Introduction: Design Friction Lab - S1 SHIELD

About: A design research lab crossing academic research with design and diverse aspects of sustainability, growing materials, glocal production, DIY and makers culture, to name just a few.

The S1 SHIELD is a single-material face-protection shield developed by the Design Friction Lab of the Faculty of design and Art together with BITZ Fablab, both of the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy.

The shield has successfully passed laboratory testing for compliance with the EN-166 European Norm for personal eye protection and is officially approved by the Italian authorities (INAIL). See attached approval protocol. By late summer 2020, over 5.000 shields have been produced directly by us, with over half of them being used by the medical staff of Soth-Tyrol's hospitals.

This design is a further evolution of different open-source masks (by Lucien Junkin and others). It is aiming for speedy, low-cost, higher-volume production with a Laser cutter/waterjet cutter.
The face shield is solely made of single sheet material, eliminating the need for any other part (3d printed, etc.). The shield as such is more durable and more resistant to different disinfection chemicals and methods.

Important - this face shield is meant to be used on top of the N95/FFP breathing masks and goggles, adding more protection and extending the time period between the disinfection or replacing of the breathing masks.

Attached please find as well the certified product instruction page in Italian and its un-certified translation in English. According to Italian INAIL regulations, the product instructions should accompany any produced visor.



Ideal: a clear sheet of 0.5mm PETG.
Also work well:
a clear sheet of 0.75mm PC (Polycarbonate) -in which case you either waterjet it or use a laser cutter, taking into consideration you will have brown-ish edges. The PC 0.75mm weighs a bit more, is slightly more rigid and as a consequence a bit harder on the forehead. It still works well though.
Alternatively: any clear sheet of Acrylic, Acetate that is stable enough on one hand, and is not too rigid either.

Step 1: Cutting and Preparing the Pieces

  • The three parts (visor, front-strap, key) are fitting within a surface of 733 x 306mm.
  • x15 shields fit within a standard sheet of 2050x1250mm
  • The laser cutter we use (Sei Laser: Mercury 609, 350w) takes about 25min. per sheet.

After cutting the pieces
1. Make sure to remove carefully the protective foils from both sides ofthe front strap and the key.
2. Remove carefully the protective foil only from the internal side of the visor.
> This will protect the more vulnerable outer side of the visor from getting scratched during assembly and handling. Remove the outer foil of the visor only before using it.

Step 2: Mounting the Front Strap

Orientation - The front-strap is positioned in the middle of the visor with the front strap 'arrows' pointing to the center and the 'S1' marking towards you.


  • Start by connecting one side of the front strap to the visor, make sure to connect the internal arrow first, inserting it to the slot in a diagonal turn so that you first fit one side of the arrowhead and then the other one.
  • Once both arrows of one side are mounted and fit well inside their slots, do the same for the other side, making sure to again start with the internal arrow.

That's it, the shield is mounted! now you only need to adjust it to your head size.

Step 3: Adjusting Head Perimeter and Locking the Shield

  • The shield should fit not fit too tight on your head but sit comfortably.
  • Try it first: put the shield on your head, adjust the straps in a position that feels tight enough and hold it there while you take down the shield.
  • Use the key to lock the back straps in the right position: push the key all the way through the most external hole possible (on either side). Make sure to pass all the key length through so the round head is touching the strap.
  • Now pass the key through the next hole.
  • Important: the key should always pass through every second hole (as illustrated).
  • As you are now just checking the size, pass the key only through two holes, put on the shield and see if the size is right.
  • Once the shield fits comfortably, complete the locking by passing the key all the way through the back straps (every second hole) so that the complete key length is 'sawn' through the back straps.

Step 4: Cleaning and Disinfecting

The shield is made out a scratch sensitive material, make sure to treat the front part carefully, not placing it on the front and always using a soft cloth for cleaning.

Recommended cleaning - IPA - isopropyl alcohol (min. 75%), ethanol (min. 78%) and virucidal solutions - disinfect for at least 5 minutes.

WARNING - Make sure to test any new disinfectant solution before using it! Apply it on the edge of one of the back straps, wait for a while and check if the disinfectant has damaged the surface.

Step 5: