A delivery of visors to the CHU of Nîmes made by makers of the fabLabs network in Occitania on their 3D printers. - RedLab Occitanie

  • After a call launched at the national level, the "makers", followers of 3D printing, embarked on the production of anti-postillon visors in a real burst of generosity.
  • In Occitania, groups were born on social networks where individuals make their skills available to caregivers, but also traders or home helpers.
  • The FabLabs network is also involved and provides hospitals with visors developed by their makers.

"We are going to the front but we have no armor. But thanks to all these individuals, we can provide quality care, they intervene without asking anything, it is a real impetus of generosity and we thank them every day. "

This cry from the heart is that of Réguy Dondon, a liberal nurse from Saint-Orens, south-east of Toulouse. It is one of the multiple beneficiaries of visors produced by a group of “makers” on their 3D printers.

When the Covid center in her commune opened, this caregiver, like her medical colleagues, found herself completely helpless, with barely a few FFP2 masks and most often out of date. “We asked the state, the regional health agency, the order of nurses and had no response. As a last resort, I launched a call on social networks for visors, but also combinations, masks. One of my contacts told me about the maker group. The same evening, there were ten visors available for the center, and there today fifty more, ”continues Réguy Dondon.

From the pleasure of 3D to the useful and the urgency

The one who relayed his call was Jean-Christophe, one of the administrators of the Facebook group Shields - Covid19 - Haute Garonne - Toulouse. Until now, this dad used his 3D printer to create figurines for his 6 year old daughter. “Last Sunday, I saw that a small group had assembled to create visors at the national level. I proposed to do this on the department to give a helping hand to the nursing staff, ”says this Toulousain whose wife is a nurse.

He then looked for "makers". From a few volunteers, today there are dozens of members of this group of 3D superheroes. And they have spread to neighboring departments where requests are pouring in nursing homes, home help and even hospital services. Little hands in the shade, those who work from their living room or their garden shed.

They are mothers, retirees, people who are unemployed or who take it between two telework breaks. A discreet army, which is waging a war outside the nails, but whose victories are hailed on social networks with photos posted by their beneficiaries who have known their existence by word of mouth.

“Today we are trying to organize a little, in particular to find raw material and finance it. It's been a week and we haven't stopped receiving photos from nursing staff, we can see the usefulness, and even if our visors are not up to standard, ”pleads Jean-Christophe.

System D in action

By his side in this race against the clock, there is Lisa Sinardet. On the stack side, this Toulousaine is in charge of the Fab Labs of the company Thales Alenia Space. In this context, through the association of FabLab companies, it worked on the prototype visors designed in nylon and which will be intended for the Toulouse University Hospital.

On the face side, like many other individuals, she decided to make her skills available during her free time. For the group, she manages my requests and allocations, stocks and needs as well as deliveries. “Orders arrive 24 hours a day, this morning it started at 6 am. My printer has a capacity of ten visors during the day and ten at night, it rotates non-stop. And to get raw materials, we use the D system, I placed an ad at home and my neighbors provided me with rubber bands, ”says the young woman.

In some town halls, elected officials have recovered the stocks of transparent covers that are usually used on the first page of spiral reports.

FabLabs on deck

In the region, several thousand visors have seen the light of day in less than a week. To which are added those provided by the FabLabs network. “Between us and individuals, there are more than 3,000. A few days ago, we provided the CHU of Nîmes, before it was the radiology department of the Toulouse CHU, ”says Antoine Ruiz-Scorletti of Red Labs, the network of around thirty FabLabs from Occitania. Not to mention those that are made outside the networks.

[ESPRIT MAKER] Congratulations to the volunteers of the Espace des Sciences for these visors👏👏👏. A great demonstration of the maker spirit, open source models are being circulated in agreement with the health authorities. #Maker #Fablab # Covid_19 #solidarite https://t.co/QEbe2iQWVq

- PlaneteSciencesOccitanie (@PlanetSciOccit) March 27, 2020

At the start of the confinement, the latter did not hide the fact that it was difficult to be heard by the competent authorities. Not to mention the fact that for some, these visors were a step backwards.

“They used this a long time ago. But since there are no more masks, there are past solutions produced by the means of tomorrow, ”he explains. From now on, he is in contact with communities, traders, charities, but also companies that do not hesitate to provide free raw materials. Solidarity in 3D which seeks only to render service.


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  • Languedoc-Roussillon
  • Solidarity
  • Technology
  • Health
  • Coronavirus
  • Montpellier
  • Toulouse
  • Society
  • Covid 19
  • 3D printer