Coronavirus: Coventry man sets-up 3D printing PPE factory in garage

Coventrian Ian King has set-up his own 3D printing factory in his garage to produce face visors, which he has donated to GPs and care homes across the region.

A Coventry Building Society worker has come to the rescue of local GPs and care homes by making over 175 face shields at home using his own 3D printer.

Ian King heard from his wife, who works as a GP, the struggles of getting PPE and decided to help by making protective plastic face shields he could provide to local key workers. To help he decided to set up his own manufacturing system in his garage using his 3D printer.

He had heard of companies and others in the 3D printing community making face shields and wanted to do his bit to help. After finding a suitable template online which had been designed in conjunction with public health experts, he started producing the shields which his wife offered to GP surgeries in need.

At first, Ian could make around eight a day, with each taking between two and three hours to print. He’s delivered the face shields to GP surgeries and care homes throughout Coventry and Birmingham so far.

Coventry Building Society, where Ian works, decided to help his good work by donating a second 3D printer to double his production and help even more key workers.

Ian’s manager also used his own money to provide a third printer so Ian can now make 24 face shields a day.

Ian said: “I just wanted to do my bit and help out. Now word has got out about the donations I’m receiving more and more requests for face shields and I’m making as many as I can to help those who work in a care setting.

“When something like this happens it’s encouraging to see everyone helping each other. Anyone with a 3D printer can make face shields and if I have too many orders I have been passing them on to friends I know can help.

“I would urge anyone who can help with making important PPE like this with a  3D printer to get involved. If you’re looking for advice on how they can help or get started I would encourage them to look up 3DCrowd.UK who can offer guidance or help co-ordinate requests for PPE.”