This list is a live document, so check back often — we’re adding new projects as they become available, emphasizing those that emerge as advantageous, and deleting those that become obsolete or superseded. Updated June 17
Moonshots take precious time. How can makers fight Covid-19 right now?
Here’s a list of projects anyone can make at home or at a makerspace (if it’s open) to help loved ones and health workers who need protective gear during the coronavirus crisis.
But before you print, cut, build, or sew these, take a minute to find out what’s needed in your local area. First read OSMS’ Guide to Effective Local Response and check with Get Us PPE and your local medical society. For sewing masks, check with Relief Crafters of America , Asks for Masks, and this list of Hospitals Requesting Homemade Masks. 3D printer jockeys, check the NIH 3D Print Exchange and Asks for Masks’ Calls for Help. To learn more about all these projects, spend time reading the FAQ at OSMS (that’s the Open Source Medical Supplies group).
HAND SANITIZING AND WASHING
WHO-recommended hand rub — It’s just glycerol, hydrogen peroxide, and lots of ethanol or isopropyl alcohol. Download the PDF recipe here. To mix up a home-sized batch, you can follow this nice tutorial on YouTube (above).
And if you’re distributing your hand sanitizer, follow these FDA guidelines for testing and labeling.
Scrubber, a Spotify Hand-Wash Timer (website) — Scrubber is a soap dispenser that doubles as a timer, by playing 20 seconds of your favorite Spotify tunes. A fun DIY “Cabin Fever” project from by Deeplocal in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
DIY Mobile Handwashing Station (website) — Bring the clean wherever it’s needed, with this 32-gallon foot-pumped sink made from trash bins, a dishpan, and common hardware. Developed by the community hygiene nonprofit LavaMaeX in Los Angeles and the SF Bay Area.
Be a citizen scientist while you sleep or play games! You can volunteer your spare computer or smartphone time, or hook up a dedicated Raspberry Pi, to help researchers crunch numbers and discover proteins that will fight the coronavirus.
Rosetta@Home (website) — Original project from University of Washington. “R@h is being used to predict the structure of proteins important to Covid as well as to produce new, stable mini-proteins to be used as potential therapeutics and diagnostics.”
Fold for Covid (website) — An engineer at Balena ported Rosetta@Home to the Raspberry Pi and other Linux/ARM single-board computers, so now your Pi’s, Jetsons, and other SBCs can join the army of computers running protein simulations. How-to video below, presented live at Virtually Maker Faire on May 23.
Foldit — Solve Puzzles for Science (website) — Gamified version, have fun while helping. Currently testing 100 designed proteins to see if they’ll have anti-inflammatory effects to fight Covid.
Folding@home (website) — is a long-standing distributed computing project for simulating the folding and movements of proteins implicated in diseases. Download the F@h software so your computer can run simulations and join the hunt for Covid-killers.
Splash-resistant surgical masks are requested by many health workers. Elastic straps may be unwelcome in clinical settings (latex allergies).
Plain fabric masks are CDC-recommended for everyone to contain coughs and sneezes. They can also protect respirator masks. 100% cotton T-shirt or pillowcase fabrics work well, or surgical mesh if you can find it. Other fabrics can filter better but restrict breathing; see a complete comparison here.
MakerMask Surge (website) — Pleated, three layer, uses nonwoven polypropylene (NWPP) from reusable grocery bags for waterproof outer layer.
Freesewing.org Fu Mask (website) — Simple surgical mask, any fabric, suitable for personal use when out grocery shopping etc.
Providence Community Mask (website) — Pleated style surgical mask requested by hospitals, use surgical mesh (ask your hospital) or other fabric.
Joann’s Make to Give Mask (website) — Simple, all cotton fabric recommended, drop off at Joann’s Fabrics store.
No-Sew T-Shirt Face Mask (website) — Masks4All advocates mandatory mask laws in all countries to stop the virus; they’re sharing an easy DIY mask cut from an old T-shirt.
Car Cover Face Masks (website) — Car covers are also made with nonwoven splashproof fabric, and you can sew 150 masks from one cover.
