and something we can do fast,” said Destin Sandlin.

Sandlin’s plea traveled fast. Locally, anyone who has a 3D printer already knows about it.

Over the last few days, 3D printers all over the Tennessee Valley from regular households to the Cook Museum in Decatur are all collaborating to print thousands of 3D parts for face shields.

“We have the tools, we have the ideas, we have the things needed. Now we can do it and help the people most in need,” said Kirk Salmond of the Cook Museum of Natural Sciences.

The face shields will go to Huntsville Hospital where they will they will be added to the supply chain and distributed within the large network of hospitals.

Sandlin is taking his efforts to the next level. He has partnered with a non-profit who just purchased regular medical masks.

“Someone just found a bid on 300,000 surgical masks. They are trying to acquire them and donate them to local medical facilities. That will cost $100,000. We are trying to get that money into the system. These people pulled the trigger saying we need it. We will figure the money out on the backside,” said Sandlin.

You can donate to the cause or help with production of face shields and masks, find out more here.

Delivery details will be communicated through the website above. All material will get a deep clean before going to any hospital.

The Cook Museum is also taking 1.75 PLA filament donations to help produce parts for the face shields. Email 3Dprint@cookmuseum.org for more information on how to donate.