Myhand Prosthetic Socket
Michal Piasecki - parametric designer and entrepreneur - was looking for a way to merge his previous experience in working with artists, designers, and contemporary technologies with a social call. When he shared the idea of working on a 3d printed hand prosthesis with Dorota Kabala - the designer running studio called We design for physical culture, she found the idea remarkably interesting from designers’ point of view. She also suggested to invite more people for collaboration, such as sociologist and strategy experts. And that is how the Myhand team was born.
At the beginning of collaboration, the team met a mother of a boy, that loves to cook. One day he came back home after a cooking workshop. His mother asked - how was it? He was excited and after a while he said, “it would be useful to have something for separating a yolk”. While researching the topic of hand prostheses and experiences of people born with congenital malformations of a hand, the team found that each of them has a different, unique opinion on prostheses. Each one had in mind some other tool that could be useful from time to time.
The birth of the project
Initial step of Myhand project was to create, design and curate and exhibition on existing prosthetic solutions, from open-source 3D printed ones to a high end robotic prosthesis. This enabled the team to produce the very early Myhand sketches, ideas and 3d printed prototypes. This starting stage was completed in collaboration with Monika Brauntsch, Dorota Cetnarska, Renata Mikołajczyk and Wiesław Bartkowski.
The idea for Myhand socket was born as a result of the exhibition.
The team also begun to contact users. It came two ways: through a network of friends as well as through an association for persons born with malformation of a hand. The team talked to many people and the general response to the idea was enthusiastic.
Our team conducted an interview with Association “Stowarzyszenie w Naszych Rękach” for parents and guardians of children born with congenital malformations of a hand. The director, Ewa Fabisiak, provided the team with very valuable insights as well as plenty of touching stories.
Myhand aims to develop an affordable 3D printed palm system that will allow one to perform selected activities. The basis for the design is the assumption that “I use prosthesis whenever I want, it helps me as a tool, but it is my choice whether to use it or not”. The key to Myhand solutions is to adapt to the needs of users through personalization.
The Myhand fills the gap between traditional prosthetics and fashion. The core values of Myhand is availability, answering a social need and providing a solution to a problem based on learning from potential users.
The creative process
Myhand has researched and responds to users’ needs, even the ones that are not fully pronounced at the first glance. User centered design is at the core of our approach. The users are the best experts in the field. We have invited 5 of them to work with us along the entire design process. They were testing, reviewing and suggesting new directions at every stage of the Worth project (lub “of the design process”).
Myhand team developed a prosthetic socket in collaboration with Malwina, Monika, Szymon and Martyna.M
It’s generated automatically. Parametric software receives data from personalised 3d scan and creates a 3D form ready for printing.
Myhand team have also developed a second type of socket with Ewa. Here too we have implemented a range of tools from parametric design to 3d printing to create a custom solution for Ewa according to her specific needs.
The development of the prosthetic socket is a crucial step in myhand journey. It was possible thanks to Worth financing.
The three partners merged experience from diverse fields: parametric design, design for sports and design of wearables as well as knowledge on digital manufacturing. The project was possible only thanks to a merge of all of these experiences together.
The team have developed a prototype of a prosthetic socket. Other elements of the prosthetic hand remain to be developed. The direction the team is considering is to create a visual prosthetic, without a spectrum of movement first. As a next step various endings for particular functions such as working on a computer or practicing yoga may appear.
This further development requires additional funding.
Each partner brought their unique gifts, experience, and knowledge to the project. Realising Myhand socket would not have been possible without it.