e-NABLE is Still Going Strong 10 Years Later

It’s hard to believe that it has been nearly 10 years since the original metal prototype for the first 3D printed e-NABLE device was created for one child in need by 2 men who wanted to make a difference. But, here we are, a decade later where not only are there thousands of individuals all over the world who are now using 3D-printed hands and arms based off of that first design, but there are thousands of volunteers who are still active and continue to help make a difference in the lives of others.

Much has changed over the past few years, and this blog has been very quiet for some time. Not because the e-NABLE Community has stopped working tirelessly, but because it grew so much bigger than we ever imagined possible, that there are so many stories of beauty happening every single day from chapters all over the world… that it became near impossible to keep up with them all!

Today, there are hundreds of incredibly talented people who are still working on improving designs, there are dozens of recipients who have turned into makers and volunteers themselves, and there are classrooms of children and young adults of all ages who are learning how their ideas and imaginations can make a difference in the world because of e-NABLE.

While this enablingthefuture.org website is the “Home” base of the e-NABLE Community and holds precious stories and information that documents the past history, origin story and links to important files, – the work of this open-source community is still moving forward and has grown so much that we needed a forum and a “Hub” to better communicate with each other.

There are still many people who are just now learning about e-NABLE and are interested in joining the global community to help “give the world a helping hand” with 3D-printed prosthetics and assistive devices. Below, we have put together some helpful information for those who would like to learn more about becoming a volunteer, getting a classroom involved, starting an e-NABLE chapter, purchasing hand assembly kits, finding skin-toned filaments, getting plugged into the e-NABLE hub and forums and much more.

Thank you for following along on our journey these past 10 years and supporting our entire global community with encouraging words, sharing our stories so other recipients can find us and so much more!

How to Get Involved as a Volunteer with the e-NABLE Community

We get a lot of questions from people who are interested in learning how they can get involved with the e-NABLE Community as volunteers, fabricators, educators, device users, and designers.

Our co-founders at 3D Universe have put together a step-by-step guide that provides an overview and some suggestions for those who want to get involved with this amazing community that includes links on our badging system, how to submit a test hand for approval, creating an account on e-NABLE Web Central (so you can find recipients) and much more.

Which e-NABLE Design to Print and Where to Purchase Assembly Kits

If you are interested in creating a 3D printed hand or arm and are in need of the assembling kits (3D printed parts are not included) please visit our shop page where you can find everything you need, prepackaged and ready to get you on your way to making your own e-NABLE hand. Every purchase made through this website helps support us!

This assembly materials kit includes all of the materials needed to assemble any of the following four Phoenix Hand designs, created by the e-NABLE volunteer community:

e-NABLE Phoenix Hand v3
Phoenix v2
Unlimbited Phoenix
Phoenix Reborn

This kit also includes sufficient materials for producing the Unlimbited Arm, except that additional velcro straps will be needed.

e-NABLE volunteer John Diamond has prepared an assembly manual for the Phoenix v2, which is available here. You can also find an assembly tutorial video below.

If you have any questions about e-NABLE assembly kits, please email us at info@3duniverse.org for more information!

e-NABLE Hand Assembly Mats | Printable Step-by-step Instructions

Printable placemats for left hand and right hand (useful for hand assembly events and classrooms) are available to download and can be printed on large format paper, such as 11×17”, double-sided.

Learn How to Start Your Own e-NABLE Community Chapter

With the e-NABLE Community of volunteers growing rapidly in recent years, there are over 200 chapters that have been formed by students, groups, libraries, schools, and maker spaces around the world, who are all participating in creating free 3D printed hands and arms for those in need. Local chapters are critical since they work face-to-face with communities in a shared language and cultural context. This allows them to deliver individualized devices that recipients love rather than “one size fits all”.

If you would like to connect to e-NABLE chapters directly for help in creating your own device or to create a device for someone else or would like to join their chapter and volunteer with people in your local community, please check the map linked in the button below to see if there is an e-NABLE Community chapter set up near you!

If you would like to create your own e-NABLE Chapter and get added to the e-NABLE chapters map so that families can find you – please follow the directions and steps from the page linked in the button below.

