While drop-off lines at schools are empty, a new kind of drop-off line popped up around Huntsville. On April 2, 3D printer owners lined their cars up to drop off the fruits of their quarantine labors — face shield frames for healthcare providers.
Mike Fanning posted a photo to Facebook showing a line of cars ready to drop off their frames — the part that holds the clear plastic on to the provider’s face — to be distributed to area hospitals and clinics.
“This is what it’s all about Huntsville,” Mike wrote. “The line to drop off 3D printed face shields at the Space and Rocket Center.”
“What Huntsville Do”
The movement seems to have started by Destin Sandler, a Huntsville engineer who runs Smarter Every Day, a website full of tech-related educational videos.
“Huntsville, it is time to do what Huntsville do,” Destin said in a Youtube video. “We’re a bunch of engineers. We’re a bunch of geeks. We’re a bunch of scientists.
Destin posted a video showing amateur 3D printers how to make the frames, complete with all the files needed to produce the frames at home. After the frames are dropped off, they will be handed over to the Huntsville Hospital supply chain department and distributed throughout the hospital system.
“Our goal is to get these in the system and let the medical professionals make the most intelligent decisions,” Destin said.
It’s not just novice manufacturers, either. Schools are getting on board with the project.
Huntsville STEAM Works, a nonprofit educational organization, is using all seven printers to produce face shields for medical workers, while Calhoun Community College and Jemison High School are using their on-site printers to make frames.
“At STEAM Works we are doing our part by social distancing and using STEAM to help our community,” the group wrote in a Facebook post.
Even the Cook Museum of Natural Sciences in Decatur got on board with the project.
“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 a museum spokesperson.
Even if you don’t have a 3D printer, there are ways to help your fellow man during the COVID-19 outbreak: Stay home, only go places that are completely necessary, and wash your hands to prevent spreading the illness.