Son of Chris Horn, Tool-o-Mat service engineer at Ceratizit UK & Ireland, Jonty used knowledge gained from a specialist 3D Printing forum, Horn responded to requests for Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) for frontline National Health staff. He accessed files to create the shields using Creality 3D printing technology and produced his first prototypes, a lightweight and heavy-duty version, then approached his local Lincoln hospital to offer the shields to their staff. He also approached his local doctor’s surgery.

Says Jonty Horn: “The initial reaction was apprehensive, but once we clarified there was absolutely no cost to them, the nurses were overjoyed. They have asked us to make the more substantial of the two so we shall commence straight away.”

The beauty of 3D printing is that the files can be shared easily and, inspired by what Horn has achieved, Ceratizit UK & Ireland’s two apprentices, Stephen Pennington and Alex Humberstone, who are studying at the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre in Sheffield, have also taken up the challenge. With access to 3D printing technology, they will begin manufacturing and offering the shields to local medical staff. Apart from access to the 3D printer, all that is required are sheets of PLA, 150 micron sheets, elastic bands and a 5mm drill bit (or hole punch).

Concludes Chris Horn: “3D-printing the holder for the plastic face shield takes around two hours on Jonty’s Creality printer, so we can’t make too many. However, if more people like Stephen and Alexander get involved, a little will turn into a lot and we can make a difference for our key workers in the NHS in the fight against Coronavirus.”