FixTheMask DIY Surgical Mask Brace (website) — Hospital surgical masks could filter as well as N95s, except they don’t fit your face as well. Use rubber bands to make a surgical mask fit snug like an N95 (shown above); ex-Apple engineers at have confirmed it works. Voilà, instant respirator mask! Now there’s a permanent V2 design cut from rubber sheet.
Bias Tape Creation Tool (website) — A quick 3D print that can help people sewing masks. Elastic is not preferred right now, and having the ability to make your own “bias tape” will greatly speed up the process of making fabric ties for your masks. One maker is using a laminator to heat-press and feed the fabric through automatically. Another modified the tool so it mounts on the sewing machine to feed and sew at the same time. Lots more versions on Thingiverse.
“Ear Savers” Mask Comfort Straps — Long hours are painful in surgical masks that strap to your ears. Print a simple back strap that takes the elastic stress off your ears. There are medically approved designs at the NIH’s 3D Print Exchange and another from HP and Peak Sport.
Face Mask Protective Shield (website) — Health workers are wearing fabric masks as shields over their N95 respirators to keep them cleaner and extend their lives. Here’s a 3D printed shield instead.
Protect the eyes and entire face from splashes/droplets. Versions that are all-cut (by laser, by hand, or by die) are faster to make than 3D printed versions. Versions that are closed at the top are safer for workers. Versions with foam can’t be sanitized for reuse.
Wisconsin “Badger Shield” (website) — Medically approved by OSMS reviewers, vinyl with foam forehead pad (shown above), all McMaster materials. Developed by University of Wisconsin-Madison Makerspace with Delve and Midwest Prototyping; now they’re teaming with UCLA on Shield-Net.org to pair hospitals with manufacturers.
Proto Shield (website) — Medically approved by OSMS, compatible with the Prusa shield (see below) but 100x faster to make because it’s all laser cut (photo above, left). No foam pad, disassembles for sterilization. Developed at Protohaven makerspace in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Kansas City Open Source Face Shield (website) — all vinyl, fast for laser cutting or CNC, plastic “ladder lock” headband can be replaced with elastic, developed at University of Kansas with local firms.
Solin Flatpack Face Shield (website) — All PETG sheet design (shown above), laser cuts in 2 minutes, developed by Illinois high school teacher Jeff Solin at home when his school makerspace was shut down by Covid-19. OSMS approved, now a Minnesota firm is die-cutting 2,000 a day for free; Make: has the story here.
Origami Face Shield (website) — Another single-material shield; unique design folds to make a top cover as well. The first project launched by Helpful Engineering, a 3,000+ volunteer incubator of ideas for fighting Covid-19. OSMS approved.
ABV4 Laser Cut Face Shield — Andrew Blackstock’s update of Konrad Klepacki and Mateusz Dyrda’s design, both on Hackaday.
Hammerspace Face Shield (website) — Laser cut, no 3D printing, elastic back.
HowToons Soda Bottle Face Shield (website) — Blast from the past, let the kids make this one for the home emergency kit. Medically approved, says OSCMS, but it is “catastrophe grade.”
Prusa Protective Face Shield RC3 (website) — 3D printed parts and vinyl shield (shown at top right), dual headband spaces the shield away from your face. When printed in PETG, it can be sanitized chemically, with hot air, or UV-C.
Design that Matters Face Shield 3.0 — Remix of Prusa shield extends visor upward to protect against aerosol and splatter from above, and improves washability and reuse (shown at bottom right). Approved and shared on NIH’s website.
RC2 Face Shield + Maker Nexus Extensions (website) — Remix of Prusa extends the transparent shield to cover the top and the user’s forehead as well. From Maker Nexus makerspace in Sunnyvale, California.
Injection Molded Prusa Face Shield (website) — Charlotte Latin School’s Fab Lab in North Carolina has modified Prusa’s 3DP face shield parts for injection molding in polypropylene plastic. Files are shared at Github and there’s a Gofundme if you’d like to donate. “We are going from 150 face shields a day to thousands a day,” said Fab Lab director Thomas Dubick.
A respirator is a face mask that seals to the face and filters fine particles from the air.
