And the Prototyping Begins!— Maria Flores

This whole week we have been working on materials and prototype design in Google Sketch-Up for our improved surgical mask. For our mask materials we decided we were going to have 3 filters, two buckle straps, elastic and a lot of mask molds to work with. Our first filter was a Universal Carbon pre-filter, the second one was a light weight white flex filter and the third was a satin silk fabric filter that not only will be used as a filter but also as a decorative fabric. Even though three  filters might be look like a lot, all three of them are used for three different purposes. The buckle straps will be used to fit any type of head and for comfort.They will have an approximately length of 8 to 16 inches for different head sizes which could also fit kids. The elastic will be used for adjustability and comfort near the nose. And lastly, the mask molds will be used as a reference and/or mold.

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Google Sketchup has been our 3D designing program for a couple of years now but we still haven’t gotten to the point where we can build stuff in less than an hour. While building our maks prototype the easiest step that we could take was getting the mask mold from the 3D warehouse and working our way from there. After having the most important thing done we went back to the 3D warehouse and looked for straps that looked just like the ones we had imagined for our prototype. When looking for the strap we found a firefighter helmet that had the straps that we were looking for, all we had to do was erase the other parts that we weren’t going to use. After having 75% of the mask done all we had to add was the circular filters and the rectangle filters, which was one of the hardest part of building the prototype. When Lorena and I finished we realized that the most important thing to have while building on Sketch-up is patience because when building, sketchup doesn’t do the things that you actually want sketch-up to do and the prototype that you imagine won’t be as perfect as you wanted to be. Maybe our next innovation could be making Sketch-up read our minds and make a sketch based on what we actually want our model to look like without struggling to make perfect curves and angles!

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