Introduction: Arthritis and Parkinson's Assistive Utensil
Introducing the EasyFork. The EasyFork, is exactly what it sounds like. It's a fork, made for use by people who have trouble gripping onto things, whether heavily disabled, or just mild arthritis, the EasyFork is good for most everything. My inspiration for this was the fact that my grandfather had Parkinson's, and couldn't hold onto his own fork or spoon. With simple full hand grips, it makes it easy to start using the EasyFork, and easy to hold onto it. With a very simple design, it is a very cheap and easy way to help those who have trouble holding onto every day items.
Disclaimer: v1 is a flat handled design, better for quicker and cheaper prints, while v1.2 has a rounder and more extruded handle, better for grip and size.
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Step 1: Printing Your Fork
To get started, if you do not have a 3D printer, I recommend 3D hubs as a great place to get this item printed. However, if you are lucky enough to have access to a printer, I recommend printing at a maximum of 1mm per layer. I personally use ABS plastic with my printer, and would recommend doing the same, however, other types of filament will work just fine.
Step 2: Finishing Your Fork
Now that you have your 3D printed EasyFork, your not quite ready to eat with it. Due to spaces in between the layers of the print, the fork is currently unsafe to eat with as it will grow bad bacteria. To fix this problem, you want to use some type of plastic sealant. Depending on what material your fork is made of, choose the right sealant. For example, I used a quick dip in acetone, followed by a drying period and multiple rinses before it was up to my standard of quality. Remember to be safe!