Picture of Custom Ergonomic handles
Create custom fit ergonomic handles for small implements or tools.  Use of soldering irons or even forks may seem simple but what if you had trouble holding them?  Make modifications to improve the grip or the way you can hold it.

I was in the dollar store recently and saw a bunch of coat hooks.  It instantly reminded me of the coat hook that gmjhowe found recently to use in his project which reminded him of bertus52x11's left handed dSLR holder.  This got me thinking to the application of the coat hook idea where people have a difficult time in using either hand. 

I am entering this into the Health by Design contest, but because it is so similar to gmjhowe's modification of bertus52x11's idea based on bertus52x11's original idea, the main reason I am entering it is so that if this instructable wins anything the prize will go to bertus52x11, giving him an extra extra chance of winning! Be sure to check out his other projects, a lot of them are simple ideas, but the kind it takes a genius to think up.

Step 1: Hang on to your stuff

Picture of Hang on to your stuff
You will need a few things to create a custom ergonomic handle but not limited to what I suggest below.

Coat hooks - they can be the simple curved hook or the double elongated coat and hat hook.

nylon tie-wraps

cutters to clip excess length off tie wraps

Extras to pad and shape the handle if desired:

electrical tape

padded handlebar tape / spare mousepad / unused pair of insole liners to cut up

small diameter foam pipe insulation

epoxy plumber's putty - yeah, same stuff as the As Seen on TV magic putty but not at the sale price.
I don't think baked scupley or air dry polymer clay can take wear and tear.

candogoods5 years ago
Great idea but it looks a little dangerous for those with spastic movements.  Is there a way to make the parts that stick out a little shorter.  I love it though.  A truly new way to hold things.  Great job!  www.candogoods.wordpress.com (Organizational tips for the parent who has a child with special needs)
caitlinsdad (author)  candogoods5 years ago
These are metal coathooks so they are easily cut with a hacksaw and a file or emery paper to smooth out the cut edges.  As long as the base of the coathook is secured, you can cut it down to a stubby post or just enough for the grip.

I don't know of any actual people with that condition to try it on but it seems a rapid jerky movement might catch on something so you can cut the ends shorter to fit.  Thanks for commenting.
noahh5 years ago
If I were to try this, I would dip the new handles in this:


It might not work for something that heats up, but it would work for a fork.
caitlinsdad (author)  noahh5 years ago
You could also try that "liquid electrical tape" brush on stuff.  Both are kinda toxic to use with the solvent they have to put in it to liquidize the rubber.
grundisimo5 years ago
That soldering iron looks like a tricked out  syringe.
caitlinsdad (author)  grundisimo5 years ago
...used for injecting hot molten solder.
Really nice. I never would have thought of using an epee-style grip on a tool, but it makes perfect sense. I think I'll put one on my Dremel flex shaft and see if my fine carving gets any less haphazard.
caitlinsdad (author)  RavingMadStudios5 years ago
 Thx, I'm sure it would help controlling the vibration and fighting the heavy flex shaft if you had a better or more comfortable grip on it.  Please let us know if it helps.
OK, so I just happened to have all the materials already. I went out to the studio, lashed a couple of coat hooks to the Dremel in the Belgian configuration, revved it up and started to carve a bit on a piece of scrap wood....

aaaand the drive spring broke.

I'm sure that the new grips had nothing to do with the breakage. It was an old flex-shaft, and its time had come.

The good news is that the tool felt much more controllable, and the couple of passes I made before the shaft died were very encouraging, but it remains to be seen whether my carvings will improve.

The downside is that if my carving fails to improve, I don't think I can blame the tool anymore,  I'll have to shift blame to the tool holding the tool....
chaitanyak5 years ago
 brilliantly simple! 
gmjhowe5 years ago
 Great! I can see these being great for people with Alzheimer's, Parkinsons, or other conditions that result in unsteady wrists and hands.
caitlinsdad (author)  gmjhowe5 years ago
A quick glance at products out there, just a bigger cushioned grip on the handle.  It seems a hook would indeed help with positioning and gaining leverage.
bertus52x115 years ago
Well, sure Gmjhowe and you are embarrassing me with your qualifications about me, but thanks anyway.

I like the fact that ideas go around and get modified / improved. I think you have a great idea.
About the contest, same reaction as with gmjhowe, no need to worry.

Finally, just out of curiousity, why is it called  a Belgian grip? One of the prejudices here agiants Belgian people (and I emphasize prejudice, because I'm one of them) is that they are not very smart. Are you saying your grip is not very smart?
caitlinsdad (author)  bertus52x115 years ago
We try to encourage and recognize those with great ideas, but enough about us...haha

Belgian pistol grip should really be called an Italian pistol grip but sometimes called English pistol grip by some manufacturers...
The Pistol grip (otherwise known as the anatomical or orthopedic grip) was originally developed for a nineteenth-century Italian aristocrat, L.Visconti, master of fencing, who lived in Belgium and had lost fingers in a tram accident.
Ah, I see...
So after all he wasn't too smart...(getting his fingers in the rails).
I think he means style/ way it is held.
I could be wrong, wait for "caitlinsdad's" answer...