In part infinity in our continuing series of heart-warming 3D-printing events, we present Liam and his amazing 3D-printed Clone Trooper arm. A cool dude named John Peterson printed the arm for Liam after learning about E-Nable, a group of volunteers who print arms and hands for kids. Liam’s arm, for example, is a RIT model that works with kids with an elbow but no forearm. Peterson built the arm in iconic black and white and presented it to him alongside the 501st Legion, a group of Star Wars enthusiasts who do good while wearing movie-perfect Storm Trooper gear.
It’s nerd umami, really: 3D printing, Storm Troopers, cool makers, and little kids coming together for a taste sensation of feel-good amazingness and really nice 3D work. Peterson presented the arm to Liam after a movie in Augusta, GA while flanked by members of the Augusta branch of the 501st. Liam also received a helmet and certificate but, more important, he was able to use his arm to pick up cups and utensils for the first time. In fact, he stopped wearing a prosthetic because the “official” child prosthetics are essentially dead weight. The RIT arm, which takes a few hours to print, can be updated as he grows and is surprisingly usable and sturdy.
So next time someone tells you 3D printing is useless, point them to Liam and his Storm Trooper arm. And then put them into Detention Block AA-23 where Vader’s interrogation droid will help them understand just what the Force has to say about doubters.