Building a Prosthetic Arm with Lego

As a part of their Human Condition Series, Great Big Story shares the amazing story of David Aguilar. David was born with a right arm that wasn’t fully developed. Growing up was challenging for David—not because of his arm, but because of the attention it brought.

Believe it or not, many people commented on his lack of an arm.

David Aguilar Lego arm

But what many viewed as a handicap or a disadvantage never held David back. David enjoys EDM, and goes by the name “Hand Solo.”

David took that can-do attitude and applied it to his love for Legos. His dream was to go out on a limb (ha!), and make Legos part of him, and he did just that, building a prosthetic out of the building blocks.

Lego Arm close up

David built his first prosthetic arm when he was nine years old. It started as a boat, but became something more. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite strong enough, and it would be nine years before David tried again. His MK1 was built with Lego Technic.

David Aguilar Lego Arm

The new arm was strong enough that David was able to do pushups with it. That first model took five days to build, but David went straight to work on MK2 as soon as it was done. The MK2 features a battery-powered motor that uses a fishing cable to act like a bicep and pull the arm up. By positioning his arm a certain way, he can activate the motor to close the arm. He can also move the prosthetic using his other arm.

That’s an amazing story.

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