e-NABLE Community Foundation Chapter Establishment

Email Us: [email protected]

Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 10.48.55 AM


This section is meant to aid those at schools, colleges and universities that wish to establish a Chapter of the Enable Community Foundation (ECF) at their institution. By doing so, those involved with the process will volunteer their time to give those in need a “Helping Hand”. This official affiliation allows the institution to formally invite volunteers to come together to provide 3D printed upper limb devices to those who can benefit from them. Although many volunteers and organizations work with ECF and e-NABLE informally, creating a formal affiliation facilitates adoption of best practices and common standards, improves communication and support and should benefit both the sponsoring institution, participating students and the beneficiaries of upper limb devices designed and fabricated by chapters.

Joe Fairley, an e-NABLE volunteer since December 2014, has initiated the formation of Chapters as a way to create a more formal structure for working with ECF. In doing so, he envisioned a Chapter as a central hub that is formally recognized by the ECF and the surrounding community, so that people looking to receive a 3D printed device from the ECF can easily find their local Chapter. The formation of official Chapters will aid in the Matching process and create an international network of centralized hubs of ECF volunteers.

By becoming a Chapter of the ECF, those individuals associated will strive to aid in their central mission, to give the World a “Helping Hand”. As an established Chapter, your main duty is to create a welcoming and mutual relationship between the Recipient and volunteers that will last for the duration of time where the Recipient would like to receive help and maintenance of their 3D printed device. If at any point during this process of aiding a Recipient where you feel that you incapable to begin or continue the relationship, you must take it upon yourself to find a Chapter that will begin or continue the relationship.

The main focus of the Chapter/Recipient relationship is to aid in the progress of performing Activities of Daily Living. At the same time, the Chapter should be respectful of the Recipient’s, including their families’ wishes regarding the spread of private information. As a Chapter, you will make sure that you are not violating any of your institution’s guidelines, as well as not exposing or misusing any of the Recipient’s private information. You must also adhere to the formal guidelines laid out by the ECF, including liability and legal matters. When in doubt, always strive to do what is right for and what the Recipient wishes to be done within the ECF guidelines.


This excerpt is the Mission Statement from the Merrimack College Chapter, established by Joe Fairley in North Andover, Massachusetts. As a Chapter, you should create your own Mission Statement that follows the same basic guidelines as the one below. Make sure to alter yours to reflect your institution’s own Mission and traditions.

e-NABLE-Merrimack College is a non-profit, volunteer organization that is modeled after its sister organization, the e-NABLE Community Foundation (ECF). As they strive to, “Use 3D printing to give the world a ‘Helping Hand’”, we will emulate this goal by reaching out to our surrounding community in the same fashion. As part of an Augustinian tradition, we strive to build a community of scholars welcoming and respecting a diversity of backgrounds, experiences, beliefs and perspectives, as well as engage other educational institutions, industry, and agencies of social change in collaborative efforts fostering a just, peaceful, and sustainable world. We will utilize this educational background to benefit and promote the health of others, specifically those who have limb differences. We will collaborate with and learn from the success of the ECF in order to further our influence and impact toward the welfare of our community.

e-NABLE-Merrimack College is a made up of a group of students, ranging in experience and focus, that has recently come together to give back to the surrounding community of the Boston suburbs. With the help and guidance of the ECF, we hope to extend our influence even beyond the Boston suburbs, so that we may grow this branch of the ECF beyond our college limits. We will be going through the process of being matched with recipients, printing and assembling a suitable prosthetic device for them, and finally, delivering the device to them and guide them through the movements of how to use the device. When we have the opportunity, we would like to extend our influence into areas in need all over the world. We will be able to accomplish this, again, through the collaboration of other ECF volunteers.

As students of Merrimack College, we are constantly looking for opportunities to get involved with bettering our community and extending our knowledge to help those in need. Through the formation of e-NABLE-Merrimack College and our cooperation with the ECF we are providing ourselves with this opportunity to make an everlasting difference in people’s lives.

The text in ITALICS is meant to be altered to your institution’s Mission and traditions.


A Chapter of the ECF will consist of the following entities:

  • A Chapter Coordinator: The person willing to lead the Chapter and ultimately make decisions with the guidance of the adult advisor(s).
  • A(n) adult advisor(s): The person/people who will provide the necessary guidance and support needed to make the monetary and other sensitive decisions.
  • Student/Individual volunteers: The people who will volunteer their time to support the various aspects of the Chapter.
  • A(n) ECF recipient(s): The person/people who will be receiving the 3D printed device and follow-up care.

