3D printing community in Green Bay create masks for medical workers

Coronavirus

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Medical staff across the nation are running low on supplies, like masks to protect themselves while caring for those with coronavirus.

A group of 3D printing lovers in Green Bay have banded together to do their part to help medical workers here on the front lines.

“It doesn’t really surprise me when someone comes up with an idea what we can turn that idea into,” says Chris Higgins.

Related: Fox Valley business woman uses her skills to make masks and help others

And just like a 3D printer, five people in Green Bay are turning an idea into a reality.

Two of them are Tom Rueckl and Chris Higgins, creating 1,200 medical shields within a matter of weeks.

The bands for the shields are being created from a few small 3D printers, which can make two bands at a time and then one big printer.

“I’m able to put out about 20 per day and others that are involved are probably doing about 20 per day,” says Rueckl. “So in order for us to get to that 1,200 number is going to be a task.”

Real-time tracking of COVID-19 cases across Wisconsin, the United States, and Worldwide

The bigger printer, which will run you about $50,000, can make about six bands at a time, but takes eight hours.

The process is simple, but tedious.

“We started with a part design that was already out there, it was provided through the Prusa Printing Network and it’s a part for a headband,” says Higgins. “I downloaded the individual parts, the software takes care of optimizing, each layer of the printer lays out a bead of plastic and it just keeps working and it builds its way up until it builds the final product.”

Related: Former Oshkosh resident finds himself stranded in Peru from coronavirus

The plexiglass for the shields will be provided by NEW Plastics in Luxemburg and cut by LaserForm in Green Bay.

Several teams banding together to help those protecting us all.

“We have these printers sitting around our houses and we make all sorts of fun little things normally,” says Rueckl. “But this is a way that we, we being a 3D printing community, can really do something to help here, that was the total motivation here.”

If you own a 3D printer and want to help make bands for the medical shields, click here.

WISCONSIN CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

WFRV COVID-19 Coverage | Confirmed cases in Wisconsin
Tracking coronavirus | Local health experts talk coronavirus
Stimulus check calculator| Local businesses hiring during outbreak

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss

Coronavirus News

More Coronavirus

Trending Stories

Your Local Election HQ

More Election

Local Sports

Notre Dame opens with shutout win over Kaukauna

WPGA Championship wraps up at Green Bay Country Club, Smith shoots 68 to win

HSSPX: Clintonville's Wederath defies blindness to take court

High School Sports Xtra - Area Football Previews

Green and Gold Game Day - Picks and Final Thoughts

Green and Gold Game Day - Live in Minneapolis talking offense

People In Our Community <<View More

Hometown Heroes <<View More