Although it seems Form5’s movement has slowed down a bit, in contrast, everything is in full swing. After Forming 5 I naturally let things guide me to what’s ahead. In my presentation at the Jeffery C. Stuart’s Exhibition of Finalists, I announced that Form5 would be relocating to new lab space at Antioch College in August. This was also announced on our social media late last month. I am excited to continue forming and sharing our next steps!
I spent most of the month executing what I called “housekeeping” activities. My lab is always kept clean, but there was a lot of things that needed to be established and figured out which often got set aside due to the extensity of Forming 5.
Within the past two years and especially during last year all the demo hands we use for presentations and meetings have been brutally “observed” by curious elementary students and even some high schoolers. These hands range from various e-Nable devices to even my early personal 3D printed prosthetics. Needless to say, they all required their own unique updates. For example, my personal prosthetic ironically has an issue with the middle finger (usually resulting in a wire snapping) and many other hands required new fingers or other parts to be printed. Luckily all broken pieces of plastic will be recycled back into filament using equipment donated to Form5 during our project Forming 5.
In addition to this newly implemented process, I have begun printing with the recycled filament made from the plastic cups I collected during my project. This has been achieved by the help of my former advisor, Keith Overton and some new connections I have made. After spending most of the project making mulch, with the new equipment we are now printing with Form5 Filament. With our goal of making filament becoming more tangible, I am working towards making full spools of the recycled filament and begin to shift our focus back to reforming prosthetics with 3D printing!
As summer progresses there are still many things to accomplish and in the next week, I am tackling a rather big housekeeping item. After having my Ultimaker 3D Printer for two years now with much difficulty at the start, I believe I have a pretty good understanding of what I am doing now. Unfortunately, my Ultimaker is in need of some well-earned “TLC” after an insane year (it printed a 7-year old girl’s prosthetic).
For Christmas, I got some new parts for my printer including a new nozzle system (Olsson Block), which allows me to change nozzle sizes for durability and strength of each part. The original nozzle on my Ultimaker is two years old and is not always cooperative. Much like a car, 3D printers require upkeep to make them function properly and suitably. All the parts needed to upgrade my printer have either been 3D printed and or purchased. Make sure to follow our Twitter & Instagram to see the progress in depth (@form5prosthetics).
More announcements & updates to come!
Big things ahead,
Aaron Westbrook, CEO & Founder of Form5 Prosthetics