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2 Beautiful machines, printing hands for kids

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Proud new owner of two UM2's.

They were used machines, so I spent a good couple of days cleaning them up, and getting to know them.

Previous users were printing in Nylon, so I fought some high temp clogs at first.

But got them cleaned out and flowing nicely now in PLA.

Side by side printing hands for eNABLE :)

Both of these I will be keeping at my local makerspace, where they will now be a full time, public eNABLE station.

Trained members will be free to use them for building hands for kids, while I am not there.

These are going to be two busy machines!!

I am working on 3 hands right now, so it is very busy for me and these will help greatly.

Having these at the makerspace will allow others to help with the builds, and assist me with the classes I am going to be teaching there.

It is one happy week for me and eNABLE!!!!






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That's wonderful! :p

It's hard to tell from pictures sometimes, but how large/small are the enable hands usually made?


Thanks :)

As for size, that all depends on the recipient. The hands are scaled to size.They could be small, for a young child, up to a full grown adult.

The picture up above, where I am holding the red palm, that was yesterday when I finally got the clog clean, and was running a very first test print on the new printer.

It is a small palm, but I have built one very close to that size for a young 3yr old boy, so the sizes are all over the place really.

The first picture however, that is a different red palm actually, and is sized for an 11yr old.

Currently I am working on a hand for a 7yr old, an 11 year old, and just met a teacher that has a 14yr old boy in her class needing one. All 3 of those will be very different sizes.


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Won't it be nice when the standard question, when the 3d printer topic is brought up, will be

"So... did you 3d print a prostetic hand for a child yet?"

Instead of the current "So... Did you 3d print a gun yet?" -_-


So true... I hate the 3d-printed gun topic... (I like guns, mind you. Just not 3D printed illegal ones).

I registered as a volunteer some time ago, but didn't complete the intake process yet. I wasn't happy with my print results so I'm waiting on my upcoming 3D printer builds to be finished. I want only the best quality to come from my workshop :)


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Yeah, not only are the hands life changing for the kids, they are also really great projects to demonstrate what printers are capable of.



So true...

I've been planning projects over and over. Multicopters, robots, RC stuff, alarm systems, whatever.

But I usually lost interest because these things just wouldn't matter much to anyone. Or you could just buy them anyways.

e-nable is a whole different story. I believe these hands do actually change peoples' lives for the better. I can relate to people with handicaps (a closely related family member of mine is paraplegic). The psychological aspect to being handicapped is - imho - even a bigger issue than the handicap itself.

If these prosthetics can change "the weird handicapped kids" into "the cool kids with the robot hand", then it's worth any effort to make it happen!

As soon as I got my workshop properly set up, I'll contact some local hospitals. I just don't want to rush things and get involved into something I can't put into reality yet.


Being an electronics guy, I see a lot of potential to build on the "gadget" factor of these hands. It will be fun to think about cool stuff to put into a robot hand. I was always fascinated by these things - robots, exoskeletons, waaay too cool :)


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Side by side printing hands for eNABLE :)



Thats awesome!

This is exactly the sorta thing i want to use my Ultimaker 2 for as well, just plan on getting one built proper before I contact eNABLE.

However I've been having a lot of problems with ugly overhang, especially on the fingers. (The sort where its curling up at the edges, no problem with adhesion though)

Any suggestions for fixing that? What do you print at?

Current settings (PLA):

Layer height: 0.1

Shell thickness: 0.8

Bottom/top thickness: 0.8

Fill Density: 35

Print speed: 60

Extruder temperature: 205

I was advised to use painters tape on the bed but can see that you don't, does that work better?

Apologies for all the questions, just want to make sure I can get some good print quality!


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The finger overhang is tricky!

Your settings look good except I tend to print a bit slower - I use 4 layers and 25% infill, but there is nothing magic about these numbers.

If you want to see what getting one of these hands does to a recipient have a look at this


broadcast on Wednesday - there was a radio interview in the morning and then this piece to camera.

The hands are early technology but they are developing all the time!


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