A $50 3-D Printed Hand is Comparable to its $42,000 Counterpart

Jose Delgado Jr. a 53-year old man who was born without a left hand, has a new prosthesis option thanks to E-Nable, an online volunteer group dedicated to creating and providing inexpensive assistive technologies using 3-D printing.

The group created a 3-D printed mechanical hand, dubbed the Cyborg Beast, for Delgado and asked him to relay his experience with it as compared to his $42,000 myoelectric prosthesis.
The MD&M East Conference will be hosting sessions on "Accelerating Speed to Market Through Effective Prototyping and 3-D Printing" June 11, 2014.
In a blog post, Jeremy Simon, the leader on the project, stressed that “since the prosthetic devices Jose has used are completely different types, his statements do not represent an apples to apples comparison.” However Delagado, whose day job requires a lot of lifting and moving boxes, says the 3-D printed prosthetic provided him much more flexibility and functionality in the fingers and also made it easer to carry and grip objects than the myoelectric hand. Driving with the Cyborg Beast is also less of a hassle.
Simon adds that it is also easy to print replacement parts for the new hand as well. He also plans to print another hand for Delgado using Bridge nylon which would offer better strength properties as well as an alternate thumb that would allow different kinds of grip.
Delgado explains more in the video below. E-nable has also made the plans for the Cyborg Beast available for anyone who wants to print their own.

 -Chris Wiltz, Associate Editor, MD+DI