Amazing: 5-Year-Old Boy Born Without Fingers Gets Robotic Hand Made With 3-D Printer

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A five-year-old South African boy, born without fingers on his right hand, has received a 3D-printed prosthetic hand.

The mother of the boy, named Liam, came across a blog post by Richard Van As of South Africa and Ivan Owen of the United States, detailing their work on prosthetics.

One of the makers, Richard Van As of South Africa, lost four of his fingers in a sawing accident.

After trying to replicate the design of a prosthetic hand he found on YouTube, he contacted the maker, a mechanical special effects artist named Ivan Owen from Bellingham, Washington, US.

The men joined forces to make a mechanical replacement for Richard- an endeavor that grew into a fundraising campaign to help people throughout the world. Soon they received two 3D printers as a donation from Makerbot, which allowed them to swap CAD files as the design progressed.

Following contact with Liam’s mother, the duo decided to create a hand for the boy, using cables and bungee cords for facilitating movement. The fingers and wrist were created using a 3D printer, a device which creates real-world copies of objects, using plastic, resin and other materials.


Liam, got the Robohand on his birthday in January. Now he can play basketball and even pick up an object as small as a coin.

The Herald NG is a leading newspaper in Nigeria at the forefront of the digital revolution.

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