Introduction: Soda Bottle Face Shield
With a global pandemic upon us and faced with shortages of protective gear, I will show you how you can easily make your own face shield for pennies with readily available materials. I provide tips and suggestions for optional methods of assembly. This design approach utilizes disposable plastic soda bottles putting them to good use rather than filling a landfill. This is a timely project for children and adults who want help the environment and to use their time constructively by making this potentially life-saving device.
Before beginning, read the comments and recommendations section for additional tips.
Disclaimer: The face shield produced herein does not necessarily conform to any commercial or government safety standard and is not guaranteed as providing any level of protection stated therein.
Step 1: Tools and Materials
- Utility Knife / Scissors
- Hole Punch
- Two-liter (Transparent) Soda Bottle
- 1 Sheet of Paper (8.5 x 11-inch)
- 2 Rubber Bands (3 to 4-inch size)
- 1 Binder Clip (3/4-inch wide)
Step 2: Prepare the Bottle
Rinse out and dry the soda bottle.
Remove the cap and as much of the label you reasonably can.
Step 3: Cut the Bottle
Using the utility knife carefully make circumferential cuts around the bottle at the top and bottom where the flat side transitions to the curved portions producing a flat-sided circular tube. Try to conserve as much of the flat side as possible. Do not cut yourself!
Recycle the top and bottom portions.
Locate the label glue line left on the bottle after removing the label.
Centered on the glue line, punch two holes 1/2-inch from one edge 1-inch apart. This edge will be the “top” of the shield for reference.
Cut the bottle apart along a straight line perpendicular to the top and bottom edges and directly between the punched holes. This will result in a square sheet. The material will naturally coil up into a smaller diameter. The inside surface of this tube will be the “inside” of the shield for reference.
Round off the four sharp corners using approximately a 1/2-inch radius.
Step 4: Install the Elastic Headbands
Stretch out the rubber bands fully a few times to make them more flexible and extensible.
Insert one rubber band into a punched hole.
Insert one looped end of the rubber band through the loop formed on the other side trapping the shield within the formed loop. Pull tight.
Similarly install the other rubber band in the remaining punched hole.
Step 5: Make the Headband Cushion
Starting on the 8.5-inch edge, roll the sheet of 8.5 by 11-inch paper into a 1-inch diameter, 8.5-inch long tube.
Staple each end with a staple about 1/4-inch from the ends. The staple ends should “straddle” exposed edge of the paper to keep the edge against the wall of the tube.
Rotate the tube on its longitudinal axis and fold on the centerline to form a crease that is perpendicular to the flattened ends as shown. Do not flatten the tube while doing so.
Step 6: Install the Headband Cushion
Unroll the shield with the inside facing you and top edge upward.
Align the center crease of the headband cushion with the shield’s vertical centerline. Position the cushion on the shield flush with the top edge.
Clip the cushion to the shield using the spring clip on the aligned shield and cushion centerlines.
Tie the loose ends of the rubber bands together using a single overhand knot. Locate the knot as close as possible to the rubber band ends. Pull the knot tight.
Step 7: Using the Face Shield
Hold each side of the rubber band adjacent to the shield and stretch the tied rubber band into a loop.
Pull the loop over your head with the rubber band against the back of your head keeping the shield away from your face while doing so. Gently let the rubber band pull the mask to your face. The cushion should rest just above the eyebrows and the rubber band comfortably positioned around the back of the head. Adjust the shield for face alignment and comfort.
You can use the shield immediately or store in a resealable Ziploc type bag for future use.
When storing, temporarily remove the cushion and untie the rubber bands. Following the shield’s natural curling tendency, roll up the shield to about a 1.5-inch diameter. Wrap the external rubber band loop around the tube as needed to secure the tube in place and prevent unrolling.
Taking care not to crush, fold the cushion together on itself along the preformed centerline crease, and tuck the creased end inside the tube from the bottom.
Fully insert the cushion within the tube and use the spring clip to secure the shield’s bottom edge.
You can reuse the shield by simply removing the cushion, disinfecting the inside and outside of the shield, and replacing the cushion with a new one.
Step 8: Comments and Recommendations
- Do not use intricately shaped bottles.
- Use only simple straight-sided transparent bottles.
- Optionally use scissors to trim edges for a more custom fit if needed. Make sure to remove all sharp edges and burrs.
- Take care when using the utility knife! Sharp!
- The utility knife works better than scissors when cutting the top and bottom off of the bottle. Scissors are a bit easier to work with when cutting the straight side of the bottle and rounding corners.
- Try other sizes of rubber bands to provide a robust and comfortable fit as required.
- The spring clip works better than paper clips.As well as providing comfort, the cushion offsets the mask from your face accommodating users who wear glasses. Consequently, do not use short or thick rubber bands, as these will uncomfortably press the shield into your face and possibly crush the cushion. A light but firm band tension is the goal.
- Masking tape may optionally be used in place of the binder clip as well as along the edges of the shield where and if necessary for comfort.
BY USING THIS DESIGN PLAN, YOU UNDERSTAND AND HEREBY AGREE THAT:
These plans, and any items arising out of or derived from these plans, are NOT meant to replace approved medical equipment and devices, and have NOT been cleared, approved, or authorized for use by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) as medical devices that comply with performance standards, including American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and International Safety Equipment Association (ISEA) standards, for protection against hazards, including blood-borne or respiratory pathogens and other infectious materials.
Providing these design plans and/or use of the design plans or any items arising out of or derived from such design plans does not convey and shall not be construed to convey any right, title or interest, including but not limited to intellectual property rights, subsisting in the design plans or any items arising out of or derived from such design plans.
ALL DESIGN PLANS ARE PROVIDED AS IS. NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES ARE MADE REGARDING THE QUALITY, NATURE, CONDITION, OR COMPOSITION OF THE DESIGN PLANS, OR ANY ITEMS ARISING OUT OF OR DERIVED FROM SUCH DESIGN PLANS.
ALL WARRANTIES AND REPRESENTATIONS, WHETHER EXPRESS, IMPLIED, OR STATUTORY, ARE DISCLAIMED, INCLUDING WITHOUT LIMITATION ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTIABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE REGARDING THE DESIGN PLANS OR ANY ITEMS ARISING OUT OF OR DERIVED FROM SUCH DESIGN PLANS.
NO PARTY PROVIDING ANY OF THE DESIGN PLANS SHALL BE LIABLE UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES FOR DAMAGES OF ANY KIND, WHETHER DIRECT, INDIRECT, SPECIAL, INCIDENTAL, CONSQUENTIAL, OR PUNITIVE, ARISING FROM ANY USE OF THE DESIGN PLANS OR ITEMS ARISING OUT OF OR DERIVED FROM SUCH PLANS.
USE OF ANY OF THE DESIGN PLANS AND/OR ANY ITEMS ARISING OUT OF OR DERIVED FROM SUCH PLANS IS SOLELY AT YOUR OWN RISK.
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Trash to Treasure Contest
2 years ago
I've been wondering if anyone would ever get to showing a 2 liter face shield! I got the idea years ago when I was trying to make a beekeeping veil!
Reply 2 years ago
Thanks for the reply. Other designs using a 2-liter bottle exist, but from the feedback I received, this design is easy to make, comfortable, effective, and inexpensive. Stay well!