I’m new here but I’ll skip straight to the point and leave introducing myself for the end of this post. I’m designing a wrist-driven, 3D printable prosthetic hand for kids as part of the final year of my degree and I need your help. I understand that there are quite a few models already available (from sources such as e-NABLE) but I’m wanting to know where these models fall short and if there’s anything that they are incapable of doing that your kids (or you!) want or need them to do.
If you know a child that either would like to use or already uses a prosthetic hand (no matter how advanced, info on the shortcomings of expensive prosthetics is just as useful) please, please, please talk to them and find out if there’s anything they wish their prosthetic could do or if they have any issues with their current model. Feedback from any adults using a prosthetic hand will also be useful throughout the design process.
Is the grip on their current model too weak? Does it fall off often? Do they wish they could tie their laces with both hands? Do they want to be able to hold a pencil/stylus/paint brush? Do they struggle to grasp complex objects with curves and indentations? Is it too heavy/light? Was it complicated to assemble?
Your help is greatly appreciated and it won’t be without reward as at the end of this project (in a few months’ time) I’ll be making the design freely available through as many platforms as possible. So please share this thread throughout the prosthetic community and help shape a new design (I’m very new to the community and there are definitely useful places I’m not aware of!).
I look forwards to hearing from you all,
A bit about myself: I’m in my final year at The University of Edinburgh in Scotland (studying Mechanical Engineering) and I’ve been fortunate enough to convince the university to let me go through with this project for my thesis. I’ve always been interested in designing prosthetics. I don’t have one myself but I do have a titanium spine (okay technically it’s a normal spine fused together with a lot of titanium but still). The period of immobility that followed my surgery gave me a considerably greater appreciation for those with disabilities and helped push me towards wanting to work with prosthetics. Most people go to uni, do their thesis, get their grade and move on which never really appealed to me. So I figured if I can do a project where someone, somewhere in the world, gets access to a new prosthetic design then why not?