Dec 22, 2015 | By Andre

It is not uncommon for those that find themselves in exceptionally unfortunate situations to dig deep, overcome adversity and make the most of the difficult hand they’ve been dealt. Adam White, a DJ from North Carolina, appears to be one of these individuals.

Immediately after a motorcycle accident with another vehicle threw him down onto some grass, he knew his leg was going to be amputated. He writes, “My leg was basically ripped and shredded from the accident. I knew I was going to lose it.

During what must have been a difficult period of rehabilitation from that point forward, he regained mobility by being fitted with a below knee prosthetic leg. It now appears as if he's making positive change by providing support to amputees within his community and even going so far as preparing a support group that is focused on helping amputees bring a sense of normalcy back into their lives.

But Adam’s ambitions don’t end there. He understands full-well what it’s like requiring a prosthetic limb and he’s hoping to raise money through Kickstarter for a Makerbot Z-18 3D Printer so he can print leg covers for wounded soldiers. With a goal of just $5,000 - which just about covers the cost of the printer - his focus on leg covers has more to do with personalization and form over that of function.

The campaign links to a video of Bespoke innovations. This is a company that produces high-quality custom prosthetic covers and had raised over two million dollars in 2010 before being acquired by 3D Systems in 2012. By using their catalogue in combination with 3D scanning and 3D printing, they are able to provide style in their prosthetics like never before.

Scott Summit, the founder of Bespoke Innovations speaks about happy customers when he says “a while ago I had a woman actually text me from the grocery store because a guy stopped her in line to tell her what a cool leg she had. Another guy, a special forces guy, said that he didn’t feel comfortable taking it off because he felt naked without it.

In the Kickstarter page, Adam mentions having the help of some great companies to make his plan come to life but doesn’t go into specifics. If the 3D printer itself is infact where most of the money raised is going, the necessary build volume to realize his campaign promises is there. And while my experience with the machine is wrought with headaches and failed prints, I personally know others that have used the Z-18 to successfully produce prosthetic limbs in a research setting.

From a rewards perspective, the campaign has arm-bands, t-shirts, custom 3D prints and more for all those generous campaign backers. Adam hopes to help at least 10 wounded soldiers from the original proceeds if he raises the necessary funds.

As of now, it is off to a slow start ($80 raised as of this writing). But with 42 days left to go, there’s lots of time for the project to gain momentum. This said, it seems as though he attempted to raise money for a similar project last year with no success. Maybe this time things are different. Lastly, while not explicitly stated, having a 3D printer available for the Amputee Support group Adam hopes to open in 2016 would make all these fundraising efforts worth while in itself.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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