Whether you’re disinfecting constantly, wearing gloves, or using your clothing as a shield, most of us are aware that door handles are covered in germs that you’ll want to steer clear of. With this in mind, digital fabrication firm Materialise started thinking of ways to make the simple act of opening a door more hygienic. Their 3D-printed door handle is a clever, effective way to help slow the spread of any virus.
The simple design is easy to install and will allow any door handle to be used hands-free. To open the door, you simply place your forearm between the door and the barrier, pressing down to release the handle. The plastic barrier then allows you to pull back and open the door without ever having to place your bare hands on the lever.
With research about the coronavirus’ viability on different types of fabric still evolving, one still needs to take precautions even if using the clever invention. These door openers do need to be disinfected regularly as well, but without the constant handling of bare hands, they should collect far fewer germs.
“The idea for the 3D printed door handle originated at an internal meeting to define measures to protect Materialise employees and visitors,” writes the firm, which runs one of the largest 3D printing facilities in the world. “It soon became clear that more people could benefit from this design and the company decided to make it available for free. Anyone with access to a 3D printer can download the design and 3D print it locally in a matter of hours.”
The 3D door opener requires just two screws, with designs for round and square handles already in place. Materialise is working to introduce other designs as needed based on user feedback. To the benefit of everyone, the firm is making the files to print the handles available free of charge, though it’s also possible to order finished handles from their online store.