A Chapter of the ECF should have the following tools/machines/software:

  • A 3D printer: The machine used to fabricate the devices, can cost around $500-$3,500.
  • Filament: The material used in printing the devices, normally PLA, ABS, or a similar flexible plastic like Filaflex or NinjaFlex is used.
  • Hand kit: The non-printable parts come in a package for a discounted price from 3DUniverse (Jeremy Simon). Otherwise you can pick these up at any hardware or craft store.
  • Basic tools: You might want to purchase/find the following tools to help you in the printing and assembly process: standard glue stick, needle-nose pliers, scissors, razor blade, super glue, and a screwdriver.
  • CAD software: SolidWorks, Autodesk, or a similar program can be used to modify and design the devices. You will also need a slicer program to model the printable file, such as Cura or the MakerBot Desktop.
  • Handomatic software: The online software through the ECF used to create 3D-printable files at certain measurements for certain hand devices.
  • Tracker software: A way to upload the recipient’s pictures and take measurements for the devices.

The guidelines outlined above are suggested components that will allow a Chapter to operate smoothly and to its fullest potential. You may find that your Chapter’s needs will call for other materials and components not listed here.


Formulated below are some steps in which one would go about starting a structured Chapter of the ECF:

Beginning with individual or group leadership, go about educating yourself and others that are interested, about the different aspects of the ECF including, but not limited to:

  • The different 3D printed device models
  • The matching process between Chapter and Recipient
  • The different materials and tools needed to build the devices
  • The different ways in which individuals and groups can get involved
  • The reasons and ambitions that brought the ECF to where it is today

Once you have established an understanding of the different components of the ECF, begin assembling a team of passionate volunteers that are interested in getting involved. Please make it clear that ANYONE can join the team regardless of their educational background or interests. There are several ways in which people can get involved with the process and everyone that would like to join this community are welcome.

From here you will need to find a 3D printer within your institution that will allow you to produce the devices. At this stage, it would be worth your time to start asking your institution how they might be able to fund the needed costs for the projects that you will be undertaking. You may even want to set up your own ways to raise money or look for outside sponsorship from companies that are engineering or technology related.

After you have assembled the necessary tools and materials needed to print your first test hand, determine which hand you will print and customize it to your liking. When it is finished printing, watch the example videos on ECF’s website to start to understand the assembly process. Once you have assembled the test hand, submit it to the ECF for an initial examination to make sure that you are able to produce a quality print for a Recipient.

Following an ok from the ECF, get in contact with one of the Matchers to begin your collaborative relationship with a Recipient. After you are paired with a Recipient, use the pictures provided to accurately size a usable device with the certain customization guidelines provided by the Recipient.

Once you have gone through these steps, you will be at the point to deliver the 3D printed device to the Recipient! At this stage you may want to look into how you can spread your influence by contacting nearby schools with engineering and technology related programs to begin partnerships. For any questions or concerns about how to start your own Chapter of the ECF or how to go about any of these steps related to designing and producing the 3D printed prosthetics, you reference the main website:

or get in touch with one of the ECF representatives.

To become a Chapter, please email us with your declarations signed, and introduce your group to us. [email protected]

Download our Chapter Declaration Below

Declaration PDF


Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.09.54 AM

IRON MAN JACK CARDER – 3D Printed Prosthetic Iron Man Themed Hand

April 2015

Jack Carder is your typical rowdy and enthusiastic five year old boy, who idolizes Marvel superheroes and can name every player on his favorite baseball team, the Cleveland Indians, as well as model their batting stances. He is just a happy-go-lucky kid that has already overcome certain obstacles in his short life. Jack was born with a hand anomaly in that his fingers never fully formed on his right hand. Today, Jack has a usable thumb due to bone graft surgery, however his four other fingers are still useless to him. In order to pick up objects, he pinches them with his thumb against his palm. As an active and growing young lad, his parents wanted to find a way for him to use a prosthetic hand that would grow with him, be able to perform daily tasks, and yet be cost effective and practical.

This is where the e-NABLE Community Foundation (ECF) and Joe Fairley’s involvement with the organization comes in. The ECF is a global volunteer community that designs 3D printed prosthetic hands, arms, and fingers for those in need. Since forming the non-profit organization in July 2013, the ECF has grown to over 6,400 members worldwide and has reached out to countless families. As a senior physics major at Siena College, Joe came to be involved with the ECF because he would like to pursue his M.S. in Prosthetics and Orthotics and become an ABC Certified Prosthetic Clinician. He initially got involved with the ECF so that he could tie in what he had learned during his undergrad to reaching out to his community and give those in need a “Helping Hand”. In order to do this, he established a student driven chapter at Siena College in early March 2015 that is now composed of more than 20 students covering every year level with backgrounds in physics, chemistry, and finance, and is being continued on after he graduated, to help more recipients in his absence.

Through the ECF’s matching process, they were quickly introduced to Jack and his family that are from Columbus, Ohio. Over the course of the past two months, the team collaborated with the family to take measurements, pictures, and video of Jack’s affected right hand so that they could design, print, and assemble him a functional and practical prosthetic hand. With the help of the open source designs that the ECF currently has and the ability of full customization from 3D printing, they were able to meet Jack’s only wish, that his hand be Iron Man themed. They gave him just that! With a yellow and red color scheme, glow in the dark accents, and a palm “laser”, Jack was ecstatic to receive the finished product on April 21, 2015. Three other team members and Fairley personally delivered the hand to Jack that Tuesday in Columbus, first at his school, then at the Columbus Clippers baseball game later that night as he got to throw out the first pitch. Seeing his emotions as he got to try out his new prosthetic hand was a humbling experience because at that moment, they knew they were making an impact in this little guy’s life.