Learn More About Including e-NABLE in the Classroom

Enjoy a round-table panel discussion led by Neesha Rahim, CEO of Bit Space in this video above. You’ll hear from Jen Owen and Jon Schull, two co-founders of the e-NABLE volunteer community, along with several educators who have integrated e-NABLE activities into their classrooms. Learn how they have used the e-NABLE project to teach their students that they themselves have the power to change people’s lives by using their ideas and imaginations to solve real-world problems with 3D printing and rapid prototyping technology.

The recording above is a segment from 3D Printing in the Workplace and STEM Education, a webinar hosted by 3D Universe, Bit Space, Ultimaker, and the e-NABLE Volunteer Community on Saturday, April 25, 2020.

In this session, During this presentation, led by e-NABLE co-founder Jen Owen and Director of Learner Experience at Bit Space, Samantha Gleisten, participants will learn how they can use the e-NABLE project to teach their students that they themselves have the power to change people’s lives by using their ideas and imaginations to solve real-world problems with 3D printing and rapid prototyping technology.

Jen and Sam will share other ways in which educators can get their students involved in their local communities and use 3D printing to make a difference.

More Helpful Links to e-NABLE Community Resources

There are numerous resources available to those who want to participate as a volunteer with the e-NABLE Community as well as for those who are in need of a device.

Please check out the various links below to participate as a volunteer or learn more about the community!

Learn about the e-NABLE Community and its origin story
Check out the e-NABLE Official Website
Learn how to get started as an e-NABLE Volunteer
Learn more about e-NABLE Chapters and how to create a chapter of your own

Explore the e-NABLE Hub (our online forum for collaboration)
Find the most recommended e-NABLE Device Open-Source Designs
Explore the e-NABLE project and curriculums in STEM Education
Check out the monthly e-NABLE calendar
Join the Prosthetic Devices for Animals e-NABLE group

Follow the e-NABLE Community’s Facebook pages

Official e-NABLE Facebook Page
e-NABLE Community Bulletin Board Facebook page
e-NABLE Educators Alliance Facebook group
e-NABLE Chapter Leaders Facebook group
e-NABLE R&D Facebook Group

If you have any other questions about e-NABLE or how to participate, please reach out to the volunteers at support@enable.org.

3D Universe Terrafilum PETG: Available in Skin Tones for e-NABLE Community Devices

3D Universe is excited to offer its PETG material in four unique skin-tone colors! Shown above (from left to right): Light Tan, Desert Tan, Chocolate Rose, and Coffee Bean.

Jeremy did a lot of research on skin tones throughout the world. We, humans, come in so many beautiful colors, but we had to pick four since that’s what his initial budget allowed for. He wanted to pick those that would match the broadest possible range of skin tones.

We asked the e-NABLE community to vote on which colors they would prefer. Based on that voting and Jeremy’s own research and inquiries, we ended up selecting four skin tones ranging from a caucasian skin tone to a dark brown color. Additional colors may be added in the future, depending on how the e-NABLE community receives these.

PETG is easy to print like PLA, but it has a higher temperature resistance and improved strength. This makes it ideally suited for printing e-NABLE assistive devices.

Which 3D Printer to Get for Making e-NABLE Devices?

If you’re looking for a 3D printer to produce e-NABLE devices, but have no idea where to start or what you are looking for, our friends at 3D Universe have some great options for you and they also offer special deals for e-NABLE volunteers. Make sure you let them know that you are purchasing a 3D printer to help make e-NABLE devices and they will apply a special discount to your order. A portion of every sale made through this website from our shop page goes towards supporting enablingthefuture.org and the e-NABLE community.

Not sure which 3D printer is right for you? Our friends at 3D Universe prepared this article to help you get started. After reviewing that information, you’re welcome to send an email to them at info@3duniverse.org, and they can help you to find a printer that’s a good fit.

Thank You for Supporting Our Community!

Thank you for continuing to support our ever-growing community of e-NABLE volunteers as we celebrate 10 years of this incredible open-source movement.

It’s been amazing to see how far was have come over the past decade and we are looking forward to seeing what the next 10 years bring!

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