i have an idea for a custom ergonomic mouse, and i'm hoping for someone to judge me.

hello community,
lately i've been feeling some pain in my wrist from computer usage, and while letting my wrist get some rest, i thought about getting an ergonomically designed mouse. but let's face it: it's way more fun to make one yourself =)

so i have this idea for casting a mouse casing, but i never casted anything before, so i'm hoping to find some mistakes in my plan before they cost me money (I'm not stingy, i just don't have a lot of money). so i'm hoping that someone who did cast stuff before could judge my plan before i execute it.

- i'll first unscrew my current mouse, and see how the electronics inside are held in place.
- i'll let my hand rest in silly putty, so it'll take the shape of my hand in a relaxed position.
- then i'll use silicone putty to make a negative of my hand mold.
(i'm not sure whether silly putty and silicone putty are the same thing, i'm very bad at doing productive research. if they are, that's a problem, and i might need to use something else).
- after i've got my negative, i'll use something like Instamorph to create the actual case i'll eventually use. i'll also make a shape for the inside to hold the elektronics. depending on how precise this has to be, i might use another mold for that too.
- to finish it up, i'll take the newly made case out of it's mold, apply some custom painting (just for fun), and perhaps some rubber for extra grip, and then transfer the elektronics.

so that is my plan. i hope i'll get some productive comments on this, and perhaps i'll learn something from it.
i'm going to study product design, so how awesome would it be if i did it with a self-designed mouse ^_^
oh, and this might be posted in the wrong place. i haven't used this website for a while. if it is, please accept my apologies. i hate messy websited too. =P

sort by: active | newest | oldest
jduffy545 years ago
i'd suggest just making a direct mold from shape-lock or something. Heat it, roll it into a ball, put your hand in it, and then place the mouse electronics in the bottom. solder some wires to the buttons, and run them up through it to where your fingers will be. Add some rubber or felt and presto!
tommiesmee (author)  jduffy545 years ago
aren't shapelock and instamorph the same thing? either way, it's difficult to get in my country. so, what you're saying is that i should skip making a negative and just use the first mold i make as the final product? that doesn't seem like a bad idea either (though i will have to hollow it out to make room for the elektronics). i'll look into that, once i finally get some shapelock/instamorph/anything.
for the electronics, start out by desoldering the buttons, and solding wires in their place. Heat up the shapelock/instamorph and push the wires through it. mold to the shape of your hand and just press it down on top of the electronics, thus making a perfect negative mold of them, and including them in the mouse without drilling. solder the buttons when it cools. just pushing the electronics into the bottom of it (the sensor/trackball has to touch the ground) will save a step and guarantee that it is exactly in the rotation in reference to your hand that you want.
Kiteman5 years ago
Wrist-pain has been discussed here relatively recently - the general consensus was to switch to a tracker-ball, allowing you to rest your hand in any position you like.
tommiesmee (author)  Kiteman5 years ago
that's an option, but tracker-balls tend to have a very awkward grip if the ball is too large, or have too little sensitivity when the ball is too small. aside from that, i like making things ^_^ still thanks for the idea. if this doesn't work out, i'll look into that.