Students – 3D Printing Hands

(Please click photo above to go to original story with video)

“We would’ve just done something that wouldn’t be very helpful and this is a good chance to help someone out who needs it.” Naomi Collins – Freshman Student at Churchill High School, Eugene Oregon.

Just about a month ago, little Keegan received his first e-NABLE hand from one of our volunteers who came up with a prototype version of the Talon Design that would work for children who have functional thumbs and do not need a full 5 fingered design.

Now, not only have our e-NABLE team of designers come up with ANOTHER version for children and adults who already have a working thumb – but Keegan is about to get to be a beta tester  and try out this new design – thanks to a couple of 9th graders at Churchill High School in Oregon!

The school just got a new 3D printer, and freshman students, Molly  Hiatt and Naomi Collins, found out about Keegan and his first 3D printed hand and decided they wanted to try making one for him too using the new design that e-NABLE is working on.

Instead of using their new school 3D printer to design things that wouldn’t be very helpful, the two students decided they wanted to focus on learning how to use the printer while also being able to help someone.

Keegan’s first e-NABLE  hand was created by one of our volunteers who lives over 400 miles away from Keegan’s family. Now, by having the local high school students take over the creation of his 3D printed hand, not only will Keegan be able to get a replacement hand faster when he outgrows the current version – but it also means that he gets to personally work with students in his home town who will be able to see the benefit of their learning a new technology and hopefully inspire each other to continue to find ways to use 3D printing to benefit others.

While the prototype hand that was already created for Keegan works well for catching a ball, holding a fishing pole and was a good start to a functional thumb design – the design and research team at Creighton University has been working to improve the concept and has come up with a newer version that will hopefully fit more snuggly and help to improve Keegan’s muscle strength!

Mailis hand (no thumb) (1)

This design has not been released as of yet to the general public as further testing needs to be done – but after our beta testers and research participants give the team some feedback and make appropriate adjustments – we will share them on our website for those that would like to try making one for themselves or someone in need.

If you would like to join the e-NABLE Global Community – please come introduce yourselves in our Google + community! We have something for everyone to help with!