A New Hand for Lily

This 8-year old girl named Lily is going to get a new left hand soon. I just finished printing it for her! There are photos below and a video showing the fully assembled prosthesis.

Lily is in 2nd grade, and she is now attending her third elementary school because other kids have relentlessly teased her about missing her left hand (and part of her left arm). Her current math teacher found out about 3D printed prosthetics on the Internet and shared a video with his class (including Lily), asking if she might like one. Now, she has more friends than she knows what to do with, and she hasn’t even gotten the prosthesis yet!

Historically, a customized prosthesis like this would cost anywhere from $10,000 to $80,000. The total cost of this one - less than $50 and some of my time! Start to finish, this took two days to 3D print and assemble. This is a perfect example of why people say that 3D printing is such a transformational technology.

If you have a 3D printer and would like to explore making prosthetics for those who need them, please visit e-Nable. Anyone can do this, as you can see in the assembly video I did recently.

About 1 in every 1000 children is born with a condition called Amniotic Band Syndrome, which results in missing fingers or other defects. And of course, there are our veterans and others who have lost fingers or limbs in the line of duty, on the job, from illness, etc. So please, get involved!

This prosthesis was printed in “Bridge” nylon, a new material from Taulman 3D. This filament has excellent strength properties, as well as being heat and chemical resistant. It has been formulated to address the challenges encountered when printing with other nylon filaments. For more information, visit http://taulman3d.com/index.html.

To download the model for this prosthesis, the Cyborg Beast:

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2 thoughts on “A New Hand for Lily”

  1. I have a new Makergear M2 trying to print in ABS to no avail. I can’t get it to stick to me heated bed. Could someone please share their technique and brand of ABS?

    1. What kind of surface are you trying to print on? Make sure your bed is perfectly level – that’s the most common cause of adhesion problems. You should be using Kapton tape (or glass with diluted abs juice applied). If using Kapton tape, clean it well with 99% rubbing alcohol or acetone before printing. Try 230C for the extruder temp and 100-110C for the bed temp.

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