…Up until now six-year-old Alex Pring, of Groveland, Florida has been without a prosthesis. His parents’ insurance company refused to pay for a prosthetic arm, due to the high cost — $40,000 — and the fact that children grow out of their artificial limbs so quickly. His parents, Alyson and Steven Pring, were unable to afford the out-of-pocket expense.
The Prings turned to an online volunteer organization e-NABLE. By their own definition e-NABLE is “a World wide movement of tinkerers, engineers, 3D print enthusiasts, occupational therapists, university professors, designers, parents, families, artists, students, teachers and people who just want to make a difference.” It was inspired by two makers who created a 3-D-printed prosthetic hand for a South African boy and then gave the blueprints away for free.
The organization put the Prings in contact with Albert Manero at the University of Central Florida. Manero is a Fulbright Scholar, with both his bachelor’s and master’s in aerospace engineering. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering.
Manero led a team of student engineers in creating a “bionic” arm for Alex Pring. Unlike other prostheses, Alex Pring’s arm cost less than $350 worth of materials. The arm took eight weeks to create, and was built using a 3-D printer, instructions downloaded from the Web, along with batteries and other mechanisms purchased online….
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.