Mansfield Students Give Houston Man New Grip on Life | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Mansfield Students Give Houston Man New Grip on Life



    (Published Wednesday, June 18, 2014)

    A group of high school students in Mansfield have used 3-D printing technology to help change the life of a Houston man.

    When a wood chipping accident in January took four of the fingers on 38-year-old Jayme Sims' right hand he had all but accepted there were things he’d never be able to do again.

    “Simple things,” said Sims. “To grab a bag of groceries is something that people take for granted because you use your fingers quite a bit. I have to now try to balance them in the palm of my hand. You end up dropping a lot of things and it’s embarrassing.”

    Students that are part of an engineering class at the Ben Barber Career and Technology Academy in Mansfield were tasked with making something using 3-D printers. 

    The high schoolers decided they wanted to design and create a working prosthetic hand.

    “You have complete finger movement,” said Nke Ebolum, a rising senior who worked on the project.

    An organization called E-Nable, that works with people who are missing hands and fingers, helped connect the students with Sims.

    Sims drove up to Mansfield on Wednesday where he was presented with a hand created for him.

    “This is something that will really help me get back things I thought that I lost,” said Sims.

    Sims had looked into getting a professional prosthetic hand, but when he learned it could cost as much as $20,000, he backed off. His new 3-D printed hand cost less than $50 to make.

    “It’s not just the cost,” said Sims. “You’re going to use that hand a lot. And if I break something on that $20,000 prosthetic, the replacement cost of getting that fixed is more money I may not have. If I break the finger on [the 3-D printed hand], I send these guys an email, they print another one and send it to me in the mail.”

    “It’s just pretty cool to do something that would not only benefit him, but benefit other people in the future,” said Ebolum.