Over the past few years, we have seen numerous amazing stories about the 3D printing community coming together to use their tools and design skills to build incredible prosthetic and assistive devices for children, animals, and others in need. Groups like Project Daniel and the prolific e-Nable have lead the way, gathering hundreds of volunteers to help their causes. Now MatterHackers, e-Nable, Ultimaker, and Pinshape have teamed up to hold the Within Reach design contest to get you to design the next great 3D printed assistive device.
While most of the stories we have heard, like MakerBot’s original robo hand story or Ultimaker’s Luke and his e-Nable hand story, have concentrated on the development of full prosthetics, the Within Reach challenge is about assistive devices for those who don’t have full mobility or usage of their hands.
The MatterHackers team was first inspired by one of their friends, Brandy Leigh Scott, who contracted a rare condition known as Dupuytrens Contracture. Usually only affecting those over the age of 60, Brandy contracted the condition when she was 7 years old. Dupuytrens Contracture causes a thickening of the tissue in the hands, eventually pulling in the fingers and causing limited mobility. While not needing a full prosthetic like an e-Nable hand, assistive tools like cup holders and forceps can greatly improve Brandy’s day.
The Within Reach design contest is split into two categories: Youth (under 18) and Adult, and will see the top designers take home 3D printers from Ultimaker, MatterControl Touch tablets from MatterHackers, spools of filament, and other great prizes for the runners-up.
To find out more or to enter this design competition, go to Within Reach. But don’t wait — the contest ends September 6th.