Teen uses 3-D printing to build a new arm for his veteran father



Teenager creates 3D arm for dad was injured in Iraq

Missouri high schooler gives his father a hand.

An ambitious teenager, uses his ingenuity, know-how and a bit of technology to build a new arm for his veteran father, who was wounded in Iraq.

St. Louis high school student Robbie Frei built a custom-made robot prosthetic arm for his father, who was an amputee, according to Fox 2 St. Louis.

Frei, who has said that he wants to go into robotics when he hits college, built in the arm for his father in about 3 months. Frei’s father was injured in an RPG attack in 2003 in Iraq.


But first, he built an arm-adapter for the Nintendo Switch video console for his father to play video games again.

“When my father was injured in the Marines, he was not able to play video games with us for about 10 years, and after I made that 3D printed adapter, he was able to play with us, at full speed,” Frei said.

Eventually, he created a custom scanned prosthetic, with the help of his father’s left hand and then mirrored it can be used for the right hand. Robbie’s father can now throw a ball with the help of the prosthesis.

This is not the first time that Robbie has illustrated his talents, according to people who know him.

“He knows how to get projects done and comes up with amazing things,” said robotics advisor Derek Ward. “He is on the robotics team for six years now. So, just to see him go from a seventh-grader for a 12-year-old, (I’m) not surprised that he can pull something like this off.”

Frei, who is a National Merit finalist, credits his accumen in mathematics for the grinding of his ability to rise to the challenge and come up with a solution.

“As soon as I start to test out different alternatives I begin to refine on something,” Frei said. “It’s kind of more discovery than invention, in a way.”

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