It’s been a bumpy ride, but we’re still going!

We’ve had 3D printers break down and need repairs. We’ve had to wait and wait and wait for parts and critical supplies. We’ve had orders for new 3D printers delayed indefinitely.

Through it all, we’ve kept going. So far we’ve made about 25 face shields, over 500 ear savers, more than 1,500 buttons (for those making crocheted and hand-sewn ear savers and headbands), and other assorted items to help others make PPE. We’ve helped secure supplies for those crafting and printing. We’ve couriered materials all over NJ and into PA. And we’ve introduced lots of folks to 3D printing.

Custom buttons for crafters making crocheted ear savers.

So far our work has supported St. Lukes Hospitals, Hunterdon Medical Center, Lehigh Valley Health Network, Capital Health Network, local nursing homes, local food pantries, first responders, and the Navajo Project.

Luckily, things are once again moving in the right direction and our ability to print larger items like face shields has been restored!

Our Prusa, on loan from the Warren County Library System, suffered some damage during a print that went badly. It happens. But getting the parts needed for repair can be a real challenge right now. With special thanks to the customer service rep, Marc, we should have that machine back online today. Whew!

Face Shields for Lehigh Valley Health Network.

Unfortunately, the additional 3D printers I’d ordered have been delayed indefinitely. After working with the company, I was able to get the money back, but 3D printers were sold out everywhere with long shipping delays if you could order.

That’s where Verde Mantis stepped in. I reached out to the founder and inventor of the company, Joe. Mantis is a locally designed and manufactured 3D Printer, right over in Reading, PA. Well, they got us a printer and a bunch of filament in a week. Mandy, the general manager, personally drove the machine to our home last Friday. It was out of the box and running in 10 minutes. The Mantis has been printing face shields ever since.

Face Shields for St. Luke’s

So the work continues. We are now offering items like ear savers to members of our local community who are either essential workers at present or who anticipate going back to work soon, as businesses reopen. There is no doubt the next weeks will be challenging ones, and we’re hoping to do whatever we can to make them easier on everyone.

If you know someone who needs PPE, please get in touch. If I can’t fill that need, I can certainly help to put you in contact with someone who can. We want you all to stay safe and healthy.

Take care out there!

Ear Savers

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