The practicality of 3D printed device especially when implemented in young children leads to amazing opportunities in terms of the customization and usefulness for the recipient. As Jack grows Fairley will be keeping in contact with him so that he can build him another hand to the right specifications. Also, if he breaks the hand, he can always just print him another one. To add to that, they donated the hand to Jack, so there is no cost to his family and he receives a device that is usable and practical for a kid his age. He told us that for his next hand he wants it to be Wolverine themed, and they are already preparing designs for when that time comes!

At the moment, they have also just finished designing a hand for a 38 year old man in New Orleans, LA and have recently sent it out to him. Having recently graduated from Siena, Fairley hopes to stay on with the ECF Chapter as a mentor for new students that join the team as they continue to help recipients in the future. With this experience Fairley has gained a lot of valuable knowledge regarding 3D printing and the construction of prosthetics. He plans on designing his own hand for the ECF in the future, and hopefully sees it become one of their more popular designs.

Here are some links to the e-NABLE Siena College Chapter, as well as pictures of Jack with his hand and news releases that covered the story:



Twitter: @ENABLESiena

Instagram: @enablesiena

Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.15.09 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.15.15 AM

Media Hits

ABC News              Yahoo News          CBS Sports          NY Daily News

 Times Union          WNYT News 13          News 10          CBS 6          99.5 The River          Sports Illustrated

Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.28.11 AM


December 2015

Batman Bailey…it has a good ring to it right?! That’s what they thought during the sketch-up stage of designing the 3-fingered Raptor Reloaded modified design for a 12-year-old boy out of St. Louis. While character customization was optimized during the fabrication of Bailey’s “Dark Knight” themed hand, they also made sure that he optimized his current range of motion. Needless to say, Bailey was blown away at the “coolness” factor that his new hand carried with it, but he was also able to jump head-first into utilizing it as a tool in his everyday life.

The “they” in this story is a group of students, undergraduate- and graduate-level, from Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts. Joe Fairley, who began the college Chapter in early September 2015, is currently a graduate fellow in the Exercise and Sports Science Master’s Degree Program. After having success building a sustainable Chapter at Siena College in his senior year as a Physics undergrad, Fairley and the Siena Chapter personally delivered one hand to a 5-year-old boy in Ohio while simultaneously finished a hand to be sent to a man in Louisiana. After he began his graduate studies at Merrimack College this past fall, Fairley and the rest of the Merrimack Chapter took on their first case with Bailey as their Recipient.

Having received a thumb-less Cyborg Beast hand from ECF volunteers two years prior, Bailey had since outgrown the hand and it had broken with use, so they anticipated his expectations and tried to manipulate the Raptor Reloaded design to fit his needs of a thumb-less design while still being able to use his fifth metacarpal (first pinky bone, in the palm). He had this bone lengthened in order to increase his “pincher-grip” which he uses to complete Activities of Daily Living, so they decided to give him this 3-fingered design to give him continued use of the grip he has become accustomed to.

After working day-in and day-out for a month on Bailey’s hand, they finished assembling the final touches just in time for a few of them to hop on a plane to St. Louis to deliver the hand to him on December 21st, 2015. The day trip, taken by Fairley, Junior Mechanical Engineering Major – Ashley Widing, and Junior Health Science Major – Sam Monaco, was an exciting one that they will never forget. They had been sitting down at the table for lunch at Dave and Buster’s for no more than 5 minutes, when the excitement overcame Bailey that he was receiving his Batman hand, at which point Fairley brought out the early Christmas present and Bailey opened it with utter joy, pride, and amazement. After they fitted him properly with the device, he tried to use it while eating lunch and picked up any random object he could, when finally it was time to put it to the real test…the arcade games of course!

It was only too fitting that Bailey played a Batman car-simulation video game, and kicked butt doing so with his custom hand. They then went into the city to journey to the top of the St. Louis Gateway Arch, and Bailey got the chance to oversee his city as the “Caped Crusader” for the first time. The added courage and confidence in Bailey’s already happy-go-lucky demeanor is the reason why they do what they do. They know the devices are a work-in-progress, and are constantly being improved upon, but they are becoming that much more usable for everyday life, and that is why they don’t hesitate to take time away from studying from finals, or to stay up till the wee hours of the morning (nope, not partaking in college festivities) watching the 3D printed parts intently and anxiously, so that they can witness firsthand Bailey’s smile, as well as the ones radiating joy from his parents’ faces. They can’t wait to see what Bailey uses his Batman hand for next!

Here are some links to the e-NABLE Merrimack College Chapter, as well as pictures of Bailey with his hand:


Facebook: ENABLE-Merrimack College

Twitter: @ENABLEMerrimack

Instagram: @enablemerrimack

Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.32.27 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.32.16 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.32.05 AM Screen Shot 2016-03-09 at 11.31.55 AM