RENSSELAER — Ron Kasparian feels his company has developed a face mask that is affordable, effective — and perhaps more importantly — reusable.
With COVID-19 — more commonly known as coronavirus — spreading across the country and into the Midwest, people of an advanced age or those burdened by medical issues may feel more comfortable wearing a face mask out in public.
With that in mind, Kasparian’s 3-D printing company, You’ll Never Guess in Rensselaer, has created a rigid shield or mask that features inexpensive make-up remover circle pads as filters.
“We think we’ve engineered a cheaper and better mask that is more comfortable and ergonomically better than those that are available right now,” Kasparian said.
The masks come in three pieces and includes a tool to remove the filters from the mask. Those four pieces are done on a 3-D printer, and the kit includes a package of 10 filters.
“We have 118 3-D printers and about 70 percent are running masks,” said Kasparian, adding his company can create 300 masks a day if needed.
“It takes about six hours to print the four items needed for each mask plus cleaning,” he said.
The masks are available on https://bit.ly/2UJc1fs, as well as Amazon and eBay for a cost. Masks can also be picked up at You’ll Never Guess at 706 W. Kannal Ave. in Rensselaer.
“We’re not trying to put these masks in hospitals or nursing homes,” Kasparian said. “They are for people who want to get out and about, maybe take a drive to the grocery store or Walmart.”
What keeps the price low with these particular masks — which Kasparian said are similar in design and quality to industrial filtration masks or to those available in ambulances — is the make-up pads for filters. A bag of 100 pads costs around $2.
“You can buy three bags for a whole year for around $6,” he said. A pad can be used for a day and thrown away.
The filters are easy to remove and replace, Kasparian added, and the masks themselves are easy to clean with warm water and soap or sanitizing spray.
For more information, go to the You’ll Never Guess website at www.yngllc.com.
You’ll Never Guess is also providing a basic mask design at no cost on its website www.thingiverse.com/thing: 4240941 for owners of 3-D printers. The masks can be printed in sections and assembled using common household tools, Kasparian said.