by Jeff Pederson
for The Beacon
With demand for comfortable and adaptable face protection skyrocketing due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) public health emergency, Plymouth entrepreneur Bob Travis saw an opportunity and promptly seized it.
Travis’ new face shield creation, CapN SHIELD provides face protection for those on the job, at home or running errands.
The patent-pending plastic shield, which requires no strap, slides onto the brim of most baseball caps and can be used in any situation where face protection is necessary.
“When the coronavirus pandemic started to hit on March 17, I started working on CapN SHIELD by making a thermal forming mold in my basement,” Travis said. “I got the idea after reading an article about a company that was making standard face shields due to the high demand with the coronavirus outbreak. Their method of manufacture took 20 minutes to create a single shield.
“With the mold, I am able to make a form for the CapN SHIELD face shield in nine seconds,” he said. “The great thing about this face shield is that it can be reused and recycled by disinfecting it after use. I am engaged with two companies that we hope will help us make up to 10,000 CapN SHIELD face shields a day.”
Due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, Travis has been granted emergency FDA approval for CapN SHIELD.
“Because of the pandemic and the high need for face shields, we were able to get an automatic emergency FDA approval,” Travis said. “We will need to resubmit for FDA approval after the pandemic passes. However, having that approval has been a big key to getting the face shields accepted by users.”
CapN SHIELD face shields are now available for order at http://www.capnshields.com.
“We just launched the website two weeks ago and we’ve already produced and sold about 500 shields,” Travis said. “This is kind of a soft launch before we join forces with a company in Madison that will help us boost our production capabilities by mid-July.”
Travis says the response to the product during the soft launch period has been overwhelming.
“The intent is to develop CapN SHIELD as an alternative to regular face masks,” Travis said. “It works well in the food service industry and the manufacturing sector. Generally, I have found that people don’t like wearing masks, especially ones with straps. However, CapN SHIELD is so easy to use and comfortable to wear by sliding onto the brim of ball caps with no uncomfortable strap. They also work well for personal use, including painting, cutting grass and any type of activity where you want to prevent debris from going in your face.”
Travis, who has owned InkWorks Printing in Plymouth for the past 10 years, has joined forces with driver Jeff Bartz and the Plymouth, Wis.-based Pure Energy Racing team, which will make its 2020 season debut for the WeatherTech Chicago Region SCCA June Sprints at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. this Saturday, June 13 and Sunday, June 14.
After the first two events of the team’s 2020 were cancelled due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) public health emergency, the June Sprints at Road America will mark the first race of the 2020 season for driver Jeff Bartz and the Pure Energy Racing team in the SCCA F1600 Formula F division.
“We are excited to get back on the track to get the 2020 season started at our home track at Road America,” Bartz said. “In addition, we are thrilled that Bob Travis and his new CapN SHIELD face shields will be on board with us starting with June Sprints and throughout the 2020 season.”
Travis got connected to Pure Energy Racing after living next door to Bartz’s father Tom for the past 20 years.
“I’ve been Tom’s neighbor in Plymouth for around 20 years now,” Travis said. “I don’t have a lot of experience with racing, but Tom is really into it and always tells me about how the team is doing.
“With this new face shield coming out and the high demand for it right now, we thought it was a great opportunity to get involved with the Pure Energy Racing team,” he said. “We start this association with the June Sprints at Road America and it will extend through the remainder of the 2020 racing season.”