When five fingers are not enough, you might want to wear Third Thumb. Third Thumb is a concept project that wants to analyze the relationship between body and prosthetic technology. It can be said as a tool, an experience, or a self-expression, it’s a model used to better understand human response to artificial extensions. Third Thumb, the name was inspired by the word of “prosthesis” or “to add, put onto”, something that is meant to extend, not replace. This project wants to re-frame prosthetic as extensions of the body instead of replacement.
Third Thumb has been designed in a way to have a dynamic movement, opposing movements work together to make the thumb even more functional than a single finger. This concept thumb would replicate these movements using two motors pulling against the natural tension of a flexible 3D printed material.
Designed by Dani Clode, this thumb is controlled by two pressure sensors fitted into the shoes under the toes, these two motors would move the thumb. The foot control was inspired by products that help to develop strong connection between our hands and our feet, such as driving a car, playing a piano, or using a sewing machine. Basically, the main parts of Third Thumb is constructed with 3D printed parts. The structural cover for the hand and wrist cover for the motors are 3D printed in smooth formlabs grey resin. This project wants to create a catalyst for society to consider human body extension in form of approachable design. It’s a tool and a form of self expression, prosthetic that is designed not just to fix disability but to extend our ability.