Instead of spending $52.50 to replace radio handsets with exposed screws -- a shock hazard for the operator -- Marines can now use a 3D-printed clip that costs 50 cents, according to a service news release.
Lance Cpl. Frederick Sattler won first prize in the First Quarter Commanding General's Innovation Challenge, "a Shark Tank-style board where Marines and Sailors can present ideas to improve their unit, the base, or the Marine Corps as a whole," for a simple design that keeps Marines from having to dispose of the damaged handsets.
"I was joking around a bit before I came in because we were marking off all of our unmodified [damaged] handsets, and I just thought how much of a waste it was," Sattler, a field radio operator with Combat Logistics Battalion 2, said in a video.
His invention clips around the exposed screws to protect the operator. Marine Forces Systems Command will evaluate the clips before mass producing them.
Sattler worked with 2nd Marine Logistics Group's "Makerspace" additive manufacturing experts and equipment to develop his award-winning design, which beat out seven other submissions.
"Makerspace" is a collaborative environment for Marines and sailors to explore ideas to improve policies, procedures or products to increase readiness within II Marine Expeditionary Force and ultimately, according to the Marine Corps.
Sattler, a native of San Pedro, California, will receive a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal and an unspecified amount of money for his idea.
-- Dorothy Mills-Gregg can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter at @DMillsGregg.