Studio Hands Join PPE Effort

Lightweight PPE face shield.

In March 2020, we joined the effort to create PPE from our material stocks in the form of these face shields. We liaised with DT teachers Rob Phillips and Stuart Sweetman at King Henry VIII school in Coventry on what they were doing and set up a base in Birmingham with a slightly tweaked open source CAD path for laser cutting.

Simple visor assembly using polypropylene and acetate.

We used 0.5mm polypropylene for the adjustable headband and acetate for the visor, keeping it all pretty lightweight. A single press from an A4 4 x hole punch made assembly quick and easy. The cutting and assembly was monitored closely for minimising transmission risk. Each mask was individually bagged, before being boxed into batches of 20 for ease of distribution before being sealed and left for 72 hours.

Multiple visors ready for packing.

Ordinarily we use laser cutters for the precise cutting out of set and model templates for miniature sets. Rebecca Cowley of Working Clasp did the laser cutting and Amanda Haas, one of our regular freelance model makers, were incredibly generous with their time to make these. Thanks to a team effort, we were able to make 775 units in total, a small amount amidst the wider effort, but gratefully received by care homes of the Yardley Great Trust Group, ARCOS charity and Stanhope Community Centre, with the majority going directly to the main NHS repository at the NEC, the Queen Elizabeth hospital in Birmingham and Russell’s Hall ITU in Dudley where needs were greatest.

The visors in use in one of the Yardley care homes.