Covid-19 Face Shield Project Simple CNC Cut Design

by andrew


The Caring Like Nicholas Foundation was looking for a good way to help all of those in need during this pandemic.  This foundation was founded by the McClary Family who are engineers and makers.  Nicholas himself was an avid maker.  With that in mind we are going to be devoting all donations taken in during the next 3 months to the Face Shield Project to help supply hospitals with needed face shields to be worn in conjunction with their masks to help protect their eyes and face from the water borne particles which can carry the virus.  McClary Design and Engineering has provided a design which they created and are releasing to the public as an open source design for non-commercial use.  We will be hosting the files, instructions, and updates for face shields here on this site.  Below you will also find links where you can sign up as a hospital to request face shields.  If you are a maker with a CNC shop and would like to volunteer by making these shields, please sign up and we will connect you with any hospitals in your area that have requests.

Why a CNC design verses 3D printed?

The 3D printed design is great and we applaud all of the makers out there who are using their 3D printers to make these, but for those companies and makers who have access to CNC machines, the face shield frames can be cut almost 10 – 15 times faster on even an amateur CNC machine than it can be printed on a printer.  Furthermore the frames can be cut out of sheets of HDPE which is highly resistant to bacteria and viruses and also can be easily cleaned and disinfected for re-use.  The print line in 3D printed parts easily trap bacteria and viruses and therefore are only really good for one use and then should be discarded.

  • Faster – cuts in less than 2 minutes
  • Easier to clean and disinfect.
  • Reusable

Linking together Hospitals and CNC Operators

If you are a hospital who would like to request some face shields – Click here.

If you are a CNC shop and would like to volunteer your time to make face shields – Click here.

The Design Considerations for this design

  • Must be able to be cut out without any tool changes.  This not only cuts down on cost and time to make them, but it also means that even amateur CNC machines as well as other commercial systems without automatic tool changers can easily used without production being slowed for tool changes.
  • Must be able to be cut by at least a .25″ endmill so that lots of the frames can be cut with faster movement and not risk tool breakage.
  • The same design can be used on flat material from .25″ up to 1″ in thickness if .25″ material is not available.


These files are free to download, alter,  and use.  The only thing we ask is that you credit Caring Like Nicholas Foundation whenever possible. @caringlikenicholas

Version Beta 2 – Zip file with DXF, SVG, and Shopbot file formats

Version Beta 2 – Fusion 360 Share

ShopBot Users – Shopbot Production Files (These are optimized SBP files with an editable master file to specify how many you want cut on a sheet.)

GCode develope by William Russo – GCode and Layout

Version Information:

Version Beta 2 –

  • Instead of matching the Prusa 4 hole design, altered the design to use a standard 3 hole pattern matching the standard US note book paper for a 3 ring binder.  Added a slot for user to wrap the brow with tissue or gauze for comfort and catching sweat.
  • Optimized the paths to shave almost a minute off of the time to cut.  Can now be cut in under a minute.


Version Beta 2




We have included Shopbot CNC files, but for all other machines you will need to download the source files and create your own gcode cut files. The design was created with the intent that it could be cut out entirely with a .25″ end mill so you won’t need any tool changes.  We have supplied the files in DXF, AI, SVG for 2D and if you would like to work with the 3D model the model is included in STEP, and Fusion 360 F3D.


Preferred plastic is .25″ sheet HDPE (High Density Poly Ethylene) which is a dense plastic and has been used in the medical and food industry for a long time.  It can be washed, exposed to UV-C light, and bleach.
Though PVC can be used, it it not preferred because it is very porous and can trap bacteria and viruses.  If it is used because that is all that is available, then the frames should be discarded after use and should not be reused.

CNC Operations (These are the basic operations you will need to create.)

  1. Operation number 1 is to trim down the height of the pins that hold the clear face shield with a clearing operation.
  2. Operation 2 is another clearing operation to remove weight from the top of the unit which we will call the visor area.
  3. Operation 3 is to drill the holes for the rubber band or elastic.
  4. Operation 4 then cuts out the entire unit. I would recommend leaving tabs to hold the parts in place. 3 seems to work, one on each ear and one in the center front.

Once the parts are removed, they should be demurred with a demurring tool or sandpaper so that there are not any sharp edges. This is extremely important along the edge that goes against the persons forehead.

Print out the PDF shield template being sure that the scale is 100%. The dimension and placement of the holes is very important for the shield to secure to the frame. The shield should just barely fit over the holes and be held tight.  Be sure to make and test one before making a lot of them.


Caring Like Nicholas Foundation is a registered 501(3c) non-profit setup for educating and assisting children fighting cancer and bone marrow transplant issues.


First Shipment of Face Shields Delivered
to Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital and Memorial Healthcare

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    Our Mission

    Caring Like Nicholas's primary mission is raising the number of people who are registered to be potential bone marrow donors, thus increasing the likelyhood that some child out there will find a perfect match and survive. Our plan to do this is by educating people on the need, how easy it is to register, how easy it is to donate, and get people involved.