I originally made one of these last year for my Mother. After 30 years of being a Physical Therapist, the strain she put on her body and arthritis caught up with her. Her right wrist became unable to make certain motions without excrutiating pain. One of those motions was the twisting motion required to turn a car key. I came up with this simple device to help. It allows one to turn their car key by pushing and pulling rather than by twisting. ( Ironically Mom got her wrist fixed by surgery and now I use it because I broke a bone in wrist a few weeks ago).

You'll notice that the device shown in this Instructable is different from the one in the video . The device in the video is the original I built for Mom which is still going strong. The one shown in this Instructable is the one I built for myself. It promptly broke on the fifth or sixth use. This is because I used a wood the was too soft and incorrectly placed the key notch. I'll describe these errors and how to avoid them in later steps.

Step 1: Tools and Materials

For this project the only material you'll need is a hard wood dowel an inch in diameter. I used a hard wood for the original device, but (without thinking/realizing) used a soft wood dowel for the device documented in the Instructable.

I used the following tools. As always if you don't have them you can acheive the same effect a different way with what you have...or use it as an excuse to buy a new tool.

* Tape measure
* Bench vise
* Work piece protectors
* Router
* Straight cut router bit (I used a 1/4" bit. This will vary depending on the thickness of your key.)
* Drill with 1/4" bit
* Jigsaw
* Sandpaper
* Wood burner with tips (Optional)

<p>Just made one in less than 15 minutes. Send requests to HandymanLLC@embarqmail.com Have enough material for about 6 more</p>
Hello my name is kim i would like to get my client one of those keys things to help her could u please tell me where to go u can email me at kimharvey809@gmail.com thanks
<p>I have a GM so my car does this automatically</p>
Im not sure someone who cant twist a key should be driving. Safety hazard.
Are you concerned at all about the extra weight you are putting on your ignition? The extra weight tends to pull down on the ignition causing it to be unbalanced in the barrel assembly, which in turn, causes premature wear. I'm surprised that a physical therapist would use a system like this. Usually you want to exercise the injured area to strengthen the muscles, not use a crutch.
well you don't really want to put too much strain on a broken wrist
I was referring to his mothers arthritis. You probably shouldn't be driving with a broken wrist in my opinion. Not because a broken wrist would cause you to lose control of your vehicle but rather, with a broken wrist, you are less likely able to regain control if something sudden were to happen.
Yeah, I feel like a jerk for saying you're right. I hope she doesn't drive on the highway.
I can't afford a cab eveyday.
No to the wear question. The turner is light and is removed after the ignition is turned on. My Mom's wrist was frozen b/c og bone spurs and arthritis. Otherwise you're correct that she would have used exercise to strengthen the muscle group and not used this. She really hates those lft chairs you see on TV, b/c they atrophy so many muscles.
Very nice! This will probably help a lot of people with wrist problems. Have you though of putting a peg through the hole so that you can turn the key with an underhand grip? I though I would throw the idea out there. =]
Actually no I hadn't thought of that. I may have to try that and see what happens! Thanks!
While very simple, I can see it helping a lot of people. It's the kind of thing that's easy to make from almost anything but it's giving people the initial idea to motivate them that's important.<br> <br> (I changed the category, hope that's okay)<br>
(have you thought of putting a piece of cord through the hole you put in the end and making the whole thing into a keyring? Those with lesser dexterity might find grabbing this easier than fumbling for keys)
That was the idea of the hole, but I didn't go through with it as my keys would be hard to fit in my pocket. My other thought was to use a piece of cord to hang it on something in the car so it would always be there when needed.
Thanks. And the category change is cool. I meant to do it myself when I saw the assistive technology announcement, but hadn't goten around to it.
I think this instructable ROCKS!&nbsp; 30 years from now I might be thanking you!
Thanks! Be sure to vote when the contest wraps up.
&nbsp;neat idea, i love these instructables that are outside the box but produce something simple yet incredibly useful
Thanks! I'm full of these kinds of projects. Subscribe and never miss a RadBear original.
that really is a good idea !&nbsp; You could probably sell a million of them on an infomercial if you made them from plastic
I considered that, but since every key (even from the same manufacturer) is different in thickness, I'd either have to make one for each car type or develop an adjustable one. Althought I do know a guy who runs an injection molding plant...hmmm...
What if you included different sized(thickness) rubber grippers, in a C -ish shape, kind of like how in-ear earbuds come with different sized rubbery parts.<br />
That might work...
I think that's smart!
this is cool and all, but if you hurt yourself to the point of not being able to turn a key, then you shouldn't be drving.
Well the thing is the injury is such that it is very limited things that cause pain. Twisting a key hurts like hell but all other motions required for driving are pain free. Very weird.

About This Instructable




Bio: I'm cheap and like to use what I have on hand and I really enjoy taking things apart to salvage parts. Rather than be ... More »
More by RadBear:Growler Transport Rack (Bill's Cradle) Add Magnetic Catches to Your Drying Rack Cork Squid Totem 
Add instructable to: