Instructables

Prosthetic Leg made with Common Household Materials

Contest Winner
In third-world countries, it is hard to get good or even decent medical materials. What if you have been injured in a terrible accident where you lose a leg? It's either you sell your house or you have to be bound to a wheel chair for the rest of your life. This may allow those in those countries to make their life a little bit better.

Questions, Comments, Suggestions or Revisions, please post them so I can improve upon this instructable.

I'd like to give some thanks to stephenniall who gave me the great idea of using a foot shaped thing to hold the shoe in place.

Just wanted to say that if you like this instructable, think about voting for it in the Humana Health by Design Contest.
Thank you !! :)
 
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Step 1: Some Background on the Project Before We Get Started

Sitting at my house I first thought about how I could possibly support all of that weight, or at least how to keep the leg in place so it doesn't randomly fall off.  I also thought about how I would even position the leg on top of the device. I then realized that maybe a dome shaped object could be where the knee rests and there is some kind of device on it holding the prosthetic leg in place.  I set off looking for a tape measure to measure the diameter of my leg and find a funnel shape. My knee's diameter was 16 inches. I then looked around for a funnel shaped object and found out that an ordinary 2 Liter soda bottle would work nicely. I was then off to find the supporting objects and than it was off to building.
This is quite resourceful...clearly a winner. Not quite the best prosthetic on the market, but in a third world country, probably the best available.
starr2211 months ago
oh my gosh...hilarious! as a below knee amputee myself I can laugh. ur idea rocks. let me tell u before I got insurance to afford a prosthetic I had many ideas being worked out myself. I think tho that to keep it on maybe try using one of those elastic knee braces over the whole of the knee up the thigh. much better support. good job. very creative.
Hwhite601 year ago
I'm sorry but I'm an intern a prosthetics company and this would not work for a below knee amputee, Its not a simple task to walk on a prosthetic
nailuj2 years ago
That is an incredible idea. The only problem that I have discovered about Instructables is how jealous it can make people of other peoples' amazing instuctables. This, Sir/Madam is one of those amazing Instructables. I am in awe.
valkgurl2 years ago
Um---sorta! Kinda the same basic idea of how my pros leg works---or doesn't.

Can tell you that the socket ie the soda bottle is way too shallow to be used. And actual below the knee amputee like moi actually does NOT walk using their "leg" or "stump" we walk using a ridge built into and hidden by the socket that hooks UNDER the kneecap.

Now if you could get something in there to FLEX the "ankle"----I imagine it would be awkward and stiff to try and walk on a completely UNbendy ankle. I can't do the twist the ankle manouver ---and in fact can't do the twist the knee part well either! which makes getting on a motorcycle um interesting.

But the basic idea of a "peg leg"-- which is what your ible is-- for a third world app is interesting.
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An actual amp ALSO uses a liner made of---well mine and others I have seen are some sort of silicone. So maybe the Oogru some one made here could be used. This acts as a shock absorber AND on mine holds a locking PIN which extends into a ratcheting receiver and HOLDS the leg to the liner. Others use a "suspension sleeve" which goes on the OUTSIDE of the leg socket and slides up over the leg and GRIPS it.

This is less secure and actually my first leg got knocked OFF while held on this way on a steep and twisty bike ride.

Other systems use air to inflate these liners and grab the leg.

There is a design for a SODA BOTTLE PROSTHETIC ARM out there somewhere which uses the soda bottle cap to attach tools and utensils too and can be swapped out endlessly. And for free!

And there is a guy on ebay selling hugely expensive "plans" on how to build a leg---the "book" runs you something like $200!!!!!! But an actual pros leg runs about $20,000 for a BASIC set up. And if you can get ahold of one---either find some one with an old one or get one off of ebay etc---you will see that for a below the knee model there is NOT that much tech involved.

Mine cost that much and consists of a plastic inner molded socket which extends from the end of the limb to slightly above the knee---approx 11" and I am 5'2" tall. This has a carbon fiber outer shell. The pylon--the pipe part---is steel and titanium. The foot is steel---spring steel of some sort---and is covered by a foot "looking" shell.

Some girls I know have used screws to hold on sandals etc. A wooden "foot" would work too with an ankle hinge.

Taping to your leg? Not even. Would eat your skin instantly esp in third world conditions and let in nasty bugs. Tying it to your belt might work but it would be loose.

Go look on ebay and see what pics people have of actual legs---and yes they DO sell them. Some go to South Africa where most people don't HAVE health insurance and there is a thriving "gray market" in used parts to make new ones or fix 'em up.

Good basic idea tho!
 This is alright i suppose But The duct tape wouldnt support it for Long and The pvc would move in the shoe!
IgnorantZebra (author)  stephenniall4 years ago
The duct tape just reinforces the JB Weld joint. The JB weld will hold together for quite a long time. The PVC won't move because I Epoxied it down in step 9
 Oh yeah Sorry I must've gone past that a little . How about adding one of those Fake feet that you put in a shoe for it to keep its shape . That way you would be able to change shoes!
IgnorantZebra (author)  stephenniall4 years ago
I just finished the device and is posting it, thanks
 Ahh Cool I love the idea of pvc pipe as a foot . That makes the project Very cheap . I might have to build One It'd be handy To have three legs ! If i get it finished tonight or tomorrow ill Post pictures!
 Update to myself (lol) . I have just bent the pvc Pipe Using a Hob and Because i didnt fill it with sand It has cracked ! I have to go to the shop tomorrow to buy some more pvc pipe and To get a 90 degree Fitting. I might try bending again as i have an idea To give the wearer His Heel Movement Back .
IgnorantZebra (author)  stephenniall4 years ago
hey... if you like it a lot, can you please vote for it in the contest?

Thanks a ton

CT320
Jor2daje4 years ago
Just wondering if you have anyway of testing this because I am almost positive that anything other than straight vertical forces would break the pvc "shin" off of the bottle neck. 150ish lbs is way more than a small amount of jbweld and some ducttape can hold.
IgnorantZebra (author)  Jor2daje4 years ago
JB weld has been proven to be able to hold up to, like, 2000 pounds. I don't think it will be a problem