Convert Surgical Mask to N95 Respirator (website) — Yes, we’re listing this project twice. Hospital surgical masks are made from N95 material but they don’t fit your face. Use rubber bands to make a surgical mask fit snug like an N95, or cut a strap from rubber sheet. Ex-Apple engineers have confirmed it works. Voilà, instant respirator mask!
Swim Mask HEPA PAPR (Instructable) — A PAPR (powered air purifying respirator) forces air through a filter into a sealed mask to protect workers; here’s a DIY version designed by physician Randell Vallero MD using a 5V computer fan, HEPA filter from a vacuum cleaner, and a full face swim mask.
Swim Mask Respirator (Instructable) — Dr. Vallero and his son also developed a non-powered swim mask respirator using common filters like 3M’s P100, HEPA vacuum cleaner bags, and hospital standard Iso-Guard in-line air filters.
Montana Mask 3D Printed Respirator (website) — DIY 3D printed medical supplies are a touchy subject because prints can be porous and hard to sterilize, but this simple 3DP mask with replaceable air filters is now in use at hospitals in Montana, Texas, California, Colorado, and other states. Recent testing indicates it can be sterilized too; check their site.
MakerMask 3D Printed Respirator (website) — Rory Larson in Seattle designed this more complex, dual-filter respirator in consultation with his local hospital and VA; it’s meant for community use and “non-patient facing jobs” — not for health providers dealing directly with patients. Read the MakerMask story here.
DIY “N95” Respirator Mask (website) — Home HVAC filters can provide filtration similar to a respirator, and OSMS notes that “MERV 13 or higher FILTRETE filters can be used to make DIY N95 masks.” Here’s a DIY version. Hospitals may not accept it, but you’d probably feel OK providing it to your family.
Full body protection for workers at the front lines.
PS-1 Open Source Protective Suit (files in google drive) — Michelle Dulce in Manila reverse engineered an existing isolation suit, turned it into a pattern, and created an instructional PDF for home sewers. Alex Crease from Boston created DXF files for machine cutting. OSCMS recommends using Tyvek and following DuPont’s method of heat-sealing the seams.
–Maker Faire Rome’s discussion about Covid
No-Touchy Hand Sanitizer Dispenser (video) — Foot-operated lever squeezes your standard pump bottle; adjustable shelf for different bottle sizes. From Ace Makerspace (aka Ace Monster Toys) in Oakland, California.
Hands-Free Door Opener (Foot Operated) (website) — Simple bracket lets you open unlatched doors by pulling with with your foot. (Bare feet and flip-flops not recommended.) From Seattle Makers.
Hands-Free Shopping Cart Handles (website) — 3D printed, push your cart with your elbows not your hands. Designed and shared by Materialise.
Wuhan Hook (website) — Chris Wang aka Akiba at Hackerfarm noticed this hack used by people in Wuhan: a simple hook for opening doors and drawers, that can be sterilized by flame after each use. It’s just an Allen hex wrench taped to a butane lighter! His how-to has inspired 3D printed versions on Instructables and Thingiverse.
Maker Hooks — There are lots of burly 3D printed hooks and handles for opening doors, flipping light switches, and lifting handles without touching them. We’re finding them in the Prusa community, Thingiverse, Facebook, everywhere.
Reuse protective gear so it lasts longer.
YouVee — A DIY UV-C Irradiation Cabinet (website) — For $50 of parts from the home improvement store, you can build a simple UV-C cabinet (shown above) to zap the virus and sterilize masks and other gear. Easy project uses a germicidal bulb, an ordinary work lamp, and aluminum foil tape. Developed by Deeplocal in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, inspired by Mike Dubrovsky‘s crude UV-C chamber how-to. Full YouVee project instructions here on Make:.
Hyjeia Wall-Sized UV-C Sterilizer (website) — Scaled-up unit for sanitizing rooms or bigger loads of PPE, using 6-foot germicidal UV-C bulbs in standard fluorescent fixtures. Designed by Chris Wang aka Akiba at Hackerfarm in Tokyo.
“Easy Bake” Heat Sterilization Oven (website) — Like an Easy-Bake Oven, this chamber uses a 100W incandescent light bulb for heat, plus a cheap styrofoam cooler and an Arduino circuit (or plain vanilla temperature controller) to keep the interior at 70°C/158°F for as long as you say. Also from Akiba.
Hybrid Heat/UV-C Face Mask Disinfection Chamber (website) — Double trouble for viruses: hackers at Needlab in Barcelona engineered a disinfection box for surgical and fabric masks, using both dry heat and UV-C light controlled by an Arduino. More complicated than the two above.
How to Reuse N95 Masks — From a Stanford Medicine study: To sterilize, heat in an oven 70°C/158°F for 30 minutes, or steam over boiling water for 10 minutes. But they warn: Don’t do this in your kitchen or you could contaminate your house! Don’t use alcohol or chlorine — these degrade the N95 filter. UV-C also works but can degrade plastic parts so don’t overexpose them. NOTE: The FDA recently approved hydrogen peroxide vapor, but we haven’t seen a DIY version of that yet.
How to Reuse Nitrile Gloves — You can use an Instant Pot as an autoclave to disinfect nitrile gloves. Ryan Singel says 30 mins, and don’t let them touch the metal or water.
We’re cooped up until widespread testing is available. Can DIYers help solve the testing shortage?
3D Printed Nasopharyngeal Swabs (website) — Don’t do this. Your FDM printer cannot make these right, and you don’t want swabs breaking off in people’s noses, sending them to the emergency room with coronavirus. A consortium of hospitals, universities, and resin 3D printing companies (Formlabs, Origin, Carbon, and EnvisionTec) is working hard to solve the shortage at printedswabs.org and they’re taking orders now for immediate fulfillment. BUT — If your hospital is desperate, and you have a professional-grade resin printer, and you’re willing to follow insanely rigorous specifications for materials, production, post-processing, and sterilization, visit the Github repo, read everything, then scroll to “Self-printing” to find an STL for printing — not yet clinically tested — and instructions shared by University of South Florida and Formlabs. Desperate measures.
A ventilator inflates/deflates the lungs of patients unable to breathe on their own. It’s a complex machine involving hardware and software. Don’t expect to build a real ventilator. But it is possible to build an emergency ventilator that can keep a non-critical patient alive until the real thing becomes available.
AmboVent Emergency Ventilation System (website) — Designed by volunteers from Israel’s national emergency medical service, leading hospitals, and military innovation centers, the AmboVent (shown above) was open sourced on Github on April 1 and immediately rated the best open source option by Robert Read. It compresses a manual bag valve mask (BVM) automatically using an Arduino Nano, SparkFun pressure sensor, and snowblower motor and can be built in a typical makerspace for about $500.
Apollo BVM Ventilator (website) — Open source design (shown at right) by Rice University’s Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen and Metric Technologies, with controls designed by clinicians. An Arduino controls a 3D-printed rack-and-pinion direct drive to automate the compression of a bag valve mask, to keep non-critical patients stable, freeing up larger ventilators for patients in dire need. Build it for less than $300.
Medtronic Puritan Bennett 560 (PB 560) (website) — Medtronic released plans for this commercial ventilator but it’s more complex to manufacture than the average makerspace can tackle. Better suited to bigger manufacturing firms, but makers are helping to update the schematics (Make: has the story here).
The following projects aren’t quite ready to build, but we expect them soon:
Minnesota CoVentor Emergency Ventilator (website) — The first emergency ventilator design to get FDA approval, it’s a plunger-based BVM type developed by University of Minnesota researchers with help from Proto Labs, Digi-Key, and others. “Will be open sourced” soon — we’ll let you know.
MIT E-Vent Emergency Ventilator (website) — Automated BVM manual resuscitator, open source, waiting FDA approval…
UV-C Sterilizing Grill — UV-C light is dangerous to your eyes/skin and rapidly degrades most materials; on N95 masks the harder plastics can become brittle and snap after a single sterilization. This is one reason hospitals don’t regularly mass sterilize with UV-C in the rooms; it can destroy tubing and other plastics. However, it can be effective for sterilization when properly timed. Building Momentum built a UV-C Sterilizing “Grill” in three hours; we’re looking forward to a BOM.